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Have You Put Your Patron Saint to Work for You?: Weekly Message for 01-22-2019
Dear Digital pilgrims,
Few practices of the Catholic faith today are so misunderstood and at times disregarded as the devotion to patron saints. From the earliest days of Christianity, families, parishes, regions, and even countries have sought holy people who have passed on to intercede for them before God. Seeking the intercession, protection, or entrusting oneself to a patron saint does not mean that we cannot approach God directly in prayer. Rather, it’s like asking a friend to lend a hand in praying for us, while we also pray—except our friends already in Heaven can pray to God for us without ceasing. This is how the communion of saints can influence our daily lives.
Do not weep, for I shall be more useful to you after my death and I shall help you then more effectively than during my life. -St Dominic
I want to spend my heaven in doing good on earth – St Therese
This past Christmas, even though blessed to visit family in Australia, I missed one of my most favorite Christmas traditions as a community…Patron Saints. Thankfully, I was able to video conference in from halfway around the world to discover which saint was chosen as my patron for the year. Amidst the Christmas season, as members of Regnum Christi, we have the custom to receive a virtue card to offer three-fold gifts: a patron saint to accompany us through the year, a virtue to work on, and an inspirational quote to keep us motivated. St. Joseph, already a very dear and familiar guardian and companion, has his work cut out for him to help me grow in the virtue of “a spirit of service”! I am sure there will be many opportunities ahead to enjoy the friendship and accompaniment of St. Joseph!
In Regnum Christi, we also especially evoke the intercession of our patron, St. Paul, to accompany us as “the love of Christ impels us” (2 Corinthians 5:14) in our pursuits of holiness and apostolic action.
As we begin the New Year, our new Retreat Guide Christ Alone is Enough: A Retreat Guide on St. Paul’s Letter to the Colossians will help us to identify what challenges and dangers we, too, face in living out our faith in the world today. St. Paul recognized the turbulence caused by the dangers of false doctrines and self-sufficiency in the early Christian community of Colossae. In his Letter to the Colossians, he encourages the faithful with a kind of inoculation against the false doctrines. These are dangers that have reappeared in our own age, morphing from pre–Christian form into a post–Christian, secular form – but still as dangerous as ever.
In the two Meditations of this Retreat Guide, we will touch on crucial passages and explore authentic, Christ-centered spiritual freedom. And in the Conference, we will review the ancient practice of Lectio Divina, sacred reading, as a way to follow St. Paul’s advice to the Colossians to “let the word of Christ dwell in your richly”.
With our New Year resolutions and plans for 2019, let’s remember to not do it alone. Ask your patron saint in heaven to intercede and guide you in all your endeavors drawing closer to Our Lord this year.
With the assurance of my prayers,
Lucy Honner, CRC
Director, RCSpirituality Center