Franciscan Spirit Blog

Lent with Padre Pio: First Sunday

“When you are unable to take big steps on the paths to which the Lord leads you, be content with small steps and patiently wait until you have the legs to run.”
—Letters, Vol. 3, 116

Have you seen those images that on closer look are actually made up of many smaller pictures? In some ways, that’s a good example of Padre Pio’s story. Throughout his life, he dealt with various obstacles ranging from his health to people doubting his faith journey. Still, he continued on the path he believed Christ had set him on. The small steps—daily prayer, hearing confessions, and suffering quietly—added up, leading Padre Pio to become a faithful role model for others.

So often we can be discouraged when we feel we are falling short of the big picture. Sometimes, though, we have to remember that the big picture can be the result of many smaller things—and often can only be seen from a wider perspective.

In Padre Pio’s Own Words

Always be strong in your faith, and always be vigilant, so that you can be safe from the snares of the enemy. This is precisely the advice that the prince of the apostles, St. Peter, gives us: “Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking some one to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith” [1 Peter 5:8–9a]. As a great encouragement to all of us, he adds this: “The same experience of suffering is required of your brotherhood throughout the world” [5:9b].

Beloved daughter of Jesus, stir up your faith in the truth of Christian doctrine, especially in the hour of battle, and in particular stir up your faith in the promise of eternal life that our sweetest Lord gives to those who fight with strength and courage. Be strengthened and comforted to know that you are not alone in suffering and that all of the followers of the Nazarene throughout the world suffer the same things.

(To Raffaelina Cerase, November 26, 1914)

lent with padre pio


St. Pio, help us focus on the smaller steps we take as part of our faith journey and give us the strength to take those steps, even when we think they’re not enough.


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