The Greater Harrisburg Area, Pennsylvania
I am the caretaker for the Msgr. Thomas J. Kujovsky Memorial Relic Library.
Category: Faith & Family
Start Date: May 26, 2017
Imagine your parents pass away unexpectedly, before they have a chance to finalize their wills. As heartbreaking as that scenario alone would be, now imagine that after they pass away all of their cherished belongings go to an estate sale to the highest bidder. That means that those items of great importance to you and your family (for example, a family heirloom handed down through generations) will now likely be out of the family unless you are able to raise enough money to rescue them. To understate this...it would be heartbreaking.
Now consider that this scenario happens with the Church family. Sadly, monasteries, convents, and Churches are often closed (for various reasons) and their contents sold at estate sales or auctions to the highest bidder. This, in most cases, includes items of great spiritual worth that are often never again seen by the Church. However, if we act quickly we can help recover some of these spiritual treasures.
One of the most spiritually valuable items sold in these cases are holy relics. Some of the most famous relics include pieces of the true cross, the crown of thorns, and the pillar at which Jesus was scourged. There are, of course, thousands of additional relics whose fame ranges from on par with those mentioned to those just barely known by the masses.
Over the past few years, I have been working with a few of my local priests to establish a local relic library whose purpose is three fold. First, the relics are being gathered to allow the faithful of local Churches to pray in front of them. Without this library, many would never have the opportunity to do so without making a pilgrimage (which is not always possible given an individual's circumstances). Second, we want to ensure these relics are safeguarded against future harm. By obtaining them, we can ensure their safety and monitoring which should make them available for future generations. Finally, we want to use them as a catechetical tool for the faithful to help guide them along their paths to holiness and salvation.
When we first started promoting this cause, we had gathered together over 70 relics for this ministry. Now we are over 120 relics for the ministry, but considering there are thousands of saints you can imagine that there are many more relics out that there could be donated and should be rescued. Some of the relics in this library have been saved from sale while most have been donated by priests, nuns, monasteries, and convents around the world. We would like to be able to rescue as many relics as possible, and that is why this campaign has been started. Costs to rescue an individual relic range from just under $100 to upwards of $2,000, depending on the relic. Since the cost of this program has remained entirely private, I am in need of assistance in rescuing additional relics. If this is something you feel called to assist with please do.
We don't want these treasures of the Church to fall into the wrong hands. If you cannot help, or do not feel called to help, that is perfectly fine. Either way, please do consider praying for the success of this ministry as we would greatly appreciate the prayerful help as well. Finally, if you have any relics you would like to donate, we are certainly open to that method of support.