Growing Apologist

Becoming a Defender of Truth

Five Quick Lessons From a Saint

 “Fight all error, but do it with good humor, kindness, and love. Harshness will damage your own soul and spoil the best cause.”  ~St. John of Kanty

St. John of Kanty

Here are five quick facts about St. John of Kanty and the example he sets for all believers.

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Who is This Man?

  • St. John of Kanty was born on June 23, 1390 in Kanty, Silesia, Poland. His parents recognized the quick, kind intelligence of their son and sent him to the University of Cracow where he earned a doctorate in philosophy. He was ordained priest and given a position to teach at the university.

  • He was well liked by the students which bothered his superiors at the college. Falsely accused of doing wrong, he was sent to be a parish priest at Olkusz, a diocese of Krakow. Being frightened of the responsibilities of a parish priest, it took some time for him to win the hearts of the town people, but he eventually did through love.

  • A legend says that as some people robbed St. John of Kanty, they asked him if that was everything, and he replied yes. After the robbers left, he remembered some gold that he had sewn into his clothes. He tracked the robbers down and insisted that they took the gold as well. Shocked, the robbers refused and then gave him back all that they took.

  • St. John of Kanty lived on the bare minimum he needed in order to survive, giving everything else to the poor. He would go as far as to give the very dinner he was eating to a passing beggar (only to return to find his plate miraculously re-filled).

  • He died on December 24, 1473 and was canonized in 1676 with his feast day set to December 23. St. John of Kanty is the patron saint of Poland.

Prayer

“Grant, we pray, almighty God, that by the example of the Priest Saint John of Kanty, we may advance in knowledge of holy things, and by showing compassion to all, may gain forgiveness in your sight. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.” [1]

References

[1] Optional Memorial of St. John of Kanty, priest, Catholic Culture 

[2] St. John of Kanty, Catholic Online

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What Keeps You Awake Tonight?

I know what keeps me awake tonight.

Taking pictures, caffeinated coffee, the desire to relax before falling asleep, the horror of 7 plus hours of lectures watched at 1.5x speed, a test only 40% done after working on it for 15 hours in two days, the frustrations of wanting to know but having no clue.  There are other things too, added on top of the test nightmares of this weekend… like the physical state of my house, the financial standing of my family, the desire to be involved in a million things but having to limit myself only to the essentials.

But how do I figure out what the essential things are?  This has been the long-standing question of my life.  Even in middle school, my interests and passions were so wide in variety, and there was never enough time in the day.

I have come to the realization that there are a lot of things in my life that I just need to make time for and then everything else will fall into place.  I remember a presentation at my protestant church years back, where the women’s ministry leader demonstrated how to fit God into a person’s life.  She had this huge jar that she dumped little marbles into it (these represented the everyday things, like responsibilities and entertainment) and then tried to add larger marbles to the jar (these represented time with God).  The large marbles wouldn’t fit.  Instead, she reversed the order, first dropping God into the jar, and then the everyday things.  The little marbles filled in the gaps between the large marbles, and everything fit into the jar.

It’s just like this post I read the other day at the blog called Let’s Go Then, You and I… titled It’s All In The Start.  The author described how she would love to start the day, on her knees spending time with God, but the difficulty of getting out of the warm bed prevented her.  She goes on to describe the difficulty of the day, how everything just becomes so overwhelming, and she came to the conclusion that it is all in how she starts off her day, in idleness or in worship.

Perhaps those things that keep me awake tonight would not be so big if I re-arranged my life a little to be centered first on Christ.  Perhaps if I got up a little earlier, started my day with God, and then moved onto the everyday things, then maybe the stress of life would not be so overwhelming.  Maybe then the peace of God would settle into my soul, and I would have the courage to face whatever life throws at me.

How about you?  What keeps you awake at night?

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Ahh, the Joys of Procrastination

I must confess– I’m an avid procrastinator.  I practice this hobby all the time.  I even compare methods as I’m deciding how to put off all dreaded tasks that require my attention.  Let’s see, do I pretend to just forget this time?  Perhaps I will think about it and say, I really really need to get this done– but right now is not convenient.  First thing tomorrow, I will do it.  Or come up with an excuse of why it can’t be done– But I have friends coming over this weekend!  Never mind that I’m just inviting them now, they are coming and that leaves no time for other things!

Ahh, my great friend, procrastination.  My most recent (okay maybe not recent, but definitely long time standing) procrastination is this blasted graduate course that I am in at the insistence of my boss (okay, another confession, I volunteered to take it).  So this class started back in January and it was suppose to end in May, but I got a really long extension on it, promising myself that I would get it done in July.  Then August… September………

But dear friend, Procrastinator, you are such a bad influence on me.  We cannot be friends anymore!  I must grow up!  Again.  This time its for good.  No slipping back– I will finish this graduate course!

I have a long weekend ahead of me.  For once, I am not excited for the end of the work week.  This evening, I start my take home midterm that I will have until Monday evening to complete.  72 hours of joyful mind boggling questions, banging my head against a brick wall, exhaustive watching and re-watching of lectures…… Maybe it can wait until next weekend…

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