Chapter 35: - Page 3 of 6

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(English version of “Noli Me Tangere”)

The women had opinions of still another kind.

Ay! sighed one woman of kindly expression. The young men are always so! If his good mother were alive, what would she say? When I think that the like may happen to my son, who has a violent temper, I almost envy his dead mother. I should die of grief!

Well, I shouldn’t, replied anotherIt wouldn’t cause me any shame if such a thing should happen to my two sons.

What are you saying, Capitana Maria! exclaimed the first, clasping her hands.

It pleases me to see a son defend the memory of his parents, Capitana Tinay. What would you say if some day when you were a widow you heard your husband spoken ill of and your son Antonio should hang his head and remain silent?

I would deny him my blessing! exclaimed a third, Sister Rufa, but—

Deny him my blessing, never! interrupted the kind Capitana TinayA mother ought not to say that! But I don’t know what I should do—I don’t know—I believe I’d die—but I shouldn’t want to see him again. But what do you think about it, Capitana Maria?

After all, added Sister Rufa, it must not be forgotten that it’s a great sin to place your hand on a sacred person.

A father’s memory is more sacred! replied Capitana MariaNo one, not even the Pope himself, much less Padre Damaso, may profane such a holy memory.

That’s true! murmured Capitana Tinay, admiring the wisdom of both. Where did you get such good ideas?

But the excommunication and the condemnation? exclaimed Sister RufaWhat are honor and a good name in this life if in the other we are damned? Everything passes away quickly—but the excommunication—to outrage a minister of Christ! No one less than the Pope can pardon that!

God, who commands honor for father and mother, will pardon it, God will not excommunicate him! And I tell you that if that young man comes to my house I will receive him and talk with him, and if I had a daughter I would want him for a son-in-law; he who is a good son will be a good husband and a good father—believe it, Sister Rufa!

Well, I don’t think so. Say what you like, and even though you may appear to be right, I’ll always rather believe the curate. Before everything else, I’ll save my soul. What do you say, Capitana Tinny?

Learn this Filipino word:

nakapakò ang paningín