These holy men and women give everyone hope.
Saints were not perfect. They made grave mistakes during their lifetime and often led public lives of dissolution before converted.
Paradoxical as it might sound at first, this is really good news. It gives us hope that even the coldest heart can be turned towards God, and given new life.
Some saints might seem “too holy” for us to imitate, but most of then were more like us than we realize. They struggled with the same addictions, pet sins and bad habits that we feel weighed down by today.
“Let me know myself”: A beautiful prayer written by St. Augustine
So let us take heart that these holy men and women were not always holy and through the grace of God overcame great obstacles to become shining examples of virtue. (For more great stories of saints who were sinners, check out Thomas Craughwell’s book, Saints Behaving Badly: The Cutthroats, Crooks, Trollops, Con Men, and Devil-Worshippers Who Became Saints.)
Visit the slideshow below to discover some brief introductions to the lives of Augustine, Pelagia, Dismas, Mary of Egypt, and Matthew the Evangelist.