“We went through a small ‘Via Crucis’ [Way of the Cross] from doctors who were recommended to us. No one understood what was happening to her. Some were kind and others were very rude,” he lamented.
‘There was a supernatural component’
“But we also saw that there was a component that wasn’t normal, a supernatural component,” Jimena’s father told ACI Prensa.
He explained that one day they had an appointment for an operation on Jimena “to fix the eye convergence issue with a procedure in the operating room, and we didn’t quite see that, we weren’t convinced that this was what we had to do.”
“She prayed a lot to the Virgin that night and the next day the eye convergence was cured. And the doctor himself saw it and then said, ‘This is pretty amazing.’ It can happen, but well, he was pretty amazed. And for a doctor to be amazed, it already has to be something extraordinary,” the father related.
For the young woman’s family, what happened “also gave us clues that we could take a leap of faith and somehow trust the Virgin and leave ourselves in her hands without, logically, abandoning our responsibility.”
A novena that really took off
In the days prior to WYD, during a walk along the Rincón de la Victoria beach in Málaga (Spain) on their way to visit an image of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel found among the rocks, father and daughter decided to completely abandon themselves to the Virgin.
“Walking along the beach we started talking. I told her that at some moments in her life she had had ‘inspirations,’” referring to the faith and trust that the young woman had placed in providence throughout her illness.
It was after that conversation that they both decided to “get in gear and get the whole world praying.”
“And that’s what happened. She told us that she believed that we had to pray and make a novena to Our Lady of the Snows from July 28 to Aug. 5, and we got moving on it with everyone else. She was leaving for Lisbon the same day, the 28th.”
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Jimena’s father said that “thousands of people” participated in the novena, which really took off, he said. “Just the girls who went with her numbered almost 400 and most of those who were there didn’t know her. And now for them it was like the miracle of WYD.”
Vacation time this August was going to be definitive for the young woman. “We had hoped that in the summer, if we had any kind of a sign, if we had any kind of indication, we were going to be turned upside down.”
“September for Jimena was [to be] a new world, because she had to start going around with a cane and training a guide dog, she also had to consider which university degrees she could do and which ones she couldn’t,” he explained.
Jimena’s father explained that, in addition, they would have had to look for new doctors, “and every time she goes to a doctor it’s a mis-treatment, because they do all kinds of tests again, because they don’t understand anything and then she ends up devastated.”
In addition, they were working with ONCE (Spanish National Organization for the Blind), “and we realized that it’s a wonderful place.” However, he admitted, “we were always holding on to the conviction that there was going to be a solution.”
‘A girl always concerned about the people around her’