I am amazed each time I have the privilege of meeting with a parishioner who wants to become more involved in their Church by volunteering.  I am awed by their generosity, their openness to the Spirit of God’s call, and often by their remarkable faith journey. But it is just as often that I am startled by their humility.  Again and again when I  suggest that a person consider bringing Eucharist to the home-bound or becoming a Catechist, I receive the reply, “Oh no, I’m not holy enough to do that!”

My immediate response is, “Of course you’re not. No one is worthy, at least not on our own.”

But that is just the point I think – God is always with us and calls us to Him wherever we are right this second, not when we “become holy” or worthy. In my case He would be waiting forever.

This is certainly no great insight, but it makes me shake my head and smile each time I think of Jesus Christ building His  Church on the shoulders of a man who doubted and betrayed Him.   That is why when I came across the following Saint,  I wanted to share his story.  How wise the Church is at times, especially when it teaches how God calls each of us,  even in extreme brokenness, and perhaps most especially during that time as in the case of  St. Mark Ji Tianxiang, a Chinese layman and opium addict,  briefly outlined in the following article:

This Addict Is a Saint

How can we use our own “addictions” to achieve sainthood?


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