Why Do We Honor the Saints?

Honoring the saints is a practice that is uniquely Catholic. From earliest times in the Christian community we have recognized that some women and men lived lives that served as models of faithfulness and commitment to their God. Contrary to the beliefs of some, Catholics do not worship Mary or the saints. We worship only God. But we do honor the saints because they became whole and holy to the best of their ability – just as God intended them to be. And just as we are expected to do.

As an Ursuline sister, I am drawn to the life of St. Angela Merici, the founder of my community in 1535. Angela was a holy woman who drew others to the way she lived her life. Her life of simplicity, strength and holy way of living was a model for others. Her influence has lasted for 485 years.

Who are the saints that have drawn your attention over the years? What was/is it that attracts you to them? Have you tried to imitate some virtue or way of life you see in them?

Like Angela, by reason of our baptism all of us are called to be whole and holy. We are invited by our loving God to become our best possible persons because God has created and called us to holiness. We, too, are to be models for others of what a faithful and committed Christian is supposed to be. We are called to be women and men who love our God, love ourselves, and love our neighbors. Our words and actions should reflect this great commandment. In the process of trying to live this way we are becoming our best persons and are becoming holy. We are becoming saints!

Do I recognize the goodness and holiness in people I know or meet daily? 

Am I growing, changing, and becoming more holy each day by loving my God, myself, and others? 

Am I a model of faithful love for and commitment to God?

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