Be Still and Know that I am God

The Diocese of Lecce is officially located in the italiaregion of Puglia, Italy…what we know as “the heel” of the boot. The locals, however, prefer the more traditional/ancient/ provincial (however you want to look at it) distinction: Salento. Whatever you call it, this ancient city was of great importance from the period of the Roman empire; before that, it was known to have trade relations with the Greeks. Visiting it, you can still see ruins of the Roman amphitheater and other structures dating from the 1st Century AD or earlier.  Continue reading “Be Still and Know that I am God”

A Letter from St. Junipero Serra to His Parents

The Church’s newest saint, Junipero Serra, a Spaniard by birth, but an “American” by virtue of his selfless service to the natives of what would become the American southwest and Mexico, left home at the age of about 35, having already enjoyed a successful period teaching philosophy at a Franciscan seminary. When the desire to be a missionary in the New World took hold of his heart, he struggled to tell his parents. In fact, in the end, he left without saying good-bye and only after he left were they informed of his departure. He would never see them in this life again. The following letter expresses the deep desire of his heart for them and, even more importantly, for the will of God in his life and theirs! Continue reading “A Letter from St. Junipero Serra to His Parents”

Your Will Be Done

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The Basilica of the Visitation where the relics of St. Francis de Sales and St. Jane Frances de Chantel are housed and venerated.

The last few weeks have provided some real opportunities to be in some very holy places (the Basilica of the Visitation, for example) in the footsteps of some very holy people such as St. Francis de Sales and St. Jane Frances de Chantel. What a treat it has been, and it really has become clear that the various places that we visit, especially where the saints have trod (in significant and not-so-significant ways), the Faith in these places takes on a certain flavor of the saints. For example, nearly every Church in Rome (it seems) has 3 required statues/images/side chapels: Our Lady and Sts. Peter and Paul. They are EVERYWHERE! In and around Assisi, it’s Sts. Francis and Clare.  Siena (proudly) has St. Catherine and St. Bernadine of Siena.  Venice has Sts. Mark, Lucy, and (allegedly) hundreds of others that they “saved” from the Muslims during the Crusades…that’s another story for another time.  Annecy, France has St. Frances de Sales and St. Jane Frances de Chantel.  There’s a real (authentic) pride about having the relics of the saints in “your” Church and/or in your home town, and they are (or at least can be) a real source of inspiration for the faithful, by means of their lives, their teachings, and their witness to Jesus Christ in the world.   Continue reading “Your Will Be Done”