A Prayer to Jesus by St. Pio of Pietrelcina
Oh my Jesus, give me Your strength when my weak nature rebels against the distress and suffering of this life of exile, and enable me to accept everything with serenity and peace. With my whole strength I cling to Your merits, Your sufferings, Your expiation, and Your tears, so that I may be able to cooperate with You in the work of salvation. Give me strength to fly from sin, the only cause of Your agony, Your sweat of blood, and Your death. Destroy in me all that displeases You and fill my heart with the fire of Your holy love and all Your sufferings. Clasp me tenderly, firmly, close to You that I may never leave You alone in Your cruel Passion. I ask only for a place of rest in Your Heart. My desire is to share in Your agony and be beside You in the Garden. May my soul be inebriated by Your love and fed with the bread of Your sorrow. Amen.
Although I have known about him for a long time, I only became very attached to him in the last couple of years. I am not sure why. I suppose it could be that he lived in my lifetime, that there are loads of photos of him, that he was Italian (I'm in love with all things Italian!), and/or that reading about him one finds that he was so very human, and yet so close to God. Just as it is our weaknesses that allow God to work in us, sometimes it is our weaknesses that draw others close to us as well. He could be downright ornery when someone was offending God or not being very honest in the confessional. He was irritated by curiosity seekers. He certainly is no two-dimensional holy card image.
Maybe that's it: he is very, very real to me, like an unseen member of my household. And I feel affection for him as I would for a dear uncle.
Padre Pio, pray for us!