I knew really nothing about Cecilia before I picked this name as my baptismal and conformation name… Do not feel weird.. As adolescent converts and under the certain circumstance, I got my baptism and conformation and first communion at the same day, the Easter vigil, 12 years ago….
The reason I picked this name was due to the local custom that picked one whose feast day is closest to your Birthday…Actually St. Catherine is the closest one, but I just picked Cecilia.. (which is really nice translated into Chinese. 则济利亚。。。）
For years along as a “uninformed ” Catholic with few faith direction, few things I knew about my patron are she is a martyr and the patron for music. I , personally am not that good at any music… but music is always my best comforts.. Like I play violin to help me overcome the hard time during the high school.. and sing chant to overcome the loneliness when I was in America.. I cannot deny no matter I how much I do not know about my patron.. She definitely knew me better.
This morning, I turned on the EWTN website as usual to find out the homily for the feast day of St. Cecilia. hopefully, one of their priests could give me more info about my saints.. and Luckily Fr. Anthony Mary did give a really really beautiful and informational homily about my patron saint.. and one of the most beautiful and powerful thing Fr. talked about is the power of “virgin” the power as a woman keep with her spouse Jesus Christ… Just like what St. Cecilia did.
Now I know… She is really great and I have soooo much thing I need to learn from her and keep asking her to pray for me.
St. Cecilia was arranged a marriage with her husband, Valerian. Before her marriage, she told her husband that she wanted to keep promise with the angel. Her husband wanted to see the angel. Cecilia told him that he had to get baptism first and he would be able to see it. After her husband was baptized, he did see an angel in her chamber, praying with her…
and the angel held two crowns, one for Cecilia and one for Valerian.
After that, the brother of Cecilia came in and smell the really beautiful flowers.. And then he was converted…
How beautiful it is!
So on her wedding day, she sang to the Lord : Let my heart be undefiled , that I be not confounded.
Her Husband and brother died before her, her own martyrdom converted a lot of people who witnessed the process. She was condemned to be suffocated in the bath of her own house, but she remained unhurt in the overheated room. Then she was ordered to be beheaded, but the executed could not cut her head off, and he was so scared so he ran away. Cecilia lived for another three days.
For three days, I asked of The Lord that I might consecrated my house as a church ( Lauds Nov. 22)
This statue is in the Basilica of St. Cecilia in Rome where her house was located. This Statue captured the moment of her martyrdom, face down…. still keep professing our Faith ” Three in One”.. see her figures..
After hearing her full version of story, I cannot deny how deeply I was moved… St. Cecilia is a gentle but really strong woman…
Fr. Anthony Mary said in the homily, there is a special strength of virgin in the Catholic Faith which even sometimes the priest have to rely on their prayers. The sisters and many other religious woman they devote all their life to Church and totally give them to Church.. They are really really close to God, so their prayers are really really powerful.
I am discerning.. I feel in the secular life, there are soo many things standing between God and I, besides daily jobs.. there are internet, cell phone games, movies.. friends….. If I make a list about the priorities of my life, though consciously I know I should rand my Lord top one, actually I never did.. When I work, I work. When I feel tired, I go for movies games, internet for comforts. When I feel lonely, I chatted with friends… Where is Lord in my life?
I cannot say how much I appreciate that Michael give the Diurnal as a gift.. All the sentences I cited here I got from Divine Office.. It reminded me every day of the importance of the position of God in our life. I know as a person living in a secular life, it is hard to remove all the things between God and me.. I have work, parents, and friends…. However, I still have to make it a goal… because.. God is the only and final joys.. As a religious, some of them might have already begun to enjoy that on earth!
St. Cecilia, Pray for me!