An Inspiring Woman


On this bitterly cold sabbath with freezing rain, this article warmed my heart. In rural Brazil, 16 year old Vitoria Bueno was born without arms. I can only imagine the heartache and worry her mother must have felt!

But in that amazing way that the Lord works, the soul who came in that little body was a large soul, a soul that would not be daunted. Her mother enrolled her in dance class when she was 5, and Vitoria took to it. She has taken classes in ballet, jazz, and tap. The dancing itself was so helpful to her, increasing her flexibility so that she could do with her feet what others do with their arms and hands. As for arms, she says, "I don't feel like I need them at all."

Here is a video of Vitoria:

What an inspiring young woman! She reminds me of Meg Johnson in our own faith community, whose newsletters I receive (and which I alsways read and forward to my family). Life is so much more than disability . . . Life is so much more than woundedness.

I do worry that we are losing sight of this as euthanasia laws are broadened to cover disabiilty. Ther is a new advocacy group called Not Dead Yet, whose goals are summed up in this statement: "Not Dead Yet is a national, grassroots disability rights group that opposes legalization of assisted suicide and euthanasia as deadly forms of discrimination against old, ill and disabled people. Not Dead Yet helps organize and articulate opposition to these practices based on secular social justice arguments. Not Dead Yet demands the equal protection of the law for the targets of so called “mercy killing” whose lives are seen as worth-less."

What a shame that the lives of those with disability are seen as "lesser," and that such an organization is needed. Sometimes the largest souls are born into (or wind up in) the most constrained bodies. I am glad that message is sometimes impossible to ignore, as with Vitoria and Meg.