Last week I lost my good umbrella, the compact one that pops upon immediately when you press a button. I’ve had it for many years, and I miss it. This is not the most valuable thing I’ve lost. I suppose the umbrella is in a special universe “lost and found” room along with my mysteriously missing driver’s license and my ID tag. Losing anything is annoying, not to mention sometimes expensive. Searching high and low for a lost item eats up valuable time. Most irritating is when you can’t find the car keys and then, when you know you’re going to be late, you discover them right under your nose. Then there are the times when you put something in a safe place and then forget where that place is. Do you ever clean a room, rearranging objects, and then when something is not where it’s been forever, you can’t remember where you moved it to? We have various ways of turning to heaven for help during such frustrating times.
The most popular remedy is to turn to Saint Anthony. There’s even a rhymed prayer to him. One version is “St. Anthony, St. Anthony, come around. Something is lost and can’t be found.” More sophisticated prayers to this saint can be found on the Internet. Why St. Anthony? Supposedly he taught a course on the psalms to novices. One of the novices decided to leave the community and took with him St. Anthony’s Psalter. This was especially distressful for Anthony because his book was marked up with his class notes. Eventually the novice changed his mind and returned to the community, bringing the Psalter back with him.
A friend of mine prays the Creed when she loses something. Some people turn to their deceased moms or dads, counting on them for help in death as in life. A few say that this strategy is unfailing. In some cases after prayer, an object will unexplainable appear in a totally unexpected place, or, more puzzling, in a place we had searched a hundred times before.
There is a way to lose things that is not stressful: not realizing you’ve lost them until someone returns them to you!
Losing material objects is not that bad when compared to losing your mind or your soul.
When have you been successful is regaining a lost object? What was your strategy?