On this Feast of Saint Anthony of Padua, I just had to share an experience that my husband and I had while visiting the Basilica of Saint Anthony in Padua, Italy. We had planned on visiting Rome, Florence and a day trip to Tuscany. Padua was not originally on our schedule. However, while travelling from Rome to Florence on their high-speed train, I saw that a trip to Padua from Florence was only a 90-minute high-speed train ride away.
With Saint Anthony of Padua being my all-time favorite saint, I couldn’t travel all the way to Italy and not visit his tomb, when he was only a 90-minute train ride away. So, my husband and I made the trip on June 16, 2011. I’ll never forget this day.
As we entered the Basilica, my husband noticed that Saint Anthony’s tomb was immediately to our left. As we approached the tomb, my husband noticed that everyone was heading toward the back side of the tomb. So we followed. Then we saw people touching the tomb. So we followed suit. Wow! What happened next is hard to describe.
How Saint Anthony Touched My Soul
As I touched the cold stone slab, I felt this surge of energy flow through my veins. It was so warm, and filled with love – I didn’t want to let go!!!! Ever!!!! I started to cry; no, make that sob; so much so, that I had to let go to blow my nose. I then touched the tomb once more, and again I felt that wonderful feeling. Was it a piece of Heaven residing in temporal form on earth? I’m not sure. All I can say is that it was a wonderful experience for me. What made it an extraordinary experience is what happened next.
After we left the Basilica, we journeyed across the street to have lunch at an outdoor café. I felt compelled to share my experience with my husband, Nick, if only to explain why I was sobbing in the Basilica. When I told him what happened, he simply said to me, “I felt it too.” That sent chills done my spine on a warm summer’s day in an Italian outdoor café.
God sends us miracles of His presence every day, if we are open to receiving them, and willing to use our eyes of faith. Saint Anthony helped me to find something that day, as he is so well known for finding things that are lost. Saint Anthony helped me to find Christ’s peace, a peace that continues to reside within me to this day. Thank you Saint Anthony! Happy Feast Day!