My best memories are from when I was in the Home of the Mother Students' Residence with Maria Augusta in Portoviejo. I remember the first time we went to the Residence. It was difficult for us to leave our families to live in a house with other girls who we practically didn’t know. We had seen each other at some activities of the Home, bu that’s all. So, we went to the Residence afraid of not knowing how we would adapt.
I remember that we felt right at home from the first day. I remember that Cieli (that’s what we called Maria Augusta) told me that same night before going to bed, “I thought that it was going to be boring with you girls, but I feel like I’ve known you my whole life.”
We were very close from the first moment onward. Every weekend we would go from Chone to Portoviejo together and talk about everything that happened at the University and in the Residence.
They were years of much self-giving and of much struggle for her, because she was a little shy and many things were difficult for her. What I most remember is her selflessness in small things. She was always ready to do anything to make sure the other girls in the Residence were okay. She did everything with joy. She never measured her self-giving.
I remember one day, after prayer, she said to me, “This is too much for me. The Lord is giving me so much that it scares me, but at the same time, I am happy.” At that time, I didn’t understand what she was talking about. I understood in the last camp when she said to me, “Erika, do you remember the night after prayer when I told you that Our Lord was giving me too much?” I said, “Yes, but I don’t know what you meant.” With a face radiant with joy, she said, “It was the day that the Lord called me to be a Servant Sister.” That day I was able to understand her words from years beforehand.
I know that Our Lord has rewarded her efforts and now she is happy with Him. When we were in the Residence, she would say, “Can you imagine when we will see the Lord face to face? Ahhhh!” She would always shout with joy when she would say it.
I give thanks to God for everything that I lived with Cieli and with the other girls.
She will surely help us on our path until we can see each other again.