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Singing for Life View Comments
By Susan Hines-Brigger

FOR COUNTRY SINGER Collin Raye, “music is like breathing.” In the 1990s, Raye was a leading figure in the country music industry, with 16 number-one hits, a total of 24 top-10 songs, and many other honors. He began singing at the age of 7 and says his goal was always to make it in the music business. He talked about that goal, his career, his faith, and his advocacy when he stopped by Franciscan Media some months back for an interview.

“I wanted hit records,” he says. “I wanted my name to be known. I wanted to perform in front of a lot of people—all the reasons a young person wants to do this.”

Starting at the age of 15, he worked to get a record deal. When he finally got one in 1990, Raye, now 53, says he gave glory to God and thought, “For some reason God had kept this from me because he knew I wasn’t ready— either professionally or mentally.”

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Susan Hines-Brigger is the managing editor of this magazine and editor of the new digital magazine Liberty + Vine.

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Alphonsus Rodriguez: Tragedy and challenge beset today’s saint early in life, but Alphonsus Rodriguez found happiness and contentment through simple service and prayer. 
<p>Born in Spain in 1533, Alphonsus inherited the family textile business at 23. Within the space of three years, his wife, daughter and mother died; meanwhile, business was poor. Alphonsus stepped back and reassessed his life. He sold the business and, with his young son, moved into his sisters’ home. There he learned the discipline of prayer and meditation. </p><p>Years later, at the death of his son, Alphonsus, almost 40 by then, sought to join the Jesuits. He was not helped by his poor education. He applied twice before being admitted. For 45 years he served as doorkeeper at the Jesuits’ college in Majorca. When not at his post, he was almost always at prayer, though he often encountered difficulties and temptations. </p><p>His holiness and prayerfulness attracted many to him, including St. Peter Claver, then a Jesuit seminarian. Alphonsus’s life as doorkeeper may have been humdrum, but he caught the attention of poet and fellow-Jesuit Gerard Manley Hopkins, who made him the subject of one of his poems. </p><p>Alphonsus died in 1617. He is the patron saint of Majorca.</p> American Catholic Blog People mess up, and it’s especially hard to watch as our children and other young people go down paths we know are likely to lead to heartbreak. Providing gentle guidance when it’s needed, and love even when that guidance isn’t followed, helps them to start fresh.

 
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