The little White and Crimson Rose of Jesus
The name of Saint Maria Goretti has a special place for me. I would judge that most everyone in my generation has grown up having heard the story of the little crimson and white Rose of Jesus, Saint Maria Goretti. Her story inspires such emotions in us, such a desire to bring ourselves to Jesus and His Mother Mary as pure buds, ready to flower into whatever vocation They desire for us, whether it be religious, lay people or as in the case of little Maria, Saints who gave their lives as martyrs rather than stain their immortal souls by committing a sin. And in that way, Saints like Maria Goretti become role models for young people in these modern times.
We know the story of Saint Maria Goretti with surface knowledge. She is famous for what she obviously did, die rather than allow her relationship with Jesus to be compromised by giving into a sexual temptation. This is the obvious cause for her Sainthood, much as Saint Maxmilian Kolbe’s obvious reasoning for Sainthood was taking the place of a fellow prisoner in the death cells of Auschwitz during the Second World War. But these are only the apparent. There is so much more to each life which calls for us to venerate them as special servants of God, true role models. We have written about Saint Maxmilian Kolbe in two different books, trying to tell the story of this powerful man in the Church.
There were two other virtues of Saint Maria Goretti which are so subtle, they get lost in the shadow of giving her life. One of them was selflessness. She cared more about her eternal soul than her bodily safety. And possibly even more than that, she cared about the soul of her attacker more than her own life. As we get into the woeful story of her life and death, we can’t help but realize that part of the reason for her determination not to give into Alessandro Serenelli was for his salvation.
About Bob and Penny Lord
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Published June 1, 2010
by Journeys of Faith.
Religion & Spirituality.