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 Tuesday July 17th 2018

 

Fr Rick Rusk, Pastor

Fr Rick Rusk, Pastor

From the Pastor’s Desk

Saint Charbel Makhluf

Feast Day: July 24

He died a hermit on Christmas Eve, 1898, in the mountains of Lebanon. After his burial, for forty-five nights a brilliant light surrounded his tomb, and then miracles happened.

Charbel Makhluf was born on May 8th, 1828, in the Lebanese village of Beka-Karfa. When he was three years old, his father died. He was raised by an uncle. Since an early age, he was attracted to prayer and solitude. When Charbel was twenty-three years old, he joined the Monastery of St. Maron, in Annaya. In 1859, he was ordained priest, and spent the next sixteen years there, before receiving permission to follow the example of St. Maron, and live the hard life of a hermit. He was devoted to the Blessed Sacrament.

Four months after his death, his grave was flooded, leading to the exhumation of his body. To everyone’s dismay, it was perfectly preserved. His incorrupt body was placed in a wooden coffin in the monastery’s private chapel. Pilgrims came to visit seeking his intercession, and God blessed many with miraculous cures. Two miracles were selected for his sainthood. A nun, Sister Maria Abel Kawary, who suffered serious intestinal problems for fourteen years, was cured instantaneously, and a blacksmith, Iskander Oubeid, who had lost the sight in one eye for thirteen years, had his vision restored. However, his most famous miracle was that of a hunchback, a seamstress named Mountaha Daher Boulos, whose hump disappeared after she visited Charbel’s tomb.

At the time of his death, Charbel’s fame extended far beyond Lebanon. He was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1977.

Prayer: Lord, help us detach from worldly possessions, and serve and love You with all our hearts.

Thanks to Pauline Ho, who prepares these saint profiles for us!

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