Today is the feast day of my patron saint, Mary Magdalene. She has always been an important influence in my faith life. I identify with her, not because I ever had demons cast out of me, but because I have been shown great mercy by God and want to follow Him to the cross, be there for the Resurrection, and remain with him for all of my life like she did.
We named our first daughter Madeleine after her. When I studied abroad in Austria I traveled for a weekend to Paris and visited the Shrine of the Madeleine, a beautiful church in the middle of the city built in her honor. When Kyle and I had a five hour lay over in Paris while I was pregnant with Madeleine, we trained into the city for just a few hours to visit the shrine. Even though I wasn't able to go in I prayed for Madeleine outside of it. I did not know that I was having a little girl at that point but I knew that if it was a girl, I would be putting her under her patronage.
People always comment that we pronounce Madeleine's name wrong for how it is spelled. We pronounce it Mad-el-ine where is should be Mad-el-en. Well, to that I say that I am American. My family came over from England in the early 1600s. It is my birth right to butcher and bastardize other countries names and words especially since France kicked my Hugenot ancestors out of their country and shipped their Protestant butts over to England where they had to change their last name from Petite to Pettit. This is just my little revenge. And I like the pronunciation Mad-el-ine better but we like the spelling we have because it honors her patron saint.
So today, on Saint Mary Magdalene's feast day my daughter and I will be honoring our patroness by lifting up prayers for her intercession before the throne of God and by sharing pop tarts.