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And Life Goes On
Francisco Candido Xavier
By the Spirit
Copyright © 2009 by
BRAZILIAN SPIRITIST FEDERATION
Av. L 2 Norte – Q. 603 – Conjunto F (SGAN)
70830-030 – Brasilia (DF) – Brazil
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced by any mechanical,
photographic, or electronic process, or in the form of a phonographic recording; nor may
it be stored in a retrieval system, transmitted, or otherwise be copied for public or private
use without prior written permission of the publisher.
Original title in Portuguese:
E A VIDA CONTINUA…
Translated by: Darrel W. Kimble and Ily Reis
Cover design by: Luciano Carneiro Holanda
Layout: Ingrid Saori Furuta
INTERNATIONAL SPIRITIST COUNCIL
SGAN Q. 909 – Conjunto F
70790-090 – Brasilia (DF) – Brazil
+55 61 3038-8400
Sales: + 55 61 3038 8425
Second Edition 8/2011
Authorized edition by Brazilian Spiritist Federation
L979a Luiz, André (Spirit)
And Life Goes On / by the Spirit Andre Luiz ; [received by] Francisco
Cândido Xavier ; [translated by Darrel W. Kimble and Ily Reis]. - Brasilia,
DF (Brazil) : International Spiritist Council, 2011.
240 p. ; 21 cm
Translated from: E a Vida Continua…
1. Spiritist Novel. 2. Spiritism. 3. Psychographic Works. I. Xavier,
Francisco Cândido, 1910-2002. II. International Spiritist Council. III. Title.
INTERNATIONAL DATA FOR CATALOGING IN PUBLICATION (ICP)
And life goes on... .................................................................. 7
In Homage ............................................................................. 9
1. An Unexpected Meeting ................................................... 11
2. At the Door to a Close Friendship .................................... 17
3. A Friendly Adjustment ..................................................... 23
4. Renewal ........................................................................... 29
5. Reunion ........................................................................... 37
6. Fraternal Understanding ................................................... 45
7. Alzira Provides Information .............................................. 53
8. An Instructive Meeting ..................................................... 59
9. Brother Claudio ............................................................... 67
10. Evelina Serpa .................................................................. 75
11. Ernesto Fantini ............................................................... 83
12. Judgment and Love ........................................................ 91
13. New Tasks ...................................................................... 99
14. New Directions ............................................................ 109
15. Time for Analysis ......................................................... 119
16. Renewal Efforts ............................................................ 127
17. Matters of the Heart ..................................................... 135
18. The Return ................................................................... 143
19. Revisions of Life ........................................................... 153
20. The Plot Revealed ........................................................ 163
21. Return to the Past......................................................... 173
22. Bases for a New Future ................................................. 183
23. Ernesto at Work ........................................................... 193
24. Evelina at Work ............................................................ 205
25. A New Direction .......................................................... 217
26. And Life Goes On ... .................................................... 225
And life goes on...
We are not writing this either to introduce or heap praise
on Andre Luiz, the friend who has made himself worthy of our
sympathy and gratitude for the consoling and constructive pages he
has been sending from the spirit world to the physical.
However, regarding matters of life “post mortem”, it would
be fair to say that, in this volume, he brings information that is
different from what he garnered in “Nosso Lar,” the spirit colony to
which he arrived in due course after his discarnation.
All characters in this account are real personages whose names,
of course, have been changed so as not to upset loved ones still on the
earth. These characters’ experiences are much different than those
that describe Andre Luiz’s own pathway during his first experiences
in the spirit world, and this would lead us to consider that levels of
knowledge and responsibility vary infinitely.
In fact, the planes of existence for the inhabitants of the Beyond
are personalized in many different ways, and life for each one is
invariably individualized according to their mental condition.
This is understandable.
The greater the learning of an incarnate spirit, the more
dolorous the results of time wasted; the more rebellious an individual
is before the Truth, the more grievous the consequences of his or her
Furthermore, we observe that society after death reflects the
customs it cultivated while on the earth.
Spirits discarnating from an Asian city do not immediately
encounter the customs and buildings of a western city, and vice versa.
A worthy construction does not occur without the cooperation
of work and time, just as rashness or violence are not part of the
Divine Plans that oversee the universe.
So as not to dwell too long on dispensable remarks, we will
only reaffirm the fact that, after our passage into the spirit world, we
will find our own spiritual portrait in the situations we forged, either
rewarding us for the good they produce or the evil they establish.
Thus, let us read Andre Luiz’s new book with the certainty that
in its pages we will be startled to find many pieces of our own story
in space and time, urging us to meditate and to examine ourselves,
realizing that life goes on, filled with hope and work, progress and
achievement in every sector of cosmic life in keeping with God’s laws.
Uberaba, April 18, 1968
We honor the First Centennial of Genesis by Allan Kardec.
Uberaba, April 18, 1968.
An Unexpected Meeting
The wind was playing with the dry leaves when Evelina
Serpa – Mrs. Serpa – decided to sit on a bench that seemed to be
inviting her to rest.
The garden-decorated square was quiet in the silence of
the warm afternoon.
There were only a few tourists at the Minas Gerais resort1
during that second week of October, and among them was Mrs.
Serpa, accompanied by an assistant who had remained behind in
the hotel room.
Feeling a craving to be alone, Mrs. Serpa had escaped the
bustle of domestic life.
She had wanted to think things over. And that is why she was
now hiding beneath the green canopy, gazing at the rows of blooming
azaleas that took pride in announcing that spring had come.
1 Poços de Caldas, as recalled by characters in chapter 6. It is a resort city located in the
Brazilian state of Minas Gerais in southeastern Brazil. Known principally for its thermal
baths, it is situated on a stream called Poços de Caldas, near the Pardo River. From
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/465714/Pocos-de-Caldas – Tr.
Nestled amid the dense foliage, she gave wing to her
The family doctor had recommended that she rest to build
up her strength before surgery. As she weighed the advantages
and risks of the operation, she allowed the memories of her short
life to pass through her mind.
She had gotten married six years ago.
At first, everything had been a golden boat ride on
waves of blue. A husband and happiness. In their second year
of marriage came the pregnancy they had lovingly hoped for;
however, along with the pregnancy the disease had appeared.
Her body was found to be failing. Her kidneys were incapable
of handling any overload and her heart was like an engine
about to sputter and quit. Her gynecologist had suggested
a therapeutic abortion, and despite the couple’s enormous
sorrow, the fetus was plucked from the maternal cloister like a
baby bird kicked from the nest.
Since then, the journey of her life had become a pathway
of tears. Caio, her husband, had metamorphosed into a
courteous friend who no longer had any romantic interest in
her. He had easily fallen under the spell of another: a young,
single woman, whose intelligence and vivaciousness Evelina
could deduce from the notes he forgot about in his pockets, and
which were filled with passionate words and kisses imprinted
on the paper by her red lipstick.
The loneliness and disenchantment she endured at
home were perhaps the factors that unleashed the dreadful
bouts of overwhelming heaviness she periodically felt in her
chest. On such occasions she experienced nausea, excruciating
headaches, an overall cold feeling, a burning sensation in her
hands and feet, and a noticeable rise in blood pressure. At the
height of her agony, she thought she was about to die. Soon
And Life Goes On
thereafter, however, she would recover, only to fall into the
same critical condition a few days later when the setbacks
with her husband were repeated.
Her energy had deteriorated, her strength was waning...
For more than two years she had gone from doctor to
doctor, from specialist to specialist.
The unanimous diagnosis had finally arrived. Only a risky
surgical procedure might possibly restore her health.
Deep down, something was telling her intuitively that this
physical problem was very serious indeed and could perhaps lead
to her death.
Who really knew for sure? she asked herself.
She could hear the chirping sparrows, whose voices
provided background music for her thoughts, and she began
evaluating her life in terms of aspirations and failures.
Was it really worth it to avoid the dangerous surgery
only to continue as a sick woman living with a man who had
disregarded his marital vows? And wasn’t it reasonable to accept
the aid that medical science might offer her so that she could
recover her health and fight for a new life in case her husband
deserted her completely? She was only twenty-six years old. Wasn’t
it right for her to wait for new routes to happiness in the fields
of time? Although she missed her father tremendously – he had
discarnated when she was still a very small child – she had been
brought up as an only child by her loving, devoted mother, who
in turn had provided her with a kind and caring stepfather. These
two, along with her husband, were her entire family back home.
Immersed in the soft breezes of the sunset, she thought
of her loved ones: her husband, her dear mother and her
stepfather far away.
Suddenly, she remembered her deceased father and her
baby that had been taken before being born. She was religious, a
practicing Roman Catholic, and as for life after death, she held
to the ideas that were fundamental to her faith.
Where might her father and child be right now? she
wondered. If she were to die because of her disease, would
she see them again? If so, where? Wasn’t it reasonable to think
about this since the idea of death was constantly on her mind?
She was deeply immersed in this inner monologue
when somebody appeared in front of her. It was an older
gentleman, whose friendly smile immediately piqued her
interest and curiosity.
“Mrs. Serpa?” he asked respectfully.
As she nodded in startled confirmation, he added:
“Please forgive me for being so bold, but I heard that
you live in Sao Paulo. So do I. Through highly unexpected
circumstances, a friend told me that you and I both have the
same health problem.”
“I would love to hear about it,” said the young woman,
noticing his embarrassment.
In response to the kindness in her voice, he introduced
“Nothing to be alarmed about, Mrs. Serpa; Ernesto
Fantini, at your service.”
“Pleased to meet you,” said Evelina, and gazing at that
wrinkled, disease-stricken face, she added: “Sit down and rest.
Here we are in this huge square, and apparently we’re the only ones
presently interested in the refreshing atmosphere it has to offer.”
Encouraged by her friendliness, Fantini sat down next
to her and continued to speak, engaging in a dialog guided by
“The owner of the hotel where we’re staying made friends
with your assistant. I found out through her that you too are
facing a difficult surgery.”
And Life Goes On
“Yes, because I myself am in the same situation.”
“My blood pressure is out of sync and my whole body is
out of whack. I have been seeing specialists for over three years
now. Finally, the X-Rays’ verdict: I have an adrenal gland tumor.
I suspect it’s quite serious.”
“I see,” replied Evelina hesitatingly, looking very pale; “I
know just what you mean ... You don’t have to tell me. Every
so often you must experience the same symptoms: your chest
tightens; your heartbeat goes crazy; your head and stomach hurt;
the veins in your neck pop out; you feel cold and hot at the same
time, and death seems to be at the door.”
“Then, you feel better for a while, only to have it start all
over again the next time you get upset.”
“You know what it’s like.”
“The doctor told me the name of my disease a number of
times. What about yours?”
Fantini took a tiny notebook from his pocket and read
aloud the exact word that defined his health problem.
Mrs. Serpa could barely disguise her discomfort on
hearing that scientific term, but getting a hold of herself,
“Yes, speaking for my doctor, my husband told me that’s
what I have.”
The newcomer realized how troubled Evelina was and
tried to be humorous:
“Well, at least we have a disease with a rare and pretty name.”
“Which doesn’t mean we don’t suffer frequent and ugly
symptoms,” she replied charmingly.
Fantini looked up at the blue afternoon sky as if he wanted
to take the conversation to the next level. Evelina followed his
pause in emotion-filled silence, showing that she too felt like
lifting the conversation above the suffering and that she was
eager to reflect and philosophize.
At the Door to a
Soon thereafter, a small carriage came into sight, moving
very, very slowly.
As he watched the horse gradually drawing nearer, the
gentleman asked Evelina:
“I know you need to rest, but if you would accept my
invitation for a trip around the thermal springs...”
“Thank you,” she responded, “but I can’t; for now, rest is
the best medicine.”
“True. Our case doesn’t allow for any bumps on the road.”
The small carriage passed by very close to the quiet nook.
Both of them saw why it was moving so slowly. It had evidently
been in an accident and displayed a broken wheel as it moved along
with difficulty. Meanwhile, the young coachman was on foot guiding
the animal with great care, leaving it almost rein-free.
Mrs. Serpa and her new friend followed them with their
gaze until they disappeared around the next corner.
Fantini smiled broadly and said calmly:
She cut him short with another open smile and corrected
him in a friendly tone:
“Call me Evelina. I believe that since we both share a rare
disease, we have the right to a casual friendship.”
“Fine with me!” said Fantini and he added, “And from
now on, I shall be just Ernesto to you.”
He rested his pale hand on the back of the large bench and
“Dona2 Evelina, have you ever read anything about
“Well, I would like to tell you that that carriage reminded
me of some notes I took yesterday while I was studying. The
interesting writer I’ve been reading, though using a definition
that he himself considers superficial, understands the human
being to be three-fold, much like the carriage, the horse and the
coachman, the three of them working together.”
“How could that be?” asked Evelina accentuating her
surprise and looking at him jokingly.
“The carriage would correspond to the physical body; the
animal may be compared to the spiritual body, that is, the molder
and sustainer of the phenomena that ensure our physical life; and
the coachman symbolizes our spirit, that is, our true self in the
mental governance of our life. A damaged ‘carriage’, like the one
we just saw, would represent a sick body, and when the vehicle
becomes completely useless, the driver abandons it to the scrap
2 In Brazilian society,Dona is a term of respect that is used with the woman’s first
name. – Tr.
And Life Goes On
heap of nature and climbs back up on the horse so that both of
them may continue the journey ... This, of course, happens at death
or discarnation. Now useless, the physical body is returned to the
ground, whereas our spirit, clothed in the envelope of subtle matter
that conditions its earthly existence, then begins to live on another
plane, where the garment of denser matter is no longer useful.”
Evelina laughed, though with all due respect for the
speaker, and argued:
“A clever theory! You talk about death, but what happens
to this trio while we are asleep?”
“For good reasons, during physical sleep the three elements
take a rest that varies from driver to driver, or rather, from spirit
to spirit. When we sleep, the heavy vehicle or physical body
always rests, but the spirit behaves much, much differently. For
instance, after the driver and the horse have had a heavy meal,
both of them will rest, and consequently, so will the carriage. On
the other hand, if the coachman is in the habit of studying and
serving, then while the carriage is in the shop for repairs or an
overhaul, he uses the horse for instructive trips or worthwhile
tasks. At other times, if the driver is still quite unskilled,
inexperienced or fearful of the trip, then whenever the carriage
needs repairs, he will probably hang around somewhere near the
repair shop, waiting for the carriage to be fixed in order to take
it up again, much like armor for self-defense.”
Evelina showed disbelief and objected:
“I don’t know a thing about spiritualism.”
“Do you profess any religion in particular?”
“Yes, I’m Catholic. I’m not a fanatic, but I try very hard
to live according to the principles of my faith. I believe in our
priests’ teachings and practice them.”
“Good for you. All sincere beliefs are to be respected. I
envy your absolute trust.”
“You’re not religious?”
“I wish I was. I’m just a searcher for the truth, a free shooter
in the field of ideas.”
“And you’ve been reading about spiritualism just to
“To entertain myself? Oh, no! I read about it because
I have to. Have you forgotten, Dona Evelina? We’re about to
undergo a surgery that could be fatal ... We might be packing
our bags fora very long trip!
“From which nobody returns.”
“I get it,” smiled the young woman. “You study spiritualism
like a traveler who wants to learn about the currency, language,
customs and fashion of the foreign country he intends to visit.
Concise information, a quick course.”
“I admit it. I’ve had a lot of time on my hands lately, and I’m
using it as best I can in everything that relates to the knowledge
of the soul, especially life after death and communication with
spirits, the supposed inhabitants of other spheres.”
“And have you found any proof of such communication?
Have you had any direct messages from any of your dead
“Isn’t that discouraging?”
“Not at all!”
“Well, I prefer my serene beliefs. Trust without doubt,
prayer without mental torment.”
“Your inner faith is a blessing and I sincerely respect your
religious contentment; but what if there is another life waiting
for us and what if questions do arise in your soul?”
“How can you say that if you haven’t yet gotten the
confirmation that we do go on living?”
And Life Goes On
“I cannot doubt the testimonies of the scholars and people
of irreproachable character who have confirmed it.”
“Well,” said Evelina good-naturedly, “you shall be with
your researchers and I with my saints.”
“I have no objections about the excellence of your
advocates,” replied Fantini in the same tone, “but I cannot
stop my thirst for knowledge. Before I got this disease, I was
extremely confident about life. I was in charge and didn’t have
the faintest idea about the existence of this or that organ in my
body. However, a tumor in the adrenal glands is nothing to
sneeze at. It is a sort of ghost announcing difficulties and forcing
me to think, reason, discover.”
“Are you afraid of dying?” joked the young woman.
“Not really; are you?”
“Well, I don’t want to die. I have parents, a husband and
friends. I love life but...”
“If God has determined that my time is up, I’ll resign
myself to it.”
“Don’t you have any other problems?” Haven’t you ever
suffered the influence of the ills that torment us day after day?”
“Don’t tell me you’re going to examine my conscience
now; I already have to account for myself to my confessors.”
And laughing easily, she added:
“I accept the evil others do to us as part of the redemption
of our sins before God; however, the bad things we do are stripes
that we inflict upon ourselves. As such, I try to watch myself;
that is, I realize that I mustn’t hurt others. And because of this, I
seek in confession an antidote that from time to time inoculates
me, preventing my bad inclinations from surfacing.”
“It’s remarkable that a person of your intelligence would
resign herself to confession so willingly and sincerely.”
“Of course, I have to choose a priest I can trust. I don’t want
to buy heaven through calculating means; instead, I want to struggle
against my imperfections. That’s why it wouldn’t be right for me to
open up my heart to someone who couldn’t understand or help me.”
Continuing the conversation based on respectful trust,
Mrs. Serpa considered:
“Believe me; I too have lived more carefully in light of my
disease, so much so, that on the day before coming here, I aligned
myself with my religious obligations by going to confession. Of
all the matters I entrusted to my old confessor, I can tell you the
most important one...”
“No! No! Too much information!” stammered Ernesto,
surprised at the caring willingness with which Evelina was
“Why not? We’ve been talking as if we were old friends.
You can tell me how you’re preparing for the possibility of death,
but I can’t talk about mine?”
They both burst out laughing, and during a longer pause
in their dialog they looked at each other meaningfully. Both of
them looked a bit frightened.
That mutual look told them they had taken a big step
toward a close friendship.
“Where had he seen this young woman before, so favored
by beauty and intelligence?” wondered Ernesto, puzzled.
“Where could she have met this mature, intelligent
gentleman before, who radiated so much sympathy and
understanding?” wondered Mrs. Serpa, unable to hide the
pleasant surprise that had come over her.
The interlude continued for a few disconcerting seconds
while the sunset combined colors and shadows around them,
announcing that nightfall was near.
A Friendly Adjustment
Fantini realized that Evelina was troubled by the look he
had given her and hasted to put her at ease:
“Let’s continue, Dona Evelina. I mean you no harm at all.
Just look at me; I’m a sick old man, old enough to be your father,
and believe me, I see you only as a daughter...”
His voice faded somewhat, but then he recovered and
“The daughter I wish I’d had, instead of the one I do.”
Evelina guessed the hidden pain expressed in his words
and tried to put him at ease:
“You wouldn’t be happy with a sick daughter like me.
But ... let’s go back to my case, I mean my confession.”
“No sad tales...”
“Right. We don’t have a lot of time.”
And she continued with a playful smile:
“Since we’re speaking with such openness in a place that
may be death’s doorway for either one of us, I can tell you
that there’s only one thing that troubles me. I’ve had the same
disappointments as anyone else. My father died when I was
barely two years old; my widowed mother gave me a stepfather
some time later. While still a child, I was sent to a boarding
school run by goodly nuns. After that, I married a husband
who was much different than what I had dreamed of ... In the
middle of our courtship, tragedy struck. Six months before my
wedding, a fine young man killed himself because of me. He had
attempted suicide once before when he thought I was rejecting
him. I felt very sorry for him. I tried to approach him to console
him at least, but while my feelings were wavering between him
and the man I finally married, he shot himself in the heart. Ever
since then, any happiness for me has been like light mixed with
darkness. Despite my immense love for my husband, I can’t even
be a mother. I’m always sick, discouraged, forlorn...”
“Come now!” ventured Ernesto, striving to find an
optimistic way out for her. “Don’t blame yourself. If not for
you, the fellow would have done the same thing for some other
reason. The suicidal impulse, as much as the criminal one...”
His voice trailed off again as if deep down he was
repressing certain memories that his words were bringing to
mind; however, giving the impression that he had gotten them
under control, he continued:
“These are mysteries of the soul. Maybe they’re the tip of
mental diseases that the spirit has been harboring for a long time.
Suicide and crime should be feared by all of us because they are
acts of insanity resulting from deep processes of mental erosion.”
“You’re trying to make me feel better with your kindness
of heart,” said Evelina thoughtfully. “You’ve probably never
experienced such an acute problem troubling your conscience.”
And Life Goes On
“What? Me?” stuttered Fantini, unnerved. “Don’t remind
me of my past, for God’s sake! I’ve made so many mistakes,
suffered so many disappointments!”
And trying to skirt the issue without avoiding it, Ernesto
forced a smile with the skill of mature persons who know
how to use certain facial expressions for certain psychological
“Weren’t you able to forget the suicide with the help of
the confessionary? Didn’t your spiritual counselor soothe your
sensitive, kind heart?”
“Like I said, I’ve always found confessing my minor
offences to be a sort of moral vaccine against bigger ones;
but in this case I wasn’t able to find the peace of mind I was
looking for ... I believe that if I hadn’t been divided between
the two men for such a long time, I could have prevented the
disaster. All I have to do is think of the unfortunate Tulio and
the picture of his death flashes back into my mind, and with
it comes the guilt.”
“You shouldn’t be so distraught. You’re still very young.
Just like the hand that gradually becomes calloused working
in the field, sensitivity hardens by means of life’s sufferings.
Of course, if we survive the leap we are about to take for our
health, we will witness many suicides, disappointments and
calamities to come.”
Mrs. Serpa thought for a few moments, and as if she were
trying to use the opportunity to soothe her inner wounds, she
“You’ve been studying the science of the soul. Do you
really believe we will see our loved ones again after we die?”
Fantini answered obligingly:
“I don’t know why, but your question reminds me of a
quote by Shakespeare: “The miserable have no other medicine
but only hope.”3 I have good reason to believe we will see each
other again after we leave this world; however, I realize that my
present precarious health may be the setting agent for such a
conviction. Have you ever noticed that ideas and words are the
offspring of circumstances? Imagine if you and I had found
ourselves in the fullness of our physical strength, healthy and
attractive, meeting at a social event – a ball, for instance ... Any
thoughts about the matters that have now brought us together
would be immediately banished from our minds.”
“The disease that afflicts us gives us the right to intertwine
new resources and new interpretations concerning life and death,
and in the realm of the new ideas lying before us, I believe that
life does not end at the grave. We are forced to remember the old
cliché in romantic novels: “Romance ends but life goes on...”
The envelope of flesh will topple over, spent; the spirit, however,
will carry on, always forward!”
“Do you ever think of who you’d like to see again in the
He smiled enigmatically and mocked:
“I can think of somebody I’d rather not!”
“I don’t get the pun. Nonetheless, I feel comforted with
your certainty about the future.”
“You mustn’t and shouldn’t lose your trust in the future.
Remember that, above all else, you are a Christian, a disciple
of a Master who rose from the grave on the third day after
Mrs. Serpa didn’t smile. She gazed beyond at the rosy clouds
reflecting the setting sun, realizing, perhaps, that she had been
shaken to the depths of her faith by that unexpected comment.
3 Shakespeare,Measure for Measure – Tr.
And Life Goes On
After a long pause, she looked at Ernesto again and
prepared to say goodbye:
“Well, Mr. Fantini, if there isanother life after this one,
and if it is God’s will for us to go through thegreat change before
long, I think we shall meet again and be good friendsthere...”
“And why not? If I happen to foresee the end of my body, I
shall keep the positive thought of our meeting firmly in my mind.”
“When are you going back to Sao Paulo?”
“Has your surgery been scheduled yet?”
“My husband will decide that with the doctor, but I think
I shall face it next week. What about you?”
“I’m not sure, but I think it’s only a matter of days. I don’t
want to postpone the surgery. Would you perchance give me the
name of your hospital?”
Evelina thought and thought ... and concluded:
“Mr. Fantini, we’re both suffering from the same rare and
treacherous disease. Isn’t that reason enough for us to feel close to
each other? Let’s await the future without anxiety. If we manage to
pull through the ordeal, I’m sure God will grant us another meeting
while still here on earth. But if death does come, our friendship in
theother world will also be subject to the designs of Providence.”
Ernesto smiled at her remark and both returned to the
hotel walking slowly in heartfelt silence.
Evelina only remembered the comforting presence of
Ernesto, the friend she barely knew, after Caio Serpa, her
husband, left her in that spacious hospital room on the eve of
her surgery. She was there now, mulling over strange thoughts.
She was too young and was almost too sure of her recovery
to dwell on any gloomy outlook. Nevertheless, as she lay there
alone while waiting for the nurse, Fantini’s assertions crossed her
mind, stoking her imagination.
Yes, she was distressed to realize, she was about to face a
serious risk. Perhaps she would not return to her family ... If
she did die, where would she go? When she was a little girl,
she trustingly believed in predestined places of either happiness
or suffering, according to what the old Catholic theology said
about people’s situation after death. Now, however, with science
exploring the cosmic immensity, she was intelligent enough to
realize how tactful her aging priest had been in speaking with her
about the indispensable renewals being imposed on the religious
realm. From him, her learned and kind friend, she had learned
to keep an unwavering trust in God, in the divine apostolate of
Jesus Christ and the ineffable ministry of the saints. However,
she had decided to set aside for reconsideration all statements of
human authority regarding the things and workings of Divine
Providence. The idea of death arose in her mind even more
forcefully, but Evelina resisted it. She wanted health, physical
well-being. She longed to recover, to live. Suddenly, she began
to think about her problems at home. She was obviously going
through a terrible phase in her marriage. Nevertheless, she had
reason to believe that things could be happily worked out. She
believed she was in her prime as a woman; the only thing she
lacked was a return to physical health. Once she had recovered,
she would apply herself in gettingthe other woman out of the
picture. She would change her love interaction with her husband.
She was so intent on making it better that her husband would of
course return her love without her having to resort to acrimony
or argument. More than that, she felt she was useful. She should
get her life back; fight for it at any price. She should feel useful
not only to her family but also to less fortunate people. Of course,
she could fight poverty wherever poverty could be found ...
Thinking about the needy touched her ... How many were
right there nearby, isolated from each other only by walls? Why
hadn’t she ever thought of that before?
She had spent her life as a satellite orbiting three people:
her husband, mother and stepfather ...Why not take back her
energies, renew herself, live? Yes, she would refuse any thought
about the phenomena of death and would concentrate all the
strength she was capable of on reestablishing herself physically.
She had read many psychologists and had learned the
importance of a mental frame of mind. She desired to be healed.