“There is no problem, I tell you, no matter how difficult it is, that we cannot solve by the prayer of the Holy Rosary.” – Servant of God, Lucia de Santos, Fatima Visionary
Betrayed. Deserted. Discarded. Dropped. Dumped. Empty. Forgotten. Forsaken. Left. Neglected. Rejected. Shunned. Sidelined. Alone. Cast aside. Outcast. These are just a few of the synonyms listed next to the word “abandoned” in a Thesaurus. Can you relate to any of them?
What can a fifteenth-century peasant girl teach us about living our mission today?
St. Joan of Arc lived during the Hundred Years’ War. It was a time of great political upheaval and confusion. Much of France was under English rule while the throne was disputed among the royals of the time. Through a series of messages from St. Catherine and St. Margaret, she was given her life’s mission to help Charles VII gain his rightful place as King of France.
Joan exhibited great courage and fortitude in pursuing her mission to save her country. The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines fortitude as, “the moral virtue that ensures firmness in difficulties and constancy in the pursuit of the good. It strengthens the resolve to resist temptations and to overcome obstacles in the moral life. The virtue of fortitude enables one to conquer fear, even fear of death, and to face trials and persecutions. It disposes one even to renounce and sacrifice his life in defense of a just cause.”
So committed was Joan to her mission that she, an uneducated peasant girl, willingly spoke in the highest courts of her land. She bravely went into battle with men who were far more experienced and skilled than she. Then, though only nineteen years old, she was unwilling to recuse herself in court to save her own life from being burned at the stake.
Below are some of the most inspiring quotes compiled from the many works, testimonies, and transcripts of her life:
“Courage! Do not fall back.”
“In God’s name let us go on bravely.”
“Every man gives his life for what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Sometimes people believe in little or nothing, and so they give their lives to little or nothing. One life is all we have, and we live it as we believe in living it…and then it’s gone. But to surrender who you are and to live without belief is more terrible than dying – even more terrible than dying young.”
“I fear nothing for God is with me!”
“Go forward bravely. Fear nothing. Trust in God; all will be well.”
“I am not afraid; I was born to do this.”
“All battles are first won or lost, in the mind.”
“I am the drum on which God is beating out his message.”
“… since God commanded me to go, I must do it.”
“Hold the cross high so I may see it through the flames.”
When it comes to spiritual warfare and battle, St. Joan of Arc is the quintessential warrior of God. May she intercede for us as we fight the battles of our time.
Let’s “Joan up” together through our prayer of the rosary this week during our Women of Grace Warrior’s Rosary Crusade.
Click the image below to join us for our Women of Grace Warrior’s Rosary Crusade every Wednesday at 4PM ET. If you’ve already registered, you should receive a reminder link directly from Zoom. Please be sure to share the information below with your friends and family!
Why were the visionaries of Fatima so motivated to offer prayers and sacrifices for souls? So much so they willingly endured the harshest of threats from the authorities, bore the scorn of their families, and regularly offered painful penances like going all day without food and water. Little Jacinta Marto’s thirst for making sacrifices was so insatiable that she never let an opportunity pass by to “offer it up.” She was often heard repeating the phrase, “I want to offer it up for the conversion of sinners” as she made each sacrifice. Read the rest…
“Whenever my enemy provokes me to combat, I try to behave like a soldier.” -St. Thérèse of Lisieux
If you have been praying with us you understand that we have been enlisted as soldiers in God’s kingdom, by virtue of our baptism and confirmation. Every moment of our lives on earth is a battle, a spiritual battle, and our enemy the Devil never rests. He is constantly prowling around seeking souls to devour. Read the rest…
In a letter to then Pope John Paul II dated May 12, 1982, Sister Lucia shared the following insight about the Third Secret of Fatima:
“The third part of the secret refers to Our Lady’s words: ‘If not [Russia] will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated’ (13-VII-1917).
Our world is fraught with fear, division and violence. Many of us feel weighed down by the burdens that overwhelm our country and we seek to be part of the solution to problems beyond our comprehension. Our hope is in the Lord.
Read the rest…
This Sunday we close out Our Lady’s month of May with the Feast of the Visitation.
In addition to being a beautiful feast day, the Visitation is one of the joyful mysteries of the rosary. It is celebrated in Catholic artwork, often depicting the scene in scripture where Our Blessed Mother, Mary, visits her cousin Elizabeth. Upon hearing Mary’s greeting, the child in her womb leapt for joy and Elizabeth was overcome with gratitude that the mother of her Lord would come to visit her. One of our favorite depictions of this scene is the one above where both St. John the Baptist and Jesus are visible in the womb’s of their mothers. Read the rest…
This week, we celebrated the 100th birthday of St. John Paul II.
During his life, he saw much change in the world and in the Church. He lived through both the Nazi and Communist regimes, the Cold War, Vatican II and the aftermath of confusion from its misappropriation, as well as the beginning of the scandals in the Church. He survived an assassination attempt and was a public witness to the challenges of living with a debilitating disease that transformed him from a vigorous athlete to someone who struggled to walk a few steps on his own. He was a man who was intimately familiar with suffering and spiritual battle. Read the rest…