Saint Rosalia Day

“I, Rosalia, daughter of Sinibald, Lord of Roses, and Quisquina, have taken the resolution to live in this cave for the love of my Lord, Jesus Christ.”

Today is the feastday for St. Rosalia. She was a mysterious, odd woman, but here’s what the internet knows about the patron saint of Palermo:

  • She was born in Palermo, Sicily into a noble family, descendant of Charlemagne.
  • She became devoutly religious and lived as a recluse in Mt. Pellegrino, “for the love of Christ.”
  • She died in 1166, in the cave.
  • In 1625, a hunter found her remains in the cave (after Rosalia came to him in a vision) and paraded them around Palermo to rid the plague that fell on the city. It worked.
  • When her remains cured Palermo, a shrine was built in the cave.9_4_rosalia_best

The first celebration this year for St. Rosalia happened July 14-15 already. July is when the relics were discovered in the cave.Her statue is carried around the streets, reenacting what happened in 1625. There are food vendors, religious activities, music, dancing, parades, even fireworks – it’s a big party that everyone gets off work for. There will still be lots of celebration in Sicily today and this weekend, as tradition dictates to process up Mt. Pellerino, to remember the day she died.

Today, many Sicilians and Catholics pray to St. Rosalia for intercession, safety, prosperity, etc. It’s not unusual to leave gifts and offerings at  her shrine.

Santa_Rosalia_1What can we learn from St. Rosalia?
You don’t need to join an order of nuns or be the leader of all your church’s groups for God to work in your life. She chose to be devout on her own, because of a call from God. She wasn’t showing off her holiness. She lived simply and loved God wholly. Whether her remains cured a town, or God was saving believers, her life is something we can all try to emulate.

Prayer & reflection: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?” [Matthew 6:25 NIV] 

Credits: Prayers for Reparation, Sicilian Housewife Blog


Sometimes I shock myself with the amount of compassion I can feel.  I know I’m so blessed and maybe I’m just growing up and realizing how much I really have and how many people actually have nothing…  But lately I have such a heavy heart for people less fortunate than I am.

My family might be broken, but I can see a little neighbor girl’s family in pain and unraveling.  There’s nothing I can do for her (unless I suspect abuse, which I don’t yet) except pray.  I hear her cry many mornings when her mom screams at her to get her “f*cking boots on”.  Every morning this little girl has to go to school with tear stained cheeks, probably feeling alone and unloved.  I remember what it was like to have a parent on edge who yelled a lot.  Maybe that’s her situation, that will get better.  Maybe it will get worse.  I don’t know.  I don’t even know her name.  I know that I get teary when I think about her and hope someday I’ll be able to help her in a tangible way.

My finances might be in poor condition, but we are not poor.  We have so much.  This country has so much.  We wipe our asses with $5 bills and the people in Haiti live off $2 a day.  I am more upset that people have no compassion than I am for the Haitians.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m so sad for them.  I donated my $10 via the Red Cross and I think we will again – because really, $10 is the *very* least we can do.  What I cannot stand is when people get upset at celebrities for helping others.  So what if an actor chooses to donate their money to the cause of their choice?  What are YOU doing with your money?  No one can help everyone all the time.  I think it’s wonderful that people with a lot of money can help where they do, no matter their reasons.  Many US shelters are open because of donation, not because they are profitable.  I would like everyone whining about celebrity charities lacking National priorities (ie, they should be “fixing” US problems before aiding others) to reflect on who they have charitably donated to with their time and money.  If it’s no one, then maybe you should try living on $2 and see how you feel about poor countries then.

I might be unemployed, but I’m marketable.  This last year has been particularly rough on my family as there are several unemployed parents.  Parents with high level degrees, work experience and strong work history.  We all know they will find work again though.  There are those people though, who can’t hold down a job and who are struggling to feed their families and have no hope of working anytime soon.  I’m so grateful for my chance to be able to go to school and have a degree.  I’m so grateful for my working experiences.  They have given me opportunities for the career experience I need to get started in entry level writing jobs and they have given me excellent references.  I feel so sad for everyone who feels hopeless and like they are running out of options.  I could still become a career counselor I suppose… Again, there’s nothing I can really do for people except pray for them.  Which feels so trivial.  I want to donate all my time and money instead… and if I didn’t have a husband or need a job to pay growing bills, I might be able to do all three.

My God isn’t stupid.

Since I just started a new job this week (yay!), I’m still *a bit* in grateful-mode.  I’m so elated to be out of my apartment, thinking and interacting with grownups, that I haven’t minded the usual annoying stuff.

I’m not so grateful that I still don’t hate a large portion of society…

One thing that continually pisses me off, is when Christians do something stupid and use the excuse that God told them to do it.  This is very common among young adults who want to be married and should probably wait, but don’t want to.  For example, if you are 20 years old and do not have your life together (ie, working or in school) and you meet someone much older than you who ALSO doesn’t have their life together and you date for a few months after knowing each other for all of 3 days, then you probably should not join your lives together until death parts you.

What makes me the most upset, is that these people (who are supposed to believe in the same Almighty God that I do) believe in a God who is also as stupid as they are.  We, as humans, are all dumb.  We can thank Jesus for giving us free will to be that way.  But God, in any religion, should be better than the people.  He is the redeemer of the people and what redeemer says it’s ok to use marriage as the time to date a new person.

Now, this isn’t like knowing someone for years, being friends, and finally confessing your love and being married.  This is meeting, a few weeks later you have been dating and then you’re engaged to be married in 3 months.  I truly believe Jesus likes dating.  It’s the non-binding mini-commitment between 2 people to get to know each other monogamously.  And if after you learn things about each other and it doesn’t work out, you can part ways.  Marriage is not and should not be like that.  While you do learn new things about your spouse as time goes on, you already have a foundation of friendship and love to build from.  There’s no foundation in these rushed “God told me so” weddings.

What will be interesting to see is how many of those weddings last over the next 5-7 years.  I know of at least 3 that I will be keeping a stalking-on-facebook eye on.

I’d like to know who else this bothers.  Sometimes I feel like the only one who has to work at their marriage even though we are good friends and dated a long time and are still in the 1st “honeymoon” year.