Since it is All Saints Day, Brother Ignatius Pio and Fr. Mark-Mary answer the age-old, controversial question, “Why do Catholics Pray to the Saints?” The word “saint” is all over the Bible, although it is often translated as something different like “holy ones” or “just ones.”
But when we talk about the saints we are usually talking about the canonized saints, those the Church has raised up as examples of holiness. We’re not saying they’re superhuman, but that these people led lives worth looking into and imitating in our attempts to follow Christ.
The saints were deeply involved in the salvation of souls on earth, and continue that same work in heaven. When we honor them, we do not worship the saints. We are saying “Thank you, God, for this person’s life.”
God wants us to participate in his work and the work of the saints. So we work together, doing everything we can to save as many souls as we can. With that end in mind, why wouldn’t we ask for the help of those who lived such holy lives on earth? Death did not separate them from the Church. As St. Paul said:
“If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all men most to be pitied” (1 Corinthians 15:19).
As Fr. Mark-Mary and Br. Ignatius Pio say, it just makes sense to pray to the saints.
See also Thomas Smith’s article “The Saints Are Alive!”
Meet Fr. Mark-Mary
Father Mark-Mary was ordained as a Franciscan Friar of the Renewal (CFR) in 2018 and lives at a friary in the Bronx.
The mission of the CFRs is to wholeheartedly embrace Jesus through fidelity to the Church and her Sacraments. Paired with their commitment to prayer, contemplation, and study of Sacred Scripture, the CFRs serve those around them, especially the poor, in the footsteps of Christ.
Discover beautiful music from the CFRs here.