¡Saludos! ¿Cómo estás? Espero que estés bien. That’s Spanish for, “Salutations! How are you? I hope that you are well.” Some of you are aware that I am currently in Lima, Peru until next Thursday the 20th. For those who might not have heard the news that is where I am at the present moment until next week, God willing.
It is my hope to try some of the national dish
- tasty raw fish that has been soaked in citrus juice - in my time here. I’m also hoping to visit the famous ruins of Machu Picchu at some point. In addition to that I’ll be visiting with some friends that I first got to know when I was serving in Venezuela. As if those things weren’t enough to keep me busy I am planning to make a prayerful visit to the Basilica of Santo Domingo (St. Dominic in English) where two patron saints of the country have their final earthly resting place. Those “Santos de Perú” or Saints of Peru are Rose of Lima and Martin de Porres.
Saint Rose of Lima was a young woman of 31 years when she left this life to spend eternity with God but she made the most of her time here. She willingly chose to embrace a life of prayer and penitence as a member of the Dominican Order. She once stated, “Lord, increase my sufferings, and with them increase Thy Love in my heart.” And yet her own personal piety did not prevent her from reaching out to the poor and marginalized to help them with their needs. Rather, in being united with the crucified love of Christ she was able to help others experience His resurrected life. Notably, when she was canonized or declared a saint in 1671 she was the first person born in the Americas to have been named a saint.
Saint Martin de Porres was a man who lived to share the saving message of Jesus Christ with every man, woman, child, and animal that he encountered. He experienced hardship and personal suffering along the way but he maintained a joyful spirit as he cared for the physical and spiritual well-being of others. He was a lay brother of the Dominican Order whose faith - empowered by Christ - enabled him to do miraculous healings, multiply large quantities of food for the poor, and have the ability to talk with animals. (There is a story of him befriending a group of cats and rats that will have to wait for another time to tell). While St. Rose of Lima is venerated on August 23rd the Universal Church remembers St. Martin de Porres on November 3rd.
On this day and during my time in Peru I ask for their prayerful intercession for all of you, Dear Readers. May the Lord who did such wondrous things through Rosa and Martin continue to bless you in all that you say and do for His Glory!