This story does not begin with “Once Upon A Time” because it is completely true!
While on my first pilgrimage to Italy, my five brothers and I had decided to all chip in and buy something special for our Mom from the beautiful city of Florence! I was charged with finding something she would be able to love and treasure as a sign of our love and devotion to her. I found the perfect gift for her – a beautiful, hand-painted, Italian gold ring! I purchased it and proudly brought it home and we presented it to her on Christmas Day, 1987.
She has worn it with pride ever since! That is until one day last February when it disappeared!
My Mom was frantic trying to find the ring! She retraced her steps around the house hundreds of times and began to pray to St. Anthony! She checked her bathroom sink, thinking that she had left the ring there while washing her hands, and moved everything off the vanity in an effort to find her Florentine treasure!
She checked inside the cushions of the couch, the chairs, under the furniture, the laundry baskets, and even every drawer in the bedrooms! All with no results. That was when she decided that St. Anthony needed the Thirteen Tuesdays Novena to get his attention! And so, she began the Novena to the Great Wonder-Worker, Miracle-Maker and Finder of anything lost, from love to rings to keys!
Now get ready for this: On the last Tuesday of the Novena, she prayed the prayers and then went into the bathroom to get ready to go out and looking down at the sink, there was the ring – lying next to the faucet! My Mom knew that the ring was not there before, and she knew that it was nowhere to be found in that bathroom, and yet there it was – on the last day of the Novena, now resting safely on her finger!
For my Mom, this was typical of the power of St. Anthony and the power of his Thirteen Tuesdays Novena. The days are moving quickly toward the beginning of our Thirteen Tuesdays Novena in honor of our dear Friend and Saint, Anthony of Padua!
Join us in prayer on each Tuesday over the next few months until the Great Feast of St. Anthony on June 13th! The origin of the Thirteen Tuesdays is lost in history, but not in the hearts of those faithful to St. Anthony. This wonderful tradition is said to have begun because of the many miracles that took place on the Tuesday following the day after the death of St. Anthony on June 13, 1231.
Join us, as we honor this great Wonder-Worker and Friend, St. Anthony, over the next thirteen Tuesdays leading up to his Great Feast on June 13th! Join the Friars in prayer and devotion over the Thirteen Tuesdays and follow the tradition of devotion and honor to this wonderful saint who answers so many of our prayers with miracles and tender love.
I look forward to hearing from you soon, as all of us prepare for this great devotion in the life of the St. Anthony’s Guild Family. The Great Novena of St. Anthony will be celebrated at St. Anthony Friary, our retirement house in Butler, NJ, starting Tuesday, March 19, 2019.
May St. Anthony help grant all your Novena Prayer Requests.
Fr. David Convertino, OFM Executive Director St. Anthony’s Guild