Monday, 3 November 2008

St Martin de Porres OP

Today we keep the memory of St Martin de Porres. He was born at Lima, Peru, in 1579. His father was a Spanish gentleman and his mother a coloured freed-woman from Panama. At fifteen, he became a lay brother at the Dominican Friary at Lima and spent his whole life there-as a barber, farm labourer, almoner, and infirmarian among other things.
Martin had a great desire to go off to some foreign mission and thus earn the palm of martyrdom. However, since this was not possible, he sought holiness in his environment. He forgave and loved those who treated him badly and served in silence and joy doing the lowliest jobs he could find. In turn, God endowed him with many graces. His greatest joy was in the time he devoted to prayer.
St. Martin's love was all-embracing, shown equally to humans and to animals, including vermin, and he maintained a cats and dogs hospital at his sister's house. He also possessed spiritual wisdom. A close friend of St. Rose of Lima, this saintly man died on November 3, 1639 and was canonized on May 6, 1962.
Here at the Parish the Parish exhibition continues on its penultimate day. So far it has brought many joys and blessings. May St Martin inspire us to continue to bring the love of Jesus for all those around us.

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