St. Kateri Tekakwitha
Lived: (1656-1680) | Feast Day: Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Kateri said: “I am not my own; I have given myself to Jesus. He must be my only love. The state of helpless poverty that may befall me if I do not marry does not frighten me. All I need is a little food and a few pieces of clothing. With the work of my hands I shall always earn what is necessary and what is left over I’ll give to my relatives and to the poor. If I should become sick and unable to work, then I shall be like the Lord on the cross. He will have mercy on me and help me, I am sure.”
She was moved by the words of three Blackrobes who lodged with her uncle, but fear of him kept her from seeking instruction. She refused to marry a Mohawk brave and at 19 finally got the courage to take the step of converting. She was baptized with the name Kateri (Catherine) on Easter Sunday.
Now she would be treated as a slave. Because she would not work on Sunday, she received no food that day. Her life in grace grew rapidly. She told a missionary that she often meditated on the great dignity of being baptized. She was powerfully moved by God’s love for human beings and saw the dignity of each of her people.
She was always in danger, for her conversion and holy life created great opposition. On the advice of a priest, she stole away one night and began a 200-mile walking journey to a Christian Indian village at Sault St. Louis, near Montreal.
For three years she grew in holiness under the direction of a priest and an older Iroquois woman, giving herself totally to God in long hours of prayer, in charity and in strenuous penance. At 23 she took a vow of virginity, an unprecedented act for an Indian woman, whose future depended on being married. She found a place in the woods where she could pray an hour a day—and was accused of meeting a man there!
Her dedication to virginity was instinctive: She did not know about religious life for women until she visited Montreal. Inspired by this, she and two friends wanted to start a community, but the local priest dissuaded her. She humbly accepted an “ordinary” life. She practiced extremely severe fasting as penance for the conversion of her nation. She died the afternoon before Holy Thursday. Witnesses said that her emaciated face changed color and became like that of a healthy child. The lines of suffering, even the pockmarks, disappeared and the touch of a smile came upon her lips. She was beatified in 1980 and canonized in 2012.
Fr. Jeffrey Kirby is a Catholic priest and vocation director in Charleston, SC. He recently published a book on teaching us how to pray.
Here are some of the points that this new program, Our Life of Prayer, will address:
prayer as a relationship
growing in a relationship with God
how our relationship with Jesus Christ is within the Church
spiritual life and the purgative way as means to draw closer to the Lord
Virtue, and our call to a “Life in the Spirit”
the importance of the Eucharist in the Spiritual life
Please join Fr. Kirby Tuesdays at 11:00am ET/10:00am CT. You can call in to Fr. Kirby’s program when it is live by calling toll free, 1-866-333-MARY(6279).
We are proud to introduce the newest member of our Radio Maria family of inspiring presenters – Kelly Pease. Kelly is a mother of 3 children under the age of 6. She has traveled both nationally and internationally as a worship leader and speaker, doing the work of the Catholic Church. Her ministries include Lifeteen, Dirty Vagabond, Adore, and Franciscan University. She has appeared as a guest on EWTN’s Life on the Rock and The Choices We Face. Kelly is also a musician, with two albums of original music to her credit, in fact, an original song she wrote was used as the theme song for EWTN’s The Pure Life.
We invite you to tune in for this new program, entitled simply, Motherhood, on Wednesdays, at 1:00 p.m. Central/2:00 p.m. Eastern.
Let Kelly help mothers find God’s grace in the daily work of caring for children and home, and experiencing His love as He calls for deeper conversion through the beautiful gift of Motherhood.
Marian Prayer of Mother Teresa of Calcutta
Give us a heart as beautiful,
pure, and spotless as yours.
A heart like yours, so full of
love and humility.
May we be able to receive
Jesus as the Bread of Life,
to love Him as you loved Him,
to serve Him under the
mistreated face of the poor.
We ask this through Jesus Christ
our Lord. Amen.