Sunday, February 17, 2013

Lives of the Saints: Words of Wisdom

Saint Bonaventure Window
Saint Bonaventure Window (Photo credit: Niall McAuley)
As a young child, I was captivated by the Lives of the Saints. Reading about their heroic deeds, their sacrifices and their words of wisdom encouraged me to try to be the best I could be.

Saints, back then, were exceptionally holy people that acted like mentors or models for Catholics.  As far as I was told, other religions didn't have saints.  What a shock when at close to 60, I find out that there is no monopoly on saints.  

Saints are by definition is a person of "great holiness, virtue and benevolence."  Therefore, saints can exist everywhere!  What a delight for me, as a interfaith seminarian, to learn words of wisdom from these holy people.

Wisdom, when encapsulated into short proverbs or memorable sayings, works best for me.  I can repeat the lines over and over, when I need affirmation or if I need help to keep from despair.  

Since St. Valentine's day was this past week, I thought I would share some of the wonderful words of wisdom from my favorite saints and from a few I have just learned about in my studies.

May they inspire you, as they have me!  

From the Saints of my Childhood:

“The splendor of the rose and the whiteness of the lily
do not rob the little violet of it’s scent nor the daisy of its simple charm.
If every tiny flower wanted to be a rose, spring would lose its loveliness.”  ― Thérèse de Lisieux 


"The spirit of humility is sweeter than honey, and those who nourish themselves with this honey produce sweet fruit." - St. Anthony of Padua

"Lord, make me an instrument of your peace; where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; and where there is sadness, joy. " _  St. Francis Of Assisi   

From the Saints of other Cultures 

"My Beloved is always with me." St. Rabia of Basra

"A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act."  -Mahatma Gandhi         

Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.  -Mother Teresa

Namasté!                                                                                




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2 comments:

Retty said...

Thanks for sharing the words of wisdom. I am still a part of those who believe in saints, but it is a bit difficult to share the same believe to my children. I hope that by knowing their Saint patrons, they will be closer to the concept of saints.

Linda M. Rhinehart Neas, M.Ed. said...

Dear Retty,

I believe that even if children act as if they think saints are old fashioned, hearing their stories and knowing about them gives them examples to follow. Sometimes they follow unawares.

So, don't give up sharing the stories. They do make a difference.

Blessings, Linda