Margaret Mary Myers has tagged me for the “Gaggle of Saint Friends” meme. (Unfortunate name, that.)
Because we share a much-loved patron and therefore must be sisters-of- the-heart, I would like to thank Margaret Mary for the tag and offer my response. This took some thought, (unlike my usual post), because—after all—we are talking about the saints. I felt like the Roman centurion: I am so not worthy! Anyway, here goes.
1. First saint you “met?”
This would have to be St. Ignatius of Loyola, whose life story figured prominently in the retreat that led to my conversion.
2. Favorite Saint(s)?
The all-inclusive list? Well, that’s not possible. Here are but a few:
St. Margaret Mary, St. Margaret of Scotland, St. Peter, St. John, St. Benedict, St. Ignatius, St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of Lisieux, St. John Bosco, St. Gianna Molla, St. Maximillian Kolbe, St. Josemaría Escrivá, St. Joseph and of course, Our Blessed Mother.
3. Patron saint for the year?
I don’t know what this means. Hang on—I’ll go do a Google search.
I’m back and the results were too, too cool! I found a lovely little web site, whereupon was listed some very familiar names…
Who knew this group was out there? Did you?
Well, I think that the Saint for a Year ministry sounds delightful. You submit your name to Marianne and she then chooses your patron (or rather, your patron chooses you). Once we receive our patron saint we should:
Take some time to research your saints so you get to know them better and then you will be able to recognize the connections and intercessions that you and your saint will share. The more sites that you can go to, the more you will learn. I also suggest that you treat your patron as a friend and confidante. Talk to your saint. Tell them your wants, your troubles, your fears, etc…Ask them to intercede for you. Most of all, listen to your saint … ask them to open your eyes and mostly your heart to what they have in store for you during this yearly walk with them. They may have chosen YOU as an intercessor for THEM and for what they stand for … in other words, maybe they want you to pray for people who suffer crosses or to pray for priests or any of the number of things that they are patrons of. Perhaps they possessed a quality that they would like to see blossom in you and they are going to be there to help you do that. Or they could have lacked a certain quality that you are strong in and they will help you help others grow in that quality or talent.
I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to get you all caught up in my serendipitous moment there, but I think this is just the thing to jumpstart my faith. I emailed Marianne and will soon be announcing my patron saint for 2008.
(This is so exciting…)
4. Favorite book by a saint?
I’ll list just a few favorites: The Spiritual Exercises by St. Ignatius; The Way to Perfection by Teresa of Avila; Story of a Soul by St. Therese; and Introduction to the Devout Life by St. Francis de Sales.
5. Saint book you are reading now?
My son & I are gearing up to read this book (surprise surprise).
6. Favorite movie of a saint?
I haven’t seen too many, to be honest. I blame our lack of cable—if only we had EWTN! I am very fond of the movies produced by Leonardo de Filippis, and in particular, his Therese.
7. Favorite Autobiography/Biography of a saint?
Story of a Soul and The Confessions of St. Augustine.
8. Favorite novel/book of a saint?
Does this question mean a book by a saint or about a saint? Does it really matter? One of my all-time highly recommended favorites is The Way, Furrow, The Forge (a 3-volume set) by St. Josemaría Escrivá. There is a copy of this book in our church’s adoration chapel, and frankly, I’m surprised that it’s still there. One or two paragraphs are all you need. They will speak to your heart. I guarantee it.
9. Saint (besides your favorites) you’d want to meet?
Oh, come on now. Why can’t we pick one of our favorites to answer this question? That’s just silly but to be “saintly” I’ll answer it anyway. I would want to meet any saint because to be in his/her presence would be transforming. Granted, we must want to be transformed, for as Our Lord said, “If the seed falls on rocky soil…”
10. Saint you look to for help?
St. Margaret Mary, to grow in love; St. Margaret of Scotland, to grow in patience; St. Therese, to grow in humility; and St. Anthony (no explanation needed).
11.Favorite saint quote?
I need some sort of random generator for this one—there are so many! I’ll go with three from my much-loved St. Teresa of Avila:
“Lord, deliver me from sad-faced saints”;
“If this is how You treat your friends, Lord, it’s no wonder you have so few of them!”;
“Let nothing disturb you.
Let nothing afright you.
All things are passing.
God alone is changeless.
He who has patience wants for nothing.
He who has God has all things.
God alone suffices.”
12. Favorite Holy Card?
Hmmm…certainly I have many to chose from, as these little guys are floating all over the house. How about those Holy Traders? Those are pretty cool, and I love how Seton always places one in with my children’s graded papers.
13. Favorite story of a saint?
Oh goodness, to pick just one! I’m going to shake things up a pick and choose a story about a man who’s not yet a saint but should be, Pope Leo XIII. (The story includes St. Michael, so I figure it still qualifies.)
You know the story, don’t you?
Pope Leo XIII was saying Mass when he was interrupted by a vision of Satan, who threatened to invade the Holy Catholic Church within the next 100 years. Pope Leo was so shaken (understandably) that he had to be helped from the altar. Once he had regained his composure, (and finished the Mass, presumably), he composed his powerful prayer to St. Michael.
14. If you could go anywhere on a pilgrimage to a saint’s homeland, where would it be?
Avila, Siena, Assisi and Lisieux!
15. Any Blesseds or Venerables that you would like to become canonized?
I’d like to see the canonization of the good bish Fulton Sheen as well as Louis and Zélie Martin and Pope John Paul the Great (natch).
And that’s that! Whew!
Now for the really fun part. I tag…Karen, whose spiritual depths are always fun to plumb and who is so very not a “sad-faced saint!”
Have a blessed Sunday, everyone!
Ad Jesum per Mariam,
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