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Angel in the Farm Field

A Story of St. Isidore the Farmer and St. Maria Torribia

Life Dates: Isidore 1970-1130; Maria died 1175
Feast Day: May 15

Maria and Isidore were up early, As farm workers for a rich land owner, they worked hard all day. Isidore spent his days in the fields, and Maria worked near their home.

While Mara and Isidore had barely enough food and money for themselves, people with even less always found their way to Maria. She would greet them kindly, sit them at her table, and make them food. Often Isidore had sent them to her.

This morning, as usual, Isidore hurried off to Mass before going to the fields. However, this was not a usual day for Juan de Vergas, the wealthy landowner. He especially liked the kind, hard-working and honest Isidore and Maria. But some of the other workers had complained that Isidore arrived late every morning, so he did less work than they did.

With a heavy heart, Juan decided to follow Isidore to find out if they were correct. Yes, Isidore when to church, not to the field. The sun had not risen when Mass was over. Juan quietly followed Isidore who was still praying as he walked to the field. There Isidore hitched his oxen to his plough and began to work.

Juan gasped. In the misty light of dawn, he saw two pure white oxen pulling another plow. This plow was driven by a man dressed all in white clothing. They worked beside Isidore, so together they got twice as much work done.

Who was this worked in white? Juan began running towards Isidore and the mysterious worker, but as he got closer, the man and his oxen seemed to melt into the mist!

“Isidore!” his boss called. “What was the man beside you?”

Isidore looked around. He seemed surprised. “Sir, I work alone. I only ask God for strength.”

And then Juan understood what a blessing it was to know Isidore and Maria, people so loved by God that God sent an angel to help plow a field!

For more information to celebrate St. Isidore and St. Maria with prayer, feasting and artwork, see A Circle of Saints.