Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


St. Lucia of Syracuse

Filed under: Musings on Being a Writer — Laura Moncur @ 12:28 pm

Yesterday, I was feeling hopeless. I felt like it was too much to do in a month. I told myself that I started four days late and I missed out on all that time. I told myself that I was feeling tired and that this deadline that I have set is self-imposed. I was feeling like failure was inevitable. When I was typing my personal journal pages, trying to get myself out of this funk, I wrote the words, “Who is the patron saint of writers?”

Thirty seconds later, I found the list of the many patron saints for writers, but the only woman was St. Lucia of Syracuse. I’ve talked about the strange idolatry and pagan basis that attracts me with the saints in the past. As I looked at the picture of St. Lucia, I told her, “Help me through this month and I will donate 20 hours of my time to you.” She is also the patron saint of eye afflictions (her eyes were plucked out during torture, but her eyesight was restored before her martyrdom). I didn’t know what I would do for her, but I was willing to do some charity work in exchange for the strength and determination needed to write 50,000 words in a month.

I printed the picture of her to place by my computer (with Buddha and St. Jude). As I laminated the picture (I’m a messy girl), he walked up to me. He’s a technician who knows as much as an engineer, but he doesn’t get the benefit of it. He lives the life of the devout Mormon man, which runs so very contrary to my atheist beliefs. We’re not the best of friends. We are certainly not the sort to exchange music. Yet he walked up to me with a CD.

“Do you listen to Acoustic Alchemy?” I was very confused. “Is it a radio show?” “No. It’s a band.” I’ve never heard of them. “Are they an LDS band?” “No. They’re smooth jazz. If you like Blue Man Group, you might like them.” He handled his CD awkwardly. I could tell this conversation wasn’t going as well as he expected. “I love the Blue Man Group.” I hold out my hand. The CD reads Acoustic Alchemy MP3s. “That’s all of their albums except a couple. I thought you’d like it. You can keep the CD.” I am sincerely grateful for the gift. “Thank you. I’ll put it on my computer right now. Thank you very much.”

I was still very confused. I had no idea why this man who rarely has any words for me suddenly showed up with music for me. I love music, but I really wouldn’t think he’d know it. I put the CD and transfer it to my hard drive. I read the items into MusicMatch and tell myself that it is a sign. I needed some mellow jazz to write by, I told myself. I pulled up the albums that had been read into my computer. I was going to start with the “Best of” album, but a different album caught my eye. It was called, “Sounds of St.Lucia.”

A chill ran down my spine. The deal was sealed. I loaded up the album and did a Google search. I printed up the PDF and faxed the Application for Volunteer Service for the Utah State Library for the Blind and Disabled. I also emailed it with the following note: “My name is Laura Moncur. I am able to start volunteering in December for approximately 20 hours over the course of that month. Please review my attached Application for Volunteer Service.”

St. Lucia is going to help me through the 50,000 pages. Every time I feel as if I can’t make it, her face is right there to console me. If you would like to give me a show of support during this month, please donate one dollar to The American Foundation for the Blind and leave me a supportive comment here.



  1. “St. Lucia is going to help me through the 50,000 pages.

    Congratulations, Laura. You’ve just graduated from atheistic to agnostic. We’ll call that a step in the right direction. ;-)

    Comment by Joseph Manno — 3/27/2006 @ 8:28 am

  2. Hey, I am going through a really hard time too-I copied the snail mail for the Am Foundation for the Blind and will mail them the dollar. I actually can’t use my credit card right now-I was the dupe of a scam and had to xl my card and bank account. Best of luck with the writing. I also struggle with the whole idea of religion but find the idea of saints very comforting. Be strong! St. Lucia is indeed going to keep you going and make your writing good as well as on time. Best regards, Andrea Garrett, Courtland, AL

    Comment by Andea Garrett — 5/4/2007 @ 9:22 pm

  3. Dear Andrea,

    Thank you so much for the positive comment. In the end, I DID finish my project, but they rejected my volunteer application. Instead, I sent them $200. I was making $10 an hour at the time, so I felt that finished up my deal of the bargain. Funny thing is, it took them FOREVER to cash the check and were totally confused as to why they got it. I guess they don’t get donations that often.

    They get all my charity money from now on, though. :)

    I’m sending good thoughts your way.

    Thanks again, Laura Moncur

    Comment by Laura Moncur — 5/5/2007 @ 8:22 am

  4. Oh my gosh- this email exchange between you and Andrea is so sweet. Andrea of Courtland, I’m sending good thoughts your way too.

    Comment by B. — 5/11/2007 @ 2:12 pm

  5. Hey Laura, well it took me a while (typical) but I’ve sent my donation to the foundation. Here’s what I said “Dear Ms. Taylor:

    I read about your organization on a weblog hosted Laura Moncur-I found her site while looking at different patron saints. Ms. Moncur related her experience with St Lucia of Syracuse and how that led her to your organization-a fascinating story.

    I am sending a small donation to your foundation in honor of St. Lucia via Laura Moncur and her blog.”

    So you are continuing to do good for St. Lucia. And thanks B for your good thoughts of 5/11 I appreciate it!!! Andrea

    Comment by Andea Garrett — 5/29/2007 @ 8:19 pm

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