In a blog about saints and suffering, I knew I had to deal with patron saint of those in pain and suffering–Padre Pio.
But I confess, I’m finding it difficult. Its not difficult because I don’t know that much about him and therefore don’t know what to say–it’s because I know so much about him, and there are so many amazing things about him, that it’s hard to express it. So I’m counting on you to help me out!!
I’ll say this:
He was an extraordinary example of suffering as he endured the daily stigmata, literal attacks from the devil, skepticisms and criticisms, and a lot of unwanted attention.
As if this wasn’t enough, he added to his Cross, by eating and sleeping very little, and hearing confessions for sometimes up to 19 hours a day.
But he embraced suffering. Why? Because he understood its purpose–its value. Here are a couple of his many quotes on suffering:
“In order to attract us, the Lord grants us many graces that we believe can easily obtain Heaven for us. We do not know, however, that in order to grow, we need hard bread: the cross, humiliation, trials and denials.”
“Jesus said to me; ‘How many times would you have abandoned Me, my son, if I had not crucified you. Beneath the cross, one learns love, and I do not give this to everyone, but only to those souls who are dearest to Me.”
So let me open it up to you. What is it about Padre Pio that speaks to you, inspires you?