Chapter 2 (Part 1) Pages 51 - 64
How does a Lady with Grandeur of Soul Suffer?
Week 8 Questions
Anyone who has any experience with the pain of gall bladder attacks knows how totally consuming and incapacitating they are. It was only extreme virtue that would allow Dona Lucilia to act as she did, before, during and after the surgery she had to endure.
Before – she had to embrace with Faith and confidence this radical, new procedure. Then, she had to help prepare her family for this huge adventure of sailing to Europe with a large entourage, plus the discomfort of the trip itself in her condition.
During the surgery, she would have to submit to all aspects of the invasive operation. Even after, she was distressed with pain, not only by the healing process, but as well but by… “baffling and debilitating…” ; pains in the soles of her feet. With extreme charity she covered the incompetent and even dangerous behaviour of the dictatorial nurse and absent doctor.
Then, there was dear Tito. It could only have been as a last resort that his family would look to Dona Lucilia and rely on her goodness to deal kindly with him, even in these circumstances, and of course their confidence was not misplaced.
Dona Lucilia had prepared herself throughout her life by prayer and the constant practice of virtue to do the best thing in each of these circumstances.
Are we ready for our own trials?
How can we become ready?
Dona Lucilia was a lady involved mainly in her domestic and spiritual pursuits. She had no real political interest and yet her surgeon’s (Dr. Bier) naive assumption that she would enjoy hearing of the Kaiser’s proposed plan to possibly establish in Brazil “…a large well-organized German colony,”; motivated her to discourage the possibility of this ever happening in Brazil. With great indignation she was able to forcefully enumerate the ways in which Brazilians “…will show you people how Brazil can defend itself.”
She would have lost none of her dignity in making this defense, and though she was still in a weakened state, her honour required that she declare her patriotism.
We see clearly that virtue guides us in all our actions.
What are the things we are and will be called upon to defend in these times?
Despite all the setbacks in her recuperation including real pain and suffering, Dona Lucilia’s noble nature allowed her to reflect on the impressions of Old Europe. She had, no doubt, imposed this tranquility upon herself to show young Rosee and Plinio, as well as the others, a gracious face that rises above adversity to share the joy of others.
We show those around us what we think of the importance of life and virtue by our actions.
How important is it to often review our words and actions in order to analyze and correctwhat is lacking?