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Martyr (entered heaven in 286)
You can count on my prayers for your friend and fellow actor. It is a pity that he has wandered from the Church, but you can be sure that God will make use of your efforts to help him find his way back. Perhaps by opening night, you will be offering your performance up together for God’s greater glory. In all honesty, I don’t think he’s too far away. From what you tell me of your first substantial conversation, he seems to have received sound instruction at some point. You said that he remarked, “I know that we are not supposed to want fame and fortune, but I know myself, and I would be lying to myself if I pretended that I don’t want my acting career to win me fame and fortune. Maybe it’s a sin, but it’s the truth.” From such a remark you can see that his conscience has not yet been completely tamed. Keep your conversations turning around that point, the motivation behind an actor’s (or anyone’s, for that matter) search for success. The Holy Spirit will give you some openings there, I imagine. From seeing his need to have nobler motives, you can nudge him towards meeting that need through a return to prayer and the sacraments.
Today’s saint could be the patron of this evangelization project. He was gifted with both a keen awareness of the needs of his fellow Christians, and a creative courage that found ways to meet those needs. He was a zealous Christian, but lived and worked in the emperor’s palace (he was the emperor’s chamberlain – personal servant). The emperor happened to be Diocletian, instigator of a particularly cruel persecution of Christians. During this persecution, Pope St Caius was especially concerned about the safety of the Roman Christians. Castulus came to the Pope’s aid, suggesting that they could worship in secret in the imperial palace itself, which was the least likely place to be searched. It worked. He also started hiding Christians in his own house, adjoining the palace. Still not satisfied that he was doing enough for the Kingdom, he and his friend Tiburtius traveled around the city encouraging their fellow believers and winning converts, until one of their own abandoned the faith and betrayed them. St Castulus was cruelly tortured and then killed by suffocation in a pit when they piled sand on top of him.
I hope you can emerge from your show breathing freely, but perhaps my prayers joined to those of St Castulus will help your evangelizing efforts bear fruit even if you don’t suffer martyrdom.
Your affectionate uncle, Eddy
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