Hagios Set Apart or “Saint”

Today’s Daily Devotion – December 9 2022

By Dr. George J. Ceremuga

For by a single offering, he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified. — Hebrews 10:14

Hagios is the Greek word for “set apart” or “different.” It is also the word for “saint.” Indeed, many saints are “different.” Many, if not most, have set themselves apart from the world. Picture Saint Francis standing naked in the main piazza of Assisi, vowing to live in poverty. Or, John the Cross, imprisoned by his own Carmelite brothers for trying to reform their order. Yes, saints truly are “set apart” for the Lord.

What about a saint who lived the last thirteen years of his life as a homeless man in tattered clothes? That was St. Benedict Joseph Labre. He was born in 1748, the eldest of 15 children, to devout parents in a small town in France. He quickly became an icon in Rome. The opinion was divided. He was either a saint for the miracles he performed or a vagabond for his unkept appearance. Upon his death, his popularity spread internationally. He was adopted as the patron saint of people with autism, people with mental illness, and people who experience homelessness.

We are all called to become “set apart” or saints!

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