We don't celebrate saint days in the States - well, not on any grand scale that I'm aware of, anyway. But, in France, each day commemorates a saint, and if your name happens to be that of a saint, you can expect someone to wish you a happy saint's day. Today was Saint-Guillaume Day - or Saint William of Bourges Day, so Gui received a barrage of text messages and voicemails wishing him a bonne fête, which pretty much just wishes him a happy holiday. I find the whole French approach to religion strikingly oxymoronic, but I like the idea of having a commemorative "feastday" (as they describe on the catholic.org website) simply because you share the name of a saint. Who doesn't love feast days?
There isn't much to say about Saint Guillaume de Bourges except that he was a man who did lots of good things in his short life, like take care of the poor and less fortunate than him. However, I did note a couple of things of interest about him (well, to me, anyway). He performed 18 miracles in his life and 18 after. Not only is that just seriously impressive, but it is a pretty well-known fact that 18 is my lucky number. He was the canon (priest) of Paris at some point, but eventually decided to abandon the big city lifestyle for a more simple life in the north of France. I also find it pretty neato that he was canonized on May 17th, which just happens to be my birthday. Knowing all of this, I'd like to say that Saint Guillaume and I would be pretty solid pals if he were living now or had I been living back in the late 12th century. I'm quite content, still, with knowing that I'll be reminded of his goodness and grace every year that we celebrate his accomplishments via his modern-day namesake.