God's Unknown Masterpieces 
by Rev. Robert J. Hermley

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I stood before the "Mona Lisa" in the Louvre, at Paris, and for a long time I gazed at this masterpiece of De Vinci.  It was beautiful, well known, and drew more of a crowd than any other painting in the huge gallery.

I realized full well how fortunate I was to be standing just a few feet from such a renowned work of art.

At length, I was drawn to look at some of the other paintings nearby, and I began to realize that many of them were works by equally famous artists.  Other paintings filled up the large room, too, but I did not recognize the names of the art work nor the names of the painters; nevertheless they were indeed beautiful and had obviously taken a great deal of time to paint.  The did not, however, receive the adulation that surrounded "Mona Lisa."  The works had to be considered treasures, nonetheless, otherwise they would never have been placed in the Louvre.  Perhaps, their creators were not as well known as Leonardo and his Mona Lisa - and a thought struck me then and there - in life, too, there are many famous people who receive the accolades of the crowd.  They are well known and many people like to gather round them to brag to others that they met them or spoke with them or had a picture taken with them and so on.

There are other people who are important, but not as well known as the celebrities, and people often like to cultivate their friendship, too; but there are thousands, perhaps even millions of every-day folk leading ordinary lives who are far more important in God's gallery of helpers than all the rich and famous of the world; people who dedicate their entire lives to living God's Commandments, obeying the Church and its authentic teaching, and then bringing it to their fellow men.  They are living portraits of Christ.  They are living works of God's love.  Like all artists, however, their works have a flaw or two; they are not perfect, and they would be the first to admit to their imperfections, but God who is loving and forgiving, must be very pleased with their lives nonetheless; and when they come to die, I feel that God will place these unknown heroes in a most auspicious place in His heavenly gallery of saints - Their charity, love and true concern for others covered a multitude of sins.