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The Battle Ahead 2
Apr 27, 1999

Thnaks father for your response to my previous letter. I did went to confession but even if God have forgiven me I can't forgive myself. On the other hand is not easy to find Priests trained to deal with these issues such as yourself. As I told you before despite the results of the tests I AM CONVINCED THAT IM AM HIV+. Sooner or later I will find out and I want to be ready. I am desperate trying to find consolation in preparation of death (one part of myself want to live, the other part is dead already) I pray and try to read books where other people relates their experiences with death. During my lunch break I went to a bookstore and was reading few pages of Paul Monet's "Borrowed Time" which I thought will be uplifting. On the contrary it was very depressing. Thereafter I became more convinced of the futility of the battle ahead. From now on I want to prepare to be soon in God's presence where i will find the TRUE PEACE. I am already hearing God's calling.

Response from Father DeMartini

Dear friend--Thank you for the response to my letter. You conclude your letter by saying that you hear God's calling and that you are seeking "true peace". The Christian community is currently celebrating a season of Easter in which we proclaim that death is overcome by life and that Jesus has conquered humankind's most feared enemy which is death. I would encourage you to read the Gospels in which Jesus constantly reaches out to people in their fear and shame and anger and invites them to believe in their worth and dignity as a child of God. I hope that you will not let your HIV status be a barrier to living but rather a door to live more fully and respectfully of yourself and others. May the Risen Lord give you this strenth and light to know the way. Blessings, Fr. Rod



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