Tuesday, July 14, 2009
As It Is In Heaven
Am I at the computer? I must be, because I see letters appearing on the screen. I finally understand what people are talking about when they say they've had an 'out of body' experience, and I don't mean the heavenly ecstasies of the saints.
Sister Nicolas has returned, a human blur of activity. The last time she arrived, I was out of town and it was Sister St. Aloysius who welcomed her to our tiny convent. I actually never really saw them in action together. I can't imagine what went on there. If there was a way to hook up Sister St. Aloysius' nervous energy and Sister Nicolas' actual energy, we could power Los Angeles.
Or the earth would blow up.
One of those two things, definitely.
Is a Saint the ‘patron saint’ of something because it is assumed from aspects of their life that they hold a special interest in it? Going by the fact that St Gomer is the patron saint of woodcutters and lumberjacks because “on his way out of town on one occasion he accidentally knocked down someone's tree” could mean that if I were to become a Saint (okay, I know I’m getting wild now – but go with me to make this question work) because I work in a law firm I could be the patron saint of lawyers, or people who work for law firms – but really, the last thing I like to think about on the weekend, let alone in Heaven, are law firms! (Hmm, maybe that could be a good starting point as to why I will never be a Saint!) What if St Gomer isn’t in the least bit interested in woodcutters and lumberjacks despite that one incident? Many thanks!
It's just too bad for you and for St. Gomer. I'm sure St. Blaise isn't all that interested in knitting, either. I'm sure the wool comb with which he was tortured is one of the last things he would like to think about, too.
But as you astutely point out, he is the saint here.
Truthfully, this is what interests me about my patron saint matching job. The whole idea of the patron saint is that we are looking for someone who understands our concerns. Personally, I believe that qualifies St. Gomer to be the patron saint of tree lovers, as he must have felt bad about destroying the trees and had to deal with the wrath of the tree lovers for that destruction. If he never gave a fig for a fig tree before, he was forced to pay attention to the whole tree situation.
And being a saint, he's already going to be sympathetic to the plight of any one with a plight.
St. Blaise is another kettle of fish. I'm okay with his being the patron saint of throat issues. He had an actual concern there. He worked a miracle in the throat department. It may have been a fluke that it happened to be a throat issue. But it's not going to cause him to say, "I have no further interest in throats."
But the wool comb thing. Poor St. Blaise. I'm sure he really would like to forget about that ordeal.
On the other hand, there in Heaven where there is no pain and even the memory of pain is pleasant, why should he care? He must be pleased to pray for the intercession of the people who are using the wool comb for it's actual intention, to comb wool.
I do think we might find a better patron saint for wool gatherers and knitters. Maybe St. Elmo, the patron saint of sailors, who has an appreciation for making a lot of knots. In a row. Until they become a sweater.
Or look at the example of St. Jude. He is the patron saint of impossible causes, not because he overcame the impossible himself, but because he wasn't busy there is heaven, thus giving him time to tackle the impossible in the hereafter.
Should you become a saint (and you will be a saint once you find yourself in Heaven) you can be the patron saint of people who have to deal with lawyers on a daily basis. You will be sympathetic to their plight with deep understanding.
You will feel no pain, a miracle in itself.