When I was growing up, one of the books we had at home was both intriguing and somewhat macabre – The Lives of the Saints. What wonders could be found between its burgundy covers! These accounts started off nicely enough, but many ended in violence or gruesomeness of one kind or another. With some trepidation, I would dip into the book from time to time, hoping to find inspiration but bracing myself for the unexpected.

Little did I imagine then that as the years went by, I would be walking with the saints daily. I think of them now as relatives – I may not see them, but I find it comforting to know they are not far away.

Through the ups and downs of life, I can call on them for help in times of trouble: when I am having a health problem (St. Raphael or St. André Bessette), when I’ve lost something (St. Anthony), when challenges come up in my work (St. Joseph or St. John Bosco), when I need courage (St. Joan of Arc), when I am worried about the climate crisis (St. Francis of Assisi)… and the list goes on. There is a saint for every type of occupation or activity, from all over the world! (You can find countless lists online.)

The saints were people just like us – flawed, yet striving for holiness that is grounded in their love of God. They are always there for us in our time of need, just a call away.

Who are your favourite saints? On this All Saints’ Day (and anytime), pray to and with the saints as you walk this amazing and at times overwhelming path of life. Here is a version of the Litany of the Saints to sing along with and contemplate:

All you holy men and women, pray for us!

Anne Louise Mahoney, Managing Editor

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