By Barbara Bartlein
From the time I was four years old, I announced to anyone who asked, “When
I grow up, I’m going to be a nurse.” My parents tried
to nurture this dream. They would surprise me with little nurse’s
kits. Contained in a small plastic case latched at the top was all
the equipment needed to be a nurse: a thermometer permanently marked
to 98.6, a pill bottle filled with candy (which would be gone in
two hours), a stethoscope that didn’t work and, best of all,
I loved that syringe. I would spend hours filling it up with water
and “injecting” my little sister. I would “inject”
the family dog and a very reluctant cat. No other single function
represented nursing to me as well as giving injections. To me, giving
shots was the epitome of what nurses do.
You can imagine my excitement, therefore, when we reached the part
of my nurses’ training where we learned injections. I studied
the techniques carefully and practiced on peaches. I practiced so
much that the fruit at my house had little water blisters all over
that looked like scabies. I participated in the “return demonstration”
with my fellow nursing students. I always claimed that my partner’s
injection was painless so that she would make a similar claim when
it was my turn.
The following week, I began my emergency room rotation at Penrose
Hospital in Colorado Springs. One day, a handsome, tanned construction
worker was admitted with a large laceration on his right arm. About
six feet, five inches tall, 250 pounds, he had huge muscles and
a grin to match. “I just sliced this a little with some sheet
metal, Ma’am,” he reported. He lay on the exam table
while the doctor sutured him with a dozen stitches. He listened
intently while the doctor gave instructions for wound care.
And then the magical moment occurred. The doctor turned to me and
said, “Nurse Bartlein, would you please give this gentleman
a tetanus shot?” My big chance! A real injection on a real
patient. I practically floated on air as I scrambled to the refrigerator
and took out the tetanus vaccine. I carefully drew up the prescribed
amount and returned to the patient. I meticulously swabbed the site
with an alcohol wipe and then expertly darted that needle deep into
the deltoid muscle. I aspirated as taught and slowly injected the
With a grin, the construction worker said, “Thank you, Ma’am”
and stood up. I winked at him, and he winked at me. He stood there
for a minute and promptly crumpled to the floor unconscious. Oh,
my God, I killed him! My first injection and I killed the patient.
My impulse was to run out the door as far into the mountains as
possible. Forget about being a nurse, forget about injections, I’ll
live off the land. No one will ever find me.
Everyone else came running and slowly helped the patient to his
feet. The doctor could see that I was quite shaken. He reassured
me with a smile and said, “Don’t worry, he’s fine.
The big ones always faint!”
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OF THE SAINTS
ST. THERESA OF THE CHILD JESUS
St. Theresa, often called the Little Flower, was born in Normandy, France, in 1873.
ST. GERARD OF BROGNE
St. Gerard was born at the end of the ninth century in France.
ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI
St. Francis was born around 1181. As a young man in his Italian hometown of Assisi.
St. Bruno was born around 1030. This founder of the Carthusian order of monks .
BLESSED MARIE ROSE DUROCHER
Blessed Eulalie Durocher was born in 1811 in Quebec, Canada.
OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY
It was St. Dominic in the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries who encouraged everyone to say the Rosary.
St. Simeon lived in the first century. In Luke's Gospel, chapter two.
ST. DENIS AND COMPANIONS
St. Denis is very popular in France. In fact, he is considered the patron saint of France.
ST. JOHN LEONARDI
St. JOhn was born in 1541and became a pharmacist in Lucca, Italy.
ELEVEN MARTYRS OF ALMERIA, SPAIN
The Spanish civil war began in 1936. It has been described as a struggle between atheism and belief in God.
St. Kenneth who is sometimes called St. Canice or Kenny, lived in the sixth century.
ST. FELIX AND ST. CYPRIAN
Sts. Felix and Cyprian were African bishops who lived in the fifth century.
King St. Edward was one of the best loved of all the English kings.
ST. CALLISTUS I
St. Callisturi, the great pope and martyr, lived in the first part of the third century.
ST. TERESA OF AVILA
St. Teresa was born in Avila, Spain, on March 28, 1515.
ST. MARGARET MARY
St. Margaret Mary lived in the seventeenth century. She is the famous French nun to whom Jesus showed his Sacred Heart.
ST. IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH
St. Ignatius of Antioch has been well-known since earliest times.
St. Luke is generally believed to be a gentile doctor.
ST. ISAAC JOGUES, ST. JOHN DE BREBEUF AND COMPANIONS--THE NORTH AMERICAN MARTYRS
Over three hundred years ago, six Jesuit priests and two holy laymen, all from France, died as martyrs here in North America.
ST. PAUL OF THE CROSS
Paul Danei of Ovada, Italy, was born into a family of merchants in 1694
St. Hilarion lived in the fourth century.
BLESSED TIMOTHY GIACCARDO
Joseph Giaccardo was born on June 13, 1896, in Narzole, Italy.
ST. JOHN CAPISTRANO
St. John Capistrano was born in Italy in 1386.
ST. ANTHONY CLARET
St. Anthony was born in Spain in 1807.
BLESSED RICHARD GWYN
Blessed Richard was a Welshman who lived in the sixteenth century.
St. Evaristus lived in the second century.
BLESSED CONTARDO FERRINI
Blessed Contardo was born in 1859. His father was a teacher of mathematics and physics.
ST. SIMON AND ST. JUDE
These two apostles of Jesus are honored on the same day.
St. Narcissus lived in the second and early part of the third centuries.
ST. ALPHONSUS RODRIGUEZ
St. Alphonsus, the Spanish saint, was born in 1553.
St. Foillan was an Irish monk who lived in the seventh century.
PHOTO OF THE MONTH
of the Relics of the Passion
for Holy Relics)
Why did Jesus, the sinless one sent from the Father in heaven,
submit himself to John’s baptism? John preached a
baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke
3:3). In this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of
the “baptism” of Jesus bloody death upon the
cross. Jesus’ baptism is the acceptance and the beginning
of his mission as God’s suffering Servant (Isaiah
52:13-15; 53:1-12). He allowed himself to be numbered among
sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father’s
will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death
for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust
and submission to God?