Testimony of Melanie from USA

A while back, I was the Spirituality Chair for my university's Newman Center. It was an aggressively secular university, and a very stressful place-- people were isolated, felt like they could never be enough, no matter what they did. I didn't have words for it then, but now I can recognize what was going on: everyone, all the students around me, were dying of thirst-- thirst for God's love. At the time, I had a growing love for and devotion to the saints. I had only just realized for myself what good friends they were, and what a comfort. What a grace to have holy friends who've walked before you, and who are now in the sight of God! Who know your situation exactly, and can intercede with God on the behalf of you and the ones you love! I used to think they were cold, aloof, perfect; a pretty good reflection of how I felt about God. And I had a strong suspicion that's how a lot of other people felt. So I took my newfound zeal for Saints and used my Chair position to do a couple of lectures on them. Bl. Pier Giorgio was one of the first ones I told people about, and people were really amazed. Here was this guy who was...funny! And liked beer! And played pranks on people, and climbed mountains, and was in love with a beautiful girl; and even though his family life sucked, and he wasn't great at school, he was all of these things....and holy, too. Giorgio was just such a normal guy, I think he really started to make a difference for people-- that Saints weren't marble statues, they were people; and it was totally possible that maybe, just maybe, it was something they could strive for, too.