Second Thoughts of the Day – 23 January – Thursday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time, Year A and the Memorial of Blessed Benedetta Bianchi Porro (1936-1964) “The White Winter Rose” An Extraordinary Love
Blessed Benedetta Carried her Cross to Teach us all!
“Her bed became the pulpit from which Benedetta ‘preached without preaching’ lessons of patience, humility, fortitude, resignation to God’s will, the value of the Cross endured with Christ and for Christ.”
Father Francis Xavier Grasso SJ
In 1963 Benedetta had another operation which it left her blind. She could barely speak and could only move her left hand. However, the number of her visitors increased, as word of her holiness and her gentle understanding, even in this great suffering and of her great love of God, which she was able to impart to all. Patience, said Benedetta, was “the weapon with which Christ conquered the darkness.”
In a letter to a young man who suffered similarly, she wrote:
“Because I’m deaf and blind, things have become complicated for me. …Nevertheless, in my Calvary, I do not lack hope. I know that at the end of the road, Jesus is waiting for me. First in my armchair and now in my bed, where I now stay, I have found a wisdom greater than that of men — I have discovered that God exists, that He is love, faithfulness, joy, certitude, to the end of the ages. … My days are not easy. They are hard. But sweet because Jesus is with me, with my sufferings and He gives me His sweetness in my loneliness and light in the darkness. He smiles at me and accepts my collaboration.”
Blessed Benedetta, your world became as small as a Communion wafer.
You were immobilised, deaf and blind and yet you were a powerful witness to the love of God and the Blessed Mother.
Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is hidden and small too, silent, immobilised and even weak — and still all powerful!
Please pray for me, Benedetta, that I will collaborate, as you did, with Jesus in whatever way He wishes to use me.
May I be granted the grace to allow the almighty Father to speak through my littleness and loneliness, too.