Andrea Alonzo Cedeño, Ecuador:
She had a magnanimous soul filled with God’s love.
I remember Valeria as a very joyful girl that was always ready to give anyone a hand. She cheered up my life with her hugs and her smile.
She helped me a lot personally. Even though she was younger than I am, she had a magnanimous soul filled with God’s love. She would always tell me: “Andreita, the Lord is waiting for you. Come back to your Home, to your family. The HM-YPEP (Home of the Mother – I Prefer Paradise group) has a place for you.” She always told me this whenever we saw each other at Mass. And whenever she knew that I wasn’t doing well spiritually, she would give me a big hug and pinch my cheeks to cheer me up.
I remember how she wrote me once, to encourage me. Her letter really helped me. This is what she wrote:“Don’t abandon us. Don’t abandon the Lord. Neither He, nor the rest of us abandon you. Andrea, don’t forget that we really love you a lot and we are always waiting for you. But, there is someone even more important, greater than we are, who loves you so much and is always waiting for you. Please, don’t be silly. Don’t let the world hold you down. Weren’t you happier outside the world, without being of the world? Didn’t God fill you? In spite of all the difficulties, He is always there. Even though we don’t see Him, He is always taking care of us. He is always there waiting for us, in spite of our insolence, our unfaithfulness, our insults… ;In the midst of all the suffering we have, we always have true happiness. The battle is not an easy one. No one said it was easy, not even Jesus. Following Christ is painful, but the joy we experience and the joy we give God is bigger than everything else. The path is not short, but long. But, we will reach our destination being what God wants us to be. Doing His will, it’s easier for us to be happy; it’s easier for us to be holy even though, like I said, it’s painful, but – Don’t we want to suffer for a God who suffers and suffered so much for us? If Jesus asks you for something, give it to Him. Don’t refuse Him [what He asks], because it’s so He can give you something really worthwhile. Haven’t you experienced that immense, true joy? Don’t abandon us. DON’T ABANDON HIM.”.
That was what she wrote to me. It really touched me and helped me a lot. As I say, she may have been the “littlest” of the girls [who died], but she had a magnanimous soul. Just observing the look on her face whenever she talked about the Lord and Our Lady was enough to make you realize this.