I found out two weeks ago about a young Catholic boy, a junior in high school, who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 Ewings’ Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer, which has spread to his lung. He was active in his parish and in Catholic groups, comes from a large family, and seems to be one of those boys that everyone loves. While local efforts have sprung up to raise money for him and his family, there is also a huge swelling of prayer support, especially asking for his cure through the intercession of Bl.PierGiorgio Frassati.
“O merciful God,
Who through the perils of the world
deigned to preserve by Your grace
Your servant Pier Giorgio Frassati
pure of heart and ardent of charity,
listen, we ask You, to our prayers and,
if it is in Your designs that he be glorified by the Church,
show us Your will,
granting us the graces we ask of You, particularily, a complete and miraculous healing for Marshall Billingsley,
through his intercession,
by the merits of Jesus Christ, Our Lord, Amen.”
This morning I was getting a bagel and coffee at Bruegger’s, and I noticed they not only had a poster up for the l’Angelus benefit concert for Marshall, but they had a huge note on their dry erase board that next Saturday they would give 15% of all profits to Marshall and his family.
And then it hit me. I had thought Marshall looked familiar to me when I saw his picture, but figured I had seen him in the Catholic crowd at some point or another.
But this morning, I realized why I recognized me. Marshall was the boy who worked at Bruegger’s this summer. The boy I shared playful banter with and posted about in the 4th entry of this blog.
And while I still can’t say I “know” Marshall, somehow the whole situation has become much more real to me. I can see his smiling face, his cheerful personality (despite the early hour of the morning). I should have known he was a Catholic young man, just judging from the way he brightened everyone’s day! That doesn’t seem like that long ago — my life is pretty much the same, as evidenced from the fact that I went to Bruegger’s this morning and got a trail mix bagel and a cup of hazelnut coffee, just as I did when Marshall was working. But his life has changed so drastically.
Please pray for Marshall and his family, as they fight this unexpected battle. Please pray through the intercession of Bl.PierGiorgio, himself a cheerful young man who brightened the day of those he met, who suffered at such a young age.