It's hard being a teen. In some ways being a Catholic teen is even harder. As a teen we are exposed to a lot, and usually things we aren't ready for, it's a difficult time of novelty and struggle, yet as Catholics we are fortunate to have the help of the saints and obviously Jesus. As a practicing Catholic I came to realise pretty soon, that I would always be in a minority. Fortunately Jesus knew this as he said: 'you are the salt of the earth.' But we need to know even though we are in a minority we must always support and help each other. 

Although I have yet to make a friend that is a practicing Catholic who is also sixteen, I have spiritual help to aid me to overcome my struggles. Last year I discovered the brown scapular, a devotion to the Virgin Mary to aid me in my purity. True devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary consists in three things: VENERATION, CONFIDENCE AND LOVE. By simply wearing the Scapular, we can tell her every moment of the day that we venerate her, love her and trust in her protection. Her aid also comes with a promise The Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel has promised to save those who wear the scapular from the fires of hell; She will also shorten their stay in purgatory if they should pass from this world still owing some debt of punishment. 

All we must do is venerate her and say the Rosary often. It seemed like a no-brainer to me and so I enrolled in it as soon as I could. The best thing is that the Virgin Mary wants us all to wear it, and to devote ourselves to her and reap the rewards. It has been a great help to me and throughout history has caused many miracles such as: 'An entire row of homes had caught fire in Westboden, Germany. The pious inhabitants of a 2-family home, seeing the fire, immediately fastened a Scapular to the main door of the house. Sparks flew over it and around it, but the house remained unharmed. Within 5 hours, 22 homes had been reduced to ashes. The one structure, which stood undamaged amidst the destruction, was that which had the Scapular attached to its door.' And I can also say it has worked miracles for me. Wear it!  When Venerable Francis of Yepes dropped his scapular the devil himself exclaimed “Take off the habit which snatches so many souls from us!”

St John Paul Wearing his Scapular. 

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