My first reaction was to thank God for their rescue. If prayers could be counted, what do you think would have been the final number of petitions lifted up to God for the salvation of these ordinary people?
I watched as the live video feed from Chile showed several of them exit “Fenix”(the rescue capsule) and rush to greet their families and friends. One of the Chilean minors, though, stepped out of the capsule and immediately knelt down and, with head bowed, stayed that way for a good minute before moving on to the embraces of his family.
I can’t find that picture anywhere. The one I used above isn’t it. But I wanted some
image to accompany these words because we all ought to stop and thank God for hearing our prayers for these good men.
A question brought up by at least one commentator was what has sustained these men
during their long and dreadful night. The Chilean miners early on asked for and recieved images of Our Lady and St.Lawrence. The men constructed a shrine downin the mine where they could offer prayers for their families and for their rescue.
It was their Faith, and I use capital “F” because their trust was not in some superstition but in a person. They knew “La Madre” would watch over them and that San Lorenzo, the patron of minors would intercede for them. But, “Primero, Dios or “God’s will be done.” He would not let them perish. Those prayers, and I mean the action of actually getting down on their knees and praying, was what enlivened their spirits and sustained them through the long, lonely night of sixty-nine days.
Their lives have been changed by prayer. It is unlikely that the miner who knelt down to thank God after his rescue will ever pray in the same way again. He knows that prayer is answered and that life-long thanks is right and just.
photo credit: istock