Family, the Lord works in powerful ways. What a time for St. Roch to come back into our lives than now, when the world is in the midst of an epidemic, the Swine Flu. St. Roch is the patron saint of plagues and epidemics, among other things. We were first introduced to St. Roch in Assisi, at the Convent of San Damiano. There is a painting of St. Roch and the dog. In Italy, he is called Santo Rocco.
We researched him, and found that he is a powerful intercessor for many things, as you can see above. We began to pray for his intercession for friends and relatives who had various diseases, like the Flu, Asthma, respiratory illnesses, and the like. He always came through for us. But as time went on, and more and more Saints became part of our lives, St. Roch was put on the back burner. We stopped praying for his help. Even two years ago, when the aviary flu struck, and then again last year, when the Swine flu epidemic began, we didn’t think to pray for the intercession of St. Roch.
Includes Litany to Saint Roch and prayer for his intercession
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Believe it or not, for those of you who have never heard of St. Roch, or only know him as a name we give to our Italian or French children, he is an extremely powerful intercessor. His miracles have saved entire cities from plague and cholera. He is responsible for many miracles and cures during his lifetime, but he is responsible for even more since his death.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. We have to share with you the story of St. Roch, who he is. He was born in Montpelier, France, which is near Spain, and also not too far from the coast of Italy. He was the son of the governor of Montpelier. His mother was thought to be barren, so to many, his very birth was considered miraculous. Another miraculous sign of his birth was, he was born with a red cross on his chest. As he grew, the cross grew also. He was a spiritual boy from an early age, due to the influence of his saintly mother. That influence was to stop when he was 20 years old, as both his parents died. On his deathbed, Roch’s father made him governor of Montpelier, a position which he did not want at all. He turned over the governorship to his uncle, gave away all his wealth, and left Montpelier, to journey as a mendicant pilgrim to Italy. Tradition tells us that he was inspired to become a pilgrim and help heal the sick by a visit to Montpelier from Pope Urban V.
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The Lives of the Saints often seem very romantic and idyllic. However, many of our brothers and sisters who have reached the Communion of Saints have paid dearly for the glory the Lord has bestowed on them. Join us as we share in the lives of just some of our Heavenly Family who have suffered greatly, sometimes at the hands of their own families or communities.
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