Sisters who work in church shops scattered around Minsk often chance upon genuine miracles. The Lord lets them meet amazing people who remain in their hearts for a while.
A sister was looking at the hubbub, which was going on around her, with sympathy. People were in a hurry. People were nervous. People were getting late… An old lady wearing a cotton headscarf came into the church shop and handed the sister a note with a list of names to be prayed for. Not only did the old lady want the sister to pray for her deceased relatives, she also needed empathy. She stood with the sister and told her about her life. After a while, her mood became less gloomy.
Other passers-by came to the sister, too. There was a young woman among them. She would later make friends with the sister of mercy and tell her about her difficult life. But it would happen later. Now it was time for a little miracle.
A girl was passing by the church shop window. She was wearing provocative outfit (even by this desensitised world’s standards), combined with excessive makeup and a bottle of beer in her hand. When the girl saw the church shop window, she stopped dead in her tracks. Then she sheepishly came closer, looked straight into the sister’s eyes, and asked, “May I sit with you for a while? Oh please let me just sit here. Just for a couple of minutes.” The sister agreed, though she couldn’t get what “sit with you” meant.
Meanwhile, Marina – that was the young lady’s name – threw her beer bottle into a litter bin. The next moment, she returned to the sister and squatted by her side. The girl took the sister’s hand, and the sister noticed that there were tears in the girl’s eyes. She was crying silently, without sobbing.
No matter how silly they looked in the midst of the noisy city, the hustle and bustle disappeared, while the two young women observed something really wonderful…
Marina spent just a couple of minutes in the church shop. She didn’t complain, nor did she ask for anything at all. The sister was doing her best to communicate to her that God’s love is boundless and that the only thing she had to do was to make a small step towards Christ.
Marina was listening to her in silence, and then said, “I’d like to be baptised.” They exchanged their phone numbers. A couple of days later, the sister decided to call Marina. She was afraid that the girl wouldn’t remember her or would refuse to talk with her. However, Marina was glad to hear our sister again and assured her that she was still eager to be baptised. The sister told her how to get prepared for the Sacrament. When their conversation was over, she almost cried.
Isn’t it a miracle? The girl was going somewhere and felt empty inside. Her soul ached so hard that it was unbearable. Suddenly, she saw the church shop, which reminded her of salvation. It was the last drop. Her heart was no longer able to keep silent.
We dare believe that the tears she shed in front of the icons of our Saviour were tears of repentance and that the Lord accepted them. We dare hope that Marina made her way to the church finally and that she didn’t stray from the true path. Well, and we would like to have more meetings like that one…
Prepared by Natallia Klimova
January 8, 2019