A Candle in a Cavern


A single flame from the smallest of candles will illuminate an entire cavern. Its seemingly insignificant amount of light is visible from miles and miles away.

The tiny Saint Maria Goretti is just such a light in a world overcome by darkness.

This great soul gave her life at the tender age of eleven in defense of the great truth of purity. In this sensually-obsessed world of ours, how many of us would give our lives rather than commit a single sin against so precious a virtue?

St. Maria understood the importance of preserving God’s great gift of life-giving powers for their proper role. So when pressed by a passionate young man of eighteen to commit sins against purity, her response was simply, “God does not want it. It is a sin. You will go to Hell.”

How beautifully concise and true. Why do we insist on over-complicating things while proposing a thousand and one justifications for our sinful actions? If something is wrong, it is wrong. It really is as simple as that. God is very simple, and He doesn’t much care for our silly excuses. If something is wrong and against His will, let’s be bold enough to, as the tiny eleven-year-old Maria, stand up and call evil by its name.

Maria’s response to her attacker was perfectly in line with the motto of her young life, “A thousand deaths rather than commit one sin.”

“A thousand deaths rather than commit one sin!”

Our modern world would happily commit a thousand sins rather than die one death. What a terrible perversion when sin becomes worth living for.

St. Maria held fast against the onslaught of the poor man, and his angry passion induced him to murder the unaccommodating Maria. Much like her Christ, this martyr gave her life in defense of the truth.

Let her tiny light be an inspiration to our dark and miserable souls. We too can become a seemingly insignificant flame in our darkened world. But flames are contagious, and a thousand candles can be lit from the flame of one tiny candle. All the while the flame of that tiny candle will burn on, undiminished.

Let us all pray to the beautiful Saint Maria Goretti today, and beg of her to obtain for us the grace to love and respect the holy truths of purity. Her peaceful, cheerful, and holy demeanor obtained the conversion of her murderous attacker, so surely now that she is face to face with her Creator her power has only increased. Turn to her that we may be a tiny contagious flame in a world of unprecedented darkness.


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