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Faithful urged: ‘Know the saints by reading, not by hearsay’

Faithful urged: ‘Know the saints by reading, not by hearsay’

Bookworms have a field day at the Sinag-Tala Publishers’ booth during this year’s Manila International Book Fair. SINAG-TALA PUBLISHERS

By Fr. Mickey Cardenas

November 13, 2018


A Catholic publisher reminded the faithful about the practice of reading the lives of saints as a time-proven means to learn from the women and men proclaimed by the Church as models of holiness.

Luis Uson, president and managing director of Sing-tala Publishers, Inc. explained that reading a frank account of saints’ lives – instead of relying on “urban legends” or “historical hearsay” – can help us “look at holiness from the ‘down-here’ rather than the usual ‘up-there’ point of view”.

Since the Pope himself challenged every Christian to be “a saint in everyday life,” Uson encouraged the faithful to read books that approach sanctity in a contemporary setting. “A book, such as the Defects of the Saints by Jesus Urteaga, gives readers a no-frills look into the lives of the holy men and women with a ‘twist’.”

“The life of a saint is the story of a person who followed the life and teachings of Our Lord in his lifetime. Some did great feats, while others did only ordinary chores, yet the resemblance of Christ was reproduced in each one of them,” Uson stressed.

He cited the book The Virtues of 50 Saints: What made them holy?’ by Carlos Pujol is another book, saying it “happily records the memory of the lives of good men and women.”

The publisher assured that “these books have a simple yet profound message: holiness is not just for a few but for everyone, and that it is possible to attain, even in this day and age.”

To drive home the point, the Catholic publisher also quoted the ‘Saint of the Ordinary’, St. Josemaria Escriva: “Don’t forget that the saint is not the person who never falls, but rather the one who never fails to get up again, humbly and with a holy stubbornness.”

Uson further pointed out that all saints provide many lessons that one can learn from and imitate. According to him, each one is a role model who paves the path to heroic sanctity.

“A look at Pope Francis’ teaching on holiness in his apostolic exhortation ‘Gaudete et Exsultate’ reveals that each saint is known for some particular virtue or as intercessor for a specific petition.

Some suffered and died as martyrs for the faith, others proclaimed the Gospel in far-flung mission countries, while some served the poor and lived as obscure and silent workers in a convent or parish,” he explained.