One Miracle used to canonize St Benedict Joseph Labre
Below is an excerpt from a talk I gave a few times at different Churches. The last one was 2017 near his feast day of April 16th at my chilhood parish of St Margaret of Scotland in Buzzards Bay, MA. I hope this inspires you to keep reading the reflections on his life. The image used is an older type of picture and was taken from one of the many books I have on his life that is very dated. Unfortunately, I misplaced the book and cannot list the source right now but I do intend to inform you of it at a later date. The image is in an older process of scetch and is very grainy. I hope you enjoy the read!
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Timothy Hughes Duff
Guild of St Benedict Joseph Labre
The following has been authenticated in our Saint’s canonization process and is also a reflection from a book written named St. Benedict Joseph Labre written in French. The original copy is in Rome at the church where he is enshrined.
Let us go back to April 16th 1783 which was Wednesday of Holy Week.
It was six O’clock in the evening; all of the bells in Rome were ringing out the Salve Regina. Shouts of children running through the street could be heard, “The Saint is dead!, The Saint is dead!”
In an upstairs room of a Butcher’s House lay the dead body of the beggar
Benedict Joseph Labre. A young man of thirty-five years whose journey in life was one of extreme humility, prayer and penance. To this day, there is a small chapel in the very room which received him in death where all of the important relics of his life are kept.
A week before Benedict Joseph died, he went to his confessor Fr. Marconi crying, he told him that he had sinned because he saw a vision of Jesus removing his sacramental presence from the Church of Sancta Maria Dei Monti and put in its place the body of Benedict Joseph . What Benedict thought to be the sin of pride was an actual prophetic message regarding his death.
The next day, in his favorite Church of Sancta Maria Dei Monti, the Blessed Sacrament was removed and holy week services had to be canceled and the Corsican Guards were called in to keep order. Numerous crowds were entering this Church where the body Benedict Joseph was laid out for his funeral Mass. Accounts of one hundred and thirty-six extraordinary miracles had been reported in Rome as a result of the sanctity of Benedict Joseph.
Why would Jesus allow honor be given to this homeless beggar instead of the Blessed Sacrament?
Did Jesus honor Benedict the way Benedict honored Jesus ?
Let us listen to what God is telling us!
Here is one of the miracles used for Benedict Joseph’s Canonization:
Two years after Benedict Joseph’s death, in a Benedictine Monastery in Sicily, lay a dying nun named Sister Maria of the Crucifixion. The doctors gave up on her and told her, “Either go home or Die!”. But Sister said, “I prefer to lose my life in the house of God rather than to enjoy health at home.”
Another sister who was close to Sister Marie was greiving for her who had been the chief chanter in the choir. She went before the Blessed Sacrament begging Our Lord with confidence, that by the merits of Benedict Joseph, He would restore the health and voice of Sister Maria.
The next night, God sent from heaven, Benedict Joseph Labre.
Sister Maria saw a pilgrim enter her room. She reported that He was so resplendent and beautiful that his rays lighted up everything like the sun. “Do you know who I am?”, he said. “I am Benedict Joseph Labre who died in Rome; God has sent me hear to heal you! He gives you this gift because you prefer to die in His house, rather than be cured at home. God gives health to you by my means.” Then, Benedict dipped his finger into a vessel which he was holding filled with fragrant oil. Blessed her in the sign of the cross saying, “In the name of God and of the Most Holy Trinity, arise, You are cured! Tomorrow you will be present with the others to chant the Divine Office at the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and you shall sing the Eucharistic Hymn, Te Deum Laudamus in thanks giving for the favor given to you!” .
All the time while Benedict Joseph was speaking, Sister Maria could not help but stare at the large precious jewel which had the emblem of the Trinity in its center hanging from our patron’s neck.
Benedict Joseph said to her, “This ornament which you admire on my breast has been given to me because of my devotion to the Most Holy Trinity which I adored and revered.” Having said this he disappeared and along with him every symptom of Sister Maria’s disease. She immediately dressed and ran to the choir loft where the sisters were preparing to say the Office of the Dead for their dying sister.
At the sight of Sister Maria, they were all filled with fear thinking she was a Ghost. Once Maria explained everything they immediately sang the Te Deum.
Who is this Saint and why was he one of the favorites of the Blessed Trinity?
Stay tuned and more can be read as I send out weekly reflections on our patron.
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