Have you ever heard, “Why can’t you be like…” or been compared to someone else? It’s not fair! People shouldn’t expect you to be just like someone else. God made us each different!
Saint Isidore felt the same way you do. He was born into a family of saints—or at least into a family everyone in Spain considered to be saintly. So, of course, it was expected that Isidore would be just like the rest of the family.
Isidore’s brother, Leander, was much older and felt that it was his responsibility to teach Isidore. Poor Isidore! His brother wasn’t a kind teacher at all! “You’re lazy! You’re stupid! You don’t try hard enough! You should know that…” (How would you feel hearing that day after day while at school? I know I wouldn’t like it—NOBODY would. And that is how Isidore felt.) One day Isidore had enough of his brother picking on him and he ran away! (I pray you have nice teachers!)
After traveling for many days Isidore sat down to rest on a large stone. Drip, drip, drip…a slow, steady drip of water was falling onto the rock from a nearby creek. Each drop didn’t feel like much but where the water fell there was a large indentation in the rock. This was caused by the constant steady dripping of water in that one spot day after day, year after year. This made Isidore think about his brother’s teaching. Yes, his brother wasn’t very nice, but he was teaching him. And, over time, if his brother continued to teach him, he would learn…just like the water made a dent in the rock.
Isidore decided to return home and continue his education with his brother. Eventually, the two must have worked things out between them, because they started to do projects together. When Leander died, Isidore finished many of the uncompleted tasks of his brother. Two things that his brother had been unable to finish were the writings of a missal and a breviary—books for prayer. Isidore completed these difficult projects, which shows us that he was indeed, a very smart man.
Feast day: April 4
St. Isidore of Seville, pray for us!
Activity: Design your own family puzzle!
What you’ll need:
- a puzzle (I suggest a 100 piece one but any size will work)
- colored markers or crayons
As a family, assemble the puzzle together. Then, carefully flip it over so that the picture side is facing the table. Using the markers/crayons, color a picture onto the backside of the puzzle. Try to get at least some color on each puzzle piece.
When you finish coloring it, take apart the puzzle and try to put it together again with your picture facing up.
You now have created a family treasure!