The story of a Peruvian girl and her miraculous cure

Hellen Katty Flores Gallo, an 11-year old girl, fell ill with a serious blood disease. After her mother prayed to Blessed Josemaria she experienced a sudden and complete cure.

Editor's note: this is a translation of excerpts from the original Spanish article.

Hellen Katty is the oldest of four children. Her mother, Elena Gallo de Flores, is an employee in a company that provides water purification services in Piura, while her father, Enrique Flores, is a Peruvian Air Force petty officer. Helen was attending a primary school for the children of Air Force personnel in Piura. One day, Elena noticed that her daughter was constantly scratching her leg. Checking more closely, she found some small red spots. She told herself it was probably a common allergy that would disappear in a short time. After the child went to bed, Elena, who was actually quite worried, got up to check on her. Entering quietly so as not to waken her, she was alarmed to see that her daughter's pillow was spotted with blood.

On the following day, her husband took the child to the Air Force medical dispensary. The doctor told him that it was a question of capillary weakness and recommended an immediate blood test. The result of the examination indicated that the child had low blood platelets and, as a result, her blood was not coagulating normally.

Enrique returned home worried. He and his wife decided to bring their daughter to the Air Force hospital in Lima. Elena got a leave of absence from work and made the trip to Lima with Helen.

At the hospital

At the hospital, they were met in the emergency room by Dr. Consuelo Astete, who examined the girl, and, given the seriousness of the case, had her hospitalized.

Dr. Jorge Vargas, who then took charge of Helen, ordered new blood tests and discovered that the platelets were continuing to decline and had reached a level well below acceptable limits. The diagnosis by specialists was "severe idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura." Dr. Vargas informed Elena of the gravity of the child's sickness and asked her to call her husband in Piura and tell him to come to Lima. Elena spent that night in vigil. The doctor had asked her to watch over Helen, who was steadily weakening.

Results from new tests did nothing to alleviate the doctor's concern. When he came to examine the child at eleven in the morning, he turned to her mother and gave her a prayer card of Blessed Josemaria Escriva that Dr. Consuelo Astete had sent him two days before for Elena.

The cure

When she received the prayer card of Blessed Josemaria, Elena began to say the prayer insistently with great fervor, begging for her child's life. From time to time she placed the card under Helen's pillow. Although she had never heard of Blessed Josemaria, when she looked at his picture, Elena felt her faith strengthened.

The doctors thought her daughter's death was imminent. On the morning of September 22, she was tested again, and at three in the afternoon Dr. Vargas brought the test results. He had good news. On seeing Elena he told her: "Madam, your faith has worked wonders. The platelets have increased to 140,000. Tell Doctor Astete that saying the prayer card has brought about a miracle."

It was a sudden and total cure. Her daughter was completely healthy and did not need any further treatment.

Elena has never doubted that the cure was due to the intercession of Blessed Josemaria Escriva. Before returning to Piura, she brought her daughter to Mass, to thank God for her cure.

A prayer card in her backpack

Helen is now 17. Her family doctor periodically gives her a blood test, but the platelets have always remained normal. Now she is preparing to enter the National University of Piura, where she hopes to study computer science. Since the day Helen left the hospital, she always carries in her backpack the prayer card that she calls "the miracle prayer card." She carries it wherever she goes and tells her friends the story. She asks Blessed Josemaria for help in exams and for many other things.

Elena says that, although she has passed through hard times financially, she has learned the importance of values other than purely material ones.

Taken from Semana,

Piura, June 4, 2000

Fabiola Morales

Translated by Opus Dei Communications Office

Fabiola Morales Castillo // Semana (Peru)