Dan Burke, the executive director of EWTN’s National Catholic Register, recently reminded graduating members of the College of St. Mary Magdalen class of 2014, “We have a desperate need for saints. We need you to be saints.”
Speaking at the College in Warner, N.H., Burke reflected on the many joys of our time—such as the recent papal canonizations—but also warned that the “forces of the enemy are also arrayed with a severity and persistence that I have not seen in my lifetime.”
“We do have hope,” he said, “but this is not a time for the faint of heart.”
Therefore, this is “not a time when the faithless will find comfort or the shallow of faith will find peace. It is a time in need of saints,” he said. Burke’s commencement address, in part, reads:
Cardinal George has recently reflected on these challenges with an ominous prediction worth noting for both its realistic assessment of what lies before us, but also for its hope based on the redemptive power of God. It is often misquoted and the element of hope omitted. He said, "I expect to die in bed, my successor will die in prison and his successor will die a martyr in the public square.” He continues, “His successor will pick up the shards of a ruined society and slowly help rebuild civilization, as the church has done so often in human history."
…We need more bright, young minds to embrace the cross of self-giving —to choose the hard road of dying to self. If there is any hope for our culture in America, for the souls of its people, it will only come through holy souls who are given to prayer and living a dynamic relationship with Christ.
…As a proud parent of a graduate from Ave Maria university this year and a husband of a Catholic school principal, I have become aware of a very dangerous phenomenon — a kind of dual personality that can develop in Catholic students. In the right places at the right times, they do the right things. However, sometimes they do them for reasons that fall short of a motivation that emerges out of an authentic relationship with God. Yes, it is good to have a habit of doing what truly good people in authority expect of you. It works out well in the workplace. However, to be saints, to be heroes, we must answer a call that is far deeper than one of mere external fulfillment of duty or the meeting of expectations set by others.
The College of St. Mary Magdalen is recommended in The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.
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