Laura Vicuña was a heroic 13-year old Chilean girl who offered her life for the conversion of her mother. Life had been cruel to Laura’s family. She came from a noble family whose fortune changed during the revolution. When her father died, her widowed mother Mercedes was left poor and penniless. She had to migrate to Argentina to hide from the family’s political enemies and to work to support her two young daughters. There, she became a domestic help in a farm owned by an abusive and alcoholic Manuel Mora. Mercedes soon became her mistress in exchange for sending her daughters to school.
Laura and her younger sister were enrolled in Mary Help of Christians School managed by the Salesian Sisters.Laura grew in knowledge and spirituality. Soon she realized the depravity of her mom’s situation and secretly prayed and offered her life for her. Manuel became more abusive also to her as she grew to be beautiful. This led her to suffer greatly to the point of death. Before she died, she revealed her secret oblation to her mom who promised to change for the better. Pope John Paul II beatified Laura in 1988.