Learning from the Saints

Learning from the Saints

by Fr. Eamonn Bourke


“I feel that I have been totally imbued with God and with this God, I am going back to my everyday life, so drab, tiresome and wearing – trusting that He whom I feel in my heart will change this drabness into my personal sanctity” (Diary No. 1363)

St. Faustina 


The Life of a Saint

When we think of our favorite saints, we tend to imagine that they spent their life living in serene peace and that everything was rosy in the garden all the time for them. When we look at their photographs, artwork or statues, we might be tempted to think that they lived in pure spiritual bliss.

When we look at the various photograph of St. Faustina, she looks so holy and content. As we struggle through our daily life, coping with our daily struggles, we can sometimes think to ourselves, “Well, if I felt the closeness of God that she did or if I felt as courageous as she was, then I would be a saint too!”

The Same Difficulties

St. Faustina reminds us that this is not the case. The Saints had the same trials, difficulties, and burdens that we all do. They were born into the same types of families as we are. They had to grow and find their place in the world. They found life to be drab, tiresome and wearing sometimes too. The Saints did not live perfect lives, in the sense that they never knew ordinariness. They had the same trials and difficulties as we have. They grew tired. They struggled. They grew weary.

The Difference

However, they never gave up. They put their trust in God. They lived with hope in their hearts. What is so reassuring is that St Faustina became a saint by living through the hardships and troublesome mess of life, facing each day with faith and hope. She had an understanding that God was present, even in the drab weary moments, calling her to holiness.

Faithfulness to Prayer

Her knowledge and understanding were gained through a life of genuine faithfulness to prayer. Becoming a saint is hard, difficult work. It takes dedication and commitment. St. Faustina and all the other saints didn’t set out knowing that they would become saints. No, they set out each day, taking one day at a time, just trying to live the best life they could, in whatever circumstances they found themselves in. They prayed every day and used the opportunities that presented themselves as stepping stones on the narrow road to holiness.

Trust in God through Prayer

Q. What one attribute do we need to have and to foster in our souls so that we too can reach the heights of holiness like the saints? Answer: Trust!

“Jesus, I trust in you” was not a trendy catchphrase for St. Faustina. It was her dedication to whom she loved. She took, into every day,  her trust in God, enkindled from time spent in prayer. An inner trust of being imbued with God and this confidence in His love and mercy changed everything.

But her trust, and the trust which all the saints had, in God's love and mercy, was renewed each day by prayer. Every saint is adamant about the fruits of prayer, especially time spent before the Blessed Sacrament. They recommend it to everyone because they know how powerful and beneficial it is to help people to find the "Way, the Truth and the Life".  

Not Enough Time Today

So, if you find yourself thinking, ‘I don’t have time to pray today’, you should think again. If there is one thing that you shouldn’t let go from your daily schedule, it is time for prayer. 

How can our trust, knowledge, and understanding of God grow if we do not spend time with God each day? Each day is a journey deeper into knowing and trusting God, allowing Him to transform our sometimes drab and tiresome life into beautiful proofs of His love. 

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St. Eunan's Cathedral, Letterkenny, Donegal, Ireland

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Letterkenny, Donegal, Ireland



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