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A Gift and a Pledge


“Suffering accepted and borne together with others is joy”

Last summer, my family and I drove out to visit my godfather in the village where I was born. He is the husband of my deceased father’s sister, the last remaining member of that side of my family. My aunt is eighty-two years old and has been bedridden for three years. All this time my uncle has been looking after her. I was so impressed and charmed by what I saw that I just have to tell you about him.

My uncle is eighty-eight years old, enjoys robust health, and is full of good humor. He has an excellent memory and is a marvelous storyteller; and he has things to relate, for he has survived two world wars and a concentration camp. He says he has prayed all his life, especially in hard times. He always wears a holy medal — the childhood gift of his mother. He says prayer is raising oneself to God, directing one’s thanks and petitions to Him. He prays with my aunt, though praying the rosary and the litanies is becoming increasingly difficult for her, as she is losing her memory. It sounds awful, but my aunt is turning into a “vegetable.” But not for my uncle. With true devotion, he washes her, changes her napkins, dresses her, feeds her — and always without any show of impatience. He has lived with her for sixty years and loves her still. Having watched them, I can state that the Sacrament of Matrimony is a gift, but it is also a pledge of caring for the other to the end of one’s days. 

I envy my aunt and would like to be treated like her one day. In our shallow, arid world such an uncle shines out like a diamond. I wish him good health. I am so proud of him.

Maria

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The article was published with the permission from "Love One Another!"

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