Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Props to St. Anthony

My old pastor has told a story of when he was a younger priest, and was in the company of a non-Catholic (I think it was a Protestant minister--we are in the South) who had lost something. Father suggested saying a prayer to St. Anthony. Everybody knows that St. Anthony is the patron saint of lost things--even this guy knew it, but being a non-Catholic, (I think a Protestant minister,) he was not so eager to invoke St. Anthony's aid. Gently admonishing, he said to Father, "Isn't that superstitious?"

Father simply said, "No, because it works." The guy eventually became desperate enough to try it--Father gave him the little two-line rhyme--and sure enough he found what he needed. He became a believer--not necessarily in the fullness of Truth in the Catholic Church, but at least in the patronage of St. Anthony.

To be truthful, I do feel a little childish, turning to him only when I have lost something and want his help finding it. Because, really, he is one of those awesome saints whose story is full of extraordinary signs and wonders that glorify God. I do believe I will grow up one day, maybe even this side of heaven, and get to know him better.

But I have been talking to him a lot lately, because...I lose things a lot. I am the queen of losing things. "Misplace" is the proper word, but when it happens it happens and I don't necessarily have a lot of patience to spare, because I was doing something just a minute ago with that notebook, and I need my keys right now, and where did that camera go, it was JUST HERE. And I have been very much like a pesty baby sister, tagging after my big brother whining for his help.

It may be a weensy bit different from the usual wording, but I often use this rhyme:
Dear St. Anthony, please come 'round.
Something's lost and must be found.
And like the best kind of older brother, he hasn't failed me yet. Sometimes he unearths the missing thing within minutes, or sends a little helpful thought my way in the middle of the search. Or sometimes he will take God's good time about helping me out. But I always get what I need when I need it. Which makes me think it's really high time I enlisted him in looking after a few lost souls I'm praying for.

Thank you, St. Anthony, for always being there. and to God be the glory!

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