An Event at the Close of the Holy Year of the Eucharist

The Year of the Holy Eucharist was closing in Rome at the end of June, 2005, during the Synod of the Bishops of the Catholic Church. In the afternoon of October 23, I went to the parish of St. Basil the Great, where I was then the pastor. There several square metres of the courtyard had to be covered with cement. Driving there, I  bought five bags of cement. The following day I had to get 25 more bags of cement for the job. As soon as I entered the churchyard, a Portuguese neighbour came up to the fence and asked: “Father, what  are you going to do here?”  I replied, “I’m going to cement the courtyard.” To my surprise, he said, “Father, just wait a minute and we’ll do this for you.” And sure enough, in a few minutes he began bringing, wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of cement, ready to pour. Just before the job was finished we ran out of cement and there still remained a small part of the courtyard to finish. At that moment I remembered that I had five bags of cement in my car. They were just enough to finish the rest of the courtyard. Having finished the job my neighbour joyfully told me: “Father, what happened here is for me a real miracle. I needed a small amount of cement to fix the path to my building. I asked my friend, who works in construction, to bring me a small amount of cement in his truck at his convenience. Today he brought almost half a truckload and left it in front of the entrance to my house. In a few hours the cement would have dried and I would have had a problem. So I prayed to the Fatima Mother of God that she would somehow help me. And she truly heard my prayer.”

I told him that for me it is also a wonder, for how is it possible that neither he nor I work with cement, and made no arrangements, and suddenly everything turned out nicely in such a strange way. He solved his problem with the cement and I with the paving of the church courtyard. This may seem as an ordinary coincidence, but it occured to me that  this event too was tied to the concluding of The Year of the Holy Eucharist, just as the piercing of my eye was tied to the begining of this celebration. The Lord speaks to people not only in great events but also in little ones, sometimes quite insignificant in themselves. We only need  to know how to recognize them.