My father was born in the state of Ceará and he came to Acre to work on the rubber plantations. In the rubber plantation he got married with my mother, Nazaré, and from the rubber plantation he came to Rio Branco. I was born here and this is the place where my father spent his life, first indoctrinating us in the Catholic Church, getting sick later on and coming to the company of Mestre Irineu, being cured and reestablishing his health.
My father died with 62 years of age, in 1946, and my mother died when I was two years old. Then he got married with Mrs. Maria, who finished the task to raise me and that today resides here, in Alto Santo, with Adália.
My father had four children with Mrs. Maria, my stepmother, and there are two of them still alive. Of the first marriage, that I knew, we were five, and now there is just me. From the second marriage are still alive Mrs. Adália and Zé Gomes. The youngest couple of my siblings died, remaining the oldest. Then we settle ourselves here, where Mestre worked and fought. Later on he was gone and we stood behind, fighting to trail in the same path with much difficulty.
When we started to work with Mestre he was living in Vila Ivonete, where today works Antônio Geraldo. Of the pioneers there is only Percília left [already departed]. In those times there was comadre [godmother] Maria Damião with her husband; Mr. João Serra and his wife; Mr. Manuel and his wife; Germano — who was my first husband; João Pereira; Maria Franco — who was the former-mother-in-law of the elder Irineu; Mrs. Raimunda — who was the first wife of Mestre that we knew and Antônio Tordo — who was his brother-in-law.
At that time there were just a few people, and persecuted by the justice. It was a sacrifice! But we overcame everything and nowadays we live in a more favorable situation. Thence Mestre sold the land over there and came over here. It was here that he handed it out [the land to other followers] and Guiomard Santos helped him. Yes, he had humility and today he is a Sir… Sir Irineu! Respectable man! And this way we met, inside this battle. I was too young, residing in his house and leaving, afterwards, already married. I married Germano Guilherme in 1943 and we spent 24 years together. I was 16 and Germano 42. Germano was from Ceará but he was naturalized in the Acre state. In the time where he came here there was no such thing as documents. Germano died in 1964, at 62 years of age.
When we arrived Padrinho Irineu had ten hymns, Maria Damião had three and Maria Franco had four (she was the mother of Mrs. Raimunda and had been married to João Pereira). That’s how it was, very few. In the night of Saint John we would drink Daime all night long. In the concentration we had manioc cooked without salt and we would sing that meal hymn, etc. After we were done we would drink again the Daime and get into concentration, spending the whole night concentrated, without doing frequent hinário works. Everyone sang their hymns three times and this way he worked, first at his house, later on building a small headquarters, making it a little bigger after, and this way he kept on going.
He’s gone… He is, but at the same time he’s not. He is here, with everything well set. Even today I heard some news from Rio de Janeiro, a thing that didn’t exist in those times [Daime in the south of Brazil]. We only had it here. Today it comes from Rio de Janeiro, from abroad, from here and there. Everything came from him and belongs to him, and this is a tranquility to us; a pleasure to be seeing the words that he spoke becomes true:
“This Doctrine is going to be ruler of the whole world”
I, from my side, have the pleasure to see it happening, because his word is echoing eternally, spreading and multiplying in the whole universe. This, for us who fought with him, who knew and heard he tells, is an enormous pleasure.
He used to tell us,
“Look, you do work and learn to concentrate, to know, to comprehend, because it will come a time in which the Daime is going to be so scarcely that the elders will only feel it by the smell, because many people are going to arrive”
The elders had to make that sacrifice to learn and to understand. At least for me I thought that he was never going to leave my side, but with all this I thank him very much, because he doesn’t scorn any of us. Us knowing how to ask, he comes!