HEROINE

I have watched the series of "Joan of Arc." I am inspired to tell about her, a patroness of France and Soldiers. In the movie, King Charles VII of France claimed, "she is a king maker;" this touched me deeply at heart. Not only me, I would think she might inspire you too.

Joan was born in France in 1412. She helped her brothers on the farm and often went to a nearby chapel to pray to Jesus.

When she was seventeen, Joan heard the voice of God calling her to drive the enemies of France from the land. Going to the king, whose army had been defeated, she asked for a small army. The king, believing that God sent her to save France, gave her a band of brave soldiers. Joan had a great love for Jesus whom she often received in Holy Communion. She also had a devotion to the angels and saints, especially St. Michael.

Joan went before the soldier carrying her banner with the words: "Jesus, Mary." The soldiers became filled with courage and drove the British army into retreat. Charles VII was crowned king of France.

Later, Joan fell into the hands of British and remained in chains for nine months. Then she was taken to the marketplace of Rouen and burned to death. With her eyes on a crucifix, she cried "God," "God," God." And she cried out, "Jesus, Jesus," through the flames. The glorious sky opened; facing up, she died smiling according to the movie shown.

O Lord, you raised up in a wondrous manner St. Joan, Your Virgin, to defend the Faith and her country. Grant that through her prayers your Church may enjoy lasting peace.

Joan was canonized 500 years after her death. Reflection on those, I am thinking of myself about what I have done to defend my Faith. Adding to all of the rivalry, jealousy, squirrel, criticizing, reasoning, disagreeing, detesting, non-giving, all kind of peace disturbing that I have made to my friends and folks, how could I die in a manner of a heroine!? Then, when could I be exalted? What should I do to nourish My Faith and show my trust in God, the everlasting-faithful God? And what else I should do, so, I could die as a heroine?

Should I be thinking of "Raise your heads" (Luke 21:28). Jesus says three things about the end: one, he will return (that gives us hope); two, no mortal know the date (that save us from all anxious curiosity); three, watch. Must I concentrate all my energy on faithfully following a living Christ, not compiling a timetable for him? How do I prepare for our Lord's coming again?

What a mistake it would be for me to get so interested in when you return that I quit preparing for your return. At your return, Jesus, I want to be found at my job of being your disciple, not off on the sidelines talking about it. Amen.

In Christ, Marie Pascale.