Colombian lawyer Natalia Bernal, known for her advocacy of life and opposition to abortion, traveled to Rome to make a special request to Pope Francis, who is recovering from bowel surgery at Gemelli Hospital. Bernal delivered a letter to the pontiff asking him to begin the beatification process for Omaira Sanchez, a 13-year-old girl who died trapped in mud after the eruption of the Nevado del Ruiz volcano in 1985.
Bernal told Semana magazine that he managed to get into the hospital without any problems and climb to the tenth floor, where the Pope was. There he handed over a letter in which he told the story of Omaira, who remained under the rubble for 60 hours, up to her neck in water, clinging to a piece of wood and surrounded by corpses. His agony was broadcast live by the media and shocked the whole world.
According to her, there are testimonies of people who were healed of serious illnesses or overcame difficult situations thanks to prayers for the girl. Bernal said that he had a special affection for Omaira and that he visited her grave in Armero, where he asked her for a favor.
Pope Francis accepted the letter graciously and told Bernal that he would pray for her and for Colombia. The pontiff is recovering satisfactorily after undergoing surgery on June 7 for symptomatic diverticular stenosis of the large intestine. According to the Vatican, the Pope will remain in the hospital for a few days to ensure a full functional recovery.
A woman named Eugenia, a native of Melgar, assured that she was cured of cancer after she visited Omaira’s grave and asked for her intercession, and a man named Gustavo, who was a lifeguard who accompanied Omaira in her last hours, confirmed that he was her son. . saved from drowning in the pool thanks to Omaira’s help; a woman named Maria, who was in a car accident with serious injuries, said she miraculously recovered after praying to Omaira; a man named Louis, who suffered from chronic kidney disease, said he had a kidney transplant after he confided in Omaira, and a woman named Ana, who had trouble conceiving a child, said she got pregnant after asking for Omaira give her permission. it’s a miracle. These are just a few examples of the testimonies of people who believe in the power of Omaira.
The image of Omaira became a symbol of disaster and was captured by the French photographer Franck Fournier, who received the World Press Photo award for his work.