She related a conversation Brescia had with his Italian immigrant father at the time. Brescia's father, she said, was overcome with joy to know that 50,000 lives a year could be saved by his son's discovery, but was dismayed to hear of the delay Brescia had accepted.
"'Don't think of this world,'" she said Brescia's father urged. "'You would let 50,000 people die?'"
Brescia published his discovery the next day. Sr. Madonna said that despite the invention now being worth $60 billion, he never gained anything from it financially. However, "he's the richest man I know," she said.
"Lasciare," she said, using the Italian word for "release" or "let go" that Brescia's father had spoken to him in urging his son to give up the discovery. "We too have to let go of so many things," she said, "that keep us from the blessing that is ours."
Referencing the "discernment of spirits" developed by St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus, Sr. Madonna said that "so often, we hand desolating thoughts and lies a microphone, and we set them on the stage of our hearts."
"It's like, 'Wow, that's the worst thing I've ever heard about myself. Say it again, just this time in surround sound,'" she said.
"Let these thoughts be taken captive," she urged listeners.
She told a story from a sister in Romania who had worked at an understaffed orphanage, where babies had stopped crying because there was no one there to respond.
"There are places in our hearts that have not yet cried out to the Father because of a lack of faith," she said. "We have a good Father, and he hears you."
"Tonight, we break the silence," she said, as FOCUS staff prepared the stage for adoration.
Speaking to CNA after her talk of how she herself first came to deeply encounter this love, Sr. Madonna told a story of time she had spent praying with the book of Genesis.
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"I had a powerful meditation with the Scripture of Jacob and Esau receiving the blessing of their father," she said. In this story, Jacob dresses as Esau to receive his father's blessing. "Sometimes, I feel like I have to dress up, or be someone else, or impress, or pretend, so that he can bless me."
"Something happened in my heart where I realized basically how sorrowful that is, how far that is from what the Father is actually offering me," Sr. Madonna stated. "Through the prayer, I felt like the Father wanted my empty hands, and wanted my heart as it is."
Speaking to CNA on the connection between accepting God the Father's love and evangelization, the focus of the SLS conference, Sr. Madonna said that this love changes how we view those we encounter.
"Once we've received our own lives as a gift, and once we recognize that every human person is made in the image and likeness of God and is a communication of him," Sr. Madonna told CNA, "when I encounter another person, I recognize that they were brought into being by God all-mighty, and are beloved of him. He loves them. They are communicating something to me that was actually entrusted to them by him and it's unique."
"When I know that, and live it, then every person is going to know that they're special, they're worthy of my time. I desire to know their hearts and be with them in solidarity."
"We have to tell people; we have to invite them."