Posted in Catholic, Christian, faith, God, Jesus, Prayers, tagged alcoholics, alcoholism, men, patron, prayer, struggling, Venerable Matt Talbot, women on June 19, 2012 |
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Today we celebrate the feast day of Venerable Matt Talbot, patron of men and women struggling with alcoholism.
I received this in an email from Catholic.org (I would have provided linkage but for some reason I am unable to find the info on Matt Talbot in the site):
Matt was born in Dublin, where his father worked on the docks and had a difficult time supporting his family. After a few years of schooling, Matt obtained work as a messenger for some liquor merchants; there he began to drink excessively. For 15 years—until he was almost 30—Matt was an active alcoholic.
One day he decided to take “the pledge” for three months, make a general confession and begin to attend daily Mass. There is evidence that Matt’s first seven years after taking the pledge were especially difficult. Avoiding his former drinking places was hard. He began to pray as intensely as he used to drink. He also tried to pay back people from whom he had borrowed or stolen money while he was drinking.
Most of his life Matt worked as a builder’s laborer. He joined the Secular Franciscan Order and began a life of strict penance; he abstained from meat nine months a year. Matt spent hours every night avidly reading Scripture and the lives of the saints. He prayed the rosary conscientiously. Though his job did not make him rich, Matt contributed generously to the missions.
After 1923 his health failed, and Matt was forced to quit work. He died on his way to church on Trinity Sunday. Fifty years later Pope Paul VI gave him the title venerable.
Searching the internet I found a couple of pics of a sculpture of Matt Talbot in Dublin and some additional information on his life at VenerableMattTalbot resourcecenter.
“Matt Talbot (May 2, 1856-7 June 1925) was an Irish ascetic who is revered by many Catholics for his life of self-sacrifice and mortification of the flesh.
Talbot was born the second eldest of twelve children to a poor family in the North Strand area of Dublin, Ireland. His battle with alcoholism from a young age became famous through the posthumous discoveries on his body. Having drunk excessively for 16 years, Talbot had successfully given it up and maintained sobriety for the following forty years of his life. He was known to his peers as a generous and, perhaps surprisingly given what was to follow, happy man who gave much of his wage to the poor as well as played an active part in the Irish Transport and General Workers Union in the city. He was, also, an extremely devout Catholic and was reportedly on the way to his third mass on the day he died. CONTINUED
Let us pray for all those alcoholics and recovering alcoholics who struggle each day to stop drinking and those who try to avoid taking a drink in order to stay sober that they may find the strength to stop picking up that drink or have the fortitude to say no to drinking that alcoholic beverage each day through the intercession of Venerable Matt Talbot. God Bless.
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Posted in Catholic Church, Christian, Christianity, faith, God, Jesus, Prayers, Religion, tagged alcoholic, alcoholism, childhood, Christians, eating disorder, experiences, faithful Catholics, God, journey, life, prayer, premarital sex, Serenity Prayer, sex in marriage, sisters, struggles on June 8, 2012 |
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My parents taught me the Serenity Prayer a good while back. While I was growing up one or the other of my sisters were usually involved in some sort of trouble more often than not. And sometimes even both at the same time. Let’s just say my parents didn’t learn this prayer until a few years after I graduated from high school which was when my sisters’ troubles were starting to calm down a bit but I sure wish they would have known about it sooner. This helped my parents to understand as much as they wanted to change my sisters’ lives for the better it was my sisters’ choice to decide how they were going to live their lives. The prayer helped my parents be more peaceful and calm as persons. My parents and I continue to say the Serenity Prayer today to aid us in giving our struggles or those of our family members over to God. Let go and let God. I have to say as much as I despise certain things I went through in my childhood God must have had me experience these things for a reason. There were many other things that I experienced as a child that were so wonderful so I don’t want anyone thinking I had a terrible childhood because I didn’t. There were just some times growing up that made it tough to be a child living where I did. One of my sisters has been dealing with eating disorders for quite some time and is also a recovering alcoholic. Her eating disorders and alcoholism may have been spurred by her premarital sexual experience. My other sister was a rebellious teenager who would sneak out of the house at night and then as a young adult she ended up getting pregnant. As much as in one sense I wish I didn’t have to experience my sisters’ shenanigans I also realize that this helped to form my conscience and my belief system. Even though the Church forbids faithful Catholics from engaging in premarital sex I knew that this was best because I had seen how having premarital sex could wreak havoc on a person’s life. I’m unsure as to whether or not my other sister’s eating disorder or alcoholism has played a role a how I eat or drink today. I normally eat a handful of small meals a day and don’t drink alcohol too often. To be honest I have never gotten sloshed drunk. I just see no point of it. Getting drunk like a skunk only harms your body. I say the Serenity Prayer every now and then – should say it more often than I do. This is a great prayer to say every day if your going through struggles or other relatives or friends of yours are struggling with addiction, or a disease, or other life struggles. May God be with you as you go through the many journeys throughout life. God Bless.
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