In his uncle’s eyes, Paul was bright and devout and would make a good priest – like himself.
In the eyes of a certain young lady, Paul was bright and devout and would make a good husband for some lucky girl – like herself.
But Paul’s eyes were fixed elsewhere.
From the time he was a young boy, he had always been amazed by and attracted to the image of Christ on the crucifix. He was overwhelmed by the great love of God he saw there: love for the world and love even for a small boy like himself, love in Christ’s eyes and love in Christ’s heart, love even in every drop of blood and in every moment of pain.
"The world lives unmindful of the sufferings of Jesus which are the miracle of miracles of the love of God. We must arouse the world from its slumber," he would write.
A community of like-minded souls would gather around Paul and his quest to proclaim the Passsion of Christ to the world. They would become known as the Passionists and Paul would become known as Paul of the Cross.
St. Paul of the Cross died 230 years ago this month and his memory is celebrated on this day.
More than two thousand Passionists in 52 nations remind people to keep their eyes fixed on Christ and the love of his cross.
(adapted from an earlier post)