by Sr. Mary Catherine Angeline, O.Carm.
My favorite saint? That is like looking to the stars on a clear night and choosing only one to be your favorite! Since childhood the saints have been my friends and heroes. Different situations called for different saints, to help me out, grow with or just dream about. The first two I learned about were St. Teresa of Avila and St. Catherine of Siena in children’s books. I loved the adventure St Teresa had trying to run off with her brother to convert the Moors. And St Catherine’s playfulness of untying her mother’s apron strings when her hands were busy...
As I grew into my pre-teen years I read about St. Agnes, St Domenic Savio, Laura Vicuna of Santiago, Chili and Kateri of the Mohawks. Little offerings of love to God in difficult situations and the practice of good deeds inspired me.
As I grew older, more books, movies, and travel - the world of saints grew exponentially. There was St Joseph patron of my parish; St Bernadette of Lourdes, Lucia, Francesco and Jacinta of Fatima, St James (the elder), Joan of Arc, Francis of Assisi... Living in Italy for a period of time offered a saint on almost every corner where I turned. I became avid to know more and more friends and heroes who loved Jesus as I did, in their own unique ways. St Margaret Alacoque, St John Evangelist, Mary Magdalen, John Paul ll, St John Vianny, Rita of Cassia, Angela of Foglino, Andrew Corsini, St Thomas Aquinas, Don Bosco, St Joseph Cupertino, Bruno Lanteri, John of the Cross, St Paul of the Cross, St Benedict and his sister St Scholastic, George Pier Frassati .... How can I chose only ONE? These are only the ones dearest to me!
Lately, my newest additional friends have become Mother Angeline Teresa and Carmelite John Soreth. Can you guess why?
The common denominator for all of the saints is their love for Christ in their own history and own experiences. Today we look for heroes in Batman, Superman, Spider man, Wonder-woman etc. Why not turn to real people, who lived real lives, and had real powers to conquer evil with good? The saints are more than willing to be our friends and heroes and role models. I’m proud to have so many as I need their help on my journey to love God and meet them personally one day in heaven.