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Edi Pensalfini

It is much more than a masterpiece, it is a hymn to life, a concrete evidence of how one can find the meaning their existence in faith, even when this seems to be impossible to accept. A slap in the face of self-pity. Edi Pensalfini, who is 38 year old and who spent the last ten of them fighting a terrible illness, has created a work of art whose extraordinary light resides in faith rather than in the patient work she invested into her mosaic made in processed glass and fine gold leaves.

The tabernacle has been located in the church of Christ Divine Worker in Ancona. It has been realized with thousands of pieces whose strongest glue is artistic effort and attachment to life and hope. Designed by Edi, it was realized with the help of the architect Victory Ribighini and that of Alessandro Scuppa.

Edi’s fight is against a disease that has slowly led her to invalidity; but the power of prayer has prevented her will and love of art from sapping. So, here is the fulfilment of this little miracle. Edi managed to come to the inauguration which took place in a crowded church; the doctors gave her permission to leave the hospital – where she is kept under close supervision and loving care – for a few hours.

A touching presence, Christ’s embodied suffering, but also his great prospect of salvation. As Edi was reading her speech, she was lucid and responsive, while the church was in a sea of tears, in a mix of emotion and joy: “In this mosaic, the Lord in the tabernacle is located at the center, the same place he occupies in my life: a work that represents a step of faith in my journey, my ‘Fiat’ to the Lord, my ‘yes’ as I abandon myself to His will”.

Edi, a psychologist and an educator, has ended her speech in an extraordinary way: “With this example, I would like to bring a ray of light and help to those in pain or sickness who do not manage to live it with the same peace and serenity I do”.

Any other person – in the same condition as this girl – would have asked for the grace of healing; others would have said: “Why me?”. Still others would have cursed. Edi does not, she has accepted with joy the cross she has to carry and transformed it into an example for everyone else. There were also Edi’s parents at her side. They came to the church to thank the Lord who, through suffering, gave them gifts most of us will never be able to comprehend. A strong faith, matured in pain and during the  long nights spent at the hospital.

At the end of the Holy Mass – a big embrace which brings to our minds Chiara Lubich’s words:  “How many times in your life do you feel the need to have someone give you their hand and, at the same time, feel that no one can solve this situation! This is when you inadvertently turn towards someone who knows how to make impossible things possible. This someone has a name: Jesus”. Those who trust God entirely, let Him act. Nothing is impossible for the Lord. This young woman, with sweet eyes and a radiant smile, has a seriously ill body, but her soul is radiant, filled with the kind of Faith Jesus asked of his disciples: an attitude of confidence and trust in Him, which allows God to manifest His power.

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