Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Little Package Arrives from Italy

This past Friday, a delightful little package arrived in my mailbox.  It came from Mugnano, Italy.

I had been waiting weeks for its arrival.  Many a day, I would rush home from work, cut across the front lawn, and peek into my mailbox, a smile already shining on my face.

But on most days (well, all of them except this last one, really), I would find nothing except the usual correspondence from those who write to me on a monthly basis.  The folks at UGI, PPL, Sprint, and a few other places never let me feel forgotten.

But on Friday, September 17th (the Feast of Blessed Stanislaus and the Feast of the Stigmata of St. Francis of Assissi, who is Michael's patron saint)...a little something finally appeared!

The parcel came from the Shrine of St. Philomena.  Last month, I had sent a donation, and I wasn't entirely sure of what they might send me in response.

As I opened the little box in my Prayer Room, unexpected teardrops fell from my eyes.  I couldn't believe that which I was holding, and I unwrapped each fragile item with care and affection.

Among the prayer cards, chaplet, small statue, and the red-and-white cord they mailed me was a beautiful and ornate reliquary.  Beneath its glass was none other than a second class relic!

Every 50 years, little Philomena's remains are redressed with new attire.  When the old garments are removed, they are cut into tiny pieces and carefully put into reliquaries for the veneration of the faithful.

How excited I feel to have this holy relic of one of God's most beloved martyrs!

Please come over soon and see it!