Monday, January 30, 2012

A Dream Of St. Anthony

My father was a lax Baptist but a wonderful Dad and husband. As such he knew nothing about Saints. One day, he lost something and demanded to know whether there was a saint for "lost stuff." I told him about Saint Anthony. From then on whenever he lost anything Daddy would ask St. Anthony for help, but in a not very respectful way. I hated the fact he would approach a Saint of God that way, and I would scold him for it. But the saint would always help my father find lost things. "Tony understands me," Daddy would say.
Years later when my father was dying, I was living and working somewhere else, and I was worried about what was going to happen with my dad. The whole family thought that he would die on the same date as my mother did years before on June 17th. The early morning of June 13th, I had a dream in which I saw a fairly stout looking man dressed as a Franciscan come over to a hospital bed where my father was lying in a coma. I saw this friar lean over and pat my father's face and say, "Pablito, Pablito", then it sounded like, "vente, vente!"
Then in the dream I saw something rise out from my father's body and form a shape just like my father used to look when he was young and vigorous. He looked at the friar and frowned. Before he could say anything the friar took my father by the hand and spoke to him something like Ici, then he patted his chest and said what sounded like, "Souez Antonio, Vente." My father looked confused but when the friar put out his hand to him, Daddy took it, smiled shyly, put his head down like a child and they walked away into this really bright light that led up into the ceiling. Then they were gone. A few minutes later I called my sister and found out that Daddy had gone. So, to this day, Saint Anthony is our family patron saint.

Have a faith-inspiring story of St. Anthony's influence in you life that you would like to share? Email it to us and we will post it on our blog~

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Praying To Find Freedom

I feel as though I'm writing in as a member of the St. Anthony fan club, a good thing. Over the past 15 years or so I have referred to the following story as my "favorite" St. Anthony story.

It was in the early part of the summer of 1993, I was at home in New Orleans and my Cuban born Mother-In-Law (Mami) and Father-In-Law (Papi) were in town visiting. I was alone in the den sitting next to Mami when I began the conversation. I remember I began by telling Mami how I believed in prayer and I related a story or two of things that had happened in my life and how it seemed to me that my prayers were answered. After telling Mami of my belief, she looked at me and said : "It was in early 1962 and Papi and I were trying to leave Cuba. My oldest 3 children (all teenagers) were able to get out of the country and were at a Catholic home in Miami since the previous October. I knew at the time that I was pregnant with your wife Ani. Castro's government at that time had a policy that they wouldn't let you leave the country if they knew you were pregnant.

One day, it was in late March or early April, when I went to Havana to visit my brother. Upon entering his home I noticed a statue of St. Anthony in the den. When I saw the St. Anthony statue, I immediately started praying ....'St. Anthony, you have to get together with St. Jude and find us a way out of Cuba. We need to leave the country soon before they know I'm pregnant. Please intercede for us and help us get out.' She told me that she prayed fervently for weeks and weeks and nothing happened, but she kept praying. And then: "the next thing we knew paperwork started going back and forth sometime in late May and early June and the next thing we knew we were leaving Cuba." With a twinkle in her eye, Mami looked at me and said, "Do you know what day we left Cuba?" We left Cuba on June 13th., 1962." She looked at me and said, “Do you know what day June 13th. is? June 13th. is St. Anthony's feast day."

The next morning, Mami was drinking her dark black coffee and she said to me, "You remember how I told you the story of our leaving Cuba yesterday? Yesterday was June 13th., 1993, 30 years to the day we left Cuba." What a story, eh, you know why I call it "my favorite St. Anthony story."

Thank you to M.K. commenting on The Path Less Taken blog for this amazing St. Anthony story~

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Prayer By St. Anthony - The Help Of The Holy Spirit

O God, send forth Your Holy Spirit into my heart that I may perceive, into my mind that I may remember, and into my soul that I may meditate. Inspire me to speak with piety, holiness, tenderness and mercy. Teach, guide and direct my thoughts and senses from beginning to end. May Your grace ever help and correct me, and may I be strengthened now with wisdom from on high, for the sake of Your infinite mercy. Amen. ~Saint Anthony of Padua

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Finding A New Friend In St. Anthony

Recently, I have been becoming more attuned to the Communion of Saints and the power of our friends in heaven. I've had a favorite one or two saints, but didn't think I could handle more than that. However, I noticed recently that St. Anthony was one of the saints who has been showing up almost every place I go. I took that as an indication that he wanted to be my friend. My last day of work at my last job was May 13. I was invited to a St. Anthony retreat on June 4. (See? He was beckoning again and I said yes to the retreat invitation.)

On the day of the retreat, I realized I had exactly nine days to start his novena. I also realized that his feast day was exactly one month later than my last day at my previous job. On that day, I started believing that St. Anthony would have a hand in helping me find my next job. I also told him I would believe and expect that he would send a miracle on his feast day.

On St. Anthony's feast day, someone I knew asked if I was interested in finding work and handed me a vacancy for a position exactly in my field of work! I believe St. Anthony will continue to intercede with the Blessed Virgin Mary and my other dear friend St. Jude. Blessed be the name of the Lord!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

He Is A Wonder Worker Indeed!

I have MANY St. Anthony stories. I was taught to pray to him for lost articles by a nun in grade school, and with the same childlike trust I pray to him whenever something is lost. I always find the lost item and sometimes it is beyond belief. The following is one of the most amazing instances.
This happened in about 1994 or 1995. I was working for a company in Chicago as an Human Resources clerk. Our group was managing a severance program for some longtime employees. A few of the employees received special terms because of their unique skills and value to the company. They had been though extensive negotiations before an agreement was signed. The other woman I worked with was responsible for their files and all the paperwork involved. It was highly sensitive and confidential information.
Shortly before two of these special employees were set to leave the company, our boss called my co-worker and requested their files with the signed contracts and all the paperwork involved in their termination. But my co-worker could not find the files! In a small panic, she came to me to ask if I had seen the files anywhere, and even if I knew where she may have put them. We looked through every drawer in our office, and even behind file cabinets and desks, crawling on our hands and knees at times. She was in real trouble. These files were critical to the smooth transition of these employees, and if they were lost who knew what difficulties would be involved. She feared she would be fired for losing them. But they were nowhere to be found. So I prayed to St. Anthony, and had her pray to St. Anthony. The boss called again, asking where the files were, and would she bring them to his office right now. She said okay, and looked at me with a desperate look, as if to say, "what can I do now?" Suddenly I remembered, we had moved offices about two months before. Could she possibly have left them in our old office? If she did, had anyone else found them? Were new people moved into our old space? If so, she would be in real trouble because all of the information in the files was highly confidential. We went two floors down to the place of our old offices, and entered her old cubicle. No one had moved into the space. She opened the file drawer next to her old desk, and much to our utter amazement, there were the files, intact, She looked at me with her jaw dropped open as I said out loud, "Thank you St. Anthony!!!" We jumped up and down with each other in joy, and she scooped up the files to take to our boss. He never knew they had been missing, and my coworker began to believe in the power of St. Anthony. He is a wonder worker indeed!

Thank you B.B. for this wonderful story. Have your own testimony to share about St. Anthony and answered prayer? Email us to have it posted on our blog~

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Lost And Found Money

Some more than 10 years ago my son, who at the time ran a stall, left more than $3,000.00, which he was to use for his stock, under his car seat, as he didn't want to carry it with him. When the person came to claim the payment, my son very confidently went to retrieve the money, but to his astonishment the money was nowhere to be found. Very frantic and hurt, he called me to relate the incident. I told him to check the car very carefully and not to leave any place unturned. I also told him to pray, and go about doing his work, and look for it again later. In the meantime, I too prayed. I have a little booklet with St. Anthony's prayers, and I decided on the prayer for desperate cases and also for the 'lost and found'. I prayed very fervently, with hope and confidence. I knew how much the money meant to my son, I dreaded what would happen if the money was not found. I finished my prayers, and my mobile phone rang. It was from my son. He was crying. He found the money! He could not explain how the money got to where he found it. I couldn't believe a miracle could happen so fast. But I believed St. Anthony could make things happen. Thank you St. Anthony.

Thank you A.M. for this great story. Have your own testimony to share about St. Anthony and answered prayer? Email us to have it posted on our blog~

Monday, January 16, 2012

St. Anthony - Doctor of the Church

Pope Pius XII declared St. Anthony a Doctor of the Church on January 16, 1946. His apostolic letter began as follows:

"Exult, happy Portugal, rejoice, happy Padua; for you have given birth for earth and heaven to a shining star, a man who has illuminated and still dazzles with a radiant light the whole earth, not only by holiness of life and fame of miracles, but by the splendor of his celestial teaching."

Saturday, January 14, 2012

A Diamond Twice Found

Many years ago, on our a way home from a summer vacation in Canada, I noticed my diamond had fallen out of my engagement ring. I mentioned it to my husband who stated that I probably lost it somewhere in the ocean and I won't ever find it again. The diamond was the original stone he gave me when he asked me to marry him. I prayed to St. Anthony in hopes my husband was wrong and the stone was somwhere in our vehicle. The follwoing morning, as we were unpacking the trunk, there on the floor of the trunk was my stone! Praise God, I thought! Thank you St. Anthony.

Several years later I once again lost the daimond out of my engagemnet ring....again St. Anthony was beckoned to help me. Something told me to look in the driveway near the grill. There sparkling in the afternoon sunlight was my stone...once again found. I have always seen this as a sign from God. I am so blessed and have a wonderful man to share my life with and have now for 26 years. Thanks again to St. Anthony for finding the stone, twice!!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Saving Life Before It Was Lost

I am a 75 year old nun and prefer to write anonymously.
In the mid-1940's I and my younger sister and brother were inside our village house sitting on the floor cleaning some uncooked rice. Then we heard the drones of planes in a "dogfight". We stood up and ran to watch near the window. The neighbors who saw us were screaming, telling us to go back inside. Just at that moment a big piece of shrapnel fell through the roof and landed on the place where we were sitting. Some of the rice got stuck on the shrapnel, badly burned.When people rushed in to check on us our parents also arrived from the fields. Daddy who was a devotee of St. Anthony (he named the first son Antonio) exclaimed and proclaimed loudly to all: "St. Anthony saved my children! Look at him, he is just there!" On the wall near to where we were seated was a framed picture of St. Anthony. This incident is a treasured story that is passed on. My brother Antonio's first son has also been named Anthony. So St. Anthony is not only the patron of lost things. Long may his name be honored!

Thank you to Anonymous commenting on The Path Less Taken blog for this wonderful story~ Yes, may Saint Anthony's name be honored!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

St. Anthony's Email Bag - St. Anthony, A Long Time Friend

St. Anthony and I go back a very long time. About 60 years or so. About 5 or 6 years ago, I began to wander away, thinking about him less and less.

Recently, I realized that I had been very neglectful of St. Anthony. I used to do Tuesday novenas, with Tuesday masses when I could fit it in my schedule. Past few years, nothing. I really wanted to get back to where I had been with St. Anthony but felt badly about how I had ignored him. I was on my way to do a little shopping where I pick up antiques and collectibles which I sell. My thoughts went towards him, and I said, St. Anthony if things are okay between you and I, and you welcome me back, please help me find something to sell today.

Good old, St. Anthony. He always hears and always answers ( have many amazing stories, but that is for another time). There on the shelf, 6 big soup bowls, cups, and saucers. All perfect, nice shine, no wear or chips. Wow, score! And, the price was unbelievably inexpensive. As I was riding home, I had an even bigger smile! The maker of this pattern of dishes? Franciscan!!

Thank you M.S. for this great story. Have your own testimony to share about St. Anthony and answered prayer? Email us to have it posted on our blog~

Monday, January 9, 2012

Deeds Without Prayer

While teaching, preaching, or writing, St. Anthony never lost sight of God, he never ceased to pray and do good. The unifying factor in praying and good works is the fact that prayer is an essential and necessary component of doing good. This is what St. Anthony meant when he wrote in his Sermon for the Feast of the Circumcision: "Deeds without devotion are like a lamp without oil," meaning that deeds without prayer are useless and ineffective.

Friday, January 6, 2012

St. Anthony - Always Willing To Help

St. Anthony is certainly a favorite on my family. He is so powerful that for the past six years my boss and her friends and family avidly pray to him to find lost items. A wedding purse with all of the couple's funds started it. Since that time every time St. Anthony responds to their prayers they donate to our church. My wife, who works for the church receives the donations without fail. My boss goes on vacations all over the globe with her husband and makes it a point to attend a Catholic church named after St. Anthony and pray. I told her that St. Anthony will convert her entire family. You see, we are devout Catholics. My boss and her family are devout Buddhists. St. Anthony is so powerful, I have no doubt my prediction will come true.

For more wonderful stories of Saint Anthony's assistance in people's lives, click here to visit the main page of our blog.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

A Gold Earring Found

I had a pair of gold earrings from my mother, who is now deceased. I lost one of the earrings - I realized at one point I was wearing only one earring. I immediately searched the room and hallway for the other earring. I didn't find it and was crushed that the earring was lost forever. The next morning, after praying to St. Anthony, the earring was laying right in the middle of the hallway where I could not miss it. The light hit it, and it caught my eye. I was baffled because there is NO WAY I could have missed it the previous day, being right in the center of the hall.

Never underestimate the power of the saints. I pray to the saints daily and ask them to intercede for me even before I need help. I think between the saints and the angels, we can pray for help to prevent tragedy, lost items, or whatever misfortune may be waiting for us.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Milk Money Lost & Found

I was in the second grade when I lost my milk money. I was very upset. My three pennies were no were to be found. Through tears I told the nun who was my teacher. She had the entire class get up and march around the classroom repeating over and over, "Dear St. Anthony please come around somethings lost and can't be found." I was amazed to find my three pennies in the fold of my uniform. I guess they had jumped out of my uniform blouse pocket when we were jumping rope. This was my first experience with St. Anthony. He has helped me many many other times since then. I say if it can be found he will find it.