Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Slave Who Found True Freedom

St. Josephine Bakhita, February 8
I must shout out for this amazing woman whom we honor today. She was called "Bakhita" by the Arab slave traders. It means "lucky one." There was nothing that looked lucky about the horrible abuse and mutilation that she suffered as a slave in Sudan, but then she was brought to Italy, found Christ, and was baptized Giuseppina Fortunata ("lucky one" in Latin).

She became a religious sister and for 50 years worked at the convent and among the people simply but with profound charity. She not only forgave her oppressors, but said she would kiss their hands if she saw them, because they brought her to Jesus (ultimately, in God's plan).

St Josephine Bakhita, you have a lot to pray for. We need you. Pray for an end to violence, human trafficking, and child abuse. Pray for South Sudan, your homeland. Pray for us, that we might love our enemies out of the conviction that God loves us and orders everything to the good.

And just to let y'all know, you'll find her "Great Conversion Story" in Magnificat, September 2014, in the GCS series written by yours truly. (Don't miss these remarkable and inspiring stories that will be appearing every month in this wonderful magazine.)