Professor reflects on lives of saints in inaugural Fr. Ted Talk
Aidan Lewis | Friday, December 4, 2015
“From a life of faith, what is important to me?” Edward Hums asked during the inaugural Fr. Ted Talk Thursday evening at Recker’s. Hums said he finds the lives of saints to hold the most importance in his faith life.
Hums, a professor of accountancy in the Mendoza College of Business and a faculty-in-residence in Lyons Hall, said he holds several saints very close to his heart due to specific events they relate to in his life.
“I have an informal litany of saints, saints that mean something to me. Not that it’s because this is what the saint did, but that the saint represents life events in my life of faith,” Hums said.
One of these saints is St. Mark, whom Hums’ hockey coach at Notre Dame always prayed to before games. For this reason, Hums said St. Mark reminds him “of the people who helped [him] through Notre Dame.”
To Hums, St. Mark is representative of the help and support everyone needs in their life.
“You can never get anywhere by yourself,” he said. “You didn’t get to Notre Dame by yourself, and you will not get through by yourself. … There are so many people you owe so much to.”
St. Joseph is another saint who has distinct significance in Hums’ life. Hums said the feast day of St. Joseph, March 19, coincides with the date 26 years ago when Hums had his last drink.
“That was a tough time period, going through something that you needed help getting through, and St. Joseph always reminds me of that day,” Hums said.
Hums said another saint in his informal litany is St. Anthony, the patron saint of lost items. When talking to students, the professor said he often notices “they are missing something.”
“They’re looking for something, and that something is faith,” Hums said.
Hums has experience with this, since he said he once struggled with faith himself. However, St. Anthony helped him through this time, he said.
“At one point in time I think I was a little bit lost too. But I got found,” Hums said.
A final saint Hums said played an essential role in his life is St. André Bessette, formerly known as Brother André of the Congregation of Holy Cross. At one point in Hums’ life, his mother was very sick, to the point that Hums said he couldn’t properly care for her anymore.
After leaving her at the Schubert House, an assisted living facility, he went to a nearby statue of Brother André.
“Brother Andre,” he said in prayer to the statue. “There’s nothing I can do. I’m a failure. I turn her care over to you, because I trust. Whatever you do, I know it’ll be God’s will.”
In her time at the Schubert House, Hums’ mother went from a wheelchair, to a walker, to a cane, to being able to walk on her own, Hums said.
“The last few years of my life, through Brother Andre, I got my mother back. They tell you miracles do happen … That’s a miracle from Brother Andre. That’s why he means so much to me,” Hums said.
Hums closed by saying everyone must find time for God in their busy lives, whether it’s through a litany of saints or some other form of prayerful reflection.
“Close your eyes, just relax, and into that silence, surrounded by all the business, this is where God comes in.”