“And I say to you, you are Kepa, and upon this Kepa I will build my church and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it”.
Jesus established His Church with men who would take the gospel to all nations.
For nearly 2,000 years, men and women of all nations, tribes, tongues have witnesses the miracles of His Saints. At times like today, there is great confusion and there is much suffering in the world.
The Catholic Church is like a great visible light that continues to sail through the mix of all hopelessness. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 states, “Therefore, we are not discouraged; rather, although our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this momentary light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to what is seen but to what is unseen; for what is seen is transitory, but what is unseen is eternal.”
When I was coming home to my Catholic Faith in the late 1970′s, one of the early Catholic Martyrs that had such a great impact on me was St. Lucy.
The college environment was in full transition, the culture was beginning to push the progressive movement.
For the progressive movement to catch a foothold in the United States, much of our innocence had to be compromised.
The divorce rate was bordering 50% even by the summer of 1976. When I was interviewed by my High School newspaper, I told the paper that my favorite band was a group called the Eagles and my favorite singer was Elton John.
At that time I was not strong in faith and I was not aware of the values and morals this actually would support.
Elton John, for example, had not come out of the closet with his homosexual agenda.
I remembered his song “Crocodile Rock” and that was a favorite song of mine at the time. That was a song that reminded me of the sock hop dances at school.
College life in 1977 would be a different scene. I am thankful that the Lord spared me of the progressive movement because of my interest in playing baseball. Instead of experimenting with the party life, I’d be out running 5 miles or in the gym. I would go to the school dances but most of that was exercise.
It was the fall of 1978 that I began to rediscover perhaps for the first time the importance of my Catholic Faith. The story of St. Lucy intrigued me greatly because of her courage.
St. Lucy lived in the early 4th century during a massive persecution of the Catholic Church. She was a very beautiful young woman whom I wondered how she would have lived in our time.
As a young beautiful woman, many men wanted to take her hand in marriage and her Mother wanted to arrange a wedding for St. Lucy.
That never materialized because of St. Lucy’s love and
commitment to Jesus Christ. She wanted to be one of Our Lady’s maids who are presented before the King (Psalms 45:15).
St. Lucy dedicated her life solely to the Lord. She would pray at the tomb of St. Agatha and through her intercession, her Mother was cured of a long illness miraculously.
This led to her Mother’s conversion to Christ, but that did not stop the suitors seeking St. Lucy’s hand in marriage.
The rejected bridegroom accused St. Lucy of being a Christian. He took his case to the Governor who sent her to a house of prostitution.
The Lord worked wondrous miracles through St. Lucy. Her guards found her “stiff and heavy as a mountain”. They could not budge her.
While in this house of ill repute, any man who looked upon her lustfully lost their sight. Can you imagine such a sight? They would receive their sight back upon her intercession. In the above picture, notice the eyes placed in her plate. This depicts God’s grace given her for protection.
The Governor was wanting to save her life because she was so beautiful, but her faith was immovable. Can you imagine what it would be like today if men were to treat women like they were ladies?
Many women today are much like those captives “weighed down by sins, led by various desires, always trying to learn but never able to reach a knowledge of the truth”. (2 Timothy 3:6-7)
Because of their rebellion, “God handed them over to degrading passions. Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural and the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another”. (Romans 1:26-27)
If I thought it was bad in 1978, going back to college in 2013 is a total shock. Our holy Catholic Faith is under attack on all fronts around the world. It is like we have lost all common sense. We really need St. Lucy today more than ever as a role model.
St. Lucy suffered torture during the terrible reign of Diocletian and is remembered today as the Patron Saint of the blind and those with eye trouble.
What courage St. Lucy demonstrated because of her strong faith. She contended for the Faith with her life as many of the Saints. She was truly a handmaid of the Lord who bore witness to the love of God in her life. Today she is among the great cloud of witnesses who greatly encouraged me at a critical time in my life.
I have stood up for the faith millions of times the past 41 years eventually going to many places in the world.
St. Lucy was a great motivation for me. I wanted to have that kind of faith. Her feast day is 13 December.
At a time when there is so much despair, the Lord gives us such great witnesses who encourages us to keep moving forward. If you feel the pressures of life crumbling around you and you feel all is lost, be reminded that
“in all things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus Our Lord.” Romans 8:37-39
Saint Lucy, you did not hide your light under a basket, but let it shine for the whole world, for all the centuries to see. We may not suffer torture in our lives the way you did, but we are still called to let the light of our Christianity illumine our daily lives. Please help us to have the courage to bring our Christianity into our work, our recreation, our relationships, our conversation — every corner of our day. Amen