Here in America – and really across the rest of the Western world – we have a bizarre obsession with celebrities. We follow their stories, their heartbreaks, their haircuts, often aiming to be like these alleged “stars.” But Pope Benedict offers different celebrities for Catholics to follow.
Having completed his Lenten retreat, the Holy Father thanked his retreat leader for providing a reflective respite, focused particularly on the saints of the church.
With your enthusiasm and your joy, you situated us in the circle of these saints and you showed us that it is precisely the ‘little’ saints who are the ‘great’ saints.
You presented them to us as ‘stars’ in the firmament of history.
Stars they are – and definitely better models of life than many of the celebrities we may model our lives after. In his letter to the Carmelite priest who led the retreat, the pope affirmed the retreat as one that made him aware that all of us here on earth are called to be saints within the heavenly communion of saints.
With the retreat ending on the feast of St. Joseph, a humble and lowly saint, Pope Benedict concluded with this prayer.
We are grateful for the humble saints; we pray to the Lord that He also make us humble in our service and, therefore, saints in the company of saints.
Let us follow the Holy Father’s lead and model our lives after the true stars of this world, the saints. It may not lead to as glamorous of a life here on earth, but the luxurious life of heaven will far outweigh any glamour that could be gained here.