Quote 2

He realized now he was only just beginning to see the full extent to which it was his destiny to follow, to walk blindly into fates he could never understand. In fate there was reward, in turning over one’s heart to God there was a magnificence that lay beyond description. At the moment one is sure that all is lost, look at what is gained!

In this passage from Chapter Five, the narrator explains the thoughts of Father Arguedas, who feels blessed to be in captivity. Arguedas believes that when you trust God, even the most dire events are full of goodness. Being held hostage by terrorists struck Arguedas as a disaster at first, but after a while, he finds blessings in the situation. Captivity means he can listen to Roxanne Coss sing every day. It also means he can fulfill his vows as a priest by ministering to people who are in great need.

Father Arguedas’s belief in destiny is strengthened by captivity. He comes to believe that “it [is] his destiny to follow.” A deeply religious man, he does not think it is his place to understand the fate that God has created for him. To Arguedas, people are helpless, uncertain creatures who must trust God if they hope to find happiness.