Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. - Psalm 116There are many lessons that Chiara taught through her short but profound life, but here are a few that burned the brightest for me:
- Our bodies are made for self-giving and love. Just as through the Body of Christ comes our salvation, we are to literally spend our bodies in service of the other. Chiara believed that in pregnancy and birth her body was for the child, even while knowing the child was not for her.
- Life is sacred. All of it. Chiara and Enrico welcomed each child with reverence, as purely a gift from God, entrusted to them only for a little while, and then to be given back. They realized that “we are born, never to die.”
- God is hiding in our suffering for the purpose of leading us closer to Him through the Cross. She compared her cancer to Christ on the road to Emmaus, who was not recognizable at first, but present all along. She recognized Him in the breaking of her body, as the disciples had recognized Him in the breaking of the bread.
- And the bread that is broken for us, the Eucharist, is what sustains us. At every turn, Chiara and Enrico could be found in front of the Tabernacle. Christ journeyed with them in the Blessed Sacrament.
- The Blessed Virgin Mary reveals to us the sweetness of the suffering face of Christ. Mary, Enrico would say, “told us the truth: that there is neither past nor future; the only certainties are the present moment and the fact that we shall die. It was she, the model, who taught us to base our lives on the Word of God.”
- Living in the present moment is the key to peace. God, they both knew, would meet them in the moment and give them the grace to live it. The past they entrusted to His Mercy and the future to His Providence. Chiara, it was said, “was obedient to each day.”
Copyright 2018 Claire Dwyer
About the Author
Claire Dwyer is a wife and mom of six. Her book, This Present Paradise, a spiritual journey with St. Elizabeth of the Trinity, is available from Sophia Institute Press. Claire currently works full time as Marketing Manager of the Avila Foundation and shares timeless wisdom for modern Catholic women at EvenTheSparrow.com. Connect with her there!