St. Charbel, a Saint of Unity
CHARBEL MAKHLOUF (1828-1898), a Lebanese monk, hermit, miracle-worker and mystic, is one of the most popular saints of the East, and the first Eastern saint canonized by the Roman Catholic Church. His wisdom and intense love of God were the fruits of a life of prayer, penance and deep silence.
The holy hermit is also revered widely by the Orthodox; in Russia alone, thousands have reported healings due to his intercession.
This “Saint of Unity” is beloved of not only Catholics and Orthodox but also Druse and Muslims. In fact, around 10% of the many miracles attributed to him are among the unbaptized.
“St. Charbel has no geographic or confessional limits. Nothing is impossible for [his intercession] and when people ask [for something], he answers,” said Fr. Louis Matar, coordinator of the Shrine of St. Charbel in Annaya, Lebanon.
“Every Person is a Torch of Light”
Words of Encouragement From St. Charbel
Every person is a torch of light; our Lord created him to illumine the world. Every person is a lamp made by our Lord to shine and give light. Whoever gets a lamp, receives it to illuminate the darkness. The lamp was made to illumine the darkness. But these lamps are preoccupied with their outer frame: they are coloring their lampshades, painting them, decorating them and embellishing them. These shades that our Lord had made thin and transparent to protect the light, have become thick and hard, and they are blocking the light, and so the world has become immersed in darkness.
These lamps that our Lord had made to carry the light and illumine the world, have become works of art that are decorated, embellished and colored but unable to give light. What is the use of a lamp that cannot light the dark? A lamp cannot be seen in darkness unless it lights up. No matter how beautiful a lamp is, its light is more beautiful than it. The world is drowning in darkness and this while you are the light of the world. Your glass should regain its thinness and transparency so that you may light up the world, and achieve the objective for which God has created you.
God made every creature to fulfill the purpose of its existence. Observe the creatures of this earth; each one is performing its duty with utmost precision and integrity, and no creature is miserable. The most miserable creature on the face of the earth is happier than the sinner. At the day of reckoning, the sinner will not so much worry about the harsh reckoning as much as he will feel ashamed before the greatness of God’s love, that love which created the universe and gave life. Love is the only treasure that you amass in this world, and which remains with you through to the next world.
All your treasures, money, glories and achievements that you think you have owned in this world and believe are yours, will remain in this world; even your own bones are not yours. Only love will go with you to the next world, and whoever gets to stand before the Lord devoid of love will die of shame, and that will be the moment of his real death, not when he departed from this world.
Man dies if he does not turn into love, for God is love, and only love is eternal. Let love reign over your hearts and humility guide your minds. Pray and repent. Pray to Jesus Christ and He will hear you; open your hearts to Him, He will enter them and peace will come into them. But pray with all your heart. Do not mumble words that come from your lips while your hearts are with another lord. Our Lord knows what is in your hearts and He wants your hearts.
Do not tire yourselves looking for the truth outside of Christ. There is no truth outside of Christ. Christ is the truth, and when you know Christ you will know the truth and become free; and Christ wants you free. Do not be afraid, be strong and be sure and confident that Christ has defeated the world.