Catholics consider the saints to be our friends. These people led good holy lives and were found worthy to enter Heaven at the time of their deaths. As very dear children of God, they will enjoy His company for all eternity.
Why do we pray to the saints?
Many Christians ask their friends here on earth to pray for them, when a troubling situation arises. We believe we can do the same thing with the saints, whom will then pray for us and intercede for us on our behalf. Because they are so close to God, we believe their prayers are more powerful than ours.
We believe the saints suffered many of the sames struggles on earth, as we do now. They had temptations and they had tribulations. This is why they understand the human condition so well, and so will work from Heaven to relieve our sorrows.
Some saints, because of their particular circumstances while alive, are considered patrons of special causes. For instance, Saint Anthony is the patron saint of lost items. This is because a troubled monk, who was leaving monastic life and putting his soul at great risk, also took off with the saint's prayer book.
Holy Saint Anthony prayed for the return of the book, and, more importantly, for the return of the monk, so he could fulfill the vows he once took of poverty, chastity and obedience.
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