Universalis, your very own breviary in pixels...

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Pawn Shops and Syphilitics

What's the connection?
Today's memorial - the Memorial of St Gaetano, or Cajetan.
More evidence, if it were needed, that we are a hospital for sinners, not a country club for saints. Because the Kingdom of God is already BUT NOT YET.
[Saint Cajetan] was born in Vicenza and became a priest at the age of 36. He worked hard for the poor and the sick and for the reform of the Church; with this last aim in mind, he founded a congregation of secular priests which became known as the Theatines. These had three functions: preaching, the administration of the sacraments, and the celebration of the liturgy.
  He encouraged the growth of pawn-shops as a means of helping the poor out of temporary financial difficulties and keeping them out of the hands of usurers. His congregation also cared for incurable syphilitics (a particularly virulent form of syphilis was sweeping Europe, having been imported from the Caribbean by Columbus’s men).
  His example encouraged many others on the path to active sanctity. He said [in a letter to Elisabeth Porto]: “Do not receive Christ in the Blessed Sacrament so that you may use him as you judge best, but give yourself to him and let him receive you in this Sacrament, so that he himself, God your saviour, may do to you and through you whatever he wills.”
 An excellent thought - His will, not mine, He is not a feather on my breath, but I on His; I am not the potter, but the mud of the earth from which, if I but let Him, He may sculpt a vessel of not just utility, but beauty.

No comments: