A Saint for Today

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A Saint for Today

We celebrate the feast of Saint Scholastica every year on February 10. What we know of Scholastica comes to us in the second book of the Dialogues of Pope Gregory the Great. Gregory tells us that Scholastica was the twin sister of St. Benedict. He does not tell us much about her, but what he does tell reveals to us that she is a saint for today.

Gregory tells us that Scholastica and Benedict would meet yearly to talk about holy things as saintly brothers and sisters would do. One momentous occasion as evening fell, Benedict got up to leave, as it is a rule that a monk does not stay away from the monastery overnight. Scholastica asked her brother to stay so that they may continue to talk and enjoy one another’s company. Benedict refused her request. So, Scholastica bowed her head, folded her hands, and began to pray. Just at that moment, the clear sky turned dark, the wind began to blow and soon came the rain, thunder, and lightning. Noticing the change in the weather and the connection to Scholastica’s prayers, Benedict exclaimed “Dear Sister, what did you do?” She simply said, “I asked you a favor and you refused, so I asked my God and He heard my prayer.”

From this story we learn that Scholastica was a woman of trust and prayer. She trusted that her Heavenly Father cared about what was happening to her. She trusted that God would listen to her prayers and help her. Scholastica turned to prayer in her need. Prayer, for Scholastica, was the response to everything that was happening in her life.

Though she lived nearly 1,500 years ago, Scholastica is a saint for today. Her example of trust and prayer is light for us who live in the darkness of a world pandemic. We need to trust that our Heavenly Father cares about what is happening to us. We, like Scholastica, need to bow our heads and fold our hands in prayer and ask God to heal our world. 

St. Scholastica by +Sister Mary Charles McGough

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“Our greatest fulfillment lies in giving ourselves to others.”
–Henri Nouwen