Archbishop Kurtz, during his homily on July 4 at the closing Mass of the Fortnight for Freedom at Washington’s Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception referred to the Little Sisters of the Poor as a “sterling example.”
My mother and father both were under the care of the Little Sisters of the Poor, both dying under the prayer of the Sisters. I affirm and applaud the Archbishop’s words about the Little Sisters at 5:50.
Later in his message he returns to the Little Sisters at 11:20 and 13:15. But, as an admiring fan and advocate of the Little Sisters of the Poor, I find the minutes beginning at 5:50 to be the ones when my head was nodding in agreement and my heart was beating with affection and gratitude.
For the Little Sisters of the Poor the feast of St. Joseph (March 19) is huge. They rely on St. Joseph as their protector and provider.
Many of us say that God provides, and some of us even preach about Divine Providence. But the Little Sisters of the Poor believe it! You might know that the Little Sisters do not receive any direct funding from our archdiocese. Did you know that the Little Sisters of the Poor do not have any endowments? They are not permitted to have endowments. It is not the government or the Church that forbids them; it is by the intention of their foundress, Jeanne Jugan. Mother would insist that having large sums of money stored away and living on the interest would not be trusting that God will provide. So, the Sisters beg, every day for every need of the aging residents of their home.
When the Sisters need something, they pray to St. Joseph. They believe that, through the intercession of St. Joseph, God will provide. God entrusted Jesus and Mary to Joseph. That is an impressive reference and resume: he took good care of God’s Mother and God’s Son. So, the Sisters quite confidently pray, “God, allow him to continue to do the same for us.”
On the feast of St. Joseph the Little Sisters of the Poor delight in telling stories of how their protector and provider has come through for them, sometimes at the last minute but always on time.