Saint Gianna Beretta and Pietro Molla: Married Love
As you could probably tell from my post two Tuesdays ago, I LOVE the love letters between this couple. Having had the privilege of reading an advance copy of The Journey of Our Love: The Letters of Saint Gianna Beretta and Pietro Molla (Pauline Books and Media, Summer 2014), I got an intimate look into the engaged and married lives of these two modern holy people. What I love most about Saint Gianna is the totality of her life, not the act she is most known for (not ending her risky pregnancy). As one of the other ladies pointed out, she was a rocking single lady we can relate to today: educated, driven, but delightful with a servant’s heart, given her ministry work. Then throughout her engagement and marriage to Pietro, she lived out the virtues we all seek for our own relationships: piety, humility, beauty, and love. What’s more, she and Pietro give witness to how working married parents can hold on to joy and faith even amid the ordinary struggles of modern life. Pietro’s cause for beatification is being put forth, now, too.
Pope Saint John Paul II: Chaste Love
Say what you will about the process to canonize the dearly beloved Papa, but I frankly LOVE that he is among the cloud of witnesses up in Heaven. It may not be entirely theologically accurate, but my belief is that how his writings on the theology of the body and the philosophical underpinnings of chastity in Love and Responsibility inspired a generation love more authentically and bear their own fruit with expanded understandings of the human person is a miracle in and of itself. When thinking about the single life and living out the call to chastity and understanding God through my own physical creation of body+spirit, I look to him and his incredible grace-filled mind. There are any number of saints we ladies can call upon for intercession with regard to the single life, relationships, marriage, and virtues like chastity.
There are also some not-canonized but beatified/venerable people too:
Bl. Louis and Zelie Martin: Parents of St. Therese of Lisieux, the Martins have a unique love story with an incredibly holy ending: all of their children went on to enter the religious life.
Venerable Fulton Sheen: Go look up his essay Love Dreams. Oh man do I love that piece. And while I haven’t read his book Three to Get Married, it’s a perennial recommendation for any couple discerning marriage.