“Always consider others as more holy and more worthy than you, at the same time strive to be as holy as you can be.” -St. Martin de Porres
St. Martin de Porres is the patron saint of social justice and race relations. His example shows us that the true solution to social injustice is found in charity for our neighbor rooted in the Gospel of Christ. This is not necessarily an easy love. It is a love that requires sacrifice. Performing corporal and spiritual works of mercy is how we truly improve our society. St. Martin showed us through his humility and service of those in need that Christ can do great things with love. A nice background article The Holy Life of St. Martin de Porres by D.D. Emmons from Our Sunday Visitor is a good read.
Some good books to learn more about Saint Martin de Porres: Martin de Porres: The Rose in the Desert, St. Martin De Porres: Apostle of Charity, and St. Martin de Porres: Humble Healer.
Sunday July 25, 2021 we ventured in to Washington DC for the day. We began by attending Mass at St. Dominic Church. A beautiful church established in 1852 it has seen quite a lot of life in its years. Many fires the Civil War and modern road construction have all been threats to this church. According to their history 1954 an act of a Congress was required to protect this consecrated church from demolition so that DC could fulfill its Redevelopment Act of improving the areas with better roads. I say that was a good choice to protect St. Dominic Church. It is magnificent inside, the acoustics are delightful. My favorite find was the St. Martin de Porres shrine with a first class relic! It was a surprise find while trying to find a nook to keep a busy and noisy baby from being too distracting during Mass. Feeling a little overwhelmed with a baby who discovered the phenomenal acoustics I was heading right for the first area stepping aside to get a moment to settle our son. What a beautiful sight to see this shrine of St. Martin de Porres! Instantly I felt so relaxed and was beyond thrilled to be there with this beloved saint. We took time to look more closely at his shrine as well as the two others there. We had no idea the treasure of this church being so close to us. We really enjoyed our time there and highly recommend you visit sometime too. We will certainly be going back for a visit.
The St. Martin de Porres National Shrine and Institute is located in St. Peter Catholic Church in Memphis, TN.
On this feast of Saint Martin de Porres, may his example inspire others to see how Christ is calling them. Saint Martin de Porres, patron of social justice, pray for us!