Decree on the heroism of the virtues of the Servant of God Sister Leonia Nastal
“In the depths of every person is hidden the seed of the love of God. When a person co-operates with the circumstances which God creates all around us, that seed will grow into an enormous tree, in the shade of which will rest the only object of our love, Jesus – our Bridegroom. I can let you know one of the mysteries of my love for God. It is my belief, that God loved me first, from all eternity; that He loves me inspite of all my misery and unworthiness; and faith that He will love me for ever, eternally. Just think of this. Would it be possible not to love while knowing that I am loved constantly and without bounds? Oh, no!”.
– From a letter of Sister Leonia
On December 2, 2016, Holy Father Francis issued a decree on the heroic virtues of the Servant of God Leonia Maria Nastal, of the Little Servant Sister of the Immaculate Conception.
Sr. Leonia is for us a model of the realization of the Founder’s Testament – love, humility and simplicity, and concern for a child’s welfare. We now have great hope that God, through a miracle received through the intercession of the Servant of God, will confirm her holiness, which she gained through spiritual infancy, and lead to an act of beautification.
The essence of Sr. Leonia’s path of spiritual infancy is the special worship and conformation to the Lord Jesus during the infancy of his earthly life, as well as unlimited trust in God and obedience to His will, following the example of Infant Jesus, which contains the content of the whole Gospel. Sr. Leonia’s desire, which also became her basic mission, was to bring people closer to God by showing the enormity of His love which she experienced herself. On the path of spiritual infancy, everyone – clergy and laypeople, young and old, scholars and simple people – can feel good, thanks to the security which God’s love gives.
Confirmation of the timeliness of the path chosen by the Servant of God is the fact that many childless marriages through her intercession ask for the gift of children and their prayers are answered. At least several dozen families enjoy healthy and beautiful children through the intercession of Sister Leonia. This mission is of particular importance in these times of struggle and fight for the lives of unborn children. She is our motivation to enclose in prayer and support these delicate and beautiful Pro-Life matters.
For those consecrated to God in religious life, Sr. Leonia – full of fidelity, courage and healthy enthusiasm in serving God in the simple conditions of everyday life, can be a model of love for a religious vocation and faithfulness to its requirements. The character of Sr. Leonia’s mysticism – “a mystical dialogue with God, and in particular listening to the inner voice, God’s voice,” has much to say to today’s world.
Today, the man likes to listen to the voice of the body (a call for bread, drink, entertainment, comfort, pleasure) and the voice of the world through media, which practically most often intensifies the voice of the body. This duo is able to divert attention from God, drowning out the delicate voice of the Creator in the heart of a man who does not solicit, does not care to hear him. Sr. Leonia teaches wisdom to discern the voice of the body and the world from the voice of God. She shows how important it is to listen to God’s voice and teaches this listening through her attitude and behavior. God’s words are able to penetrate the deepest secrets of the heart, enrich and fill it with peace, happiness, and joy.
One can say that Sr. Leonia is an ordinary girl with an extraordinary soul. She spent 22 years in the secular state. Through her radical dedication to Jesus, she can be a model of commitment to religious life for the lay youth. It shows that a clear, firm attitude in advocating for God and His laws not only does not depress but can be attractive and fill one with happiness. For young people, she is also a model of perseverance in striving to achieve the ideal which for her was religious life. Once she met God, she placed Him at the center of her existence. With prayer, she was able to overcome the huge obstacles that stood in her way of fulfilling her vocation. The church needs young generous people like Sr. Leonia who are ready to leave everything and choose the radical way of imitating the pure, poor and obedient Christ.
Let us pray that Sr. Leonia would support our noble desires and aspirations and let us pray for the grace of a miracle needed for her beatification.
Words of Jesus to Sister Leonia about spiritual infancy:
“I desire that you should love my infancy in a special way. Each period of my life has unlimited value, God’s value. That same Jesus is forever in glory with the Father; the same – as an infant which cries in the manager at Bethlehem, the same who teaches, the same who dies, rises from the dead and lives in a glorious and sacramental life. My servant Teresa (Saint Theresa of the Child of Jesus) reached perfection through the way of childhood. Go one step further, or rather one step lower to the level of spiritual infancy”.
Sister Leonia Maria Nastal “I believed in God’s Eternal Love”
– Spiritual Diary I, 54