Message from Father Rick
What do the following saints all have in common? Issac Jogues, Kateri Tekakwitha, Blessed Junipero Serra, Elizabeth Ann Seton, Rose Duchesne, Theodore Guerin, John Neumann, Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, Damien of Molokai, Marianne Cope, Frances Cabrini, and Katharine Drexel?
Give up? These are all Saints that we can proudly claim as our own American Saints. Each of the individuals I listed above lived and courageously served the God they loved and the good people of our homeland. They are recent saints when you look at the history of sainthood and they lived in states and towns we are familiar with. Fr. Paul Boudreau, a priest of our Diocese, and Alice Camille recently wrote a wonderful book entitled; Fearless – Stories of the American Saints. In their book the authors paint incredibly personal and tangible portraits of the Saints listed above. They write in their introduction, It is our desire to tell these stories within the context of our unique cultural history. These were, after all, men and women who walked the streets of New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore; who worked in New Orleans, Denver, and along California’s coast. They penetrated the heartland of Indiana and Missouri with missions and churches, schools and hospitals. They preached in the Southwest and brought hope to island territories that would later become part of our national story.
What an arsenal of advocates we now have as a nation. These are the saints we need to become more familiar with since they are precisely who we should be praying to for the safety and well being of the country we love and the country we see in great crisis. The many wars, civil unrest, economic uncertainty, poverty, lack of respect towards life and the deterioration of the family unit can be overwhelming and lead one to a feeling of hopelessness. It is at those moments throughout history that Catholics have always pulled out the big guns and have called upon heaven to help us in our hour of need. How many of you are praying for our country? If not, why not? Let’s make a concerted effort to pray to the American Saints and ask for their unique intervention in helping us to heal and once again become a nation of faith, a nation of compassion and a nation of dreams.
God bless everyone – hang in there Spring is right around the corner!