A dear Catholic friend of mine has taught her five children, whenever they hear an emergency vehicle's siren, to pray silently for all those involved.
Among her children is a teenage girl, Therese, who struggles greatly with cystic fibrosis. Despite the enormity of Therese's personal challenge just to breathe, she has an incredibly sunny and generous disposition, ever mindful of the personal difficulties that others might be facing in their lives.
Therese and her mom were in her hospital room yesterday when they heard a siren. Therese started praying immediately, but her whispered words puzzled my friend.
"What did you say?" her mother asked.
Therese paused, distracted. "What?"
Her mother frowned slightly. "Did you just say, 'phenomenal?'"
The girl brightened immediately. "Oh. Yeah!" She tilted her head thoughtfully. "You know, I used to just pray, 'Lord, please let everyone be okay,' whenever I heard a siren. But, then I thought, you know, Jesus raised Himself from the dead! I mean, why am I just praying for, 'Okay?' I should be praying for, 'phenomenal!' So, now I pray, 'Lord, please let everyone be phenomenal!'"
Therese's grin and her utter confidence in the Lord granting her supplication positively lit up the room. Beside her, I think my name is probably O Ye, as in, "O, ye of little faith." If we all had the faith of a mustard seed like this girl (and like Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, not be afraid to use it) we would indeed change the world!
Please pray for Therese during her current hospital stay! Her lung function has dipped into the 40s and there are other complications. Thank you!