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    We Miss Sofia

    Fernando Peralta

    In the dark and in pain, I prayed for my sister’s well-being.

    In 2012 I had completed seminary and high school, and a new world was opening in my life. The beginning of the year was great, especially the multistake youth camp. I felt blessed and protected by my Heavenly Father.

    Years before, I had decided I would serve a full-time mission, so in 2012 I planned to dedicate myself to saving all the money I could. Thanks to my older sister, Sofía, I was able to quickly find a job at the company where she worked. On February 22, Sofía and I took the train to work. It was a beautiful day, but when we arrived at the destination, I heard a loud noise, and then everything went dark.

    When I awoke, I was hurting and confused. Was my journey on earth coming to an end?

    When I awoke, I was hurting and confused. Was my journey on earth coming to an end? I really wanted to be around to experience certain things, like going on a mission and having a family. So I prayed, asking Heavenly Father to give me the opportunity to live and serve a mission.

    Lying in the tangled wreckage of the train, I looked around for my sister, but I couldn’t see her. Finally I heard firefighters asking everyone to stay calm, and I could feel hope in my heart. I prayed for my sister’s well-being because I didn’t know where she was. As I prayed, I felt great peace. I had to fight to endure the pain I felt, but Heavenly Father gave me the necessary strength.

    After an hour I was rescued. I felt the Lord with me during that time. As I was taken to the hospital to have an operation on my leg, I couldn’t stop thinking about my sister and wondering how she was. But every time I thought about her, I felt peace.

    The next day my parents informed me that Sofía had not survived the accident. That news brought the greatest pain I have ever felt. But at the same time, I felt comfort and gratitude for the sacred covenants made by my parents in the temple in sealing our family together for eternity.

    When I returned home from the hospital, the Lord blessed my family through our friends and relatives, who were our angels, giving us comfort. We will always be grateful for that. Thanks to the power of the priesthood, I learned how to walk again much quicker than expected. I was able to walk normally after just a few months.

    The gospel is beautiful every way you look at it. I am so grateful for temples and temple ordinances. I know that the Lord has something sacred prepared for my sister. Life without her is not easy, and it never will be, but the assurance and the peace we have is stronger than the pain we feel at her absence. We miss Sofía with all our hearts and remember her every day. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said that heaven without your family just wouldn’t be heaven (see Between Heaven and Earth [DVD, 2005]), and I testify that is true.

    God loves us, and He never leaves us alone. Isaiah 54:10 says, “My kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee.”

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    This article originally appeared in the February 2015 New Era.

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