Saintly inspiration

April 24, 2012

HOUSTON – While Bishop-elect Sheltz has many family and friends as companions on his faith journey, there are certain saints who he also looks to as models of holiness. Who inspires our next auxiliary bishop? Bishop-elect Sheltz named five men and women whose lives encourage him:

St. George

Patron of: Boy Scouts; Soldiers; England; Germany; Portugal

Feast day: April 23

Interesting: The story of St. George slaying a dragon, rescuing a king’s daughter and converting Libya is a fable, according to But St. George is nonetheless known as a favorite patron saint of crusaders. 

Mary, Mother of God

Patron of: All humanity

Feast day: Jan. 1

Interesting: Bishop-elect Sheltz said he is dedicating his episcopacy to Mary, who is his model. 

St. Patrick

Patron of: Ireland; engineers; Nigeria

Feast day: March 17

Interesting: St. Patrick was a Christian missionary to Ireland, where he evangelized the Christian spirit in dramatic ways. St. Patrick is also Bishop-elect Sheltz’ confirmation saint. “I was taught by Irish nuns. He was the only saint you ever heard about,” the bishop-elect said, with a laugh.

St. Therese of Lisieux

Patron of:
 Florists; missionaries; pilots

Feast day: Oct. 1

Interesting: A Carmelite nun, “The Little Flower” is known for her “little way” of doing the ordinary with extraordinary love. She was proclaimed a Doctor of the Church in 1997 – a recognition of the significance of her teaching on spirituality in the Church.

St. Bernadette

Patron of:
 The ill

Feast day: April 16

Interesting: The Virgin Mary appeared to Bernadette 18 times, instructing her to build a chapel on the spot of the visions – in Lourdes, France. Lourdes is one of the most popular Marian shrines in the world today. (Bishop-elect Sheltz still has memories of watching “Song of Bernadette” as a young boy in a movie theatre on Main Street, near what is now Holy Cross Chapel.)