By the time I had buckled myself in and drove off of USCB, tears were streaming down my cheeks. Joanne was right. She was so right!!!!
For 7 months, thousands upon thousands of people across the globe have been praying for Nina and the rest of her family. Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, Hinduists, Agnostics and even Atheists have been praying in unison. Through this process my faith has been transformed. I struggle with the heaviness I feel of being abandoned by the God I love........but truth be told (when I'm not being stubborn and allow myself to reach beyond the pain) I understand that God has never abandoned me. On the contrary, I have been blessed continuously and Joanne's words reminded me of that truth. The reality is that my faith is palatable now. It does not fit a box or a name or a creed but it is truer than prior to August 19th, 2010. My suffering has transformed my faith permanently.
Today, a Mass in Nina's memory and honor was celebrated at the Vatican. My precious Linda has been working on this gift for the past month with her dear Italian friend Elisa who lives in Rome. Below is the email that Elisa sent describing the mass. When I read this, I had just dropped off Teddy at karate. I stood outside in the rain but it was my tears that poured!
March 24 2011,S Pietro 7, 35 am
The square is beautiful as well as the light, today is a fantastic sunny day. Very few people, just thirty-four at the security gate. The going through the main entrance is like arriving at the waited final destination. Josè is already inside, close to the sagresty where a lot of priests are changing their clots with those for celebration. Josè does the same. Our chappel is that of St Joseph altar (n46 in the map http://www.
erboristeriaedaltro.com/ camereciprobeb/mappa_basilica_ di_san_pietro.htm)......Fantastic! Don't worry Nina Dolores, we're all in the same boat and I'm sure now you're really very happy within His arms. Your mom is here with me, I know it, it's night in LA but she's not sleeping, she's talking with you! Josè says you're an angel now, so we've to pray to you , not for you...anyway, I'm really happy today being here with you and for you with all the people loving you...forever
Nina's life, suffering and death has moved people to pray and strive to live better lives. That is something to rejoice about!!!