Raymond Arroyo had a wonderful interview with Eduardo Verastegui on The World Over (the live program was on Friday, this was the re-run and will be seen here). His story keeps getting richer with meaning each time it is told.
I had forgotten the important role Eduardo's ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher had on his conversion. Tonight, he said that her persistent questioning of his motive for working in Hollywood, and her challenging him on how he was insulting God with how he abused his body, was the key factor in his conversion. She is a devout Catholic, and I send her my praise, as a fellow ESL teacher who also tries to be a good influence on my students. Yes, last weekend, I did show them the trailer for "Bella" in our weekly ESL class!
I hope to bring many of them to see "Bella" when it opens in two weeks. Even though their English is limited, I could see their pride in a fellow Latino who is a proud Catholic and a fine actor. Eduardo says he is tired of the media stereotype of Latinos as criminals or womanizers. He wants to help change this image, and help Americans see the truth, that Latinos are family oriented, and love children. I have known this for 20 years, I pray he succeeds.
One of the callers asked whether Eduardo knows of Theology of the Body, and plans to feature this in an upcoming film, and he answered he did understand it and how our bodies are sacred, and he has increased respect for women these last five years when he has been practicing chastity. He said that his mother, sisters and aunts are good, and wise, and hates to see women treated as objects. He wants to offer his entire self to the woman he marries, and that he will wait until he is married to do so. When he was asked how he maintains his purity, he answered that he goes to daily Mass and weekly confession.
The grace which has touched Eduardo Verastegui is truly remarkable, and it has been said, more than once that his conversion is a story which would make a great movie. Wait till he creates a wedding scene for the film, what a beautiful climatic moment that would be!