Sunday, December 5, 2010

St. David Lewis (1616 to Aug. 27, 1679)

   It seems every time I wish for a second that I was a religion other than Roman Catholic, something happens to make me thankful that I am.
  This morning I helped my friend sell his jewelry and deer antler nativity sets at a holiday bazaar at a Congregational Church on the East Side of Providence. My guess it that we were the only Roman Catholic vendors (that would be non-practicing).
   Inside was aglow with fresh evergreens, tasty baked goods, and live choir music. Sunday school students skipped happily around dressed in adorable Christmas clothing while others held their parents hands and pointed at the toys and books that they wanted on their wish lists.
  "Wow," I thought. "These Protestant families seem to have it all."
  To occupy my time during the shopping lull, I bid on gifts baskets in the silent auction. The three I chose were Italian foods, pedicure/aromatherapy, and cupcake baking. I knew I had a good chance of getting all three, but my favorite was the cupcake-themed one. It had a fancy cupcake stand, all the mix, sprinkles, frosting, and baking liners you'd ever need and a set of pans. It came in a huge, colorful handwoven basket.
  Basically, I kept going over to the bidding area and upping my amount each time someone made a new bid. I was finally at $65, it was the end of the event, and I figured it would be mine.
  However, next thing I knew, the cupcake basket was gone while the two dozen others remained in place. I could see the silent auction coordinator gathering bid papers, so I went up and asked her what happened to the cupcake basket.
  She said that it went to someone who bid $75 and they took it and left.
  "Generally, I announce the end of the silent auction and say there's a chance to bid one last time," she explained. "This year I forgot."
  I gathered my thoughts and responded, "You conveniently forgot because your friend wanted the basket. That's unfair. I would have bid $80."
  Actually, I wouldn't have bid that much money for something I could buy at Marshall's department store for under $30. Still, I wasn't surprised at all by the behavior of the stodgy woman. I was in a Protestant church, afterall. Say what you want, but this never would have happened at a bazaar at a Roman Catholic Church.
  I can guarantee that St. David Lewis wasn't turned off by the Protestant church over a silent auction, but he did convert Catholicism at age 16, when he was living in Paris, France. He was born in 1616 in Monmouthshire, England.
  St. David Lewis studied for the priesthood in Rome, Italy and was ordained in 1642. Thirty six years later, he was arrested for being a Jesuit priest and saying Mass. He was accused of being an accessory to the Popish Plot.
  St. David Lewis was hanged on Aug. 27, 1679. He was canonized in 1970 as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales. His feast day is Oct. 25.

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