Mission of Healing
The mission of the new St. Raymond Nonnatus Foundation is that of healing for families and individuals affected by divorce. St. Raymond Nonnatus is a saint from the Mercedarian Order, a Catholic Religious Order founded by St. Peter Nolasco in the Thirteen Century. The charism of the Mercedarian religious order is redemption: the willingness to sacrifice one’s life for “those in danger of losing their faith.”
In 2012, I was introduced to the Order after a long search for a good spiritual director. I had never heard of this religious order at that time. I gradually learned more about the Order and the mission, and it’s been a tremendous blessing in my life. The St. Raymond Nonnatus Foundation is an offshoot of the Mercedarians’ reaching out to all those affected by divorce through the healing love of Jesus!
The fourth vow of the Mercedarian Order, the “willingness to sacrifice one’s life for those in danger of losing their faith,” really caught my eye when I first found the Order. I discovered first hand what this really means after years of prayer and even some years of desolation in my faith life. Finding this spiritual director and becoming a part of the Mercedarian family was just the beginning of my own personal healing journey. Since then I have become a Third Order member of this wonderful “mission of healing.” I’m very excited to share with my CatholicMom.com friends both the great mission of the Mercedarians and of the new foundation of the Order.
St. Raymond Nonnatus Foundation
St. Raymond Nonnatus was born in 1204 in Barcelona, Spain. He is called Nonnatus or “not born,” referring to his Caesarean section birth. His mother died while giving birth to him. He is the patron saint of childbirth, midwives, pregnant women and priests defending the confidentiality of Confession. He spent his childhood tending sheep and spend many hours in prayer at a nearby chapel dedicated to St. Nicholas. Ordained a priest in 1222, he “ransomed” many Christians who were in danger of losing their faith during this time. He died in 1240 and many miracles were attributed to him both before and after his death. He is probably the most celebrated of the saints within the Order.
Father Matthew Phelan, OdeM and Father Joseph Eddy, OdeM, current friars of the Mercedarian Order, were enlightened by the Holy Spirit a few years ago to bring the mission of the foundation to fruition. I have observed their diligent work along with other members of the group prayerfully get this mission off the ground. It has been a blessing to observe how the Holy Spirit is working to make it all happen. The mission will branch out to many other areas of the Church in need of Christ’s healing touch. The initial mission of the St. Raymond Nonnatus Foundation will be to minister to families in the Church affected by divorce. Our hope will be to branch out to other areas of the Church and the world in need of receiving God’s love and redemption.
Upcoming Events to Help the Divorced
There are many families and individuals affected by divorce. It is never an easy thing for families to experience in life. Please offer prayers for these families and for our mission. We hope to “give our lives for those in danger of losing their faith,” which sometimes happens in the process of divorce. Christ and the Sacraments of the Church will bring families the love and hope they need to feel the welcoming presence of the Church. Thank you for praying for this mission.
If you or anyone you know can use the healing given by this ministry, please find us on Facebook and the other social media sites. My name is “Philly Mercedarian” on social media and you will find my profile on the sites. Check out the new St. Raymond Nonnatus Foundation page on Facebook for information on all of our upcoming events.
Reach out to us if your parish or organization would like us to host an event to minister to divorced Catholics in need of the healing love of Jesus, Mary and of the Church!
Copyright 2017 Anne DeSantis