Fr. Joe’s St. Anthony Story
I am a Franciscan priest who has a strong trust in St. Anthony’s gift of finding lost, personal items. However, allow me to tell you this incident.
In my younger years I was a retreat director. One year after giving a retreat I spent a few weeks at home to rest a bit. During that time I discovered that I couldn’t find my favorite pants. So with unshakable trust I turned to St. Anthony to help me find my pants. Days passed into weeks, weeks turned into months, and the passing months became a whole year.
During this time my mind became occupied with my work demands. Without realizing it the desire to find the lost pants quietly sneaked out the back door of my mind.
Then one day after finishing a retreat, I was packing my belongings into my suitcase to leave for home. Before leaving I wanted to check inside a closet to make sure I had all my stuff. When I opened this unused closet my lost pants were the only item hanging on the rod.
I couldn’t believe my eyes! I was so surprised and thrilled that, although physically I wasn’t jumping up and down, inwardly I was.
St. Anthony must have gotten a big kick out of planning this joke on me. But secretly, I was hoping he would have acted more quickly.
(Now 87, Fr. Joseph Ricchini lives in retirement in Cincinnati and is involved in Word and Sacramental Ministry.)
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