Anecdotes from the lives of saints

In this column we will try and showcase saints who have moved us with their love for Jesus and who have been able to find wit and humor even amidst the crosses they carried.

St  Teresa  of  Avila

As a child young Teresa was especially fascinated by the lives of saints and wanted to be like them. At the tender age of seven she ran away from home along with her brother to be a martyr among the Moors. Such was her drive and passion to live and die for Jesus. Fortunately for the two children, their uncle spotted them outside the city wall and brought them home.

Later, Teresa joined the Cloister. Here she suffered much, on account of her ailing health. However, even in her illness she experienced moments of “ecstasy” and what she best described as a rich “blessing of tears”. She was extremely conscious of the horror of sin and admitted that through no means of her own could she turn away from sin, but only through total surrender to God.

Following is an account of a humorous incident which happened in St Teresa’s life. Notice her wit which stems from her intimate relationship with God.

St  Philip  Neri

From his infancy, Philip was a cheerful boy and was often called called “Pippo buono” or “good little Phil” because of his merry disposition. He was known to foster good human relationships and had an amazing talent of bringing out the best in people of all ages.

Philip Neri was greatly disturbed by the grave abuses within the Church, because of which the laity were being filled with the venom of cynicism and disbelief. Thus he made it his mission to bring new ardor among the people of Rome. He went to street corners and public squares where people were inclined to loiter. He would befriend them, which wasn’t very difficult considering his good humor and wit. He had a warm personal approach because of which he attracted people on the streets, would get them involved in discussions and finally challenge them to do something worthwhile. And soon they were taking care of the sick and gathering together to pray.

Philip Neri was gifted with extraordinary gifts. A number of times he foretold incidents which came true. A number of people close to him would often admit that at times his face shown with a celestial radiance.

 Here is a short anecdote of the saint with the funny bone who believed- “A joyful heart is more easily made perfect than a downcast one”.

If you have stories from the lives of saints whom you love, do send them to us, and we will put your contribution on this page!

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