Today is the Feast Day of Saint Thomas Aquinas. Of all the saints, he is one of my favorite. It isn’t so much what he did with his life as what he left to the world. His teachings. His writings. Most of all, his inspiration.
That truly is the point of saints in the first place. After all, who are saints? Were they created by God, placed on this earth as saints? Hardly! Saints are people – full of warts and imperfections and in the case of some, very colorful lives. What sets saints apart is that they have accomplished something that is very difficult – they have surrendered fully and completely to the will of God. For some, this surrender was as naturally as breathing. For others, it was more like drowning. Whatever their individual path, at some point they all surrender. And in so doing, God’s greatest works are manifested.
When Saint Thomas surrendered, it required a great deal of personal sacrifice. Thomas was an intelligent, educated man. While at the university he was introduced to the philosophical influences of Aristotle, Averroes and Maimonides. He also met John of Saint Julian, a Dominican preacher, who had the greatest influence on him. His family was against the idea of him joining the Dominican Order. They even went so far as to hold him prisoner in the family castle of Monte San Giovanni Campano. For Thomas to follow the path God had for him, it meant turning his back on family.
Saint Thomas wrote a great many books. His works give such insight into the glory that is God. What he had to say continues to ring true today. For truth knows no bonds.
Eternity is called whole, not because it has parts, but because it is lacking in nothing.
Charity brings to life again those who are spiritually dead.
Faith is God’s work within us.
We can open our hearts to God, but only with Divine help.
Miracles are signs not to them that believe, but to them that believe not.
We must love them both, those whose opinions we share and those whose opinions we reject, for both have labored in the search for truth, and both have helped us in finding it.
If you were to ask me, that last quote is the most relevant in today’s world. There is so much fighting and opposition that nothing good seems to be accomplished. We cannot appreciate the good in those who do not walk like us or talk like us or think like us. Evil is a cancer that feeds on anger, resentment and mistrust. It’s thirst for the human spirit seems unquenchable. Faith is the answer. God is the key to eternal salvation. And Saints are examples of all we can accomplish through trust and compassion. The first step is to be brave enough to surrender to the will of God.
Today is also National Blueberry Pancake Day. When it comes to eggs, Eggs Benedict is my favorite. When it comes to waffles, a Belgium Waffle with fresh berries and whipped cream is hard to resist. And when it comes to pancakes, Blueberries are right up there as some of the best. You don’t have to be a Saint or even one in the making to appreciate a beautiful breakfast.
Fabulous Blueberry Pancakes
1/2 cup frozen Blueberries, thawed
1-1/4 cups Flour
1 tablespoon Baking Powder
1-1/2 teaspoon Sugar
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Milk
1/2 tablespoon Butter, melted
6 tablespoons Butter
12 tablespoons Blueberry Syrup
Rinse blueberries under cold water to thaw, drain well and pat dry.
In a large bowl, sift flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt together. In a small bowl, whisk milk and egg. Stir egg mixture into flour mixture until just combined. Melt butter, add to the batter. Fold in the blueberries. Let batter reset for 1 hour before cooking.
Heat a griddle over medium-high heat. Lightly spray with cooking spray.
Ladle 1/4 cup scoop of batter onto the hot griddle for each pancake; spread out slightly in a circular motion. Cook pancakes until bubbles appear on the surface, then flip and cook until golden brown on both sides. Serve hot with butter and Blueberry Syrup.
Hands down, the best Blueberry Pancakes I’ve ever made! Better yet, the best Blueberry Pancakes I’ve ever tasted. Well worth the wait for the batter to rest.
Be sure to find (or make) a good Blueberry Syrup for even more blueberry goodness. Wow – what a morning!
2 thoughts on “A Saint’s Inspiration”
Beautiful musings about saints in general and St. Thomas Aquinas in particular.