I was naked…hungry…

The story goes that St. Martin of Tours (316 – 397), who was a senior officer in the Roman Imperial Horse Guard, and who had just come to faith in Christ, was approaching the gates of the city of Amiens, France when he was confronted by a half-naked beggar. At once he took off and cut his military cloak in half to share with the man. That night, Martin dreamed of Jesus wearing the half-cloak he had given away, and heard him say to the angels: “Martin, who is still but a catechumen, clothed me with this robe.”

Jesus came to the main entrance today, under the guise of a poor young man. This young man, emaciated, barefoot and bareheaded, and with his clothes in tatters, was frozen because the day was cold and rainy. He asked for something hot to eat. So I went to the kitchen, but found nothing there for the poor. But, after searching around for some time, I succeeded in finding some soup, which I reheated and into which I crumbled some bread, and I gave it to the poor young man, who ate it. As I was taking the bowl from him, he gave me to know that He was the Lord of heaven and earth. When I saw him as he was, He vanished from my sight. When I went back in and reflected on what had happened at the gate, I heard these words in my soul: “My daughter, the blessings of the poor who bless Me as they leave this gate have reached My ears. And your compassion, within the bounds of obedience, has pleased Me, and this is why I came down from My throne–to taste the fruits of your mercy.” O my Jesus, now everything is clear to me, and I understand all that has just happened. I somehow felt and asked myself what sort of a poor man is this who radiates such modesty. From that moment on, there was stirred up in my heart an even purer love toward the poor and the needy. — St. Faustina, Diary #1312

I was hungry statue

7 comments on “I was naked…hungry…

  1. Jennifer says:

    As I was scrolling down, reading this I was trying to guess who was speaking. By the time I got to the bottom I had thought of at least half-a-dozen saints who had similar experiences: Jesus appearing to them in the disguise of the poor. He seems to do this so often, and those are just the times he is recognized! How many times has he not been recognized? Thank you for the reminder to be open and generous, to love each person we encounter like they were Jesus.

  2. N.O.S. says:

    With shame I weep.

  3. Jennifer says:

    I shared this story from St. Faustina’s diary with my students today while discussing the life of Venerable Father Solanus Casey. Here is a question from one of my grade six students: ” How could it have been Jesus who appeared to St. Faustina or any of the other saints? Isn’t EVERYONE supposed to know when Jesus returns because when he does every knee will bend and every tongue will confess Jesus is Lord?” Help!!

    • 🙂 Brilliant in its simplicity! Let me try… From the Ascension to the Second Coming, Jesus continues to “come” to us and remain with us as He promised (cf. Mt. 28:20; Jn. 14:23), especially in the Sacraments. Though, after the Ascension, He ordinarily comes to us through the medium of faith (cf. Jn. 20:29; Luke 24:30-31), He at times allows a vision to lead us to the Truth that is to be had by means of faith (Acts 9:1ff; Acts 18:9; 2 Cor. 12:9; Rev. 1:9-18). Those experiences of Jesus before His final and all-consuming coming at time’s end are all “concessions” to human weakness, but they always lead us back to faith and bck to what has already been fully revealed in Jesus via Scripture and Tradition. So note Faustina’s vision was simply a reminder of the truth of Matthew 25. Does that help?

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