Paysandú Sur – Uruguay - Presence of the Little Sisters in the local families

’The inheritance of the Little Sister is the poor, the workers and their family: she will love this inheritance with a preferential love.’ Etienne Pernet

Leo (12), was taking his brother (7) to school on a scooter, without his mother’s permission. She was five months pregnant at the time. Three streets away from the house he was struck by a vehicle, and was taken to hospital in a serious condition. His mother stayed full-time in the hospital with him and a Little Sister accompanied her in this great sorrow because of the delicate situation of her pregnancy, as they were expecting the worst. The other sisters went to the house, took the clothing and other linen that needed laundering, washed and ironed them and took them back to the house, and this over a period of many days. 
 
The elder brother Gustavo (13), who attends the secondary school, was on his own and was very distressed. We suggested that he stay in our community for as long as his mother was looking after his brother in the hospital. We took it in turns to call him at 6 a.m. and prepared his breakfast before he set out for school. When he returned in the afternoon we were waiting for him with the meal we had carefully prepared and he would tell us about the day’s events with his classmates and his teachers. 
 
With the neighbours and the community we had a day of prayer for Leo’s quick recovery and, thank God, Leo is now well, he can walk (with some after-effects), to the great joy of his family, and ours too. Four months later his very healthy little brother was born. 
 
María Luisa, aged 70, a woman of deep faith with a great love for the Lord Jesus, was a person with a strong sense of solidarity, always concerned to help many people discreetly. She was ill and the doctor said that she would live for about six months. She was aware of this situation. Her only sister (Carmen) took her to her house and provided all that she needed for the time she had left: medical attention, nursing care. She looked after her with great care during those six months; she sadly accepted this harsh reality. 
The sisters accompanied María Luisa lovingly, they prayed, they confided her to Mary since María Luisa had great love for her; this gave her great peace at those moments. They stayed with her particularly at the times that made it easier for Carmen to participate with an easy mind in the Eucharist at the parish and also gain some strength for the difficult time that was approaching. Some friends from the parish also wanted to help in some way and used to come to fetch the sisters in order to accompany them back to our community because it is not advisable to come to our neighbourhood late. Maria Luisa died after six months, as the doctor had predicted. 
 
María, a young women of 30, was to become a mother for the second time and her pregnancy was very complicated. She had to be hospitalised because her life and that of her baby were in danger. 
Because of her frail health she was not to be left alone at any moment and so her mother spent the nights with her; her husband was working and in his spare moments he also came to be with her but, there was still time to be covered. That is how the Little Sisters spent a lot of time with María, giving her food and water, making sure that she did not get up because she had to lie flat, even having to eat lying flat – it was part of the treatment. 
This was during the last months of her pregnancy, until the baby was born. He weighed 3.6 kilos. The mother is very well and the baby is beautiful, surrounded with all the love of his parents, grandparents and L.S.A..
 
Rosa, aged 90, a very good woman, obliging, energetic and devout, and for many years (with other women) used to make snacks for the needy children of the locality after the ’school support’ session. 
During her illness the Little Sisters brought her Communion, which she received in a very recollected way; each time she waited for the Lord Jesus as ’Somebody’ very important in her life who visited her during the week. 
She had a large family, seven children. Two daughters partici-ate in the Chapel, they are very generous and active. Rosa fractured her hip and because there was a widespread strike by doctors it was not possible to operate on her and so she just had to lie in bed. During that time she developed bedsores and for over a year the Little Sisters tended these, as well as checking her blood pressure and accompanying the families. 
 
The family are very friendly with us and very grateful for the services given. 
 
’Attentive presence to families’
 
 
Francisco Joaquin was born on the 1st of July. Weighing 3.9kg, he is a beautiful baby; there is great joy in the family and among their friends. He’s the 5th grandson of this working family with 2 children: they are neighbours with a great sense of solidarity, and were the first to help the Little Sisters when they moved into Paysandú. They used to take them something to eat every day, either for the midday or the evening meal. The Little Sisters are attentive to the grandparents by being close to them, offering simple practical services. 
 
Sisters Mirandolina, Liliana, Maria 
Community of Paysandú
12/12/2013
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