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Life of a Saint

Saint Charbel Makhlouf (vegan): Miraculous Lebanese Healing Saint, Part 2 of 4

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Known as the “Miracle Monk of Lebanon” by Lebanese Christians, Saint Charbel Makhlouf was a 19th-century monk who lived in Lebanon. We are privileged to have one of His relatives, Antonia, with us to share some stories of Saint Charbel Makhlouf. Antonia is of Costa Rican-Lebanese heritage, and her family has a deep relationship with the Saint. "Since He was a child, He loved the countryside, He loved nature, He respected it, and He saw God reflected in all of nature. This perhaps explains the later, special relationship that Saint Charbel had with animals. Many of His miracles concern animals. One of the greatest miracles was when the locusts attacked and destroyed the fields, the crops. The locusts would attack any crops except those that Saint Charbel had blessed. Then, the farmers sought Him out to bless their fields, and those fields were never touched by the locusts.

Another time, a snake came out, a poisonous snake. So, Saint Charbel stopped everything He was doing and went to the serpent and said: 'Please, get out of here, take that path.' The snake heard Him and heeded Him, and he left. It was a constant in His life that animals obeyed Him. Since He was a child, he herded, shepherded flocks, and when He went to pray, He would say to His sheep, 'Please, stay still because I am going to pray.' And the sheep were totally still."

The hermitage of Saints Peter and Paul is a quiet refuge at an altitude of 1,200 meters (3,937 feet). It was here that Saint Charbel completely devoted His life to God. He slept on a mattress of straw and used a log for a pillow. He ate once a day, a meal consisting of vegetables or herbs. For 23 years, He prayed, fasted, and adored God.

Saint Charbel was extremely devoted to the Eucharist. In 1898, He passed away on Christmas Eve at the age of 70, while reciting the prayer, “Father of Truth, behold Your Son, a sacrifice pleasing to You, accepting the offering of Him who died for me.” It was reported that His body remained intact for more than 40 years after His departure from the physical world.

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