A joyfully Franciscan view of Catholic life, inspired by St. Clare (Santa Chiara) of Assisi!

My Photo
Location: Virginia, United States

Chiara Offreduccio (St. Clare) was born in 1194. It is said that when her mother had Chiara in her womb, an angel appeared to her and said, "your child will be a light that will illuminate the world!" Hence, her mother named the child Chiara, which means "light. As G.K. Chesterton put it, St. Clare was a romantic figure just like Juliet was. However, instead of running away from her family in order to be with an earthly man, Clare gave up everything and ran away from her family for the love of her Savior!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

"For All the Saints": St. Veronica

(By the way: Click on the above image to get a better look at the text. The same goes for my last post on Mary Magdalene)

Sorry, everyone, for not posting this past week- I came down with one of those dreadful stomach viruses and was confined to bed for an entire week! However, I will continue with my posts on my little picture book of Saints!

I developed my devotion to St. Veronica in a rather random way. When I was in 4th grade, my class was doing a one-act play about the Last Supper......the casting of 13 boys was automatically taken care of, but they needed parts for the dozen or so girls! Instead of having women at the table of the "Last Supper," they decided to have the various women of the Gospel "drop in" and say a few things about themselves and how they knew Jesus. Knowing how fickle little 9-year old girls can be, the teacher decided to have us draw from a hat the parts that we would play. Most of the other girls were hoping that they would get to be Our Lady, but for some unexplainable reason I really wanted to be Veronica. Even though I didn't know anything about St. Veronica, I had this gut feeling that I wanted to play her in this skit! This wonderful Saint must have had a sense of humor and interceded for me, because I randomly drew her name out of the hat! I was so very happy, and as a reward to St. Veronica for interceding for me, I promised her that I would ultimately have her as my confirmation Saint.

Fast forward seven years to the time of my confirmation. I was a very agnostic and cynical 16-year-old at the time, and the only reason why I went through the confirmation program was to appease my parents. When it came time to choose a name, I lived up to my childish promise to make St. Veronica my confirmation name (that, and also because since I fancied myself as a non-conformist, no other girls in the program wanted Veronica as their name). Even though I didn't have a sincere heart at all when I was confirmed, my St. Veronica was looking after me and has always been.

In the world's eyes, St. Veronica didn't really "do much"- unlike Simon the Cyrenean who carried Christ's cross, Veronica showed her love for Christ with the simple act of wiping His face. Nonetheless, Christ accepted Veronica's small act as an act of great love....and He rewarded her greatly by giving her the imprint of His Holy Face on her veil! Similarly, God takes our simple acts of love and glorifies them.

My own "Veronica" experience came a couple of years ago at Notre Dame. Just as Veronica was probably running an ordinary errand on Good Friday, I was taking a stroll by the lake on the way back from class. I noticed that an elderly Holy Cross priest's motorized wheelchair tipped over right in the middle of the street, and I immediately ran to his aid. By the time I arrived at his side, several other people had already begun to tend to him. One guy ran to get security, a lady started to lift up the wheelchair, and a couple of other men lifted the priest onto the wheelchair. Because it all happened so suddenly, I found that all I could really do was hold the priest's hand while this all was going on. After the situation was resolved and security arrived on the scene, I thought about the incident and was ashamed at myself for not doing anything more than being able to hold the priest's hand to give him emotional comfort. Similiarly, perhaps St. Veronica felt ashamed of not doing more for Christ. Whatever the case may have been, God glorified her little act of love as small as it was.

Another thing that I love about St. Veronica is that she started the devotion to the Holy Face, which is one of my favorite devotions. Here is a wonderful link about the devotion to the Holy Face.

Finally, below is a novena to the Holy Face:

Novena to the Holy Face

Say once a day for 9 days

O Lord Jesus Christ, in presenting ourselves before Thine adorable Face, to ask of Thee the graces of which we stand in most need, we beseech Thee above all, to grant us that interior disposition of never refusing at any time to what Thou requirest of us by Thy holy commandments and divine inspirations. Amen.

O Good Jesus, who hadst said, "Ask and you shall receive, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened to you," grant us O Lord, that faith which obtains all, or supply in us what may be deficient; grant us, by the pure effect of Thy charity, and for Thine eternal glory, the graces which we need and which we look from Thine infinite mercy. Amen.

Be merciful to us, O my God, and reject not our prayers, when amid our afflictions, we call upon Thy Holy Name and seek with love and confidence Thine adorable Face. Amen.

O Almighty and Eternal God, look upon the Face of Thy Son Jesus. We present It to Thee with confidence to implore Thy pardon. The All-Merciful Advocate opens His mouth to plead our cause; hearken to His cries, behold His tears, O God, and through His infinite merits, hearken to Him when He intercedes for us poor miserable sinners. Amen.

Adorable Face of Jesus, my only love, my light, and my life, grant that I may know Thee, love Thee and serve Thee alone, that I may live with Thee, of Thee, by Thee and for Thee. Amen.

Eternal Father, I offer Thee the adorable Face of Thy Beloved Son for the honor and glory of Thy Name, for the conversion of sinners and the salvation of the dying. O Divine Jesus, through Thy Face and Name, save us. Our Hope is in the virtue of Thy Holy Name! Amen.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very interesting and lovely post about St. Veronica. If you are ever in North Jersey, there is a wonderful shrine to the Holy Face you may want to check out!

8:22 PM  
Blogger Chiara said...

Anonymous, a family member lives in Union County, so next time I go to visit him I'll have to ask him to take me to that shrine! I've also been to the Shrine of St. Joseph...have you been there?

8:36 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

<< # St. Blog's Parish ? >>