My relationship with the saints started when I was 19 years old beginning with a book about St. Therese of Lisieux. Up to that point, I thought there was no way I could be a saint. However, after reading St. Therese’s Little Way, I thought I could give this a try as I was inspired by her humility and kind heart. Many times through the years, St. Therese answered my prayers with a rose. The most significant time was when I was going for infertility surgery. A dear friend showed up at my front door with excitement on her face. She had a single stem that had 5 roses on it. It should have been a single rose, but somehow had 5 buds. My friend took this as a sign that God would allow me to have children.
Through the years, I have read and studied about many saints. They have become my friends as I walk on this earth. They have also become a support and help. One of these friends is St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. She became a special saint in my life as she was a convert, a wife, a mother, a widow and a religious. St. Elizabeth taught me about perseverance in family life and in friendships. Her writings reveal a woman who never gave up on anyone in her life as she tried to win them to Christ.
I have also traveled some of my roads with St. Clare of Assisi. There are many stories I could share from her life, but one particular story that impacted me told of her willingness to serve the other sisters, even after she became Mother Superior of her order. My prayers for assistance through St. Clare have often brought me comfort in difficult times, and once led to a healing while I prayed to her in Assisi, Italy. St. Clare has been a model to me of simplicity and great love for the Passion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
A saint that has been a blessing in times of suffering is Blessed Margret of Castello. Blessed Margaret was born very deformed and blind. Her father was so embarrassed that he built what was essentially a cell, in the woods by their house, for her to live in so she would be hidden from the world. A priest was her only visitor each day. Growing up, she had a deep faith and offered up her sufferings for others. I am currently praying to Blessed Margaret for an increase in courage and perseverance in suffering. Recently, I found a novena to Blessed Margaret of Castello. I prayed the novena for one of my daughter’s back pain to be healed, and it was!
Although I could go on and on about many saints who have walked with me, there is one more saint, and his family, who have been a source of strength in my life. I have always loved praying to St. Bernard of Clairvaux, and his sister Blessed Humbeline. (My daughters were nervous I would name one of my children Humbeline when they were younger :) St. Bernard’s mother, Alice of Montebar, has also inspired me. Alice taught her seven children to pray, and instilled in each of them a great faith. One aspect of their lives together that always inspired me was how St. Bernard continually called his siblings to deeper faith. Now, each and every sibling in their family is a Blessed!
I cannot imagine my life without my friends, the saints. They have truly called me on, supported me, encouraged me, and been by my side. I do not put them above Jesus, as they draw me to Jesus. Their examples don’t make me scared, bur rather encourage me. There are many more saints – thousands of saints! There is a saint for each and every situation you can be in. They want to walk with us. It is the Church Triumphant reaching out to, and praying for, the Church Militant. My goal is not to tell you all the stories of the saints, but rather to inspire you to go and learn about the saints and build friendship with the saints that touch your heart.
Pray for us all you saints in Heaven!
- Laura Greey, People of Hope Member