We recently celebrated the feast day of Blessed Anna Maria Taigi, an ordinary housewife and mother to seven children ( June 9) and, as often happens with saints’ feasts, the timing could not have been better!
Bl. Anna Maria Taigi was an ordinary person with earthly responsibilities, a spouse, and children. She was vain and superficial in her youth despite not ever being wealthy, just as each of us can be from time to time. This wonderful woman came to sanctity and service of God from the same difficulties and concerns that each of us faces on a daily basis. Her self-reflection and interior illumination allowed her to see the poor state of her soul, and she undertook a life of obedience, humility, patience, and selfless service as the remedy.
Her strong interior illumination showed the state of her soul with the effects of sin and its misery before God. With that, she embarked on a life of obedience, mortifications, submission, patience, humility and self-renunciation. She developed in this effort, finding ways to fulfill her duties while practicing total submission to the Will of God. It became her mission to comfort others in as many ways as possible. Anna Maria balanced her efforts between the practical necessities of her earthly responsibilities and the spiritual necessities of her family, such as teaching her children how to pray properly. In addition, she devoted herself to the Church, and especially to the Sacraments of Confession and Holy Communion, attending daily Mass. She also had a special devotion to Our Lady and to the Holy Trinity.
Anna Maria is yet another example, like St. Therese The Little Flower, that sanctity comes not so much from what we do but, more importantly, how we do what we do. She became a renown healer and a great mystic, conversed with Jesus and Mary, and displayed various supernatural gifts from God, including the ability to see all things hidden in the present and the future.
Too many people disqualify themselves from sanctity by embracing the myth that saints are born saints, and that sanctity depends upon the age in which one lives. In truth, saints are made via love and service to God and others, and sanctity can arise in any age. Blessed Anna Maria Taigi reminds us that no matter what our state in life or vocation, we are called to replace self-love and self-will with the will of God. By kissing and embracing whatever crosses Our Lord may send us out of love, we will turn any cross into a ladder to Heaven. This holy woman turned the ordinary into the extraordinary simply through love of God and others. In this so-called modern world which increasingly has no time for God, Anna Maria Taigi comes as a reminder that any time without God is simply wasted time indeed.
2016, Gabriel Garnica