(NationalUSNews.com) — Father Jesús Mariscal, of St. Paul Cathedral in Yakima, Washington, was called upon to perform a heroic act of service in September. He was just running out to buy some doughnuts as he prepared for an appointment when he heard a woman yelling that she needed help.
She was standing near Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception outside the cathedral and said that she was having a baby. Mariscal immediately called 911, but there was clearly no time to wait, as he could see blood on her feet. He set his phone on the ground and followed the dispatcher’s instructions, and a baby boy was born in just minutes.
However, the unidentified homeless woman was not done yet. The baby’s twin was in distress. He was still encased in the amniotic sac, and the 911 dispatcher instructed Mariscal to break it. With no tools and no time, he did so, using his bare hands, only to find that the baby had the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck. The operator had him release the child, lay him on his side, then gently tap his back. After a few moments, the relieved priest saw the tiny infant draw breath, and he placed him in his mother’s arms. When paramedics arrived, they took the mother and infants to the hospital, and Mariscal arrived late for his appointment with an unbelievable story.
Father Mariscal works with the migrant worker population in Washington. He says the story is both beautiful and sad. He visited the woman in the hospital, finding her and her twins doing well, despite the baby boys being born prematurely at 30 weeks. She and her family seem to have left the hospital hours later and have not returned.
Yakima Bishop Joseph J. Tyson praised Father Mariscal’s service and said that he hopes the story will bring awareness to Washington’s homeless problem. For his part, Mariscal says the experiences seemed like something out of a movie, but he believes the story should remind people of those on the “peripheries of our own communities” and the need to embrace and love their neighbors.
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