Photo by Miguel Bruna on Unsplash

Speaking Out: Using talents to change the world

By  Mary French, Youth Speak News
  • June 24, 2020

Capes and feats of strength, or perhaps great speeches and political influence — these are images associated with the heroes we envision changing the world around us. 

It might surprise you to hear that changing the world is easier than you think, and it isn’t limited to huge protests or daring feats. It starts with us. 

“Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire,” said St. Catherine of Siena.

Catherine (1347-1380) is one of the only four female Doctors of the Church. Her writings continue to be very influential in Catholic culture. She was an incredible woman, yet her advice for bringing Christ to the world is so simple. 

Each one of us has a particular gift, whether it be writing, art, listening to others or a multitude of seemingly mundane talents. Though our talents may seem unimportant in the big picture, they are in fact the very things which enable us to express ourselves, impact others and, yes, even change the world.

The saints all had a few characteristics in common: their undying devotion to and love of God, as well as their boldness in being themselves. Simple as this sounds, it is, in fact, all we need to set the world on fire for God.

Sometimes it is hard to be unique. Standing out — not to mention standing for goodness, honesty and wonder — can be daunting sometimes.

Yet the world needs this wonder. It needs people who are willing to boldly share their talents. It needs those who are unafraid to peel away from the status quo. Even if using our talents to write a story, sing a song or dance away on stage seems insignificant, these are the very gifts through which God works His purpose.

Take Bl. Chiara Badano, for example. This young girl, already on her way to sainthood, died in 1990. Though only 18 years old at her death, Badano, declared Blessed in 2009 by Pope Benedict XVI, was still able to impact so many people both before and after her death, simply by being herself. 

Just like any other teenager, Badano enjoyed activities such as tennis, singing and dancing. She tried to bring Christ to her friends through her example and by living a happy life.

When she was hospitalized with bone cancer, she responded to adversity by spreading joy and Christ-like love, ultimately touching many people’s lives — even that of a drug addict.

Badano is proof that you don’t have to be distinguished to be a saint. She was a normal girl with nothing standing out except her unfailing love for God and others, and her shameless knack for being herself.

Simply by expressing ourselves through our gifts, we can impact so many people without realizing it. Further, by using these gifts, we discover more about ourselves and who God created us to be.

Change in the world starts with loving ourselves and using the gifts God gave us. So, dancers — dance! Writers — write! Those differences and unique perspectives are what the world needs.

(French is a third-year student at Our Lady Seat of Wisdom College in Barry’s Bay, Ont.)

Please support The Catholic Register

Unlike many media companies, The Catholic Register has never charged readers for access to the news and information on our website. We want to keep our award-winning journalism as widely available as possible. But we need your help.

For more than 125 years, The Register has been a trusted source of faith-based journalism. By making even a small donation you help ensure our future as an important voice in the Catholic Church. If you support the mission of Catholic journalism, please donate today. Thank you.