Thursday, May 22, 2014

Saint Raymond Nonnatus - Patron of Those Falsely Accused

Saint Raymond Nonnatus is pictured above being fed by angels. That's because his mother died just before he was born, and someone cut him from her womb in order to save his life. That is why the name "Nonnatus" stayed with him throughout his time on earth. In Latin, it means "not born."

Born in Catalonia, Spain in 1204, Saint Raymond joined the Mercedarian religious order and was ordained to the priesthood in 1222. At that time, Moorish invaders to Spain often took Christians as captives. The order, which still exists, was founded specifically to raise money to ransom these people. In addition to taking the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, Saint Raymond, as a Mercedarian, had a fourth vow. That was to offer his life if another person was in danger of losing their eternal salvation through weakness of faith.

Living out his vocation, Saint Raymond set out for North Africa with enough money to purchase the freedom for hundreds of Christians. However, he ran out of funds. So he offered himself as ransom to release a couple dozen more. Unfortunately, he suffered greatly at the hands of his captors. He was scalded with a hot iron. A padlock was put on his mouth to prevent him from talking about God and converting others. Eventually, he was released and died in his native Spain in 1240.

Because of the time he spent in captivity, with his mouth padlocked, he is considered the patron of those falsely accused. The mouth is capable of so much destruction.

It is now a pious belief that Saint Raymond will intercede for those who are the target of nasty and malicious rumors. (Please ask him to help your enemies, by securing a spiritual padlock on their mouths, so they will no longer sin with their tongues.) For this reason, people often leave padlocks upon the altars of the various parishes in the world now named after him.

I realize some of my readers are probably not Catholic, so I wanted to explain why Catholics turn to Canonized saints in times of need. We don't worship the saints, but we do consider them our friends. We ask them to pray for us just like we do with our friends here on earth. We've noticed that this is very effective, as the souls of these saints in Heaven are perfected, and God always hears the prayers of the just.

For additional reading on personality disorders, please read my Female Bullies blog.

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