As a mystic, St. Margaret Mary Alacoque often faced conflict when she felt that even the Sisters in her own convent misunderstood her as she tried to obey Christ’s comands. In her own words: “All this gave rise to fresh trials as the time for my Profession drew near. I was told that it was evident I was not capable of acquiring the spirit of the Visitation, which feared all such ways as are open to deception and illusion.” Understandably, some of the Sisters were concerned that her spirituality be authentic. But St. Margaret Mary persevered in her beliefs, and so became a witness to the world in her love for the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
The witness of one person is so powerful; imagine the impact of every Catholic who stood firm in their faith! We may not be mystics, but we will all come up against siutations where our beliefs may be questioned by others. It is then that we must take a stand for what we believe: "But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander." (1 Peter 3:15-16)
We can all pray more, make small sacrifices during our day for others, and try to live truth and goodness in our homes and work places. Let’s not be ashamed to say a prayer of thanksgiving in a restaurant, offer up a Christian opinion on a current topic in the news, or bring our faith in God into a conversation. We may think that we will be ridiculed for doing such things, but people are hungry for God’s love in their lives and welcome even small gestures as these. Don’t ever underestimate your own witness to the world!
St. Margaret Mary, pray for us!