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Making our way to holiness

As I wandered about the sanctuary of Our Lady of Fatima, Portugal, after the candlelight procession one evening, I came upon this scene. People were using the flame of another candle to light their offertory candle. As you can see in the picture, these candles were not in neat, straight rows, but instead allowed to morph into new shapes and eventually collapse onto another candle. People lingered praying their intention, but I found myself drawn into this space of warmth and light. I watched the flickering and melting of the candles one onto another, and I began to see in this scene how similar it was to our lives. The candles were each of us. In God’s creation, we are allowed to shine our light in our unique way, but together we become a more glorious light than anyone could be on their own. I saw in the leaning and collapsing of each candle how each of us has a role to play in helping the other on their path to holiness, and I thought of God's nurturing plan for each one of us as his children. Candles extinguished by the wind or those simply who have run out of fuel make way for new candles with brighter lights and so on. Do not struggle, but let your beautiful candle burn brightly in the darkness of the world, knowing that God has the perfect plan of holiness for you.

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