St. Monica.. All in God’s Time
Today we celebrate the Memorial of St. Monica. Although she is usually mainly thought of as the Mother of St. Augustine, who we celebrate tomorrow, Monica is truly a Saint in her own right. Her life clearly shows us why she is known as one of the Patron Saints of tolerance and patience. We can all definitely learn from the example of St. Monica within our lives.
Monica’s life shows us the true realism that still exists in many families even today. She could be seen by some as an obsessive, overbearing mother who drove her son crazy chasing after him until he would convert. She would’ve probably driven her bishop crazy with all her tears. The example of Monica’s life and her tolerance and patience clearly shows us how we should ourselves be living for a more full and true relationship with God Our Father. We need to stop wanting a personal genie, or instant answers to the prayers we send when we feel we need help or change within our lives. The Lord does listen to all of our prayers and will always do that which is best for us, even if not the response we may be seeking. However, God our Father answers in His own time and not in ours.
When most people think of St. Monica, several things probably come to mind: Her determination in prayer, her amazing dedication as a mother, her patient, long-suffering as the wife of an adulterous pagan with a mean-spirited pagan mother-in-law.
St Monica reminds me of the persistent widow in the gospel of Luke 18:1-8:
And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to lose heart. 2. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. 3. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying,
‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ 4 For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man, 5 yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.’” 6 And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says.7 And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? 8 I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”
So with this in Our Minds, let us pray:
troubled wife and mother,
many sorrows pierced your heart during your lifetime.
Yet, you never despaired or lost faith.
With confidence, persistence, and profound faith,
you prayed daily for the conversion
of your beloved husband, Patricius,
and your beloved son, Augustine;
your prayers were answered.
Grant us that same fortitude, patience,
and trust in the Lord.
Intercede for us, dear St. Monica,
and grant us the grace to accept His Will in all things,
through Jesus Christ, our Lord,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.