February 10 Scholastica (480-547)
St. Scholastica was born in Italy, the twin sister of St. Benedict, founder of the Benedictines. She was consecrated to God “from her earliest years” and when her brother founded the monastery ay Monte Casino, she founded a similar one for women religious nearby. The twins remained close, both intensely interested in pursuing the religious life. One commentator says, “They sacrificed some of the opportunities they would have had to be as brother and sister in order to fulfill their vocation to the religious life. In coming closer to Christ, however, they found they were also closer to each other. In joining a religious community, they did not forget or forsake their family, but rather found more brothers and sisters.” That should come as no surprise, though, for the Lord who has given us all things has promised to multiply those blessings when we sacrifice them in his service: “And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will inherit a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life.” (MT 19:29)
February 11 Our Lady of Lourdes
In 1858, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to a young girl named Bernadette Soubirous near Lourdes, France, and identified herself as “the Immaculate Conception”. In a series of visions, she directed the girl to prevail upon the priests to build a chapel near a tiny stream there and to pray for a conversion of sinners. In the years that followed, Lourdes became a place of pilgrimage and healing. But the relevance of this feast does not lie solely in the many miracles that have occurred there, “but on the ‘prolonged miracle’ of the effects of the paschal mystery on our physical, moral, or spiritual weakness. To bathe in the waters of Lourdes is to return to the font of our baptism and to rise from sin to new life. This feast invites us to recall the beginning of our discipleship and to recommit ourselves to Jesus, wholly and without qualification, as Mary did when she uttered her first, trusting “Yes” to the Lord. “Oh Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you”.
-taken from Steward Saints for Every Day by Sharon Heuckel