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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.”


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

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John Leonardi: "I am only one person! Why should I do anything? What good would it do?" Today, as in any age, people seem plagued with the dilemma of getting involved. In his own way John Leonardi answered these questions. He chose to become a priest. 
<p>After his ordination, he became very active in the works of the ministry, especially in hospitals and prisons. The example and dedication of his work attracted several young laymen who began to assist him. They later became priests themselves. </p><p>John lived after the Protestant Reformation and the Council of Trent (1545-63). He and his followers projected a new congregation of diocesan priests. For some reason the plan, which was ultimately approved, provoked great political opposition. John was exiled from his home town of Lucca, Italy, for almost the entire remainder of his life. He received encouragement and help from St. Philip Neri, who gave him his lodgings—along with the care of his cat! </p><p>In 1579, John formed the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, and published a compendium of Christian doctrine that remained in use until the 19th century. </p><p>Father Leonardi and his priests became a great power for good in Italy, and their congregation was confirmed by Pope Clement in 1595. He died at the age of 68 from a disease caught when tending those stricken by the plague. </p><p>By the deliberate policy of the founder, the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God have never had more than 15 churches and today form only a very small congregation.</p> American Catholic Blog Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

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