In today’s world, everyone has an excuse as to why they can’t be involved in their Church, serve the poor, or spend time in prayer.
They are either too busy, too tired, too old, or too young. Yet, God calls us to serve Him no matter what our schedules look like or what stage of life we are in. We are asked to give of ourselves and “not to count the cost” no matter our circumstances.
Let this list of young saints inspire us to go beyond our excuses and limitations in order to give God our very best.
1. St. Therese of Lisieux (The Little Flower)
St. Therese, often referred to as The Little Flower, spent her life on earth doing “little things with great love.” She offered up her deeds big or small to Christ. Although she died at the young age of 24 and lived a simple life as a Carmelite, she has been named a Doctor of the Church. Her feast day is October 1st.
2. Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati
Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati was described by St. John Paul II as a “man of the beatitudes” because of his zest for holiness and passion to serve. In today’s terms, he might be called “a mover and a shaker”. He certainly did not sit around waiting for things to get done. He was involved in a variety of ministries and desired to live out Catholic social teaching. He died at the age of 24 and his feast day is July 4th.
3. Blessed Chiara Luce Badano
Blessed Chiara was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 16 and passed away on October 7th, 1990. Though she was in great pain, she would not take medicine to relieve it because she wanted to offer up her suffering. She was known for her exuberant joy and is a true witness to not letting your life’s circumstances determine your attitude.
4. Venerable Antonietta Meo
Venerable Antonietta Meo may soon be one of the youngest Saints of the Catholic Church. At the age of five she was diagnosed with cancer. Throughout her illness she wrote over one hundred letters to Jesus and Mary. These letters show a holiness beyond her years.
5. St. Maria Goretti
St. Maria Goretti is a beautiful example of a commitment to purity. At the age of twelve an aggressive neighbor tried to assault her. She was determined to not give in to his requests and in turn he stabbed her repeatedly. While in the hospital dying, Maria had the strength to forgive her attacker. Maria’s feast day is July 6th.
St. Dominic faced many struggles that the youth of today deal with while in school. It seems that time and again he stood up for his beliefs and encouraged others to repent when they did wrong. He was very influential over his peers because of his example and life of prayer. St. Dominic died at the age of 15. His feast day is March 9th.
7. Blessed Jacinta and Franciso Marta
When Blessed Jacinta and Francisco Marta were children the Virgin Mary began appearing to them near Fatima, Portugal. They were obedient to the instructions that Mary gave them before they both became ill and passed away young.
8. St. Agnes
At the age of thirteen St. Agnes became a martyr for the faith. She refused to be married to the Governor’s son because she adamantly told people she belonged to Christ Jesus. Because of her refusal to his invitation, she was sentenced to death.
9. Blessed Imelda
Blessed Imelda had a strong desire to receive Jesus in the Eucharist when she was just a child. When she was finally able to make her First Holy Communion she was so overcome with joy that she died shortly after.
10. Blessed Laura Vicuna
Blessed Laura was devoted to serving her mother to the point that she offered her own life for her mother’s salvation. She is a witness to how a child can lead their parents to the faith. Blessed Laura was devout in her prayer and devotion to the Lord.
Continue to get to know these Saints and call them your friends. Study the stories of their lives. Ask for their intercession. They understand the difficulties we face trying to live out the Christian life in a world that doesn’t always agree with what we are doing and they desire to help us succeed in glorifying God. What is it that separates you from these young men and women? What is holding you back from becoming a Saint? The Church needs your witness to the faith!