Today’s Friday Favorite has a Holy Week spin… I am sharing a few of my favorite Saints.
There is a common misconception that Catholics worship Saints – that is actually not true. We do like to study their lives, honor their faith, and pray for their intercession on our behalf to the Lord – but we do not worship them. Our Saints are just regular people who were able to achieve miraculous things, despite their humanity. I personally find a lot of comfort in learning from these people that chose to take their life, or utilize their circumstances to honor the Lord.
Some Saints live to serve God’s people, some provided resources (readings, prayers, practices) for our church, and others we may know very little about – but they all share the bond of finding a way to rise above themselves in the name of faith. But that life of dedication isn’t without trial and error, frustrations, fear or pain….. and that is what make me so appreciative of their stories, I can relate! They have been called holy and yet they have messed up, gotten lost, even commit murder – but they never let that shame or guilt rule their life and instead found the way to relinquish their control and give their future to God’s plan. It gives me a lot of peace, hope, comfort….. and a friendly person to talk to while in prayer to ask for a little help!
So here are some information about a few of my favorite Saints and I encourage you to share some of yours!
Saint Maria Goretti
Saint Maria Goretti was tragically murdered as just a child after refusing the sexual advances of a teenage boy. In her dying hours she forgave him and later he would become a blessed brother. Saint Maria chose to give grace, to offer forgiveness and to live until her death with the heart of a child that finds everyone deserving of God and love. I struggle with the last word or being right – when really, does it matter? Maria could have gotten the last word, truly she was “right” in this scenario – but did it really matter? Her life was being taken – no matter if she was right or wrong, and yet she choose to still choose God and offer his love. I pray for a heart with that sort of kindness and ability to forgive – Saint Maria Goretti, pray for me.
Saint Jude was one of Jesus apostles and is the Saint of hopeless cases. I have always known Saint Jude to be the go to for dire situations, but he did not really stand out for me until last year my mom gave me a prayer card for him that belonged to my grandfather. When 2017 grew very dark I prayed those words fervently and begged Saint Jude to help me cling to hope….. at that point I was not even worried about the outcome, I was fearful I wouldn’t have enough hope to make it to see the outcome. In a year my life has been transformed and hope is a theme. I will always cherish the hours I have spent begging for St. Jude’s intercession and wisdom. Saint Jude, pray for me.
Saint Theresa lived a simple life as a cloistered nun, but she struggled terribly with illness and mental anguish in her faith life. However, she believed in the immense power in seeing great love and beauty in the simple things. Her writings have inspired so many of us to see the world’s beauty in even the most unexpected places and to spread the message of faith’s love through the most simple acts. We all think to be a saint or even just a valuable Christian you need to be outgoing or boisterous and doing incredible works – yet Saint Theresa reminds us that doing all the little things with love or treating anyone in our life with great respect is God’s work too. For me, I can get so bogged down in the need to do great big important things… which means I may not do other menial tasks with great love and care- what a missed opportunity to worship God all day long and live my faith. Saint Theresa, pray for me.
Not much is known of Saint Natalie from 300s AD… but what is known is she and her husband were so overcome with the faith of the Christian’s being put to death – they joined the Christians being persecuted immediately – without even a formal baptism! This story always makes me think of those people you meet who so impress you with their energy or spirit, you are compelled to connect with them. Saint Natalie found that experience in the Christian community, that she followed to her death….. I don’t need folks to die, but am I so alive with God’s spirit and joy others want to learn more? How can I live life enveloped in God’s grace so much so that I just radiate it? Saint Natalie, pray for me.
I encourage you to take time out of your prayer life to study these stories or research what Saint’s may fit in the needs of your current challenges. My guess is you will suddenly feel like you have a special angel on your side and a friend to talk to about what plaques your humanity. Build your Saint group and talk to them about what you fear, what you need… and I will promise you their work on your behalf will be seen.
Thank you so much for reading and remember to make it a great day!