Monday, July 6, 2009

St. Maria Goretti Giveaway

Yes, it's another giveaway! Those who won the Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati contest have been notified... and now it's time for one that I've wanted to do since last year.

I've felt a connection to St. Maria Goretti since I first heard about her story. She's truly an inspiration and a great role model for young girls (and boys) growing up in our society. I've known of girls as young as 12 who have had children, and not as a result of rape. I sometimes help my sister and brothers by listening to music and watching shows that are aimed for kids. When you have 15 nieces and nephews (yes, I'm serious -- 15 of them), you try to do all you can to make sure they don't get the wrong messages. You'd be surprised at how many have sexual innuendos and/or things that are completely inappropriate for them. It makes me sad that there aren't enough good role models out there for them. I hope that more and more young people (those underage) learn about St. Maria Goretti and get encourage to live their lives the way she did. As Pope Benedict XVI said: "How timely this message (of purity) is. Today, pleasure, selfishness and directly immoral actions are often exalted in the name of the false ideals of liberty and happiness. It is essential to reaffirm clearly that purity of heart and of body go together, because chastity ‘is the custodian’ of authentic love."

I decided last year to give away two DVDs of her life story the next time her feast day came around -- which is today! All you have to do is answer the following questions and DM me the answers on twitter or send me a quick email. Winners will be chosen, randomly, out of the entries with the correct answers. Contest ends: Tuesday, July 7 at 11:59 p.m. PST.

The Questions:
1) What were the dates of her beatification and canonization?
2) What is she the patron(ess) saint of?
3) What did she say about her attacker briefly before she passed away? She .... and wanted him ....
4) Name at least 3 other saints or blesseds that died under the age of 14. Hint: I mention one quite often on this blog.

Good luck to everyone! :D

That's all for today. Sorry it's so short but I still have errands to run. :) As always, thanks for reading and God Bless. :D


Regina Colleen said...

I agree with you that encouraging purity in young girls is so important, and that to an extent St. Maria is a wonderful example of that... but I am *very* uncomfortable - as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse - with the idea that purity is worth more than life. I'm not saying that Maria should have just let her attacker rape her; she was incredibly brave! But if a girl or woman doesn't respond in the same way, have they failed Jesus? Have they sinned? The inspiration I get from St. Maria's story is that she forgave her murderer; through that act, she gave him a chance at new life in Christ, and that's amazing and what makes her a saint to me.

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

Regina: The Mercy of God is greater than anything that we can imagine. In the case of rape, incest, it is not a sin to be raped, the sin is on the raper...The circumstances for each situation are different, we are called to martyrdom if the situation calls for it, but rest assured, the rapee didn't sin.

Miss C.N.W. said...

Regina- The point I was trying to make with my post is that what St. Maria Goretti did - choosing to fight off her attacker - is something we can admire. In her case, she physically protected herself and unfortunately she ended up dying in the process. But you can take this example and say "You might not have to physically defend yourself, but spiritually and emotionally, you can stand up for yourself and your purity by refusing to give into the advances and pressures of others."

Trust me, I've also been subject to what you could call sexual abuse. Though it never got too far with me, I did have to physically defend myself in order to maintain my purity. (An upside of being the youngest of 6, four of which are males). Other times, it's been a psychological and emotional defense. We're not glorifying death over purity; we admire her for her commitment to God and her virtue.

I'm so sorry you were a victim. As Joe said, you in NO WAY sinned. The sinner was the person who did what they did to you. God knows that and he knows that you were still pure, despite what was done to you. Like you, I also admire St. Maria Goretti for her forgiveness, which a majority of rape and incest victims struggle with.

Joe- Thanks for replying before I did. I didn't want her to think her comment would go unanswered. :D

Regina Heater said...

Thanks to both of you for your comments. I am going to read more about Maria Goretti - do you have any recommendations?

I don't consider myself a victim; I'm a survivor. And my anger was mostly with God, particularly because most people kept telling me that God allowed it to happen to me because I was going to learn a lesson from it. When I was able to process that and work through it, I realized that God doesn't ALLOW those things to happen; the fault was entirely on my abuser, and that God never abandoned me. That turned my faith around - even though i had never lost it, I had kept wondering what my lesson was supposed to be. Rediscovering the depth of God's love for me was the key, and inspired me to make the commitment to the life I have.

I'm also going to read more about martyrdom. take care!

Joe of St. Thérèse said...

No problem :), that's why my brain is here, LOL!

Miss C.N.W. said...

I haven't read any books on her, yet, but as soon as I do, I will let you know. :D Definitely check out the movie based on her life. If you have Netflix, you can put it on your queue.

And, that is awesome! Glad you see yourself as a survivor, because that's what you are. :D And, you're right, He didn't decide (or let that happen) you had to go through it in order for you to learn something. I could go into this whole thing about free will and grace but I'll save that for a future entry. Point is that, though you went through it, God (like you said) never left you alone. He will NEVER leave us alone because He loves us that much. :D