My Dear Parish,
How many saints can you name off the top of your head? Can you name three or ten or fifty? Saint Vincent de Paul comes to mind, for starters - our church is named after him. Then of course there's Saint Joseph and Saint Mary (although we usually call her "the Blessed Virgin Mary" or "Our Lady"). There's Saint Peter and Saint Paul, Saint Cecilia, and the list goes on and on.
It turns out that there are tons of saints. But have you ever stopped to think what makes a saint a saint? It's an important question and one that effects you and me more than we may realize. In fact, it's so important that I've decided to focus our attention on this question for the next several months. And hopefully by the end of these reflections, not only will we understand better what a saint is, but we'll find outselves closer to becoming saints, too.
What is a saint?
A saint is someone whose earthly life was so pleasing to God that they can be assured of being happy with God and all the other saints forever in heaven. It's someone who faithfully reflects God's holiness. A saint is a faithful friend of Jesus Christ.
I think we could all say that at the end of our earthly lives, when all is said and done, we want to know that unending happiness that God has prepared for us from before he created the heavens and the earth. We want to hear the words spoken to us, "Come, my good and faithful servant, enter thy master's joy."
There are many saints to whom we can look for inspiration. We've already named a few. Next week we'll hear that becoming a saint is not just for the few, but for all of us.
St. Josemaría dedicated his life to sharing the message that everyone (ordinary people like you and me) is called to sanctity; to holiness. We are all called to be a saint—we are all called to be a faithful friend of Jesus Christ. St. Josemaría shared that we should all strive to be holy in the ordinary circumstances of everyday life.
A Saint is a sinner that keeps trying.