September 25, 2023

Walk in Us through Our World

Sister M. Elinor Grimm

Little Experiences in Dachau and

On the Road

Your explanation made a big difference

I wanted to go home after a giving a tour in Dachau to students. Then a woman approached me in front of the Jourhaus. She was happy that because of my dress, she recognized me as a Schoenstatt Sister of Mary. She and her family belong to the Schoenstatt Federation in Brazil. They came from Schoenstatt, Germany and wanted to visit the memorial before continuing their journey. I quickly decided to show them at least the most important places. Thank goodness, it was not as hot outside as in the previous days. The memorial was super crowded!

The lady knew some German. With MPHC (the Blessed Mother takes perfect care) we muddled through linguistically. Two teenagers were with them, and I tried to be considerate of them as well. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a flyer in Portuguese or Spanish. Nevertheless, the family was very grateful! We were happy about the precision work of divine providence allowing us to meet: a “gift from the MTA!” From home, I emailed them some material in Portuguese. The woman thanked me very much for that. Among other things she wrote:

“… We are grateful to our dear Lord for his attentiveness to us in Dachau. The MTA cared wonderfully for our trip and your presence was a gift for us…  

Thanks be to God we had a nice vacation. From Germany we visited a niece in Spain and then we left our daughter at the World Youth Day in Lisbon.

Once again, thank you so much for your selflessness and for giving your time to accompany us in Dachau. Your presence and your explanation made a big difference. May God reward you.

Remaining in God and in the care of our MTA …

The precision work of divine providence

Some weeks after that, I had a similar experience with a young woman from Germany! After giving a tour to some Schoenstatt priests from Burundi, we were going to take a noon break. An excited young lady came to me right in front of the gate Arbeit Macht Frei. “Where can I find Father Kentenich? I prayed so hard it would work out and now I see you!” She was visibly happy. She explained briefly that she had been in the Schoenstatt Youth. Thanks be to God, I had informational material with me. From the materials of the tour with the clergy, I gave her many things so she could then do the tour on her own. I gave her the informational material and went to lunch. Again I was impressed by the precision work of divine providence: I had walked through the gate just as this young woman arrived.

A little gift on the way

I was on my way to the doctor with an elderly co-sister and I wanted to put money into the parking meter, but I didn’t have enough change, and only a bill which was of no use. I looked around to see if there was a store nearby where I could get some change. I saw a small barber shop and went in. A man, a foreigner, was ready to help immediately. He asked me how—in what coins–I wanted the change. Then he wanted to know how much it cost. Without further ado, he pressed the amount, € 1.50, into my hand. I was speechless! I didn’t expect that. Apparently he felt honored that a sister came into his shop. So I accepted the gift, thanked him, and was happy about his kind deed! I told this to my co-sister in the waiting room and sent a prayer of thanksgiving to heaven. Because I had entrusted my “parking” request to Father Kentenich, I also thanked him. On the way back, I saw a car with “JK” on the license plate, an additional joy!

I was shopping in the supermarket when I noticed a somewhat unkempt-looking man with a long beard. It seemed he was looking at me but he didn’t say anything. There was a small queue at the checkout. When I took out my credit card to pay, this man beat me to it without saying a word. Just looking at the cashier, he paid for the things in my cart with his credit card. At first I didn’t know what happened, but I didn’t want to cause a stir. The cashier nodded at me. I thanked her and was almost embarrassed. But then I was happy about this unexpected gift.

Towards evening I went to put gas in the car. A young mother was on duty. She had her little daughter with her. The girl asked me, “Are you a grandma?”  I thought about the question and wondered: Do I look so old or does my dress remind her of a grandmother. I wanted to answer simply and I spontaneously said, “No, but if I were married, I probably would be a grandmother.”  Meanwhile, a middle-aged man came to the cash register and wanted to pay. He seemed to have heard the conversation and said, “Actually you are married—to God!” I was amazed. I didn‘t expect such a reaction! And even the young woman, presumably Muslim, had understood his objection and said something like: “I know, I just didn’t think the little one would understand yet.” I said a friendly goodbye. On my way home, inner joy arose in me because of this beautiful experience. I remembered my investiture when my great desire to be a “Bride of Christ” was fulfilled.

Around the time of the World Youth Day two big groups came to Dachau – one from Brazil and another from Paraguay. We divided each group into three subgroups. Despite the short amount of time, one could sense that the young people had a deep experience. We speakers were also impressed. One of us, from Brazil, led a Schoenstatt group for the first time and was very excited to meet the young people from his homeland. One assistant from the Schoenstatt Federation of Families was happy that he had the same tour guide as in 2014. That evening he wrote to me.

“...I’m still very impressed about the very nice experience with the youth from Paraguay; I’m sending you photos …Today was a very great experience for me and  the collaboration with Mrs. K.H. was again excellent.”