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Introduction and Statistics

According to the 2006 Annuario Pontificio, the official yearbook of the Vatican, the membership of the Catholic Church was approximately 1,098,000,000 in 2004. There were 405,891 priests, 32,324 permanent deacons, and 113,044 seminarians when the data was compiled [2][3].

The Hierarchy of the Church


The Roman Pontiff, as the successor of Saint Peter the Apostle, is the supreme pastor over the Catholic Church. Bishops, as the successors of the Apostles, share in the authority of the Roman Pontiff when they are united to him. Priests and deacons are appointed to assist each bishop in the administering of the care of the faithful. Certain Rites of the Catholic Church may be organized in a different manner.[4]

The Pontiff

The succession of pontiffs has continued from St. Peter to Benedict XVI who is considered the 265th pontiff [5]. (Footnote: some calculations by other scholars differ, as one pontiff died before his coronation and another held the office at three separate times.) To protect the purity of the Truth handed onward from the Apostles, the Pontiff is infallible in matters of Faith and Morals in virtue of his office.[6] (Footnote: Pope Vigilius may be an example of this power at work.) The Pontiff is popularly referred to as the Pope (who should not be confused with the Coptic Pope or the Eastern Orthodox Pope of Alexandria.). The pontiff is also known by several other titles (but no longer Patriarch of the West).

The pontiff often writes documents for the instruction and management of the Church. Some of these documents are: Apostolic Constitutions, Apostolic Exhortations, Apostolic Letters (some of which are given Motu Proprio), and Encyclicals.

The Cardinals

The Cardinals are chosen by the pontiff to be the electors of the succeeding pontiff upon the death or resignation of the pontiff. The choosing of cardinals is sometimes called the giving of red hats--referring to the official garb of cardinals. The cardinals are assigned to one of three categories: the episcopal order, the presbyteral order, and the diaconal order. The pontiff may choose any ordained priest to be a cardinal; however, the person must be consecrated a bishop if this has not yet been done. The pontiff may also choose to designate a cardinal in pectore, in which it is publicly announced that an appointment has been made, but the name is not revealed and the person is not notified until a later date. This is frequently used in the case of appointments of clergy from countries where the Church is persecuted. Although cardinals are frequently appointed to metropolitan sees and Magisterial offices, the designation as a cardinal does not give any other significant hierarchial faculties other than the electoral function. All cardinals who are not diocesan bishops are required to reside in Rome.[7] Upon the death or resignation of the pontiff, the cardinals assemble in a conclave to elect the next pope.

At the time of this book's publication, the Apostolic Constitution, Universi Dominici Gregis, written by Pope John Paul II, governed the process of electing a new Pontiff upon the vacancy of the Holy See. Any subsequent Pontiff may revoke, amend, or replace these rules at any time he chooses.

The Bishops

Bishops are usually the head of a see, a regional area called a diocese, which may vary greatly in size. In the case of certain papal delegates and officials, an appointment may be made to a "Titular See." Bishops in union with the Pontiff also share in the reception of the divine assistance of infallibility regarding faith and morals in virtue of their office.[8]


Bishops ordain priests through the Sacrament of Holy Orders. Two categories of priests exist: diocesan and religious. A man may not be ordained a priest unless he is at least twenty-six years old, and there has been an interval of at least six months between his ordination to the diaconate and his ordination to the priesthood.[9]

Diocesan Priests

Diocesan priests are usually assigned to one or more parishes to administer the majority of the sacraments to the faithful. Occasionally, the bishop may determine to assign a priest to assist in another diocesan task such as the administration of tribunals, the spiritual direction of an organization, or the formation or education of seminarians. Diocesan priests are directly responsible to their bishop, and take vows of chastity and obedience.

Religious Priests

Religious priests usually live in a communal atmosphere, such as in a monastery. They may, however, be assigned to a parish or another diocesan task with the approval of the local bishop (also called the "ordinary"). Religious priests are primarily subject to the authority of a superior of the order. They may also be subject to the authority of the bishop in whose diocese they are residing and, in the case with some orders, to the bishop who has given the order permission to be founded in and andministrated from his diocese.


Deacons were first appointed by the Apostles to assist in the care of the temporal needs of the faithful. Currently, they may also partake in other duties, especially in the Liturgy of the Mass, the administering of Baptism, and the instruction of the faithful. There are two categories of deacons: transitional and permanent.

Transitional Deacons

Transitional deacons are candidates for the priesthood who have been ordained deacons and administer in this capacity until they are ordained to the priesthood. A man may not be ordained as a transitional deacon unless he has attained the age of twenty-three. Ordination may not take place until after the fifth year of theological and philosophical studies has been completed.[10]

Permanent Deacons

Permanent deacons may be either married or unmarried men who have devoted themselves to the work of the Church. An unmarried man must be at least twenty-five years old to be ordained. A permanent deacon must be at least thirty-five years old, must have the consent of his wife,[11] and may not marry again if his wife dies.

Other Rites of the Catholic Church

Other Rites may be organized in a different manner. There are twenty-one Eastern Rites. One of these is the Maronite Rite.

Doctrines of the Church

Attributes of the Catholic Church

The four attributes of the Catholic Church are: it is One, Holy, Catholic (universal), and Apostolic.[12]

The Trinity and the two natures of Jesus

There is one God in three Divine Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. This doctrine is also called the doctrine of the Blessed Trinity. The Second Person of the Blessed Trinity (the Son) assumed a human nature by being born of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who was free from all stain of original sin.

The Life of Christ

1)The Annunciation
2) The Visitation
3) The Nativity
4) The Presentation
5) The Finding in the Temple

6)The Baptism of Christ (Lk 2,41-50)
7)Jesus Calls the Apostles
8) The Miracle at Cana (Jn 2,1-12)
9) Proclamation of the Coming of the Kingdom (Mk 1,15; Lk 7,47-48; Jn 20,22-23)
10)Jesus walks on water and other miracles of Jesus
11) The Transfiguration (Lk9,35)
12)The Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem
13) The Last Supper (Jn 13,1)

For our redemption He was crucified on Calvary, died, and was buried in a tomb.

14)The Agony in the Garden
15) The Scourging at the Pillar
16) The Crowning of Thorns
17) The Way of the Cross
18) The Crucifixion

On Easter Sunday He rose from the dead.

19) The Resurrection
20) Appearance to Saint Mary Magdalene

He ascended into heaven on Ascension Thursday, forty days after the Resurrection.

21) The Ascension

He ascended into heaven on Ascension Thursday, forty days after the Resurrection.

Marian Doctrines

The doctrine of Mary being conceived without original sin is the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception, a dogma of the Faith. Mary was assumed body and soul into heaven, also a dogma of the Faith. She has also been proclaimed as the "Mother of God by the Council of Ephesus(?).

The Catechism of the Catholic Church

The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains much of the Church's teaching. This is available on the Vatican's website.

The Creeds

Two Creeds are used on a frequent basis in the Catholic Church: the Apostles' Creed and the Nicene Creed. The Athanasian Creed is also used.

The Apostles' Creed / Credo

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended into hell;
the third day He rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven,
and sits at the right hand of God the Father almighty;
from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Holy Catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and life everlasting. Amen.

Bible References for The Apostles' Creed

I believe in God the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth (Gen. 1:1, Isa. 44:6; 45:5; Neh. 9:6; Jn. 1:1-3; Acts 14:15; Mt. 5:45; 1 Pt. 1:17; Mt. 6:7-13; Rom. 1:20).
I believe in Jesus Christ (Lk. 2:11; Jn. 2028; Mt. 3:17; Phil. 2:11),
His only Son (Jn. 1:18; 3:16; Prov. 30:4),
our Lord (Jn. 20:28).
He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit (Lk. 1:35; Mt. 1:20),
born of the Virgin Mary (Lk. 1:17; 2:7; Isa. 7:14),
He suffered under Pontius Pilate (Lk. 23:23-25; Jn. 19:16),
was crucified (Mt. 27:33-61; Mk. 15:22-47; Lk. 23-56; Jn. 19:18-42),
died (1 Cor. 15:3),
and was buried (1 Cor. 15:3).
He descended to the dead (1 Pt. 3:18-20).
On the third day He rose again from the dead (1 Cor. 15:4; Mt. 28:1-20; Jn. 20:1; Lk. 24:1-53; Mk. 16:1-20).
He ascended into heaven (Mk. 16:19; Lk. 24:41; Acts 1:11).
He is seated at the right hand of the Father Almighty (Mk. 16:19; Heb. 1:3).
He will come again to judge the living and the dead (2 Tim. 4:1; Jn. 5:22; Mt. 16:27; Acts 10:39; 1 Cor. 15:51).
I believe in the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14:15-20; Jn. 15:26; 16:7-8; 13-14; Acts 1:7-8; Acts 13:2),
the Holy Catholic Church (Mt. 16:18-19; 19-20; Rom. 1:7-8; Acts 9:31; Gal. 3:26-29; Rev. 7:9; Eph. 5:26-27; Col. 1:24),
the Communion of Saints (Heb. 10:25; Heb. 12:1; Rev. 19:14; Mt. 28:19-20; 2 Cor. 11:13; 1 Cor. 15:33),
the forgiveness of sins (Isa. 1:18; Lk. 7:48; Jn. 20:22-23; 1 Jn. 1:9),
the resurrection of the body (1 Thes. 4:16; Jn. 6:39; 1 Cor. 15:51-54; 1 Thes. 4:13-18; Rom. 8:23,30),
and life everlasting. Amen. (Jn. 10:28; 17:2-3; 1 Jn. 5:20)

Suffering in God's Plan

For Roman Catholics, suffering is meant to bring them closer to God, to merit graces for others, and to give the opportunity to practice charity.

Sources of Truth

The Catholic Church uses two sources for its teaching: Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture. Sacred Tradition could be described as the understanding of what Christ wanted for the Church as He communicated it to the Apostles being handed down through the centuries. Sacred Scripture is various writings of different authors at different times that the Catholic Church determined were inspired by the Holy Spirit. Sacred Scripture gives stability to the unchanging truths communicated through Sacred Tradition, and Sacred Tradition prevents a legalistic interpretation of Sacred Scripture.

The various writings of Sacred Scripture were compiled into one volume in the 4th Century AD. This volume of collective works is often called the Bible. A complete Catholic Bible contains the following books: Genesis; Exodus; Leviticus; Numbers; Deuteronomy; Joshua; Judges; Ruth; 1 Samuel and 2 Samuel; 1 Kings and 2 Kings; 1 Chronicles and 2 Chronicles; Ezra; Nehemiah; Tobit; Judith; Esther; 1 Maccabees and 2 Maccabees; Job; Psalms; Proverbs; Ecclesiastes; The Song of Songs; The Wisdom of Solomon; Sirach (Ecclesiasticus); Isaiah; Jeremiah; Lamentations; Baruch; Ezekiel; Daniel; Hosea; Joel; Amos; Obadiah; Jonah; Micah; Nahum; Habakkuk; Zephaniah; Haggai; Zachariah; Malachi; Gospel of St. Matthew; Gospel of St. Mark; Gospel of St. Luke; Gospel of St. John; Acts of the Apostles; Romans; 1 Corinthians and 2 Corinthians; Galatians; Ephesians; Philippians; Colossians; 1 Thessalonians and 2 Thessalonians; 1 Timothy and 2 Timothy; Titus; Philemon; Hebrews; James; 1 Peter and 2 Peter; 1 John, 2 John and 3 John; Jude; and Revelation (Apocalypse).

The Angels

Angel escorting Soul to Heaven 001.jpg

Angels are pure spirits without a body, created to adore and enjoy God in heaven. Angels appeared to the Blessed Virgin and St. Joseph; also to Abraham, Lot, Jacob, Tobiah, and others. The angels were also created to assist before the throne of God and to minister unto Him; they have often been sent as messengers from God to man; and are also appointed our guardians. The angels are not equal in dignity. There are nine choirs or classes mentioned in the Holy Scripture. The highest are called Seraphim and the lowest simply Angels. The Archangels are one class higher than ordinary Angels. The Archangel Michael drove Satan out of Heaven; the Archangel Gabriel announced to the Blessed Virgin that she was to become the Mother of God. The Archangel Raphael guided and protected Tobiah.

The Angels are pure spirits created by God who, unlike humans, have no physical bodies. There are two ways of classifying angels: by the choir to which an angel belongs by nature, and by whether or not the angel remained faithful to God.

It is taught that there are nine choirs of angels: Seraphim, Cherubim, Virtues, Dominations, Powers, Principalities, Thrones, Archangels, and Angels (might not be in correct order). The term angel broadly refers to any creature possessing an angelic nature, but specifically refers to the ninth choir.

The second manner of classifying distinguishes between the good angels and the bad angels, also called devils. It appears that all angelic beings were tested at a certain point, and that some chose to follow God and others rejected Him. It is speculated by many theologians (in a good sense of the term) that the event was probably as follows:

God showed the angels that the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity would become man. They were told that they must adore Him in His human nature, and that they would be expected to serve Him and any creatures He created that possessed a human nature. One of the Seraphim announced that he would not do it. One of the Archangels countered him with "Who is like unto God?" All the members of the nine choirs of angels irrevocably and with full knowledge made a determination as to whether or not they would serve God. A battle was then fought in Heaven and the devils were driven out. When humans were created, the devils began to try to persuade them also to choose not to serve God, which they continue to do until this day.

An"gel, n. Etym: [AS. æangel, engel, influenced by OF. angele, angle, F. ange. Both the AS. and the OF. words are from L. angelus, Gr.

1. A messenger. [R.] The dear good angel of the Spring, The nightingale. B. Jonson.

2. A spiritual, celestial being, superior to man in power and intelligence. In the Scriptures the angels appear as God's messengers.
O, welcome, pure-eyed Faith, white-handed Hope, Thou hovering angel, girt with golden wings. Milton.

3. One of a class of "fallen angels;" an evil spirit; as, the devil and his angels.

4. A minister or pastor of a church, as in the Seven Asiatic churches. [Archaic]
Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write.
- Revelation 2:1

5. Attendant spirit; genius; demon. Shak.

6. An appellation given to a person supposed to be of angelic goodness or loveliness; a darling.
When pain and anguish wring the brow. Sir W. Scott.

7. (Numis.)

Defn: An ancient gold coin of England, bearing the figure of the Archangel Michael. It varied in value from 6s. 8d. to 10s. Amer. Cyc.

Note: Angel is sometimes used adjectively; as, angel grace; angel whiteness. Angel bed, a bed without posts.

-- Angel fish. (Zoöl.)
(a) A species of shark (Squatina angelus) from six to eight feet long, found on the coasts of Europe and North America. It takes its name from its pectoral fins, which are very large and extend horizontally like wings when spread.
(b) One of several species of compressed, bright colored fishes warm seas, belonging to the family, Chætodontidæ.

-- Angel gold, standard gold. [Obs.] Fuller.

-- Angel shark. See Shark.

-- Angel shot (Mil.), a kind of chain shot.

-- Angel water, a perfumed liquid made at first chiefly from angelica; afterwards containing rose, myrtle, and orange-flower waters, with ambergris, etc. [Obs.]

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary.

A word signifying, both in the Hebrew and Greek, a "messenger," and hence employed to denote any agent God sends forth to execute His purposes. It is used of an ordinary messenger (Job 1:14; 1 Samuel 11:3; Luke 7:24; Luke 9:52), of prophets (Isaiah 42:19; Haggai 1:13), of priests (Malachi 2:7), and ministers of the New Testament (Revelation 1:20). It is also applied to such impersonal agents as the pestilence (2 Samuel 24:16 - 24:17; 2 Kings 19:35), the wind (Psalm 104:4). But its distinctive application is to certain heavenly intelligences whom God employs in carrying on his government of the world. The name does not denote their nature but their office as messengers. The appearances to Abraham at Mamre (Genesis 18:2, Genesis 18:22. Compare Genesis 19:1), to Jacob at Peniel (Genesis 32:24, Genesis 32:30), to Joshua at Gilgal (Joshua 5:13, Joshua 5:15), of the Angel of the Lord, were doubtless manifestations of the Divine presence, "foreshadowings of the Incarnation," revelations before the "fulness of the time" of the Son of God.
(1.) The existence and orders of angelic beings can only be discovered from the Scriptures. Although the Bible does not treat of this subject specially, yet there are numerous incidental details that furnish us with ample information. Their personal existence is plainly implied in such passages as Genesis 16:7, Genesis 16:10, Genesis 16:11; Judges 13:1-21; Matthew 28:2; Hebrews 1:4, etc. These superior beings are very numerous. "Thousand thousands," etc. (Daniel 7:10; Matthew 26:53; Luke 2:13; Hebrews 12:22, Hebrews 12:23). They are also spoken of as of different ranks in dignity and power (Zechariah 1:9, Zechariah 1:11; Daniel 10:13; Daniel 12:1; 1 Thessalonians 4:16; Jude 1:9; Ephesians 1:21; Colossians 1:16).

(2.) As to their nature, they are spirits (Hebrews 1:14), like the soul of man, but not incorporeal. Such expressions as "like the angels" (Luke 20:36), and the fact that whenever angels appeared to man it was always in a human form (Genesis 18:2; Genesis 19:1, Genesis 19:10; Luke 24:4; Acts 1:10), and the titles that are applied to them ("sons of God," Job 1:6; Job 38:7; Daniel 3:25; compare Daniel 3:28) and to men (Luke 3:38), seem all to indicate some resemblance between them and the human race. Imperfection is ascribed to them as creatures (Job 4:18; Matthew 24:36; 1 Peter 1:12). As finite creatures they may fall under temptation; and accordingly we read of "fallen angels." Of the cause and manner of their "fall" we are wholly ignorant. We know only that "they left their first estate" (Matthew 25:41; Revelation 12:7, Revelation 12:9), and that they are "reserved unto judgment" (2 Peter 2:4). When the manna is called "angels' food," this is merely to denote its excellence (Psalm 78:25). Angels never die (Luke 20:36). They are possessed of superhuman intelligence and power (Mark 13:32; 2 Thessalonians 1:7; Psalm 103:20). They are called "holy" (Luke 9:26), "elect" (1 Timothy 5:21). The redeemed in glory are "like unto the angels" (Luke 20:36). They are not to be worshipped (Colossians 2:18; Revelation 19:10).
(3.) Their functions are manifold.

(a) In the widest sense they are agents of God's providence (Exodus 12:23; Psalm 104:4; Hebrews 11:28; 1 Corinthians 10:10; 2 Samuel 24:16; 1 Chronicles 21:16; 2 Kings 19:35; Acts 12:23).
(b) They are specially God's agents in carrying on his great work of redemption. There is no notice of angelic appearances to man till after the call of Abraham. From that time onward there are frequent references to their ministry on earth (Genesis 18; Genesis 19; Genesis 24:7, Genesis 24:40; Genesis 28:12; Genesis 32:1). They appear to rebuke idolatry (Judges 2:1), to call Gideon (Judges 6:11 - 6:12), and to consecrate Samson (Judges 13:3). In the days of the prophets, from Samuel downward, the angels appear only in their behalf (1 Kings 19:5; 2 Kings 6:17; Zechariah 1-6; Daniel 4:13, Daniel 4:23; Daniel 10:10, Daniel 10:13, Daniel 10:20, Daniel 10:21). The Incarnation introduces a new era in the ministrations of angels. They come with their Lord to earth to do him service while here. They predict his advent (Matthew 1:20; Luke 1:26), minister to him after his temptation and agony (Matthew 4:11; Luke 22:43), and declare his resurrection and ascension (Matthew 28:2; John 20:12 - 20:13; Acts 1:10 - 1:11). They are now ministering spirits to the people of God (Hebrews 1:14; Psalm 34:7; Psalms 91:11; Matthew 18:10; Acts 5:19; Acts 8:26; Acts 10:3; Acts 12:7; Acts 27:23). They rejoice over a penitent sinner (Luke 15:10). They bear the souls of the redeemed to paradise (Luke 16:22); and they will be the ministers of judgment hereafter on the great day (Matthew 13:39, Matthew 13:41, Matthew 13:49; Matthew 16:27; Matthew 24:31).

The passages (Psalm 34:7, Matthew 18:10) are usually referred to in support of the idea that every individual has a particular guardian angel. They also indicate that God employs the ministry of angels to deliver His people from affliction and danger, and that the angels do not think it below their dignity to minister even to children and to the least among Christ's disciples. The "angel of his presence" (Isaiah 63:9. Compare Exodus 23:20, Exodus 23:21; Exodus 32:34; Exodus 33:2; Numbers 20:16) is probably rightly interpreted of the Messiah as the guide of His people. Others have supposed the expression to refer to Gabriel (Luke 1:19).

The Sacraments

The seven Sacraments are: Baptism, Penance/Reconciliation, Holy Eucharist, Confirmation, Matrimony, Holy Orders, and Extreme Unction/Anointing of the Sick.


Baptism is given "in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." Baptism is only given once and is permanent; even if a person later "leaves" the Catholic Church, he/she is still a member, and if the person repents and returns to the Church, no rebaptizing is necessary. If there is uncertainty of a person's baptism or lack thereof, "conditional baptism" is administered ("If you have not already been baptised, I baptise you in the Name...")

The Sacrament of Baptism

All properly baptized persons, even those not in complete communion with the Roman Pontiff, are members of the Church of Christ and may rightfully be called "Christians" and "brethren in Christ." [This can be found on www (then a period " . " ) Catechism of the Catholic Church, §1271] Baptism permanently makes one a Christian, cannot be undone, and never needs to be given a second time. [This can be found on www (then a period " . " ) Catechism of the Catholic Church, §1272] Although a person may enter into heresy or schism, or even completely reject Christianity and apostasize, the person will never be able to cease being a Christian. Although the Catholic Church may use penalties [This can be found on www (then a period " . " ) Code of Canon Law, Canons 1336-1338] and censures [this can be found on www (then a period " . " ) Code of Canon Law, Canons 1331-1335] to attempt to reform a person or minimize the harm a person can do, it does not have the power to revoke Baptism or expel a member from the Church.

"Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we will certainly be united with Him in a resurrection like His." -Romans 6:3-5

"For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body-Jews or Greeks, slaves or free-and we were all made to drink of one Spirit." -1 Corinthians 12:12-13

Baptism is the first among three sacraments of Christian initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist). It is through the baptism of an individual person " . . .in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit" that one enters the Christian community.

Baptism is a sacrament which nearly all Christian denominations share in common. It is a sacrament that does not need to be repeated. Once a person is baptized into Christ, it is forever.

Catholics believe baptism can happen at any point in a person's life. It can be the decision of parents to raise their children in a Christian community and so to baptize them as infants; or it can be the decision of a younger child, teenager or adult to be baptized.

By ancient Christian tradition, before baptism takes place, the individual to be baptized must participate in a Christian parish community, must be instructed in the Christian faith, and must be sponsored by at least one baptized Christian adult. For adults, instruction comes through the Rite of Christian Initiation Program (RCIA), for young children and infants, parents and sponsors (Godparents) attend preparation classes.

Baptism for those instructed through the RCIA Program is celebrated by the parish at the Easter Vigil (the night before Easter Sunday). Baptisms are also celebrated at other times throughout the year. A baptismal preparation meeting for parents of infants and small children is usually held prior to the Baptism.

Penance / Reconciliation

Sacrament of Penance

In the Sacrament of Penance, a penitent is absolved "in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." It is required that all mortal sins be confessed, and the confession of venial sins is encouraged. Catholic are required to make use of this sacrament at least once a year. There is no limit as to how many times this sacrament may be administered to a penitent.

Holy Eucharist

Bread and wine are transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ in the context of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Communion is usually received in the course of the Mass; however, it Communion may also be received in a Communion Service (and even outside of a Communion Service in some cases?) Catholics are required to receive Communion at least once in the course of the Easter period. Catholics must be in the state of grace to receive Communion. Currently, a person may receive communion twice a day, but the second time must be in the course of a complete Mass attended by the recipient.

"For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, and when had given thanks, he broke it and said, 'This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.' In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, 'This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.' For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes."

Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist

-1 Corinthians 11:23-26

"Then he took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them saying, 'This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.' And he did the same with the cup after supper, saying, "This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood."

-Luke 22:19-20

"The Eucharist is the 'summit' of Christian initiation and all apostolic activity, because the Sacrament presupposes membership in the communion of the Church. At the same time, it is the 'source,' because the Sacrament is nourishment for the Church's life and mission."

- Vatican II, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, 47

The Eucharist we celebrate is the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus, our Lord, our God, and our King. The Eucharist is what we do and who we are as a Catholic parish community. Each Sunday we gather to celebrate the Eucharist and commemorate the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus.

We are challenged as Catholics to, as St. Augustine said, "become what we receive," in the Eucharist. The Eucharist, also referred to as the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, is celebrated to sustain us, but it also invigorates us to go back into the world and strive to bring Christ's presence into our homes, work places, schools, grocery stores, doctors and dentist's offices, and all the places we go to accomplish our daily duty.

The Eucharist is to be reserved in each parish church. This ancient custom of the Church began so that people who were not able to join the Christian community for the celebration of the Eucharist could receive Jesus in their homes at a later time. Today, the Eucharist is reserved in the Tabernacle, so that Jesus can be taken to the sick and those near the hour of their death, being called "Viaticum" at that point.

Great devotion to Christ's presence in the Eucharist arose and the practice of praying in the presence of the reserved Eucharist grew and continues to this day. Many churches have Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Perpetual Adoration to adore Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.

Catholics commit themselves to celebrate the Eucharist on Sunday, the Lord's Day, as it was named after the Resurrection. Many people are inspired to participate in the celebration of the Eucharist on a daily basis. As a sacrament of initiation, the Eucharist brings people into fuller communion with the Christian family. First Eucharist, or First Holy Communion, as it is usually referred to, may be celebrated as early as the second grade (7-9 years old). Reception of Holy Communion can also be celebrated for the first time anytime after that age.


Confirmation is given once in a person's lifetime and is permanent. If a person later "leaves" the Catholic Church, and later repents and returns to the Church, no reconfirmation is necessary.

"But it is God who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us, by putting his seal on us and giving us his Spirit in our hearts as a first installment." 2 Corinthians 1:21-22

"Be sealed with the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Peace be with you." Rite of Confirmation

Confirmation is one of the three sacraments of initiation. The development of Confirmation as a rite and sacrament in itself coincides with the growth of the Christian Church. Confirmation is the anointing on the forehead of a baptized person with Chrism. From the beginning of the Church, those who were baptized were always given this seal by the head of a local Christian community (today called a bishop). As the Church grew, bishops appointed co-workers (priests) to celebrate the Sacraments on a day to day basis for parish communities. Bishops made it their practice as head of a local Church to visit all the communities of Christians under their care. During those visits, the bishop would confirm any baptisms that had taken place by sealing the baptized person with Chrism.

Confirmation deepens a baptized person's communion with the Christian community. It also connects the individual to the Church on a broader level. Confirmation celebrates a deepening of the gifts of the Holy Spirit first given to a person at baptism and renewed and enriched in each celebration of the Eucharist.


Sacrament of Matrimony

The Sacrament of Matrimony, when properly administered without impediments and consummated, is permanent until the death of one of the two spouses. If a marriage is not properly administered or there are impediments, an annulment is granted, which is a determination that the marriage was never valid in the first place. If a marriage is not consummated, it is possible to get what is called an ecclesiastical divorce. Marriage is only valid between one man and one woman.

Holy Orders

Holy Orders is the ordination of candidates to the priesthood. This sacrament is only given once and is permanent; if a priest later "leaves" the Catholic Church, he/she is still a priest, and if the priest repents and returns to the Church, no reordination is necessary. Even if a priest is laicised, he still may give the Last Rites to a person in danger of death. In general, those who are ordained priests are required to be unmarried. An exception is made for certain Protestant ministers who convert to Catholicism.

Extreme Unction/Anointing of the Sick

This Sacrament is given in cases of sickness, imminent death, or old age. It is usually given only once per occasion, but in the case of an extended illness, it is often received more than once. When it is administered, it is often given with the Sacraments of Penance and the Holy Eucharist; the reception of these sacraments is often collectively called the Last Rites.

"Are any among you sick? They should call for the presbyters of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up; and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven." -James 5:14-15

All who find themselves facing illness, surgery or other serious ailments are encouraged to celebrate the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick. It can be celebrated more than one time. It can be celebrated in the hospital, a nursing home or in the individual's home. It is only celebrated by a priest or bishop.


The Catholic Church teaches that, after the sin of Adam, each person who comes into the world inherits Original sin (correct?). Original sin is washed away in baptism. (?) Christ atoned for the sins of all, however man's cooperation is required in order to accept Christ's free gift of grace. Faith--which necessarily includes good thoughts, words, and actions--constitutes acceptance of this sanctifying grace. When a person performs an evil thought, word, or action, he commits a sin. Sin is classified into two categories: venial and mortal. A person who commits a venial sin weakens his soul, but has not rejected Christ's offer of sanctifying grace. Mortal sin constitutes a rejection of Christ's offer of grace and thus causes the individual to loose sanctifying grace until it is regained after reconciling with God (normally achieved through the making of a good confession). If a person dies in the state of mortal sin, he has failed to accept Christ's offer of salvation, and therefore has chosen eternal damnation in Hell over eternal life in Heaven with God. If a person dies who is in the state of grace but is not perfectly pure, he undergoes purification in Purgatory before entering Heaven. A person may remove the impurity resulting from sin in several ways. One of these ways is to gain an indulgence.


An indulgence may be gained by the recitation of certain prayers or the performance of certain acts. Indulgences are categorized as plenary and partial. Plenary indulgences completely remove the punishment due to sin. Certain conditions must be met to gain a plenary indulgence. A partial indulgence removes some of the punishment due to sin. Indulgences are administered by the Apostolic Penitentiary [13]. The Enchiridion is the current book of indulgences. The Fourth edition (first published in 1999) can be found on the Vatican's website in the Latin language.[14] A book called the Raccolta once served this purpose.

A summary of the moral requirements of Catholics is contained in the Gospel of Mark:

And there came one of the scribes that had heard them reasoning together, and seeing that he had answered them well, asked him which was the first commandment of all. And Jesus answered him: The first commandment of all is, Hear, O Israel: the Lord your God is one God. And you shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind and with your whole strength. This is the first commandment. And the second is like to it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these. [This can be found on www (then a period " . ") Mark 12:28-31].

Aspects of this calling are highlighted and defined in the Ten Commandments and in other commandments, laws, and principles.

The Ten Commandments

In quotations of the Ten Commandments, the Catholic Church uses the division in Deuteronomy rather than Exodus. In the Catechism of the Catholic Church, topics similar to the commandment are explained.

The First Commandment

Idolatry, love of possessions and persons over God, superstition, witchcraft, atheism, apostasy, and agnosticism are forbidden. The faithful and clergy may only worship God and Him alone; they may honor those of His servants who have set an heroic example of fidelity to God.[15]

The Second Commandment

Cursing, swearing, profanity, obscene speech, rash oaths, blasphemy, and improper use of God's name or the names of the saints are forbidden.[16]

The Third Commandment

A day of rest is to be observed on Sunday.[17]

The Fourth Commandment

Obedience and respect to lawful authority is required, except in the case where one would be required to commit a sin.[18]

The Fifth Commandment

Murder, suicide, abortion, contraception, euthanasia, and intentional physical injury of oneself or another is prohibited. Unjust wars are also forbidden, and the few cases when a war is undertaken for a just cause are explained.[19]

The Catholic Church teaches that life begins from conception and exists until natural death. Pope Paul VI wrote the encyclical Humanae Vitae on the matter.

The Sixth Commandment

Adultery, fornication, pre-marital sex, and homosexuality are forbidden.[20]

The Seventh Commandment

Theft, vandalism, and damage to the property of another are prohibited. Employers are required to pay just wages.[21]

The Eighth Commandment

False witness, perjury, detraction, calumny, slander, boasting, bragging, lies, and gossip are forbidden.[22]

The Ninth Commandment

Lust, impure thoughts, and impure desires are forbidden; purity and modesty are required.[23]

The Tenth Commandment

Envy is forbidden.[24]

The Six Precepts of the Church

  • Catholics are required to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation
  • Catholics are required to confess their sins at least once a year in the Sacrament of Reconciliation
  • Reception of communion at least once during the Easter Season is required.
  • Holy Days of Obligation must be kept holy.
  • Observation of the fast and abstinence laws is required.
  • The faithful are obligated to provide for the temporal needs of the Church.[25]

Seven Corporal Works of Mercy

The seven corporal works of mercy are: give food to the hungry, drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, visit the imprisoned, visit the sick, and bury the dead.

Seven Spiritual Works of Mercy

The seven spiritual works of mercy are: ...Counsel the doubtful, admonish the ignorant,... forgive all injuries, and pray for the living and the dead.


Certain good qualities that should be practiced by Catholics are often classified as virtues.

Theological Virtues

There are three Theological virtues: Faith, Hope, and Charity. These qualities apply directly to a person's relationship with God.[26]

Cardinal Virtues

There are Four Cardinal Virtues: Prudence, Justice, Temperance, and Fortitude. These are qualities that are naturally necessary for any moral life.[27]

Prayers and Sacramentals

The Stations of the Cross

The fourteen Stations of the Cross are:

  • Jesus is condemned by Pilate
  • Jesus accepts His Cross
  • Jesus falls the first time
  • Jesus meets His Mother
  • Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus carry His Cross
  • Veronica wipes Jesus's face
  • Jesus falls the second time
  • Jesus consoles the women of Jerusalem
  • Jesus falls the third time
  • Jesus is stripped of His garments
  • Jesus is nailed to the Cross
  • Jesus dies on the Cross
  • Jesus is taken down from the Cross
  • Jesus is buried in the Tomb.

Sometimes the Resurrection is added as a fifteenth station.

The Rosary

The rosary is a Marian prayer attributed to St. Dominic. It is begun with the Sign of the Cross and the Apostles' Creed. One Our Father, three Hail Marys, and one Glory Be are prayed. Fives sets of decades (composed of one Our Father, ten Hail Marys, and one Glory Be) are prayed. The Rosary is concluded with the Hail, Holy Queen and the optional prayers for the Pontiff. In 1917, our Blessed Mother requested that the Fatima Prayer--"O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell. Lead all souls into Heaven, especially those in the most need of Your mercy."--be prayed after the "Glory Be" of each Mystery.

Currently there are twenty "mysteries" commonly used for meditation (there is also a more uncommon set of five called the Consolation Mysteries):

The Joyful Mysteries (prayed on Mondays and Saturdays)
  • The Annunciation
  • The Visitation
  • The Birth of Jesus (also called the Nativity)
  • The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple
  • The Finding of Jesus in the Temple
The Luminous Mysteries (prayed on Thursdays)
  • The Baptism of Christ by Saint John the Baptist
  • The Miracle at Cana
  • The Proclamation of the Coming of the Kingdom of God
  • The Transfiguration
  • The Institution of the Eucharist
The Sorrowful Mysteries (prayed on Tuesdays and Fridays)
  • The Agony in the Garden
  • The Scourging at the Pillar
  • The Crowning of Thorns
  • The Carrying of the Cross
  • The Crucifixion
The Glorious Mysteries (prayed on Wednesdays and Sundays)
  • The Resurrection
  • The Ascension
  • The Descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles
  • The Assumption of Mary
  • The Coronation of Mary

Although the standard order is used by most Catholics, the selection of which set of mysteries to pray on which day is not obligatory.

The Scapular

The scapular is a sacramental attributed to St. Simon Stock.

The Miraculous Medal

The Miraculous Medal is attributed to St. Catherine Labouré. Around the edge of the medal is "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee."

Other Sacramentals

Other sacramentals are:

  • Holy Water
  • Blessed Salt
  • Saint Benedict Medal
  • Crucifix
  • Other Medals
  • Other scapulars (such as the green scapular)


The Sacrifice of the Mass is divided into two parts: the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist. Priests and certain members of religious congregations are required to pray the Liturgy of the Hours.

The Liturgical Calendar

The Liturgical Year begins with the Season of Advent, followed by the Season of Christmas, followed by a period of Ordinary Time, followed by the Season of Lent, followed by the Easter Season, followed by another period of Ordinary Time which continues until the next Season of Advent. Select days of the year also commemorate specific Saints and the lives of Jesus and Mary.

See also: Liturgical Calendar

Vessels and Vestments of the Mass and other Ceremonies

The vestments used in the Mass are the amice (optional), alb, cicture, stole, and chasuble. The vessels used in the Mass are the primarily the paten and chalice. Other textile items also used are the purificator, chalice veil, corporal, and burse (optional). The cope and humeral veil are used in Eucharistic processions and Benediction. A deacon wears a dalmatic, rather than a chasuble. Acolytes either wear cassocks and surplices (or sometimes capes/humerales?), or they wear albs. Lectors, cantors, and choristers may occasionally wear vestments similar to those worn by acolytes. Important sanctuary furniture includes the tabernacle, altar(s), lectern, and ambo (optional). Other furniture in the church includes the baptismal font, sanctuary lamp, holy water fonts (optional[28]), and pews.

The Order of the Mass

The Mass is begun with the Sign of the Cross and followed by the Penitential Rite. The Penitential Rite may have several different forms. It may be the Rite of Sprinkling, it may be the Confiteor (I Confess to Almighty God) followed by the Kyrie (Lord, have mercy), it may be the Kyrie combined with tropes (in this case, these tropes are usually statements about the different aspects of God), or it may be the simple Kyrie. For a few select days of the Liturgical Year (such as Ash Wednesday) a special rite proper to that day is substituted. The Gloria (Glory to God in the Highest) is recited Sunday Masses outside the Advent and Lenten Seasons,on solemnities, and on feasts. The Opening Prayer follows the Gloria (if the Gloria is omitted, it follows the Penitential Rite).

An excerpt from the Bible is read. If there are two readings, the first is from the Old Testament, the Acts of the Apostles, or the Apocalypse (Revelation), and the second reading is from one of the Epistles. If there is only one reading, it may be from any book of the Bible other than the four Gospels. The first reading is followed by a responsorial psalm (or a portion of it; the Responsorial Psalm may also be from a book of the Bible other than the Psalms), which is followed by the second reading (if there is one). On select days (such as Easter and Corpus Christi) there is a sequence. Then there is the Gospel Acclamation, followed by an excerpt from one of the four Gospels. A homily may follow this.

On solemnities and Sundays the Nicene Creed is prayed (for Masses with children, the Apostles' Creed may be substituted). The General Intercessions conclude the Liturgy of the Word.

The Liturgy of the Eucharist begins with the Offertory. This is followed by the Prayer over the Gifts, the Preface, and the Sanctus (Holy, Holy). The priest may select from one of nine Eucharistic Prayers. Eucharistic Prayer I (also called the Roman Canon) is particularly suited to days when this Eucharistic Prayer has a special form (Christmas and Christmas Octave, Holy Thursday, Epiphany, Easter Vigil and Easter Octave, the Ascension, and Pentecost. Eucharistic Prayer II is particularly suitable for weekday Masses. Eucharistic Prayer III is particularly suitable for Sunday and holydays. Eucharistic Prayer IV recounts the history of salvation in greater detail and has a preface specifically assigned to it, and is suitable for days that are not assigned a preface. [1] There are also two reconcilatory Eucharistic Prayers, and three for Masses with children.

The Our Father is prayed, which, after several other prayers, may be followed by the optional Sign of Peace [see The Sacramentary, page 563]. The Agnus Dei (Lamb of God) is prayed or sung. The first two verses may be repeated as many times as necessary until the ministers of the Eucharist are prepared, but the concluding verse always ends with grant us peace. The priest prays two inaudible prayers [see The Sacramentary, page 563] and, after the "This is the Lamb" and a prayer based on the statement of a centurion, the Eucharist is consumed by the priest and, in most cases, the faithful present who are in the state of grace and have prepared themselves by the proscribed fast.

The Prayer after Communion, followed by the Final Blessing, concludes the Mass.

The Liturgy of the Hours

The Liturgy of the Hours is prayed several timed during the course of a day. The key parts of the Liturgy of the Hours are the Invitatory, Morning Prayer, Daytime Prayer, Evening Prayer, Night Prayer, and the Office of Readings.


The Invitatory begins the prayer of every day. It is composed of the verse "Lord, open my lips" with the response "And my mouth will proclaim your praise," followed by a psalm (usually Psalm 95, but it can be substituted with Psalm 100, 67, or 24). It is combined to the period of prayer which follows it, which may be either Morning Prayer or the Office of Readings.

Morning Prayer

Morning prayer is composed of the following: a hymn (unless Morning Prayer both follows and is combined with the Office of Readings, in which case the hymn proper to Morning Prayer is moved to the beginning of the Office of Readings),a psalm, an Old Testament canticle, a second psalm, a Biblical excerpt which serves as a reading, a responsory, the Canticle of Zechariah, a collection of intercessions, the Our Father, a concluding prayer, and the dismissal.

Daytime Prayer

Daytime prayer is composed of the following: a hymn, three psalms, a Biblical excerpt which serves as a reading, a responsory, a concluding prayer, and a final acclamation. Daytime Prayer can be a single period or three separate periods termed Midmorning, Midday, and Midafternoon. Diocesan priests pray one period of daytime prayer, and religious communities pray three. (?)

Evening Prayer

Evening prayer is composed of the following: a hymn, two psalms, a New Testament canticle, a Biblical excerpt which serves as a reading, a responsory, the Canticle of Mary, a collection of intercessions, the Our Father, a concluding prayer, and the dismissal.

Night Prayer

Night Prayer is composed of: an introduction, an examination of conscience, a penitential rite or prayer, a hymn or poem, one or two psalms, a Biblical excerpt which serves as a reading, a responsory, the Canticle of Simeon, a concluding prayer, and a Marian prayer.

The Office of Readings

The Office of Readings is frequently combined with another period of prayer. It is composed of a hymn (it uses its own prescribed hymn if not combined to another period other than the invitatory, but it uses the hymn of the other period at its beginning if it is followed by and combined with another period), three psalms, a verse with a response, a Biblical reading, a responsory, a reading from one of the Church writers, a second responsory, the Te Deum (only recited on Sundays, solemnities, and feasts; maybe not during Lent and Advent?), a concluding prayer, and a final acclamation.

(Create a table which will help clarify this)


History of the Catholic Church

Several approaches to describing the history of the Catholic Church after Christ's Ascension may be used. Three different methods are currently in use in this page. The first is to organize it by the succession of each Roman Pontiff. The second way is to organize it by what was taking place within the Church at large. The third is to organize it by date.

Biographies of the Roman Pontiffs/Categorization by Pontificate

  • Saint Peter
  • Linus[2]
  • Anacletus
  • Clement I
  • Evaristus
  • Alexander I
  • Sixtus I
  • Telesphorus
  • Hyginus
  • Pius I
  • Anicletus [3]
  • Soter
Soter became Pope about the year 167, and was pope for about eight years. It appears that he was particularly known for his generosity, but this book currently has no information regarding any alms or kindness he bestowed. He either died or was martyred about the year 175.[4][29]
  • Eleuterus
  • Victor I
  • Zephyrinus
  • Callixtus I
  • Urban I
  • Pontian
  • Anterus
  • Fabian
  • Cornelius
  • Lucius I
  • Stephen I
  • Sixtus II
  • Dionysius
  • Felix I
  • Eutychian
  • Caius
  • Marcellinus
  • Marcellus I
  • Eusebius
  • Miltiades
  • Sylvester
  • Mark
  • Julius I
  • Liberius
  • Damasus I
  • Siricius
  • Anastasius I
  • Innocent I
  • Zosimus
  • Boniface I
  • Celestine I
  • Sixtus III
  • Saint Leo I the Great
  • Saint Hilarius
  • Simplicius
  • Felix III
  • Gelasius I
  • Anastasius II
  • Symmachus
He was the son of Fortunatus and a native of Sardinia. He was elected to the papacy on November 22, 498 at the Lateran Basilica. On the day of his consecration, a faction went to Santa Maria Maggiore and elected Archpresbyter Laurentius as an antipope.[30]
  • Hormisdas
  • Saint John I
  • Saint Felix IV
  • Boniface II
  • John II
  • Saint Agapetus I (also "Agapitus")
  • Saint Silverius
  • Vigilius
  • Pelagius I
  • John III
  • Benedict I
  • Pelagius II
  • Saint Gregory I the Great
  • Saint Sabinian
  • Boniface III
  • Saint Boniface IV
  • Adeodatus I
  • Boniface V
  • Honorius I
  • Severinus
  • John IV
  • Theodore I
  • Saint Martin I
  • Saint Eugene I
  • Saint Vitalian
  • Adeodatus II
  • Donus [5]
Donus became Pope on November 2, 676. While he was Pope he had the atrium in front of St. Peter's Basilica paved and St. Euphemia's on the Appian Way restored. He also had another church repaired which was either St. Paul's Outside the Walls or a church on the route to it. He died on April 11, 678 after a pontificate of one year, five months, and ten days.[31]
  • Saint Agatho
He was born in the late 500's and became Pope in 678. During his papacy he restored St. Wilfred to his see. He also had an ecumenical council held in Constantinople in 680 to suppress the Monothelite heresy, but died before he was able to sign the decrees of the council. He died in Rome in 681 and was buried in St. Peter's Basilica on January 10, 681. It appears he was responsible for a significant number of miracles and was sometimes called "Thaumaturgus" (Wonderworker), but this book currently has no information regarding what miracles he performed or which miracles were attributed to him.[32]
  • Saint Leo II
  • Saint Benedict II
  • John V
  • Conon
  • Saint Sergius I
  • John VI
  • John VII
  • Sisinnius
  • Constantine
  • Saint Gregory II
  • Gregory III
  • Saint Zachary
  • Stephen II[6]
  • Saint Paul I
  • Stephen III
  • Adrian I
  • Leo III
  • Stephen IV
  • Saint Paschal I
  • Eugene II
  • Valentine
  • Gregory IV
  • Sergius II
  • Saint Leo IV
  • Benedict III
  • Saint Nicholas I the Great
  • Adrian II
  • John VIII
  • Marinus I
  • Saint Adrian III
  • Stephen V
  • Formosus
  • Boniface VI
  • Stephen VI
  • Romanus
  • Theodore II
  • John IX
  • Benedict IV
  • Leo V
  • Sergius III
  • Anastasius III
  • Lando
Lando was the son of Taino and a native of the Sabina. It appears he became pope in either July or August of 913. He apparently granted a privilege of some variety to a church in Sabina. He died in either February or March of 914. He had a pontificate of slightly more than six months.[33]
  • John X
  • Leo VI
  • Stephen VII
  • John XI
  • Leo VII
  • Stephen VIII
  • Marinus II
  • Agapetus II
  • John XII
  • Benedict V
  • Leo VIII
  • John XIII
  • Benedict VI
  • Benedict VII
  • John XIV
  • John XV
  • Gregory V
  • Silvester II
  • John XVII [7]
  • John XVIII
  • Sergius IV
  • Benedict VIII
  • John XIX
  • Benedict IX
  • Silvester III
  • (second term of Benedict IX)
  • Gregory VI
  • Clement II
  • (third term of Benedict IX)
  • Damasus II
  • Saint Leo IX
  • Victor II
  • Stephen IX
  • Nicholas II
  • Alexander II
  • Saint Gregory VII
  • Blessed Victor III
  • Blessed Urban II
He was born about 1042 with the name Otho[8] of Lagery in Châtillon-sur-Marne in Champagne. He studied in Reims, and was promoted to the office of an archdeacon and canon while residing there. He went to Cluny about 1070 and joined the monastery there, and was later advanced to the position of prior. Saint Hugh sent him to Rome to assist Pope Gregory VII, and became Cardinal Bishop of Ostia in 1078. He was assigned to be the legate to Germany and France from 1082 to 1085. When he returned to Rome in 1085, Victor III had been elected to the papacy. After Pope Victor III died, Otho was elected to the papacy on March 12, 1088, and took the name Urban II. During the course of his papacy the possession of Rome frequently changed hands between him and the antipope Guibert of Ravenna. In November of 1095 he convened a council in Clermont, at which the First Crusade was proclaimed and Philip of France was excommunicated on account of adultery. Urban regained possession of the Castel Sant'Angelo in 1098, and convened a council in Bari to attempt a reconciliation with Eastern bishops by addressing the matter of the filioque clause. He died on July 29, 1099, was buried in the crypt of Saint Peter's Basilica, and was beatified on _______ by Pope Leo XIII. [34]
  • Paschal II
  • Gelasius II
  • Callixtus II
  • Honorius II
  • Innocent II
  • Celestine II
  • Lucius II
  • Blessed Eugene III
  • Anastasius IV
  • Adrian IV
  • Alexander III
  • Lucius III
  • Urban III
  • Gregory VIII
  • Clement III
  • Celestine III
  • Innocent III
  • Honorius III
  • Gregory IX
  • Celestine IV
  • Innocent IV
  • Alexander IV
  • Urban IV
  • Clement IV
  • Blessed Gregory X
  • Blessed Innocent V
  • Adrian V
  • John XXI
  • Nicholas III
  • Martin IV [9]
  • Honorius IV
  • Nicholas IV
  • Saint Celestine V
  • Boniface VIII
  • Blessed Benedict XI
  • Clement V
  • John XXII
  • Benedict XII
  • Clement VI
  • Innocent VI
  • Blessed Urban V
  • Gregory XI
  • Urban VI
  • Boniface IX
  • Innocent VII
  • Gregory XII
  • Martin V
  • Eugene IV
  • Nicholas V
  • Callixtus III
  • Pius II
  • Paul II
  • Sixtus IV
  • Innocent VIII
  • Alexander VI
  • Pius III
  • Julius II
  • Leo X
  • Adrian VI
  • Clement VII
  • Paul III
  • Julius III
  • Marcellus II
  • Paul IV
  • Pius IV
  • Saint Pius V
  • Gregory XIII
  • Sixtus V
  • Urban VII
  • Gregory XIV
  • Innocent IX
  • Clement VIII
  • Leo XI
  • Paul V
He was originally born as Camillo Borghese on September 17, 1550 in Rome. He became a cardinal in 1596. He died on January 28, 1621.[35]
  • Gregory XV
  • Urban VIII
  • Innocent X
  • Alexander VII
  • Clement IX
  • Clement X
  • Blessed Innocent XI
  • Alexander VIII
  • Innocent XII
  • Clement XI
  • Innocent XIII
  • Benedict XIII
  • Clement XII
His original name was Lorenzo Corsini. He was born on April 7, 1652 in Florence. He became titular archbishop of Nicomedia in 1691 and a cardinal-deacon on May 17, 1706. He was elected to the papacy on July 12, 1730. During his pontificate he paved the streets of Rome and restored the Arch of Constantine. In 1738 he issued the first papal decree against the Freemasons. He died on February 6, 1740.[36]
  • Benedict XIV
  • Clement XIII
  • Clement XIV
  • Pius VI
  • Pius VII
  • Leo XII
  • Pius VIII
  • Gregory XVI
  • Blessed Pius IX
Pius IX was born with the name Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti in Sinigaglia on May 13, 1792. He ws ordained on April 10, 1819. He was promoted to the position of Archbishop of Spoleto by Pope Leo XII on May 21, 1827. He was assigned to the Diocese of Imola by Pope Gregory XVI.[37]
  • Leo XIII
Leo XIII was born with the name Gioacchino Vincenzo Raffaele Luigi Pecci on March 2, 1810 in Carpineto to Count Lodovico Pecci and Anna ProsperiBuzi. Gioacchino entered the Collegio Romano in 1824, and received his doctorate in 1832. He was promoted to the rank of domestic prelate in January of 1837 by Gregory XVI. He was ordained on December 31, 1837 by Cardinal Odeschalchi at the chapel of Saint Stanislaus on the Quirinal. Pope Gregory XVI assigned him to Benevento, where he worked diligently to annihilate the brigands and smugglers infesting the region. Pope Gregory XVI then assigned him to Perugia, where Gioacchino started a savings bank specifically to assist farmers and small businesses in obtaining low interest rates. In January of 1843 Gioacchino was promoted to the position of nuncio to Brussels, and was consecrated titular bishop of Damiata on February 19, 1843 by Cardinal Lambruschini. Pope Gregory XVI appointed Gioacchino to the See of Perugia when it became vacant, but permitted him to retain the title of Archbishop. He was created a cardinal on December 19, 1853 by Pope Pius IX. He was appointed to be the Camerlengo in August of 1877, and was elected to the papacy on February 20, 1878, taking the name Leo XIII. He wrote the encyclical Rerum Novarum, dated May 18, 1891. He died in Rome on July 20, 1903.[38]
  • Saint Pius X
  • Benedict XV
  • Pius XI
  • Pius XII
  • John XXIII
  • Paul VI
  • John Paul I
  • John Paul II
  • Benedict XVI

Organization by Era

After the Ascension of the Lord, the Apostolic Age was begun, which ended with the death of the last Apostle, Saint John the Evangelist.

This was followed by the Age of Martyrs.

After the death of Nero, persecutions of Christians were intermittent, and varied in rigor. This period was ended with the Edict of Milan, which was promulgated by the Emperor Constantine in 313. [39]

This was followed by the Dawn of the Early Heresies.

Soon after the Christians were no longer threatened with civil punishment on account of the Faith, heretical sects arose which frequently had a twofold aim: to both advance a particular doctrine and to also gain control of the Church through the aid of civil leaders sympathetic to their cause. Some of the principal heretical sects at this time were the Arians, the Nestorians, the Gnostics, and the Monophysites. An unusual reversal of the state of affairs occurred during the reign of Julian the Apostate, who attempted to restore paganism and rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem, of which both attempts failed.

This was roughly at the same time as the Conversion of Europe to Christianity.

While large portions of the Roman Empire were coming under the control of heretical sects, large portions of Europe were also converting from paganism to Christianity, particularly Ireland, France, and Germany. Eventually Europe became, in a sense, a Christian continent in which most of the inhabitants were either Catholic or belonged to a heretical or schismatic sect.

This was followed by the Middle Ages and the Crusades.

Hostility between nations, the possession of properties, and the quest for additional revenues and incomes frequently gave rise to clashes between the Church and rulers of nations and other principalities, particularly regarding the appointment of bishops. When the Muslims succeeded in their conquest of the Holy Land, Blessed Pope Urban II declared a crusade to regain the Holy Land in 1095, and subsequent crusades were declared when necessary. Toward the end of the Middle Ages the Bubonic Plague ravaged Europe, in which many pious clergy cared for the sick and also contracted the disease, while many of the less pious clergy fled and returned after the plague had subsided.

This was followed by the Renaissance, the Reformation, and the Counter-Reformation.

Besides the bubonic plague, several factors also contributed heavily to the progression of the era: the "Avignon Captivity" and the "Great Schism," the conflicting interests of the Catholic Church and national governments (especially regarding revenues, property ownership, and the appointment of bishops), the conflicts between European nations (particularly the "Hundred Year's War" between France and England), the immoral lives of many of the clergy and many members of the upper classes, and the reintroduction of pagan culture. The French cardinal _________ was elected to the papacy on ___________ and took the name ______________, but Rome was the scene of much self-destruction by the local Italians. The French king __________ extended the invitation to Pope _________ to come to peaceful Avignon and take residence for a while, and the Popes did not want to leave Avignon and return to Rome for over one hundred years. When Pope _________ finally submitted to the entreaties and rebukes of Saint Catherine of Siena (?) and Saint Gertrude (?), it was only a few years before he was disgusted with the situation in Rome and wanted to return to Avignon, which was only prevented on account of his death. His successor, the Roman (?) cardinal _____________ was elected on _________ and took the name ___________, but the cardinals soon disliked him and elected the French cardinal __________ as an antipope, who took the name ________________. An attempt to solve this division of the Church was later made to persuade the successors to both simultaneously resign and permit the cardinals to elect a new pope, but this only resulted in three "popes." Eventually this situation was ended at a conclave (?) when the Roman pope and third "pope" (Pisan?) simultaneously resigned, the cardinals elected Cardinal ______________ to the papacy (who took the name _________), and the majority (or was it all?) of the European nations transferred their allegiance to the new pope.
Saint Peter's Basilica was in the process of construction, and Pope ______________ announced that an indulgence (plenary or partial?, also, did one have to follow the usual conditions to obtain it: pray for the pope, confession, communion, no attachment to sin?) could be gained when a person contributed (how much?) to its construction. The pope appointed the Dominicans to handle the collection of the funds, which was greatly resented by the Augustinians. One of the Augustinians, Martin Luther, voiced his distaste of the situation differently than most and began condemning the indulgences themselves, and his superior ____________ was delighted and encouraged Martin Luther to continue his denunciation of the indulgences. The Dominicans in turn invoked higher authority, and when Luther's superior found that the papal authorities were determined to censure Luther if he continued, he privately advised Luther to cease the accusations. Luther, however, enjoyed the publicity and respect he received,[10] and decided to enter into complete rebellion instead. Flocks of commoners hastened to his side, and looted monasteries and churches to enrich themselves. A great number of princes declared their support of Luther, and hastily seized ecclesiastical properties for themselves.
King Henry VII of England's son Arthur had married Catherine of Aragon (daughter of Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand), but Arthur died during his father's reign, so Arthur's brother Henry married Catherine (now his brother's widow). This Henry ascended to the throne as King Henry VIII of England. Some time after his ascension to the throne, he published a rebuttal of Luther's doctrines, and received the title "Defender of the Faith" from Pope ____________. At one point, Henry had a sinful relationship with Mary Boleyn, but did not publicize it. When he later wished to have a relationship with Mary Boleyn's sister Anne Boleyn, Anne Boleyn firmly said she would only do so if she was his queen. Henry VIII decided to try to get an annulment, and approached the matter by confiding to Cardinal Wolsey (the English Chancellor) that he was being tormented by scruples regarding the validity of his marriage to Catherine. Wolsey was delighted to hear this and proposed that the king marry the French princess ______________. Henry was not pleased and told Wolsey he wanted to marry Anne Boleyn. Wolsey wished to object to Henry's marriage to a mere local noblelady rather than a marriage that would strengthen the bond between England and its most powerful ally at the time, but seeing the heightening anger of Henry, Wolsey acquiesced to his monarch's wishes. A delegation was sent to Pope ________ which related that Henry was concerned about his marriage to Catherine and asked about getting a n annulment. The pope's responded that he trusted Henry's judgment on the issue and told him to follow the normal local procedures to investigate whether the marriage was valid and issue an annulment if necessary, but the pope also asked Henry to wait until Charles V (Catherine's nephew) was defeated by the Italian and papal forces significantly enough in order that Charles V would not take revenge on the pope because of the annulment. After Charles V was no longer a threat, the process in England was started to investigate the validity of the marriage to Catherine, but soon was stalled by the lack of impediments in the marriage to Catherine and the existence of an impediment in the proposed marriage to Anne Boleyn. Another delegation was sent to the pope to request special permission to remove the impediment to the proposed marriage to Anne Boleyn, which the pope granted (?). The English bishops, however, were faced with a problem: to the best of their knowledge the marriage to Catherine was perfectly valid, but they knew Henry wished to get the annulment so that he could marry Anne Boleyn. Rather than attempt to declare a false annulment for which the bishops would be morally responsible, an attempt was made to deceive the pope into declaring an annulment through the pope's ignorance of the situation. (correct?) The pope, however, was growing suspicious of the matter and seriously began to doubt the honesty of Henry's statements regarding Anne Boleyn's exemplary virtue and piety. After being bombarded with a distasteful number of requests for the annulment,[11] Pope __________ determined that the marriage to Catherine was valid. Cranmer proposed to Henry VIII that he free himself from the moral jurisdiction by taking control of the Church of England, which Henry promptly did. After Henry's death and his son Edward's death, Queen Mary I of England attempted to restore Catholicism to England, but when she was ready to die, King Philip II of Spain (who was married to Queen Mary) did want the monarchy to pass to Mary of the Scots (who was married to the King of France), as it could be a powerful alliance against Spain. Mary selected Anne Boleyn's daughter Elisabeth to be her successor, and Elizabeth promised Mary to keep England Catholic. Upon Mary's death and Elisabeth's coronation, Elisabeth promptly disregarded her promise and, by the end of her life, had completely undone the work of Mary and firmly entrenched England in Anglicanism.
The Council of Trent was convened in ________ and addressed many of the problems wrought by heresy and the immoral conduct of the clergy.

This was followed by the Enlightenment.

Philosophers frequently clashed with the Catholic Church, and many times resorted to violence, particularly in the case of the French Revolution.

This was followed by the Industrial Revolution.

Inventors were constantly discovering and designing faster and more efficient ways of performing common tasks which were frequently laborious, and were inventing new products to promote a better and higher standard of living. This era, which was so full of promise for the betterment of the whole human race, was instead beset by the poverty of many. In the United States a movement among workers called the Knights of Labor was begun to unite laborers together to require business owners to pay higher wages. Regarding this, Pope Leo XIII wrote the encyclical Rerum Novarum which required the laborers to respect the property of their employers and to work well, while also requiring employers to pay decent wages that would support the laborers and their families.
Also in this era was the Reunification of Italy, which mostly took away the temporal power of the papacy and placed Italy and the Pope on bad terms with one another.

This was followed by the Modern Age:

In this era Pope Pius XI signed the Lateran Treaty with Italy, which allotted Vatican City to the popes with an annuity in recompense for the papal states. Pius XI then had the relative freedom to write encyclicals against the errors held by surrounding nations such as Germany, Russia, Spain, and even Italy itself. This sovereignty also assisted his successor Pope Pius XII in his protection of Jews from the Nazis during World War II.
In 1962 Pope John XXIII opened the Second Vatican Council, which was originally convened to freshen the doctrine of the Church. In the course of the Council, Pope John XXIII died and was succeeded by Pope Paul VI, who wrote the encyclical Humanae Vitae while the Council was still in progress. This encyclical was greatly disliked by many of the bishops, who often voiced their opposition to it publicly. When the Council was finished in 1965, the bishops returned to their dioceses and implemented whatever they wished to implement.
Beginning with Pope Paul VI, the popes began to visit countries on a regular basis. Pope John Paul II visited many countries during his pontificate, and even learned languages so that he would be able to speak to the people in their native tongue. Pope Benedict XVI followed a similar itinerary during the beginning years of his pontificate.

Chronological Organization of Facts

  • 1st Century AD
On Pentecost Sunday the Holy Spirit descended on the twelve Apostles in the Upper Room.
Saint Paul is converted to Christianity.
The Roman Emperor Nero begins his persecution of Christians after a fire devours much of the city of Rome.
Saints Peter and Paul are martyred in Rome.
Jerusalem is conquered by Roman forces
79 June 23 Emperor Vespasian dies. [40]
  • 2nd Century AD
117 August 7 Emperor Trajan dies. [41]
  • 3rd Century AD
  • 4th Century AD
313 Diocletian dies. [42]
313 Constantine I legalizes Christianity by the Edict of Milan [43]
325 The first Council of Nicea was convened to make a determination on Arianism.


337 May Emperor Constantine the Great dies. [45]
Emperor Julian the Apostate attempts to restore paganism and rebuild the Temple of Jerusalem.
363 June 26 Emperor Julian the Apostate dies. [46]
387 Saint Augustine is baptized by Saint Ambrose.
  • 5th Century AD
Saint Jerome completes the Vulgate Bible.
  • 6th Century AD
  • 7th Century AD
  • 8th Century AD
741 October 21 King Charles Martel of the Franks dies. [47]
768 September 24 King Pepin the Short of the Franks dies. [48]
800 Charlemagne crowned Emperor of the Romans by Pope Leo III
  • 9th Century AD
  • 10th Century AD
973 May 7 Emperor Otto I the Great dies. [49]
  • 11th Century AD
1095 Blessed Pope Urban II preaches the First Crusade to regain the Holy Land.
  • 12th Century AD
  • 13th Century AD
1216 June 16 Pope Innocent III dies. [50]
St. Dominic founds the Dominican order. [51]
1226 October 3: St. Francis, founder of the Franciscan order, dies in Assisi. [52]
  • 14th Century AD
1309 Pope Clement V moves Roman Curia from Rome to Avignon.
1378 Pope Gregory XI moves papacy back to Rome from Avignon.
  • 15th Century AD
Saint Joan of Arc mostly frees France from English rule.
Johannes Gutenberg begins production of the Bible with the printing press.
Columbus discovers America
  • 16th Century AD
1547 January 28 King Henry VIII of England dies.[53]
1558 Charles V, former Holy Roman Emperor, dies. [54]
1558 November 17 Queen Mary Tudor of England dies. [55]
The apparitions of Our Lady of Guadalupe to Saint Juan Diego
The Jesuit order is founded. [56]
1598 September 13 King Philip II of Spain dies. [57]
  • 17th Century AD
1626 November 18: St. Peter's Basilica dedicated by Urban VIII. [58]
  • 18th Century AD
American War for Independence begins
French Revolution begins
  • 19th Century AD
The Louisiana Purchase is bought by the USA
The American Civil War is fought
Unification of Italy
Marian apparitions to Saint Bernadette at Lourdes, France
The Spanish-American War is fought
  • 20th Century AD
Pope St. Pius X dies during World War I, succeeded by Pope Benedict XV
1917: Marian apparitions at Fatima
Lenin gains control of Russia
Creation of Poland
Pope Benedict XV dies, succeeded by Pope Pius XI
Pius XI signs treaty with Italy, recognizing the existence of the Vatican City State
Germany annexes Austria
Pope Pius XI dies, is succeeded by Pope Pius XII
World War II is declared
World War II is ended, large sections of Europe are dominated by Communist rule.
Pope Pius XII dies, is succeeded by Pope John XXIII
Pope John XXIII opens the Second Vatican Council
Pope John XXIII dies, is succeeded by Pope Paul VI
Pope Paul VI writes the encyclical Humanae Vitae
Pope Paul VI dies, is succeeded by Pope John Paul I
Pope John Paul I dies shortly after the beginning of his pontificate, is succeeded by Pope John Paul II
The Berlin Wall is razed.
  • 21st Century AD
Pope John Paul II dies, succeeded by Pope Benedict XVI

Biographies of the Saints

Note:To edit an article on a saint, click on the title of the saint to take you to the article on that saint, where you can do your editing; any changes made to a saint's article will automatically change the text here. If you do not see a change, Refresh the page.

Biographies of persons canonized by the Catholic Church are often used as reading materials to educate and inspire the faithful to greater acts of virtue. Some of the persons who are the subject of these biographies are:

Born: 100 BC unknown real day in Jerusalem

Died: unknown date in Jerusalem
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Orthodox Churches
Anglican Communion
Aglipayan Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Feast: July 26 (Anglican Communion), (Roman Catholicism);
September 9 (Eastern Orthodox Church), (Greek Catholics);
March 20 (General Roman Calendar, 1584-1738); Sunday after the Octave of the Assumption (General Roman Calendar, 1738-1913); August 16 (General Roman Calendar, 1913-1969)
Attributes: Lamb, doves, with Saint Anne or Mary
Patronage: Adjuntas, Puerto Rico, fathers, grandparents, Fasnia (Tenerife)

Memorial on July 26

Born: c. 1st century B.C.E.

Honored in: Christianity
Feast: July 26th (Western calendar) and July 25th (Eastern calendar)
Attributes: Book, door, with Mary, Jesus or Joachim
Patronage: carpenters; childless people; equestrians; grandparents; homemakers/housewives; lace makers; lost articles; Fasnia(Tenerife); Mainar; Detroit; miners; mothers; moving house; old-clothes dealers; poverty; pregnancy; seamstresses; stablemen; sterility

Memorial on July 26

His role as husband of Mary is celebrated as a Solemnity on March 19, his career as a worker is celebrated as a Memorial on May 1.

Born: Bethlehem, c. 90 BC (according to non-canonical sources)
Died: Nazareth, July 20, 18 AD (traditional)
Feast: March 19 - Saint Joseph, Husband of Mary (Western Christianity), May 1 - St Joseph the Worker (Roman Catholic Church),
The Sunday after the Nativity of the Lord (Eastern Christianity)
Attributes: Carpenter's square or tools, the infant Jesus, staff with lily blossoms, two turtle doves, spikenard.
Patronage: The Catholic Church, unborn children, fathers, immigrants, workers, against doubt and hesitation, and of a happy death, Vietnam, Philippines. Many others; see

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

March 19 — ST. JOSEPH, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin and Patron of the Universal Church.

ST. JOSEPH was by birth of the royal family of David, but was living in humble obscurity as a carpenter when God raised him to the highest sanctity, and fitted him to be the spouse of His Virgin Mother, and foster-father and guardian of the Incarnate Word. Joseph, says the Holy Scripture, was a just man; he was innocent and pure, as became the husband of Mary; he was gentle and tender, as one worthy to be named the father of Jesus; he was prudent and a lover of silence, as became the master of the holy house; above all, he was faithful and obedient to divine calls. His conversation was with angels rather than with men. When he learned that Mary bore within her womb the Lord of heaven, he feared to take her as his wife; but an angel bade him fear not, and all doubts vanished. When Herod sought the life of the divine Infant, an angel told Joseph in a dream to fly with the Child and His Mother into Egypt. Joseph at once arose and obeyed. This sudden and unexpected flight must have exposed Joseph to many inconveniences and sufferings in so long a journey with a little babe and a tender virgin, the greater part of the way being through deserts and among strangers; yet he alleges no excuses, nor inquires at what time they were to return. St. Chrysostom observes that God treats thus all His servants, sending them frequent trials to clear their hearts from the rust of self-love, but intermixing seasons of consolation. "Joseph," says he, "is anxious on seeing the Virgin with child; an angel removes that fear. He rejoices at the Child's birth, but a great fear succeeds: the furious king seeks to destroy the Child, and the whole city is in an uproar to take away His life. This is followed by another joy, the adoration of the Magi; a new sorrow then arises: he is ordered to fly into a foreign unknown country, without help or acquaintance." It is the opinion of the Fathers that upon their entering Egypt, at the presence of the child Jesus, all the oracles of that superstitious country were struck dumb, and the statues of their gods trembled and in many places fell to the ground. The Fathers also attribute to this holy visit the spiritual benediction poured on that country, which made it for many ages most fruitful in Saints. After the death of King Herod, of which St. Joseph was informed in another vision, God ordered him to return with the Child and His Mother into the land of Israel, which our Saint readily obeyed. But when he arrived in Judea, hearing that Archelaus had succeeded Herod in that part of the country, and apprehensive that he might be infected with his father's vices, he feared on that account to settle there, as he would otherwise probably have done for the education of the Child; and therefore, being directed by God in another vision, he retired into the dominions of Herod Antipas, in Galilee, to his former habitation in Nazareth. St. Joseph, being a strict observer of the Mosaic law, in conformity to its direction annually repaired to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. Our Saviour, now in the twelfth year of His age, accompanied His parents thither. Having performed the usual ceremonies of the feast, they were returning with many of their neighbors and acquaintances towards Galilee; and never doubting but that Jesus was with some of the company, they travelled on for a whole day's journey before they discovered that He was not with them. But when night came on and they could hear no tidings of Him among their kindred and acquaintance, they, in the deepest affliction, returned with the utmost speed to Jerusalem. After an anxious search of three days they found Him in the Temple, discoursing with the learned doctors of the law, and asking them such questions as raised the admiration of all that heard Him, and made them astonished at the ripeness of His understanding; nor were His parents less surprises on this occasion. When His Mother told Him with what grief and earnestness they had sought Him, and asked, "Son, why hast Thou thus dealt with us? behold Thy Father and I sought Thee in great affliction of mind," she received for answer, "How is it that you sought Me? did you not know that I must be about My Father's business?" But though thus staying in the Temple unknown to His parents, in all other things He was obedient to them, returning with them to Nazareth, and there living in all dutiful subjection to them. As no further mention is made of St. Joseph, he must have died before the marriage of Cana and the beginning of our divine Saviour's ministry. We cannot doubt that he had the happiness of Jesus and Mary attending at his death, praying by him, assisting and comforting him in his last moments; whence he is particularly invoked for the great grace of a happy death and the spiritual presence of Jesus in that hour.

Reflection.—St. Joseph, the shadow of the Eternal Father upon earth, the protector of Jesus in His home at Nazareth, and a lover of all children for the sake of the Holy Child, should be the chosen guardian and pattern of every true Christian family.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint John the Baptist - Prophet - Martyr - Saint

Born: unknown, in Herodian Judea
Died: 28 - 36 A.D. in Machaerus, Perea, Iudæa
Honored in: Aglipayan Church, Anglicanism, Assyrian Church of the East, Bahá'í Faith, Eastern Orthodox Church, Islam, Lutheranism, Mandeanism, Oriental Orthodox Churches, Roman Catholic Churches
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Church of St John the Baptist, Jerusalem
Feast: June 24 (Nativity) - celebrated as a Solemnity,
August 29 (Beheading) - celebrated as a Memorial,
January 7 (Synaxis, Eastern Orthodox),
Thout 2 (Coptic Orthodox Church)
Attributes: Camel-skin robe, cross, lamb, scroll with words "Ecce Agnus Dei", platter with own head, pouring water from hands or scallop shell
Patronage: Patron saint of Jordan, Puerto Rico, Knights Hospitaller of Jerusalem, French Canada, Newfoundland, Cesena, Florence, Genoa, Monza, Porto, San Juan, Quiapo Church of the Black Nazarene, Turin, Xewkija, and many other places.

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Saint John the Baptist - The "forerunner of our Lord." We have but fragmentary and imperfect accounts of him in the Gospels. He was of priestly descent. His father, Zacharias, was a priest of the course of Abia (1 Chronicles 24:10), and his mother, Elisabeth, was of the daughters of Aaron (Luke 1:5). The mission of John was the subject of prophecy (Matthew 3:3; Isaiah 40:3; Malachi 3:1). His birth, which took place six months before that of Jesus, was foretold by an angel. Zacharias, deprived of the power of speech as a token of God's truth and a reproof of his own incredulity with reference to the birth of his son, had the power of speech restored to him on the occasion of John's circumcision (Luke 1:64). After this no more is recorded of him for thirty years than what is mentioned in Luke 1:80. John was a Nazarite from his birth (Luke 1:15; Numbers 6:1). He spent his early years in the mountainous tract of Judah lying between Jerusalem and the Dead Sea (Matthew 3:1). At length he came forth into public life, and great multitudes from "every quarter" were attracted to him. The sum of his preaching was the necessity of repentance. He denounced the Sadducees and Pharisees as a "generation of vipers," and warned them of the folly of trusting to external privileges (Luke 3:8). "As a preacher, John was eminently practical and discriminating. Self-love and covetousness were the prevalent sins of the people at large. On them, therefore, he enjoined charity and consideration for others. The publicans he cautioned against extortion, the soldiers against crime and plunder." His doctrine and manner of life roused the entire south of Palestine, and the people from all parts flocked to the place where he was, on the banks of the Jordan. There he baptized thousands unto repentance. The fame of John reached the ears of Jesus in Nazareth (Matthew 3:5), and he came from Galilee to Jordan to be baptized of John, on the special ground that it became him to "fulfill all righteousness" (Matthew 3:15). John's special office ceased with the baptism of Jesus, who must now "increase as the King come to His kingdom. He continued, however, for a while to bear testimony to the Messiahship of Jesus. John pointed Jesus out to his disciples, saying, "Behold the Lamb of God." John's public ministry was suddenly (after about six months probably) brought to a close by his being cast into prison by Herod, whom he had reproved for the sin of having taken to himself the wife of his brother Philip (Luke 3:19). He was shut up in the castle of Machaerus (q.v.), a fortress on the southern extremity of Peraea, 9 miles east of the Dead Sea, and here he was beheaded. His disciples, having consigned the headless body to the [[:Category:grave, went and told Jesus all that had occurred (Matthew 14:3). John's death occurred apparently just before the third Passover of our Lord's ministry. Our Lord Himself testified regarding John that he was a "burning and a shining light" (John 5:35).

Saint Peter the Apostle - Prince of the Apostles - First Pope - Martyr - Preacher

Born: ca. 1 BC(?), Bethsaida, Gaulanitis, Roman Empire
Died: possibly AD 67, Rome, Italia, Roman Empire
Honored: By all Christians who venerate saints, honored in Islam
Major shrine: St. Peter's Basilica
Main feast (with Paul of Tarsus) Solemnity: 29 June (Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, Lutheranism)
Chair of St. Peter in Rome: 18 January (Pre-1960 Roman Calendar)
Confession of St. Peter: 18 January (Anglicanism)
Chair of St. Peter: 22 February (Roman Catholic Church)
St. Peter in Chains: 1 August (pre-1960 Roman Calendar)
Attributes: Keys of Heaven, pallium, Papal vestments, Rooster, man crucified head downwards, vested as an Apostle, holding a book or scroll. Iconographically, he is depicted with a bushy white beard and white hair
Major written works:
1 Peter
2 Peter

Saint Mark - Evangelist

Born: 1st century AD in Cyrene, Pentapolis of North Africa, according to Coptic tradition
Died: Uncertain
Honored in: Coptic Orthodox Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Catholic Churches, Lutheranism
Major shrine: Saint Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral (Cairo, Egypt)
Saint Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral (Alexandria, Egypt)
Basilica di San Marco (Venice, Italy)
Feast: April 25
Attributes: Lion in the desert; bishop on a throne decorated with lions; man helping Venetian sailors; man holding a book with "pax tibi Marce" written on it; man holding a palm and book; man with a book or scroll accompanied by a winged lion; man with a halter around his neck; man writing or holding his gospel; rescuing Christian slaves from Saracens.
Patronage: Barristers, Venice, Egypt, Mainar and others.

Saint Mark's Feast Day is on April 25. Saint Mark was one of the four Evangelists.

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Saint Mark the evangelist; "John whose surname was Mark" (Acts 12:12, Acts 12:25). Mark (Marcus, Colossians 4:10, etc.) was his Roman name, which gradually came to supersede his Jewish name John. He is called John in Acts 13:5, Acts 13:13, and Mark in Acts 15:39, 2 Timothy 4:11, etc. He was the son of Mary, a woman apparently of some means and influence, and was probably born in Jerusalem, where his mother resided (Acts 12:12). Of his father we know nothing. He was cousin of Barnabas (Colossians 4:10). It was in his mother's house that Peter found "many gathered together praying" when he was released from prison; and it is probable that it was here that he was converted by Peter, who calls him his "son" (1 Peter 5:13). It is probable that the "young man" spoken of in Mark 14:51, Mark 14:52 was Mark himself. He is first mentioned in Acts 12:25. He went with Paul and Barnabas on their first journey (about A.D. 47) as their "minister," but from some cause turned back when they reached Perga in Pamphylia (Acts 12:25; Acts 13:13). Three years afterwards a "sharp contention" arose between Paul and Barnabas (Acts 15:36), because Paul would not take Mark with him. He, however, was evidently at length reconciled to the apostle, for he was with him in his first imprisonment at Rome (Colossians 4:10; Philemon 1:24). At a later period he was with Peter in Babylon (1 Peter 5:13), then, and for some centuries afterwards, one of the chief seats of Jewish learning; and he was with Timothy in Ephesus when Paul wrote him during his second imprisonment (2 Timothy 4:11). He then disappears from view.

See also: Gospel of Saint Mark
Gospel According to Saint Mark (Commentary)

Solemnity on June 29, his conversion is celebrated as a Feast on January 25

Born: c. AD 5 in Tarsus in Cilicia (south-central Turkey)
Died: c. AD 67 probably in Rome
Honored in: All Christianity
Major shrine: Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls
Feast: January 25 (The Conversion of Paul)
February 10 (Feast of Saint Paul's Shipwreck in Malta)
June 29 (Feast of Saints Peter and Paul)
November 18 (Feast of the dedication of the basilicas of Saints Peter and Paul)
Attributes: Sword
Patronage: Missions; Theologians; Gentile Christians

Information about Saint Paul can be found in the Bible in: Acts of the Apostles

St. James the Greater

Saint James the Greater - Apostle and Martyr
Born: 1 A.D., Bethsaida, Galilee
Died: 44 A.D. in Judea
Honored in: All Christianity
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Galicia (Spain)
Feast: 25 July - (Western Christianity)
30 April - (Eastern Christianity)
30 December - (Hispanic Church)
Attributes: Scallop, Pilgrim's hat
Patronage: Places Acoma Pueblo, Sahuayo, Santiago de Querétaro, Galicia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Guayaquil, Spain, etc.
Professions: Veterinarians, equestrians, furriers, tanners, pharmacists

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

James -
(1.) Saint James the Greater - The son of Zebedee and Salome; an elder brother of John the apostle. He was one of the twelve. He was by trade a fisherman, in partnership with Peter (Matthew 20:20; Matthew 27:56). With John and Peter he was present at the transfiguration (Matthew 17:1; Mark 9:2), at the raising of Jairus's daughter (Mark 5:37), and in the garden with our Lord (Mark 14:33). Because, probably, of their boldness and energy, he and John were called Boanerges, i.e., "sons of thunder." He was the first martyr among the apostles, having been beheaded by King Herod Agrippa (Acts 12:1, Acts 12:2), A.D. 44. (Compare Matthew 4:21; Matthew 20:20).

Born: Bethsaida, Galilee

Died: c.80 in Hierapolis, by crucifixion
Honored in: Christianity
Islam (named in exegesis)
Canonized: Pre-congregation
Feast: 3 May (Roman Catholic Church), 14 November (Eastern Orthodox Church), 1 May (Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church and pre-1955 General Roman Calendar), 11 May (General Roman Calendar, 1955–69)
Attributes:Elderly bearded, Saint, and open to God man holding a basket of loaves and a Tau cross
Patronage: Hatters; Pastry chefs; San Felipe Pueblo; Uruguay.

Feast on May 3

Saint Matthias - Apostle

Saint Matthias - Apostle
Born: 1st century AD in Judaea (modern-day Israel)
Died: c. 80 AD in Jerusalem or in Colchis (modern-day Georgia)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Oriental Orthodox Churches
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Feast: May 14 (Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion)
August 9 (Eastern Orthodox Churches)
February 24 (in leap years February 25) (pre-1970 General Roman Calendar, Episcopal Church, Lutheran Church)
Attributes: axe
Patronage: alcoholism; carpenters; Gary, Indiana; Great Falls-Billings, Montana; smallpox; tailors

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

February 24.—ST. MATTHIAS, Apostle. His feast day had been on February 24, but is now on May 14.

AFTER our blessed Lord's Ascension, His disciples met together, with Mary His mother and the eleven Apostles, in an upper room at Jerusalem. The little company numbered no more than one hundred and twenty souls. They were waiting for the promised coining of the Holy Ghost, and they persevered in prayer. Meanwhile there was a solemn act to be performed on the part of the Church, which could not be postponed. The place of the fallen Judas must be filled up, that the elect number of the apostles might be complete. St. Peter, therefore, as Vicar of Christ, arose to announce the divine decree. That which the Holy Ghost had spoken by the mouth of David concerning Judas, he said, must be fulfilled. Of him it had been written, "His bishopric let another take." A choice, therefore, was to be made of one among those who had been their companions from the beginning, who could bear witness to the Resurrection of Jesus. Two were named of equal merit, Joseph called Barsabas, and Matthias. Then, after praying to God, Who knows the hearts of all men, to show which of these He had chosen, they cast lots, and the lot fell upon Matthias, who was forthwith numbered with the apostles. It is recorded of the Saint, thus wonderfully elected to so high a vocation, that he was above all remarkable for his mortification of the flesh. It was thus that he made his election sure.

Reflection.—Our ignorance of many points in St. Matthias's life serves to fix the attention all the more firmly upon these two—the occasion of his call to the apostolate, and the fact of his perseverance. We then naturally turn in thought to our own vocation and our own end.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint Thomas - Apostle

Born: 1st century AD, Galilee
Died: 21 December 72, Mylapore (modern day India)
Honored in: Assyrian Church of the East, Catholic Church. Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodox Churches, Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church
Respected and honored in: Protestant Churches
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Feast: July 3 (Roman Catholic Church's Latin, Syriac and Syro-Malabar components, but 21 December in the pre-1970 Roman Calendar)
21 December (Episcopal Church USA)
26 Pashons (Coptic Orthodox Church)
Thomas Sunday (the 1st Sunday after Easter, October 6, and June 30 Synaxis of the Apostles) (Eastern Orthodox Church)
Attributes: The Twin, placing his finger in the side of Christ, spear (means of martyrdom), square (his profession, a builder)
Patronage: Architects, Builders, India, and others.

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary.

Didymus - (Gr. twin = Heb. Thomas , (q.v.), John 11:16; John 20:24; John 21:2.

Born: Unknown

Died: Unknown date in Egypt or Jerusalem
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion,
Eastern Orthodox Church
Feast: 1 May (Anglican Communion),
May 3 (Roman Catholic Church),
9 October (Eastern Orthodox Church)
Attributes: carpenter's saw; fuller's club; book
Patronage: apothecaries; druggists; dying people; Frascati, Italy; fullers; milliners; Monterotondo, Italy; pharmacists; Uruguay

Feast on May 3

See also: Letter of James

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

James -
Saint James the Lesser - The son of Alphaeus, or Cleopas, "the brother" or near kinsman or cousin of our Lord (Galatians 1:18, Galatians 1:19), called James "the Less," or "the Little," probably because he was of low stature. He is mentioned along with the other apostles (Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:15). He had a separate interview with our Lord after His Resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:7), and is mentioned as one of the apostles of the circumcision (Acts 1:13). He appears to have occupied the position of head of the Church at Jerusalem, where he presided at the council held to consider the case of the Gentiles (Acts 12:17; 15:13-29: Acts 21:18). This James was the author of the epistle which bears his name.

Feast on August 24

Born: 1st century AD in Iudaea (Palaestina)
Died: 1st century AD in Armenia. Flayed and then crucified
Honored in: Assyrian Church of the East
Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Oriental Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Islam (named in Muslim exegesis as one of the disciples)
Major shrine: Saint Bartholomew Monastery in historical Armenia, Relics at Saint Bartholomew-on-the-Tiber Church, Rome, the Canterbury Cathedral, the Cathedral in Frankfurt, and the San Bartolomeo Cathedral in Lipari
Feast: August 24 (Western Christianity)
June 11 (Eastern Christianity)
Attributes: Knife and his flayed skin
Patronage: Armenia; bookbinders; butchers; Florentine cheese and salt merchants; Gambatesa, Italy; Catbalogan, Samar; Għargħur, Malta; leather workers; neurological diseases; plasterers; shoemakers; curriers; tanners; trappers; twitching; whiteners

Feast on September 21

Saint Matthew - Apostle, Evangelist, Martyr
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Eastern Catholic Churches
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Aglipayan Church
some other Protestant Churches
Canonized: pre-congregation, Russia by St. John
Major shrine: Salerno, Italy
Feast: 21 September (Western Christianity)
16 November (Eastern Christianity)
Attributes: Angel
Patronage: Accountants; Salerno, Italy; bankers; tax collectors; perfumers and others.

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

See also: Saint Matthew for pictures.

Matthew - Gift of God,
a common Jewish name after the Exile. He was the son of Alphaeus, and was a publican or tax-gatherer at Capernaum. On one occasion Jesus, coming up from the side of the lake, passed the custom-house where Matthew was seated, and said to him, "Follow me." Matthew arose and followed him, and became his disciple (Matthew 9:9). Formerly the name by which he was known was Levi (Mark 2:14; Luke 5:27); he now changed it, possibly in grateful memory of his call, to Matthew. The same day on which Jesus called him he made a "great feast" (Luke 5:29), a farewell feast, to which he invited Jesus and his disciples, and probably also many of old associates. He was afterwards selected as one of the twelve (Luke 6:15). His name does not occur again in the Gospel history except in the lists of the apostles. The last notice of him is in Acts 1:13. The time and manner of his death are unknown.

Saint Simon the Zealot - Apostle, Martyr, Preacher

Born: Cana or Canaan
Died: ~65 A.D. or ~107 A.D. place of death disputed. Possibly Pella, Armenia; Suanir, Persia; Edessa, Caistor
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church; Eastern Orthodox Church; Coptic Church; Oriental Orthodox Churches, Eastern Catholic Churches; Anglican Church; Lutheran Church; Islam.
Major shrine: relics claimed by many places, including Toulouse; Saint Peter's Basilica
Feast: October 28 (Western Christianity); May 10 (Coptic Church)
Attributes: boat; cross and saw; fish (or two fishes); lance; man being sawn in two longitudinally; oar
Patronage: curriers; sawyers; tanners

Born: 1st century AD in a Roman Province of Galilee

Died: 1st century AD in a Roman Province of Syria
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church,
Eastern Catholic Churches,
Eastern Orthodox Churches,
Oriental Orthodox Churches,
Church of the East,
Anglican Communion,
Aglipayan Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Saint Peter's, Rome, Reims, Toulouse, France
Feast: October 28 (Western Christianity)
June 19 (Eastern Christianity)
Attributes: Axe, club, boat, oar, medallion
Patronage: Armenia; lost causes; desperate situations; ibises[citation needed]; hospitals; St. Petersburg, Florida; Cotta; the Chicago Police Department; Clube de Regatas do Flamengo from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Lucena, Quezon, Sibalom, Antique, and Trece Mártires, Cavite, the Philippines.

Feast on October 28

Saint Andrew - Apostle - First-called
Saint Andrew

Born: Early 1st century in Bethsaida
Died: Mid- to late 1st century AD in Patras
Honored in: All of Christianity
Canonized: Apostolic age by Pre-congregation
Major shrine: Church of St Andreas at Patras, with his relics
Feast: November 30
Attributes: Old man with long (in the East often untidy) white hair and beard, holding the Gospel Book or scroll, sometimes leaning on a saltire (a Saint Andrew's Cross in the form of a diagonal cross or the letter X - as it is said that he was martyred on a cross of that design.)
Patronage: Scotland, Ukraine, Russia, Sicily, Greece, Cyprus, Romania, Patras, Diocese of Parañaque, City of Manila, Amalfi, Luqa (Malta) and Prussia; Diocese of Victoria fishermen, fishmongers and rope-makers

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Andrew - Manliness, a Greek name; one of the apostles of our Lord. He was of Bethsaida in Galilee (John 1:44), and was the brother of Simon Peter (Matthew 4:18; Matthew 10:2). On one occasion John the Baptist, whose disciple he then was, pointing to Jesus, said, "Behold the Lamb of God" (John 1:40); and Andrew, hearing him, immediately became a follower of Jesus, the first of His disciples. After he had been led to recognize Jesus as the Messiah, his first care was to bring also his brother Simon to Jesus. The two brothers seem to have after this pursued for a while their usual calling as fishermen, and did not become the stated attendants of the Lord till after John's imprisonment (Matthew 4:18 - 4:19; Mark 1:16 - 1:17). Very little is related of Andrew. He was one of the confidential disciples (John 6:8; John 12:22), and with Peter, James, and John inquired of our Lord privately regarding His future coming (Mark 13:3). He was present at the feeding of the five thousand (John 6:9), and he introduced the Greeks who desired to see Jesus (John 12:22); but of his subsequent history little is known. It is noteworthy that Andrew thrice brings others to Christ,
(1) Peter;
(2) the lad with the loaves; and
(3) certain Greeks. These incidents may be regarded as a key to his character.

----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

November 30ST. ANDREW, Apostle

ST. ANDREW was one of the fishermen of Bethsaida, and brother, perhaps elder brother, of St. Peter, and became a disciple of St. John Baptist. He seemed always eager to bring others into notice; when called himself by Christ on the banks of the Jordan, his first thought was to go in search of his brother, and he said, "We have found the Messiah," and he brought him to Jesus. It was he again who, when Christ wished to feed the five thousand in the desert, pointed out the little lad with the five loaves and fishes. St. Andrew went forth upon his mission to plant the Faith in Scythia and Greece, and at the end of years of toil to win a martyr's crown. After suffering a cruel scourging at Patræ in Achaia, he was left, bound by cords, to die upon a cross. When St. Andrew first caught sight of the gibbet on which he was to die, he greeted the precious wood with joy. "O good cross!" he cried, "made beautiful by the limbs of Christ, so long desired, now so happily found! Receive me into thy arms and present me to my Master, that He Who redeemed me through thee may now accept me from thee." Two whole days the martyr remained hanging on this cross alive, preaching, with outstretched arms from this chair of truth, to all who came near, and entreating them not to hinder his passion.

Reflection.— If we would do good to others, we must, like St. Andrew, keep close to the Cross.

Saint John the Evangelist - Evangelist - Disciple

Born: c. AD 15, Jerusalem (?)
Died: c. AD 100
Honored in: Coptic Orthodox
Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Catholic Churches
Eastern Orthodox Church
Anglican Communion
Aglipayan Church
Feast: December 27 (Western Christianity); May 8 and September 26 (Repose) (Eastern Orthodox Church)
Major works:
Gospel of St. John
1 John
2 John
3 John

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Saint John the Evangelist -
The Apostle, brother of James the "Greater" (Matthew 4:21; Matthew 10:2; Mark 1:19; Mark 3:17; Mark 10:35). He was one, probably the younger, of the sons of Zebedee (Matthew 4:21) and Salome (Matthew 27:56; compare Mark 15:40), and was born at Bethsaida. His father was apparently a man of some wealth (compare Mark 1:20; Luke 5:3; John 19:27). He was doubtless trained in all that constituted the ordinary education of Jewish youth. When he grew up he followed the occupation of a fisherman on the Lake of Galilee. When John the Baptist began his ministry in the wilderness of Judea, John, with many others, gathered round him, and was deeply influenced by his teaching. There he heard the announcement, "Behold the |Lamb of God," and forthwith, on the invitation of Jesus, became a disciple and ranked among his followers (John 1:36, John 1:37) for a time. He and his brother then returned to their former avocation, for how long is uncertain. Jesus again called them (Matthew 4:21; Luke 5:1), and now they left all and permanently attached themselves to the company of His disciples. He became one of the innermost circle (Mark 5:37; Matthew 17:1; Matthew 26:37; Mark 13:3). He was the disciple whom Jesus loved. In zeal and intensity of character he was a "Boanerges" (Mark 3:17). This spirit once and again broke out (Matthew 20:20; Mark 10:35; Luke 9:49, Luke 9:54). At the betrayal he and Peter follow Christ afar off, while the others betake themselves to hasty flight (John 18:15). At the trial he follows Christ into the council chamber, and thence to the praetorium (John 18:16, John 18:19, John 18:28) and to the place of crucifixion (John 19:26, John 19:27). To him and Peter, Mary first conveys tidings of the Resurrection (John 20:2), and they are the first to go and see what her strange words mean. After the Resurrection he and Peter again return to the Sea of Galilee, where the Lord reveals Himself to them (John 21:1, John 21:7). We find Peter and John frequently after this together (Acts 3:1; Acts 4:13). John remained apparently in Jerusalem as the leader of the church there (Acts 15:6; Galatians 2:9). His subsequent history is unrecorded. He was not there, however, at the time of Paul's last visit (Acts 21:15-40). He appears to have retired to Ephesus, but at what time is unknown. The seven churches of Asia were the objects of his special care (Revelation 1:11). He suffered under persecution, and was banished to Patmos (Revelation 1:9); whence he again returned to Ephesus, where he died, probably about A.D. 98, having outlived all or nearly all the friends and companions even of his mature years. There are many interesting traditions regarding John during his residence at Ephesus, but these cannot claim the character of historical truth.

See also:
Gospel of St. John
1 John
2 John
3 John

Stephen was one of the first deacons and the first Christian martyr; his day is celebrated as a feast on December 26. In the Acts of the Apostles the name of St. Stephen occurs for the first time on the occasion of the appointment of the first deacons (Acts 6:5). Dissatisfaction concerning the distribution of alms from the community's fund having arisen in the Church, seven men were selected and specially ordained by the Apostles to take care of the temporal relief of the poorer members. Of these seven, Stephen is the first mentioned and the best known. He was stoned to death after he was accused before the Sanhedrin, probably about the year 37.

Saint Stephen - Deacon - Protomartyr
Died: c. 34, Jerusalem
Honored in:
Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Oriental Orthodox Church
Eastern Catholic Churches
Lutheran Church
Anglican Church
Ukrainian Catholic Church
Feast: 26 December (Western) 27 December (Eastern)
Attributes: stones, dalmatic, censer, miniature church, Gospel Book, martyr's palm, orarion
Patronage: casket makers; deacons; Altar Servers; headaches; horses; masons; Serbia

Saint Barnabas
Saint Barnabas

Memorial on June 11. Barnabas was the one who presented St. Paul to the Apostles. He was influential in the spread of the Church among the Gentiles, and accompanied St. Paul on his first missionary journey. He was martyred about the year 61 at Salamis.

Saint Barnabas - Apostle to Antioch and Cyprus
Born: unknown in Cyprus
Died: reputedly 61 AD in Salamis, Cyprus
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Churches, Oriental Orthodox Churches, Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Monastery of St Barnabas in Famagusta, Cyprus
Feast: June 11
Attributes: Pilgrim's staff; olive branch; holding the Gospel of St. Matthew
Patronage: Cyprus, Antioch, against hailstorms, invoked as peacemaker

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Barnabas - Son of consolation, the surname of Joses, a Levite (Acts 4:36). His name stands first on the list of prophets and teachers of the church at Antioch (Acts 13:1). Luke speaks of him as a "good man" (Acts 11:24). He was born of Jewish parents of the tribe of Levi. He was a native of Cyprus, where he had a possession of land (Acts 4:36, Acts 4:37), which he sold. His personal appearance is supposed to have been dignified and commanding (Acts 14:11, Acts 14:12). When Paul returned to Jerusalem after his conversion, Barnabas took him and introduced him to the apostles (Acts 9:27). They had probably been companions as students in the school of Gamaliel. The prosperity of the church at Antioch led the apostles and brethren at Jerusalem to send Barnabas thither to superintend the movement. He found the work so extensive and weighty that he went to Tarsus in search of Saul to assist him. Saul returned with him to Antioch and laboured with him for a whole year (Acts 11:25, Acts 11:26). The two were at the end of this period sent up to Jerusalem with the contributions the church at Antioch had made for the poorer brethren there (Acts 11:28). Shortly after they returned, bringing John Mark with them, they were appointed as missionaries to the heathen world, and in this capacity visited Cyprus and some of the principal cities of Asia Minor (Acts 13:14). Returning from this first missionary journey to Antioch, they were again sent up to Jerusalem to consult with the church there regarding the relation of Gentiles to the church (Acts 15:2; Galatians 2:1). This matter having been settled, they returned again to Antioch, bringing the decree of the council as the rule by which Gentiles were to be admitted into the church. When about to set forth on a second missionary journey, a dispute arose between Saul and Barnabas as to the propriety of taking John Mark with them again. The dispute ended by Saul and Barnabas taking separate routes. Saul took Silas as his companion, and journeyed through Syria and Cilicia; while Barnabas took his nephew John Mark, and visited Cyprus (Acts 15:36). Barnabas is not again mentioned by Luke in the Acts.

Feast on October 18. Saint Luke was a physician who accompanied Saint Paul in some of his travels. It appears he probably joined Paul about the year 51. He wrote the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles. An ox is frequently used to symbolize him.

Born: in Antioch, Syria, Roman Empire
Died: c. 84 near Boeotia, Greece
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Orthodox Church, Eastern Catholic Churches, Anglican Church, Lutheran Church, some other Protestant Churches
Major shrine: Padua, Italy
Feast: 18 October
Patronage: artists, physicians, surgeons, and others

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Saint Luke - The evangelist, was a Gentile. The date and circumstances of his conversion are unknown. According to his own statement (Luke 1:2), he was not an "eye-witness and minister of the word from the beginning." It is probable that he was a physician in Troas, and was there converted by Paul, to whom he attached himself. He accompanied him to Philippi, but did not there share his imprisonment, nor did he accompany him further after his release in his missionary journey at this time (Acts 17:1). On Paul's third visit to Philippi (Acts 20:5, Acts 20:6) we again meet with Luke, who probably had spent all the intervening time in that city, a period of seven or eight years. From this time Luke was Paul's constant companion during his journey to Jerusalem (Acts 20:6-21:18). He again disappears from view during Paul's imprisonment at Jerusalem and Caesarea, and only reappears when Paul sets out for Rome (Acts 27:1), whither he accompanies him (Acts 28:2, Acts 28:12), and where he remains with him till the close of his first imprisonment (Philemon 1:24; Colossians 4:14). The last notice of the "beloved physician" is in 2 Timothy 4:11. There are many passages in Paul's epistles, as well as in the writings of Luke, which show the extent and accuracy of his medical knowledge.

Gospel According to Luke - Was written by Luke. He does not claim to have been an eye-witness of our Lord's ministry, but to have gone to the best sources of information within his reach, and to have written an orderly narrative of the facts (Luke 1:1). The authors of the first three Gospels, the synoptics, wrote independently of each other. Each wrote his independent narrative under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Each writer has some things, both in matter and style, peculiar to himself, yet all the three have much in common. Luke's Gospel has been called "the Gospel of the nations, full of mercy and hope, assured to the world by the love of a suffering Savior;" "the Gospel of the saintly life;" "the Gospel for the Greeks; the Gospel of the future; the Gospel of progressive Christianity, of the universality and gratuitousness of the Gospel; the historic Gospel; the Gospel of Jesus as the good Physician and the Savior of mankind;" the "Gospel of the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man;" "the Gospel of womanhood;" "the Gospel of the outcast, of the Samaritan, the publican, the harlot, and the prodigal;" "the Gospel of tolerance." The main characteristic of this Gospel, as Farrar (Cambridge Bible, Luke, Introd.) remarks, is fitfully expressed in the motto, "Who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil" (Acts 10:38; compare Luke 4:18). Luke wrote for the "Hellenic world." This Gospel is indeed "rich and precious." "Out of a total of 1151 verses, Luke has 389 in common with Matthew and Mark, 176 in common with Matthew alone, 41 in common with Mark alone, leaving 544 peculiar to himself. In many instances all three use identical language." (See MATTHEW; MARK; GOSPEL.) There are seventeen of our Lord's parables peculiar to this Gospel. (See Table Parables in the Gospels.) Luke also records seven of our Lord's miracles which are omitted by Matthew and Mark. (See Table Miracles Recorded in the Gospels.) The synoptical Gospels are related to each other after the following scheme. If the contents of each Gospel be represented by 100, then when compared this result is obtained in the following table: Synoptic Gospels Peculiarities Coincidences Total Mark 07 93 100 Matthew 42 58 100 Luke 59 41 100 That is, thirteen-fourteenths of Mark, four-sevenths of Matthew, and two-fifths of Luke are taken up in describing the same things in very similar language. Luke's style is more finished and classical than that of Matthew and Mark. There is less in it of the Hebrew idiom. He uses a few Latin words (Luke 12:6; Luke 7:41; Luke 8:30; Luke 11:33; Luke 19:20), but no Syriac or Hebrew words except sikera , an exciting drink of the nature of wine, but not made of grapes (from Heb. shakar , "he is intoxicated", Leviticus 10:9), probably palm wine. This Gospel contains twenty-eight distinct references to the Old Testament. The date of its composition is uncertain. It must have been written before the Acts, the date of the composition of which is generally fixed at about 63 or 64 A.D.. This Gospel was written, therefore, probably about 60 or 63 A.D., when Luke may have been at Caesarea in attendance on Paul, who was then a prisoner. Others have conjectured that it was written at Rome during Paul's imprisonment there. But on this point no positive certainty can be attained. It is commonly supposed that Luke wrote under the direction, if not at the dictation of Paul. Many words and phrases are common to both; see table: Compare With Luke 4:22 Colossians 4:6 Luke 4:32 1 Corinthians 2:4 Luke 6:36 2 Corinthians 1:3 Luke 6:39 Romans 2:19 Luke 9:56 2 Corinthians 10:8 Luke 10:8 1 Corinthians 10:27 Luke 11:41 Titus 1:15 Luke 18:1 2 Thessalonians 1:11 Luke 21:36 Ephesians 6:18 Luke 22:19, Luke 22:20 1 Corinthians 11:23 Luke 24:46 Acts 17:3 Luke 24:34 1 Corinthians 15:5

Born: 1st century AD

Died: 96 or 107 AD in Gortyn, Crete
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Eastern Catholic Churches
Anglican Communion
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Heraklion, Crete
Feast: January 26
February 6 (General Roman Calendar 1845-1969)

Memorial on January 26. Titus was the first bishop of Crete. Saint Paul addressed one of his epistles to him. He died about the year 96 in Goryna, Crete.


January 4.—ST. TITUS, Bishop.

TITUS was a convert from heathenism, a disciple of St. Paul, one of the chosen companions of the Apostles in his journey to the Council of Jerusalem, and his fellow-laborers in many apostolic missions. From the Second Epistle which St. Paul sent by the hand of Titus to the Corinthians we gain an insight into his character and understand the, strong affection which his master bore him. Titus had been commissioned to carry out a twofold office needing much firmness, discretion, and charity. He was to be the bearer of a severe rebuke to the Corinthians, who were giving scandal and were wavering in their faith; and at the same time he was to put their charity to a further test by calling upon them for abundant alms for the church at Jerusalem. St. Paul meanwhile was anxiously awaiting the result. At Troas he writes, "I had no rest in my spirit, because I found not Titus, my brother." He set sail to Macedonia. Here at last Titus brought the good news. His success had been complete. He reported the sorrow, the zeal, the generosity of the Christians, till the Apostle could not contain his joy, and sent back to them his faithful messenger with the letter of comfort from which we have quoted. Titus was finally left as a bishop in Crete, and here he, in turn, received the epistle which bears his name, and here at last he died in peace.

The mission of Titus to Corinth shows us how well the disciple caught the spirit of his master. He knew how to be firm and to inspire respect. The Corinthians, we are told, "received him with fear and trembling." He was patient and painstaking. St. Paul "gave thanks to God, Who had put such carefulness for them in the heart of Titus." And these gifts were enhanced by a quickness to detect and call out all that was good in others, and by a joyousness which overflowed upon the spirit of St. Paul himself, who "abundantly rejoiced in the joy of Titus."

Reflection.—Saints win their empire over the hearts of men by their wide and affectionate sympathy. This was the characteristic gift of St. Titus, as it was of St. Paul, St-Francis Xavier, and many others.
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Born: probably Iudaea Province (modern-day Israel or West Bank)

Died: traditionally Larnaca, Cyprus or Tarascon, Gaul (modern-day France)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Christianity, Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church
Canonized: Pre-congregation
Feast: July 29 (Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran), June 4 (Orthodox)
Attributes: broom; keys; ladle
Patronage: butlers; cooks; dietitians; domestic servants; homemakers; hotel-keepers; housemaids; housewives; innkeepers; laundry workers; maids; manservants; servants; servers; single laywomen; travelers; Villajoyosa, Spain.

Memorial on July 29.

Martha was the sister of Lazarus, who was raised from the dead by Jesus. Her sister was Mary, also known as Saint Mary Magdalene. They were very good friends of Jesus. He would visit them when He came to Bethany. She died about the year 80.

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Martha - Bitterness,
the sister of Lazarus and Mary, and probably the eldest of the family, who all resided at Bethany (Luke 10:38, Luke 10:40, Luke 10:41; John 11:1-39). From the residence being called "her house," some have supposed that she was a widow, and that her brother and sister lodged with her. She seems to have been of an anxious, bustling spirit, anxious to be helpful in providing the best things for the Master's use, in contrast to the quiet earnestness of Mary, who was more concerned to avail herself of the opportunity of sitting at His feet and learning of Him. Afterwards at a supper given to Christ and His disciples in her house "Martha served." Nothing further is known of her. "Mary and Martha are representatives of two orders of human character. One was absorbed, preoccupied, abstracted; the other was concentrated and single-hearted. Her own world was the all of Martha; Christ was the first thought with Mary. To Martha life was 'a succession of particular businesses;' to Mary life 'was rather the flow of one spirit.' Martha was Petrine, Mary was Johannine. The one was a well-meaning, bustling busybody; the other was a reverent disciple, a wistful listener." Paul had such a picture as that of Martha in his mind when he spoke of serving the Lord "without distraction" (1 Corinthians 7:35).

Memorial on July 22

Born: Date unknown Place unknown
Died: Date unknown Place: possibly Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume, Ephesus, Asia Minor
Honored in: Eastern Orthodoxy
Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
other Protestant churches
Bahá'í Faith
Feast: July 22
Western: alabaster box of ointment
Eastern: container of ointment (as a myrrhbearer), or holding a red egg (symbol of the resurrection); embracing the feet of Christ after the Resurrection
Patronage: Apothecaries; Kawit, Cavite; Atrani, Italy; Casamicciola Terme, Ischia; contemplative life; converts; glove makers; hairdressers; penitent sinners; people ridiculed for their piety; perfumeries; pharmacists; reformed prostitutes; sexual temptation; tanners; women

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Mary - Hebrew Miriam. Mary Magdalene, i.e., Mary of Magdala, a town on the western shore of the Lake of Tiberias. She is for the first time noticed in Luke 8:3 as one of the women who "ministered to Christ of their substance." Their motive was that of gratitude for deliverances He had wrought for them. Out of Mary were cast seven demons. Gratitude to her great Deliverer prompted her to become His follower. These women accompanied Him also on His last journey to Jerusalem (Matthew 27:55; Mark 15:41; Luke 23:55). They stood near the Cross. There Mary remained till all was over, and the Body was taken down and laid in Joseph of Arimathaea's tomb. Again, in the earliest dawn of the first day of the week she, with Salome and Mary the mother of James (Matthew 28:1; Mark 16:2), came to the sepulchre, bringing with them sweet spices, that they might anoint the Body of Jesus. They found the sepulchre empty, but saw the "vision of angels" (Matthew 28:5). She hastens to tell Peter and John, (John 20:1, John 20:2), and again immediately returns to the sepulchre. There she lingers thoughtfully, weeping at the door of the tomb. The risen Lord appears to her, but at first she knows Him not. His utterance of her name "Mary" recalls her to consciousness, and she utters the joyful, reverent cry, "Rabboni." She would fain cling to Him, but He forbids her, saying, "Touch Me not; for I am not yet ascended to My Father." This is the last record regarding Mary of Magdala, who now returned to Jerusalem.

Memorial on January 26. Timothy was born in Lystra in the first half of the first century. His father was a pagan and his mother was a Jewess. Saint Paul, a close friend of his, wrote Timothy two letters that are now known as the First and Second Epistles to Timothy.

Born: c. AD 17
Died: c. AD 97 in Macedonia
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Oriental Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Feast: January 22 (Eastern Christianity)
January 26 (Roman Catholic Church, Lutheranism)
January 24 (some local calendars and pre-1970 General Roman Calendar)


January 24 — ST. TIMOTHY, Bishop, Martyr.
(January 26 - This is the new date of the Memorial of Saint Timothy)

TIMOTHY was a convert of St. Paul. He was born at Lystra in Asia Minor. His mother was a Jewess, but his father was a pagan; and though Timothy had read the Scriptures from his childhood, he had not been circumcised as a Jew. On the arrival of St. Paul at Lystra the youthful Timothy, with his mother and grandmother, eagerly embraced the faith. Seven years later, when the Apostle again visited the country, the boy had grown into manhood, while his good heart, his austerities and zeal had won the esteem of all around him; and holy men were prophesying great things of the fervent youth. St. Paul at once saw his fitness for the work of an evangelist. Timothy was forthwith ordained, and from that time became the constant and much-beloved fellow-worker of the Apostle. In company with St. Paul he visited the cities of Asia Minor and Greece—at one time hastening on in front as a trusted messenger, at another lingering behind to confirm in the faith some recently founded church. Finally, he was made the first Bishop of Ephesus; and here he received the two epistles which bear his name, the first written from Macedonia and the second from Rome, in which St. Paul from his prison gives vent to his longing desire to see his "dearly beloved son," if possible, once more before his death. St. Timothy himself not many years after the death of St. Paul, won his martyr's crown at Ephesus. As a child Timothy delighted in reading the sacred books, and to his last hour he would remember the parting words of his spiritual father, "Attende lectioni—Apply thyself to reading."

Reflection.—St. Paul, in writing to Timothy, a faithful and well-tried servant of God, and a bishop now getting on in years, addresses him as a child, and seems most anxious about his perseverance in faith and piety. The letters abound in minute personal instructions for this end. It is therefore remarkable what great stress the Apostle lays on the avoiding of idle talk, and on the application to holy reading. These are his chief topics. Over and over again he exhorts his son Timothy to "avoid tattlers and busybodies; to give no heed to novelties; to shun profane and vain babblings, but to hold the form of sound words; to be an example in word and conversation; to attend to reading, to exhortation, and to doctrine."
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Martyred in 107, Memorial on October 17

Born: ca. 35 in a Province of Syria, Roman Empire
Died: ca. 108 in Rome, Roman Empire
Honored in: Oriental Orthodox Churches, Eastern Christianity, Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion, Lutheranism
Canonized: pre-congregation
Major shrine: Basilica of San Clemente, Rome, Italy
Feast: Eastern Orthodox Church, Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria and Indian Orthodox Church: December 20 (January 2nd in the Julian calendar), Western and Syrian Christianity: October 17
General Roman Calendar, 12th century to 1969: February 1
Attributes: a bishop surrounded by lions or in chains
Patronage: Church in eastern Mediterranean; Church in North Africa

Ignatius' feast day is observed on December 20 in the Eastern Orthodox Church. In the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, he is commemorated, according to its Synaxarium, on the 24th of the Coptic Month of Kiahk (which currently falls on January 2, but is equivalent to December 20 in the Gregorian Calendar due to the current 13-day Julian-Gregorian Calendar offset). In Western and Syriac Christianity his feast is celebrated on October 17.

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

ST. IGNATIUS, Bishop, Martyr.

ST. IGNATIUS, Bishop of Antioch, was the disciple of St. John. When Domitian persecuted the Church, St. Ignatius obtained peace for his own flock by fasting and prayer. But for his part he desired to suffer with Christ, and to prove himself a perfect disciple. In the year 107, Trajan came to Antioch, and forced the Christians to choose between apostasy and death. "Who art thou, poor devil," the emperor said when Ignatius was brought before him, "who settest our commands at naught?" "Call not him 'poor devil,'" Ignatius answered, "who bears God within him." And when the emperor questioned him about his meaning, Ignatius explained that he bore in his heart Christ crucified for his sake. Thereupon the emperor condemned him to be torn to pieces by wild beasts at Rome. St. Ignatius thanked God, Who had so honored him, "binding him in the chains of Paul, His apostle."

He journeyed to Rome, guarded by soldiers, and with no fear except of losing the martyr's crown. He was devoured by lions in the Roman amphitheatre. The wild beasts left nothing of his body, except a few bones, which were reverently treasured at Antioch, until their removal to the Church of St. Clement at Rome, in 637. After the martyr's death, several Christians saw him in vision standing before Christ, and interceding for them.

Reflection.—Ask St. Ignatius to obtain for you the grace of profiting by all you have to suffer, and rejoicing in it as a means of likeness to your crucified Redeemer.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint Lawrence before Roman Emperor Valerian

Born: c. 225 AD in Osca, Hispania (now modern-day Spain)
Died: 258 AD 10th August in Rome
Honored in: Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodoxy, Anglican Communion, Lutheranism
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Basilica di San Lorenzo fuori le Mura in Rome
Feast: August 10
Attributes: Usually holding a gridiron and wearing a dalmatic
Patronage: Rome, Rotterdam, Birgu (Malta), Huesca (Spain), San Lawrenz, Brgy. San Lorenzo, San Pablo City, Philippines (Gozo), Canada, Sri Lanka, comedians, librarians, students, miners, tanners, chefs, roasters

Deacon and martyr, his Feast day is on August 10. Lawrence was martyred during the persecution of the Roman Emperor Valerian on August 10, 258 A.D.

Saint Lucy - Santa Lucia - Virgin and Martyr

Born: (traditionally) ca 283 AD in Syracuse, Italy
Died: (traditionally) 304 AD in Syracuse, Italy
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: San Geremia, Venice
Feast: December 13 September 16 - (duplicate feast in pre-1970 General Roman Calendar)
Attributes: cord; eyes; eyes on a dish; lamp; swords; woman hitched to a yoke of oxen; woman in the company of Saint Agatha, Saint Agnes of Rome, Barbara, Catherine of Alexandria, and Saint Thecla; woman kneeling before the tomb of Saint Agatha
Patronage: blind; martyrs; Perugia, Italy; Mtarfa, Malta; epidemics; salesmen, Syracuse, Italy, throat infections, writers

Virgin and martyr, Memorial on December 13. Lucy was born into a wealthy family about the year 283. After her father died, she persuaded her mother Eutychia to give a large portion of the family's wealth to the poor in thanksgiving for Eutychia's healing at the tomb of St. Agatha. Lucy's suitor was enraged that the wealth that might have been his was lost, and reported her to the governor of Sicily (another source says he reported her to a judge in Sicily). After several failed attempts to execute her, she was martyred by the sword.

Born: Sebastea, historical Armenia

Died: c. 316MN
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Armenian Apostolic Church
Eastern Catholic Churches
Feast: January 16 (Armenian Apostolic)
February 3 (Roman Catholic)
February 11 (Eastern Orthodox and Greek Catholic)
Attributes: Wool comb, candles, tending a choking boy or animals
Patronage: Animals, builders, choking, veterinarians, throats, infants, Maratea, Italy, Sicily, Dalmatia, Dubrovnik, Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, Rubiera, stonecutters, carvers, wool workers

Martyred in the 300's, Optional Memorial on February 3. Blase, also known as Saint Blaise, is believed to have been a physician in Sebaste of Armenia before he became the city's bishop. During the persecution of Licinius, he was hunted down by order of Agricolaus, the governor. He was eventually found in a cave in the wilderness and imprisoned. While in prison, he cured a boy who was choking to death on a fishbone. He was martyred about the year 316. On his memorial day the blessing of throats is given with two crosses candles.

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

February 3 — ST. BLASE, Bishop and Martyr.

ST. BLASE devoted the earlier years of his life to the study of philosophy, and afterwards became a physician. In the practice of his profession he saw so much of the miseries of life and the hollowness of worldly pleasures, that he resolved to spend the rest of his days in the service of God, and from being a healer of bodily ailments to be- come a physician of souls. The Bishop of Sebaste, in Armenia, having died, our Saint, much to the gratification of the inhabitants of that city, was appointed to succeed him. St. Blase at once began to instruct his people as much by his example as by his words, and the great virtues and sanctity of this servant of God were attested by many miracles. From all parts the people came flocking to him for the cure of bodily and spiritual ills. Agricolaus, Governor of Cappadocia and the Lesser Armenia, having begun a persecution by order of the Emperor Licinius, our Saint was seized and hurried off to prison. While on his way there, a distracted mother, whose only child was dying of a throat disease, threw herself at the feet of St. Blase and implored his intercession. Touched at her grief, the Saint offered up his prayers, and the child was cured; and since that time his aid has often been effectually solicited in cases of a similar disease. Refusing to worship the false gods of the heathens, St. Blase was first scourged; his body was then torn with hooks, and finally he was beheaded in the year 316.

Reflection.—There is no sacrifice which, by the aid of grace, human nature is not capable of accomplishing. When St. Paul complained to God of the violence of the temptation, God answered, "My grace is sufficient for thee, for power is made perfect in infirmity."
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Martyred in Diocletian's persecution. Optional Memorial on January 20. Sebastian was born in Narbonne, Gaul, and entered the Roman army about the year 283 under Emperor Carinus. Emperor Diocletian appointed him as captain of the Praetorian Guards, and Emperor Maximian retained him in that position. In 286 Sebastian was discovered to be a Christian, and was ordered to be executed by the Mauretanian archers. He was left for dead, but when St. Irene, the widow of St. Castulus, came to bury his body, she found him still alive and took care of him until he recovered. After he recovered he went to Diocletian and tried to gain clemency toward the Christians, but was beaten to death about the year 288.

Born: c. 256
Died: c. 288
Honored in: Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodoxy
Oriental Orthodoxy
Aglipayan Church
Feast: January 20 (Catholic),
December 18 (Eastern Orthodox)
Attributes: Tied to a post, pillar or a tree, shot by arrows, clubbed to death
Patronage: Soldiers, plagues, archers, holy Christian death, athletes


January 20 — ST. SEBASTIAN, Martyr.

ST. SEBASTIAN was an officer in the Roman army, esteemed even by the heathen as a good soldier, and honored by the Church ever since as a champion of Jesus Christ. Born at Narbonne, Sebastian came to Rome about the year 284, and entered the lists against the powers of evil. He found the twin brothers Marcus and Marcellinus in prison for the faith, and, when they were near yielding to the entreaties of their relatives, encouraged them to despise flesh and blood, and to die for Christ. God confirmed his words by miracle: light shone around him while he spoke; he cured the sick by his prayers; and in this divine strength he led multitudes to the faith, among them the Prefect of Rome, with his son Tiburtius. He saw his disciples die before him, and one of them came back from heaven to tell him that his own end was near. It was in a contest of fervor and charity that St. Sebastian found the occasion of martyrdom. The Prefect of Rome, after his conversion, retired to his estates in Campania, and took a great number of his fellow-converts with him to this place of safety. It was a question whether Polycarp the priest or St. Sebastian should accompany the neophytes. Each was eager to stay and face the danger at Rome, and at last the Pope decided that the Roman church could not spare the services of Sebastian. He continued to labor at the post of danger till he was betrayed by a false disciple. He was led before Diocletian, and, at the emperor's command, pierced with arrows and left for dead. But God raised him up again, and of his own accord he Went before the emperor and conjured him to stay the persecution of the Church. Again sentenced, he was at last beaten to death by clubs, and crowned his labors by the merit of a double martyrdom.

Reflection.—Your ordinary occupations will give you opportunities of laboring for the faith. Ask help from St. Sebastian. He was not a priest nor a religious, but a soldier.
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint Agnes of Rome - Virgin and Martyr

Virgin and martyr. Memorial on January 21. Agnes was born either about the year 241 or about the year 291. When she refused to marry Procop, the governor's son, he accused her of being a Christian before her father, who had her put to death on either January 21, 254, or January 21, 304. She was buried beside the Via Nomentana in Rome. On her feast day, two lambs are blessed at Sant'Agnese fuori le mura by the pope, and their wool is used to make the palliums the Pope gives to new archbishops.


January 21 — ST. AGNES, Virgin, Martyr

Born: c. 291
Died: c. 304
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Catholic Churches, Eastern Orthodox Churches, Oriental Orthodox Churches, Anglican Communion, Lutheranism
Canonized: Pre-congregation
Major shrine: Church of Sant'Agnese fuori le mura and the Church of Sant'Agnese in Agone, both in Rome
Feast: 21 January; before Pope John XXIII revised the calendar, there was a second feast on January 28
Attributes: a lamb, martyr's palm
Patronage: Betrothed couples; chastity; Children of Mary; Colegio Capranica of Rome; crops; gardeners; Girl Guides; girls; victims of violence; virgins; the diocese of Rockville Centre, New York


----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

ST. AGNES was but twelve years old when she was led to the altar of Minerva at Rome and commanded to obey the persecuting laws of Diocletian by offering incense. In the midst of the idolatrous rites she raised her hands to Christ, her Spouse, and made the sign of the life-giving cross. She did not shrink when she was bound hand and foot, though the gyves slipped from her young hands, and the heathens who stood around were moved to tears. The bonds were not needed for her, and she hastened gladly to the place of her torture. Next, when the judge saw that pain had no terrors for her, he inflicted an insult worse than death: her clothes were stripped off, and she had to stand in the street before a pagan crowd; yet even this did not daunt her. "Christ," she said, "will guard His own." So it was. Christ showed, by a miracle, the value which He sets upon the custody of the eyes. Whilst the crowd turned away their eyes from the spouse of Christ, as she stood exposed to view in the street, there was one young man who dared to gaze at the innocent child with immodest eyes. A flash of light struck him blind, and his companions bore him away half dead with pain and terror.

Lastly, her fidelity to Christ was proved by flattery and offers of marriage. But she answered, "Christ is my Spouse: He chose me first, and His I will be." At length the sentence of death was passed. For a moment she stood erect in prayer, and then bowed her neck to the sword. At one stroke her head was severed from her body, and the angels bore her pure soul to Paradise.

Reflection.—Her innocence endeared St. Agnes to Christ, as it has endeared her to His Church ever since. Even as penitents we may imitate this innocence of hers in our own degree. Let us strictly guard our eyes, and Christ, when He sees that we keep our hearts pure for love of Him, will renew our youth and give us back the years which the canker-worm has wasted.

Saint George - Martyr

Born: between c. AD 256 and 285 in Lydda, Syria Palaestina, Roman Empire
Died: April 23, 303 in Nicomedia, Bithynia, Roman Empire
Honored in: Roman Catholicism
Oriental Orthodox Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Major shrine: Church of Saint George, Lod
Feast: April 23
Attributes: Clothed as a soldier in a suit of armour or chain mail, often bearing a lance tipped by a cross, riding a white horse, often slaying a dragon. In the West he is shown with St George's Cross emblazoned on his armour, or shield or banner.
Patronage: Many Patronages of Saint George exist around the world

Martyr. Optional Memorial on April 23. George was tortured and beheaded for the Faith about the year 304 in Lydda, Palestine, during the reign of Diocletian.

Born: 2nd century A.D. in Rome

Died: Sicily
Major shrine: Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, Rome
Feast: November 22
Patron saint of musicians and church music
Attributes: flute, organ, roses, violin, harp, harpsichord, singing
Patronage: Church music, great musicians, poets; Albi, France; Archdiocese of Omaha; Mar del Plata, Argentina

Virgin and martyr (married, but lived celibately with her husband). Memorial on November 22. Cecilia was born about the turn of the second century (based on the date of the reign of Pope Urban I; another source places it about the turn of the first century) to a senatorial family. She had vowed to remain a virgin, but her parents decided to marry her to Valerian (Valerianus) of Trastevere, a noble pagan youth. After the wedding, Valerian was converted to Christianity and baptized by Pope Urban I, and Valerian's brother Tiburtius also converted to Christianity soon afterwards. Because the two brothers both gave alms and buried the bodies of the martyrs, the prefect, Turcius Almachius, had them condemned to death. St. Cecilia buried the bodies of her husband and brother-in-law, and was also condemned to be executed. After a failed attempt to suffocate her in her own house, she was ordered to be decapitated, but the soldier struck her neck three times and fled, leaving her neck only partially cut. She died three days later, some time between 222 and 230 (another source says about the year 117.) She was buried in the Catacomb of St. Callistus, and in 1599 she was found to be incorrupt.

Saint Anthony of the Desert

is also known as Anthony the Great or Antony the Great (c. 251–356), (Coptic Ⲁⲃⲃⲁ Ⲁⲛⲧⲱⲛⲓ), also known as Saint Anthony, Anthony the Abbot, Anthony of Egypt, Anthony the Anchorite, Abba Antonius (Ἀββᾶς Ἀντώνιος), and Father of All Monks.

Venerable and God-bearing Father
Born: ca.251 in Herakleopolis Magna, Egypt
Died: 356 in Mount Colzim, Egypt
Honored in: Eastern Orthodoxy,
Coptic Orthodox Church,
Oriental Orthodoxy,
Roman Catholic Church,
Major shrine: Monastery of Saint Anthony, Egypt
Saint-Antoine-l'Abbaye, France
Feast: January 30 (Eastern Orthodoxy - Tobi 22 Coptic Church)
January 17 - Western Christianity
Attributes: bell; pig; book; Cross of Tau
Patron Saint of: Basket makers, brushmakers, gravediggers

(Born about 250, died in 356, Memorial on January 17)[12]
Anthony was born in Coma in the mid-200's. He lived as a hermit for a significant number of years. Later, he also gave guidance to others practicing a secluded ascetic life. He died in the mid-300's.

Saint Helena

Born: ca. 246/50 possibly at Helenopolis Bithynia, Asia Minor
Died: ca. 327/30 in Rome
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Churches
Oriental Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: The shrine to Saint Helena in St. Peter's Basilica
Feast: 18 August (Roman Catholic Church); 21 May (Orthodox, Anglican & Lutheran Churches); 19 May (Lutheran Church); 9 Pashons (Coptic Orthodox Church)
Attributes: Cross
Patronage: archaeologists, converts, difficult marriages, divorced people, empresses, Saint Helena island

Helena was born in the mid-200's. She and her husband Constantius Chlorus had a son, Constantine, in 274. Constantius became co-Regent of the West in 292, and he abandoned Helena to marry another woman. In 308 Constantine came to power and conferred the title of Augusta on his mother Helena. Helena converted to Christianity after her son's victory over Maxentius. She died about the year 330.[13]

----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

August 18.—ST. HELENA, Empress;

IT was the pious boast of the city of Colchester, England, for many ages, that St. Helena was born within its walls; and though this honor has been disputed, it is certain that she was a British princess. She embraced Christianity late in life; but her incomparable faith and piety greatly influenced her son Constantine, the first Christian emperor, and served to kindle a holy zeal in the hearts of the Roman people. Forgetful of her high dignity, she delighted to assist at the Divine Office amid the poor; and by her alms-deeds showed herself a mother to the indigent and distressed. In her eightieth year she made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, with the ardent desire of discovering the cross on which our blessed Redeemer suffered. After many labors, three crosses were found on Mount Calvary, together with the nails and the inscription recorded by the Evangelists. It still remained to identify the true cross of Our Lord. By the advice of the bishop, Macarius, the three were applied successively to a woman afflicted with an incurable disease, and no sooner had the third touched her than she arose, perfectly healed. The pious empress, transported with joy, built a most glorious church on Mount Calvary to receive the precious relic, sending portions of it to Rome and Constantinople, where they were solemnly exposed to the adoration of the faithful. In the year 313 Constantine found himself attacked by Maxentius with vastly superior forces, and the very existence of his empire threatened. In this crisis he bethought him of the crucified Christian God Whom his mother Helena worshipped, and kneeling down, prayed God to reveal Himself and give him the victory. Suddenly, at noonday, a cross of fire was seen by his army in the calm and cloudless sky, and beneath it the words. In hoc signo vinces— "Through this sign thou shalt conquer." By divine command, Constantine made a standard like the cross he had seen, which was borne at the head of his troops; and under this Christian ensign they marched against the enemy, and obtained a complete victory. Shortly after, Helena herself returned to Rome, where she expired, 328.

Reflection.— St. Helena thought it the glory of her life to find the cross of Christ, and to raise a temple in its honor. How many Christians in these days are ashamed to make this life-giving sign, and to confess themselves the followers of the Crucified!


  1. General Instruction of the Roman Missal, #322
  2. A large number of the early pontiffs were canonized Saints, and will be properly labeled in future editions of this book
  3. This is the correct spelling, and this pope's name was slightly different than the name of Anacletus
  4. Catholic Encyclopedia says a less likely source (Harnack) says he was pope from 166 to 174.
  5. His name can also be written Domnus.[1]
  6. another Stephen was elected before him but died before episcopal consecration, so he is not classified as a pontiff for the purposes of this book. Numbering in this book is calculated as though he was not a pontiff. Old references (and maybe even some new ones) might include him as a pontiff.
  7. John XVII took the "XVII" because it was thought at the time that Antipope John XVI was a true Pope.
  8. or Otto or Odo
  9. He took the "IV" because Marinus I and Marinus II were mistakenly considered Martin II and Martin III at the time. There is no Martin II or Martin III.
  10. History of England, Volume 4?, written by Lingard?,this was done from memory, not with the text in front of the contributor, so some facts may be inaccurate
  11. History of England, Volume 4?, written by Lingard?,this was done from memory, not with the text in front of the contributor, so some facts may be inaccurate
  12. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
[1] (died in mid-300's, Optional Memorial on December 6)[2]
Nicholas was the bishop of Myra, Lycia. He died about the year 346.[3]


  1. Also known as Nicholas of Bari because his relics are believed to be in Bari, Italy
  2. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Saint Nicholas of Myra - Nikolaos of Myra - Nikolaos the Wonderworker - Nikolaos of Bari Bishop of Myra, Defender of Orthodoxy, Wonderworker
Born: c. 270 AD (the Ides of March) in Patara, Lycia, Asia Minor (modern-day Asia)
Died: December 6, 343 AD in Myra, Lyciah
Honored in: the Roman Catholic Church, Orthodox Christians, various Anglican and Lutheran churches
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Basilica di San Nicola, Bari, Italy
Feast: December 6 (main feast day)
December 19 (some Eastern churches)
9 May (translation of relics)
Attributes: Vested as a Bishop. In Eastern Christianity, wearing an omophorion and holding a Gospel Book. Sometimes shown with Jesus Christ over one shoulder, holding a Gospel Book, and with the Theotokos over the other shoulder, holding an omophorion
Patron Saint of: Children, sailors, fishermen, merchants, broadcasters, the falsely accused, prostitutes, repentant thieves, pharmacists, archers, pawnbrokers

Saint Cyril of Alexandria: The Pillar of Faith; Bishop, Confessor and Doctor of the Church

Born: c. 376
Died: c. 444
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Oriental Orthodox Church
Feast: 18 January and 9 June (Orthodox Churches)
27 June (Coptic Church, Roman Catholic Church- but 9 February in Roman Calendar 1882-1939 - and Lutheran Church)
Attributes: Vested as a Bishop with phelonion and omophorion, and usually with his head covered in the manner of Egyptian monastics (sometimes the head covering has a polystavrion pattern), he usually is depicted holding a Gospel Book or a scroll, with his right hand raised in blessing.
Patronage: Alexandria

(born in 370, died in 444, Optional Memorial on June 27)[1]

Cyril of Alexandria was born in 376 to a family in Alexandria, Egypt. He was the nephew of Theophilus[2], the Patriarch of Alexandria, and in 402 (another source says 403[3]) he went with him to Constantinople when his uncle deposed St. John Chrysostom from the patriarchate of Constantinople. After his uncle died on October 15, 412,[4] he was selected to succeed him, and was consecrated on October 18, 412. Some of his first acts as patriarch were to shut down the churches of the Novatian heretics and to expel the Jews from Alexandria after they had massacred Christians. Nestorius became the Patriarch of Constantinople in the winter of 427-428, and Cyril eventually became aware of the heretical teachings of Nestorius. After a period of correspondence between Nestorius and Cyril, Cyril asked Pope St. Celestine to intervene. Celestine responded that Cyril was to take the responsibility of admonishing Nestorius, and that Nestorius was to be excommunicated and deposed. Emperor Theodosius II summoned a council in Ephesus, and Cyril arrived with fifty of the bishops from his patriarchate, and bishops also came from Palestine, Crete, Greece, and Asia Minor. Nestorius also arrived in town, but the papal legates and Patriarch John of Antioch had not yet arrived when Cyril decided to begin the council on June 22, 431. He summoned Nestorius to appear, and when he did not, he pronounced Nestorius excommunicated and deposed. The papal legates arrived on July 10, 431, and confirmed the sentence of excommunication and deposition, but when Patriarch John of Antioch (who was on friendly terms with Nestorius) arrived with the bishops under him, he set up a council of his own and declared Bishop Memnon of Ephesus and Cyril deposed. Both sides appealed to the emperor, who took the peculiar position of considering all three bishops as deposed and arrested all three of them. The emperor also dissolved the council, but eventually released Cyril. He died in Alexandria, Egypt on either June 9 or June 27 of 444, and was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1882 by Pope Leo XIII.


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

The following two homilies are from Saint Cyril of Alexandria on the text of Luke 18:31-43. These excerpts are in the public domain and appear here courtesy of the Tertullian Project.

Homily 125 on the Gospel of St Luke:

Luke 18:31-34. And He took the twelve, and said to them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all those things shall be accomplished which are written in the prophets about the Son of man. For He shall be delivered up to the heathen, and shall be mocked, and shamefully entreated, and spit upon. And when they have scourged Him, they shall put Him to death: and on the third day He shall rise again. And they understood none of these things, and this word was hid from them, and they knew not what was said.

THE blessed prophet David has spoken one of those things which are of great importance for our benefit, especially as it refers to what is of constant occurrence, so to speak, to men’s minds. “For I was prepared, he says, and was not troubled.” For whatever happens unexpectedly, whenever it is of a serious character, exposes even courageous persons to agitation and alarm, and sometimes to unendurable terrors. But when it has been mentioned before that it will happen, its attack is easily averted. And this, I think, is the meaning of, “I was prepared, and was not troubled.”

For this reason the divinely-inspired Scripture very fitly says to those who would attain to glory by leading a course of holy conduct, “My son, if you draw near to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for temptation. Direct your heart, and endure.” For it does not so speak in order to produce in men an abject slothfulness which will win no reward, but that they may know that by practising patience and endurance, they will overcome the temptations which happen to all who would live virtuously, and prove superior to every thing that could harass them. And so here also the Savior of all, to prepare beforehand the disciples’ minds, tells them that He shall suffer the passion upon the cross, and death in the flesh, as soon as He has gone up to Jerusalem. And he added too. that He should also rise, wiping out the pain, and obliterating the shame of the passion by the greatness of the miracle. For |579 glorious was it, and worthy of God, to be able to sever the bonds of death, and hasten back to life. For testimony is borne Him by the resurrection from the dead, according to the expression of the wise Paul, that He is God and the Son of God.

It is necessary, however, for us to explain what the benefit was which the holy apostles received from having learnt the approach of those things which wore about to happen. By this means then He cuts away beforehand both unseemly thoughts and all occasion for stumbling. How, you ask, or in what way? The blessed disciples then, I answer, had followed Christ, our common Savior, in His circuit through Judaea: they had seen that there was nothing, however ineffable, and worthy of all wonder, which He could not accomplish. For He called from their graves the dead when they had already decayed: to the blind He restored sight: and wrought also other works, worthy of God and glorious. They had heard Him say, “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s knowledge.” And now they who had seen these things, and been emboldened by His words to courageousness, were about to behold Him enduring the ridicule of the Jews, crucified, and made a mock of, and receiving even buffets from the servants. It was possible therefore, that being offended because of these things, they might think thus within themselves, and say: He Who is so great in might, and possesses such godlike authority; Who performs miracles by His nod alone; Whose word is almighty, so that even from their very graves He raises the dead; Who says too that His Father’s providence reaches even to the birds; Who is the Only-begotten, and first-born: how did He not know what was about to happen? Is He too taken in the nets of the foe, and made the prey of His enemies, Who even promised that He would save us?. Is He then disregarded and despised of that Father, without Whose will not even a tiny bird is taken? These things perchance the holy apostles might have said or thought among themselves. And what would have been the consequence? They too, like the rest of the Jewish multitude, would have become unbelieving, and ignorant of the truth. |580

That they might therefore be aware both that He foreknew His passion, and though it was in his power easily to escape, that yet of His own will He advanced to meet it, He told them beforehand what would happen. In saying then, “Behold, we go up to Jerusalem,” He, so to speak, testified urgently and commanded them to remember what had been foretold. And He added necessarily, that all these things had been foretold by the holy prophets. For Isaiah, as in the person of Christ, says; “I have given My back to scourgings, and My cheeks to buffetings: and My face I have not turned away from the shame of spittings.” And again, in another place, He says of Him, “As a sheep He was led to the slaughter, and was silent, as a lamb before its shearer.” And again, “All we like sheep have gone astray: every one has gone astray in his path: and the Lord has delivered Him up because of our sins.” And again the blessed David also in the twenty-first 1 Psalm, painting as it were beforehand the sufferings upon the cross, has set before us Jesus speaking as one that lo! already was hanging upon the tree, “But I am a worm, and not a man: the reproach of men, and a thing rejected of the people. All those that have seen Me, have derided Me: they have spoken with their lips, and shaken their heads; He trusted in the Lord: let Him deliver Him.” For some of the Jews did shake their wicked heads at Him, deriding Him, and saying, “If You are the Son of God, come down now from the cross, and we will believe You.” And again He said, “They parted My garments among them, and upon My vesture they cast the lot.” And again in another place He says of those that crucified Him, “They gave gall for My food, and for My thirst they made Me drink vinegar.”

Of all therefore that was about to happen to Him, nothing was unforetold, God having so ordered it by His Providence for our use, that when the time came for it to happen, no one might be offended. For it was in the power of one Who knew beforehand what was about to happen, to refuse to suffer |581 altogether. No man then compelled Him by force, nor again were the multitudes of the Jews stronger than His might: but He submitted to suffer, because He knew that His passion would be for the salvation of the whole world. For He endured indeed the death of the flesh, but rose again, having trampled upon corruption, and by His resurrection from the dead, He planted in the bodies of mankind the life that springs from Him. For the whole nature of man in Him hastened back to incorruption. And of this the wise Paul bears witness, saying, at one time, “For since by man was death, by man was also the resurrection of the dead.” And again. “For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all live.” Let not those therefore who crucified Him indulge in pride: for He remained not among the dead, seeing that as God He possesses an irresistible might: but rather let them lament for themselves, as being guilty of the crime of murdering the Lord. This the Savior also is found saying to the women who were weeping for Him, “Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for Me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children.” For it was not right that they should lament for Him, Who was about to arise from the dead, destroying thereby corruption, and shaking death’s dominion; but more fitly, on the contrary, would they lament over their own afflictions.

The Savior of all then declared these things beforehand to the holy apostles: “but they, it says, understood not what was said, and the word was hidden from them.” For as yet they knew not accurately what had been before proclaimed by the holy prophets. For even He Who was first among the disciples heard the Savior once say that He should be crucified, and die; and arise: but in that he did not as yet understand the depth of the mystery, he resisted it, saying, “That be far from You, Lord: this shall not be to You.” But he was rebuked for so speaking: because he as yet knew not the purport of the Scripture inspired of God relating thereunto. But when Christ arose from the dead, He opened their eyes, as another of the holy Evangelists wrote; for they wore enlightened, being enriched with the abundant participation of the Spirit. For they who once understood not the words of the prophets, exhorted those who believed in Christ to study |582 their words, saying, “We too have a more sure prophetic word, whereunto you do well to look, as to a lamp that shines in a dark place, until the day shine forth, and the light-star arise in your hearts.” And this has also reached its fulfilment: for we have been enlightened in Christ; by Whom and with Whom to God the Father be praise and dominion, with the Holy Spirit, for ever and ever, Amen. |583

Homily 126 on the Gospel of St Luke:

Luke 18:35-43. And it came to pass, that as He drew near to Jericho, a certain blind man sat by the way side begging: and hearing a multitude passing by, he asked what it meant. And they told him that Jesus of Nazareth passes by. And he cried, saying, Jesus, Son of David, have mercy upon me. And they who went before rebuked him that he should hold his peace. But he cried out so much the more, Son of David, have mercy upon me. And Jesus stood still, and commanded that they should bring him to Him. And when he drew near, He asked him. What do you want me to do for you? And he said, Lord, that I may receive my sight. And Jesus said to him, Receive your sight: your faith has made you live. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Him, glorifying God. And all the people when they saw it gave glory to God.

WHOSOEVER are yet without understanding, and accept not the faith in Christ, may justly have that said to them which was spoken by the voice of David, “Come and see the works of God, the miracles that He has put upon earth.” For He wrought miracles after no human fashion, though He was in appearance a man such as we are; but with godlike dignity rather, for He was God in form like to us, since He changed not from being what He was, as the purport of the passage now read from the Gospels proves to us. “For the Savior, it says, was passing by. And a blind man cried out, saying, Son of David have mercy on me.” Let us then examine the expression of the man who had lost his sight; for it is not a thing to pass by without enquiry, since possibly the examination of what was said will beget something highly advantageous for our benefit.

In what character then does he address to Him his prayer? Is it as to a mere man, according to the babbling of the Jews, who stoned Him with stones, saying in their utter folly, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy; because |584 that You being a man make Thyself God?” But must not that blind man have understood that the sight of the blind cannot be restored by human means, but requires, on the contrary, a divine power, and an authority such as God only possesses? for with God nothing whatsoever is impossible. He drew near to Him therefore as to the Omnipotent God; but how then does he call Him the Son of David? What therefore can one answer to this? The following is perhaps, as I think, the explanation. As he had been brought up in Judaism, and was by birth of that race, the predictions contained in the law and the holy prophets concerning Christ of course had not escaped his knowledge. He had heard them chant that passage in the book of the Psalms: “The Lord has sworn the truth to David, and will not reject it, that of the fruit of your loins will I set upon your throne.” He knew also that the blessed prophet Isaiah had said, “And there shall spring forth a shoot from the root of Jesse, and from his root shall a flower grow up.” And again this as well; “Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bring forth a son, and they shall call His Name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” As one therefore who already believed that the Word, being God, had of His own will submitted to be born in the flesh of the holy virgin, he draws near to Him as to God, and says, “Have mercy upon me, Son of David.” For Christ bears witness that this was his state of mind in offering his supplication, by saying to him, “Your faith has saved you.”

Let those then be ashamed who imagine themselves not to be blind, but who, as the wise Peter says, are “sightless, and have darkness in their mind.” For they divide into two the one Lord Jesus Christ: even Him Who is the Word of the Father, [but 2 Who became a man, and was made flesh. For they deny that He Who was born of the seed of David was really the Son of God the Father: for so, they say, to be born is proper to man only, rejecting in their great ignorance His flesh,] and treating with contempt that precious and ineffable dispensation by which we have been redeemed: and even |585 perhaps foolishly speaking against the Only-begotten, because He emptied Himself, and descended to the measure of human nature, and was obedient to the Father even to death, that by His death in the flesh He might abolish death, might wipe out corruption, and put away the sin of the world. Let such imitate this blind man: for he drew near to Christ the Savior of all as to God, and called Him Lord and Son of the blessed David. He testifies also to His glory by asking of Him an act such as God only can accomplish. Let them wonder also at the constancy wherewith he confessed Him. For there were some who rebuked him when confessing his faith; but he did not give way, nor cease his crying, but bade the ignorance of those who were rebuking him be still. He was justly therefore honoured by Christ: for he was called by Him, and commanded to draw near. Understand from this, my beloved, that faith sets us also in Christ’s presence, and so brings us to God, as for us to be even counted worthy of His words. For when the blind man was brought to Him, He asked him, saying, “What do you want me to do for you? Was his request then unknown to Him? For was it not plain that he sought deliverance from the malady that afflicted him? How can there be any doubt of this? He asked him therefore purposely, that those who were standing by, and accompanying Him, might learn, that it was not money he sought, but rather that regarding Him as God, he asked of Him a divine act, and one appropriate solely to the nature that transcends all.

When then he had declared the nature of his request, saying, “Lord, that I may receive my sight:” then, yes! then the words that Christ spoke were a rebuke of the unbelief of the Jews: for with supreme authority He said, “Receive your sight.” Wonderful is the expression! right worthy of God, and transcending the bounds of human nature! Which of the holy prophets ever spoke ought such as this? or used words of so great authority? For observe that He did not ask of another the power to restore vision to him who was deprived of sight, nor did He perform the divine miracle as the effect of |586 prayer to God, but attributed it rather to His own power, and by His almighty will wrought whatever He would. “Receive, said He, your sight;” and the word was light to him that was blind: for it was the word of Him Who is the true light.

And now that he was delivered from his blindness, did he neglect the duty of loving Christ? Certainly not: “For he followed Him, it says, offering Him glory as to God.” He was set free therefore from double blindness: for not only did he escape from the blindness of the body, but also as well from that of the mind and heart: for he would not have glorified Him as God, had he not possessed spiritual vision. And further, he became the means of others also giving Him glory, for all the people, it says, gave glory [to 3 God. It is plain therefore from this, that great is the guilt of the scribes and Pharisees; for He rebukes them for refusing to accept Him though working miracles, while the multitude glorified Him as God because of the deeds which He wrought. No such praise is offered on their part: yes, rather] the miracle is made an occasion of insult and accusation; for they said that the Lord wrought it by Beelzebub: and by thus acting they became the cause of the destruction of the people under their rule. Therefore the Lord protested against their wickedness by the voice of the prophet, saying; “Alas for the shepherds, who destroy and scatter the sheep of My inheritance.” And again; “The shepherds have become foolish, and have not sought the Lord: therefore did none of the flock understand, and were scattered.”’

Such then was their state: but we are under the rule of the chief Shepherd of all, even Christ: by Whom and with Whom to God the Father be praise and dominion, with the Holy Spirit, for ever and over, Amen. |587

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894


ST. CYRIL became Patriarch of Alexandria in 412. Having at first thrown himself with ardor into the party politics of the place, God called him to a nobler conflict. In 428, Nestorius, Bishop of Constantinople, began to deny the unity of Person in Christ, and to refuse to the Blessed Virgin the title of "Mother of God." He was strongly supported by disciples and friends throughout the East. As the assertion of the divine maternity of Our Lady was necessary to the integrity of the doctrine of the Incarnation, so, with St. Cyril, devotion to the Mother was the necessary complement of his devotion to the Son. St. Cyril, after expostulating in vain, accused Nestorius to Pope Celestine. The Pope commanded retraction, under pain of separation from the Church, and intrusted St. Cyril with the conduct of the proceedings. The appointed day, June 7, 431, found Nestorius and Cyril at Ephesus, with over 200 bishops. After waiting twelve days in vain for the Syrian bishops, the council with Cyril tried Nestorius, and deposed him from his see. Upon this the Syrians and Nestorians excommunicated St. Cyril, and complained of him to the emperor as a peace-breaker. Imprisoned and threatened with banishment, the Saint rejoiced to confess Christ by suffering. In time it was recognized that St. Cyril was right, and with him the Church triumphed. Forgetting his wrongs, and careless of controversial punctilio, Cyril then reconciled himself with all who would consent to hold the doctrine of the Incarnation intact. He died in 444.

Reflection.—The Incarnation is the mystery of God's dwelling within us, and therefore should be the dearest object of our contemplation. It was the passion of St. Cyril's life; for it he underwent toil and persecution, and willingly sacrificed credit and friends.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint Cyril of Jerusalem: Bishop, Confessor and Doctor of the Church

Born: ca. 313 possibly near Caesarea Maritima, Syria Palaestina (Modern-day Israel)
Died: 386 in Jerusalem, Syria Palaestina
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church,
Oriental Orthodox Church
Anglican Communion
Feast: March 18

(born in 315, died in 386, Optional Memorial is on March 18)[1][2]

Cyril of Jerusalem was born about the year 315. Acacius, bishop of Caesarea, exiled him in 357, but Acacius himself was deposed at the Council of Selucia in 359. The emperor then exiled Cyril again in 360, but Julian allowed him to return in 361. Acacius eventually died, and Cyril's nephew Gelasius replaced Acacius as bishop of Caesarea.[3] In 367 he was forced to leave again under the rule of Emperor Valens, but and this period ended when Valens was killed in 378. Cyril went to the Council of Constantinople in 381, and the Emperor Theodosius ordered that observance of the Nicene faith become law in the Roman Empire. The precise date of his death is not certain, but it is quite probable that he died on March 18, 386.[4]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. St. Joseph Weekday Missal, Volume I

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894


CYRIL was born at or near the city of Jerusalem, about the year 315. He was ordained priest by St. Maximus, who gave him the important charge of instructing and preparing the candidates for Baptism. This charge he held for several years, and we still have one series of his instructions, given in the year 347 or 318. They are of singular interest as being the earliest record of the systematic teaching of the Church on the creed and sacraments, and as having been given in the church built by Constantine on Mount Calvary. They are solid, simple, profound; saturated with Holy Scripture; exact, precise, and terse; and, as a witness and exposition of the Catholic faith, invaluable. On the death of St. Maximus, Cyril was chosen Bishop of Jerusalem. At the beginning of his episcopate a cross was seen in the air reaching from Mount Calvary to Mount Olivet, and so bright that it shone at noonday. St. Cyril gave an account of it to the emperor; and the faithful regarded it as a presage of victory over the Arian heretics. While Cyril was bishop, the apostate Julian resolved to falsify the words of Our Lord by rebuilding the Temple at Jerusalem. He employed the power and resources of a Roman emperor; the Jews thronged enthusiastically to him and gave munificently. But Cyril was unmoved. " The word of God abides," he said; "one stone shall not be laid on another." When the attempt was made, a heathen writer tells us that horrible flames came forth from the earth, rendering the place inaccessible to the scorched and scared workmen. The attempt was made again and again, and then abandoned in despair. Soon after, the emperor perished miserably in a war against the Persians, and the Church had rest. Like the other great bishops of his time, Cyril was persecuted, and driven once and again from his see; but on the death of the Arian Emperor Valens he returned to Jerusalem. He was present at the second General Council at Constantinople, and died in peace in 386, after a troubled episcopate of thirty-five years.

Reflection.—"As a stout staff," says St. John Chrysostom, "supports the trembling limbs of a feeble old man, so does faith sustain our vacillating mind, lest it be tossed about by sinful hesitation and perplexity."
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

(born in 295, died in 373, Memorial on May 2)
Athanasius was consecrated to the episcopate in 328. He was first exiled for nearly two and a half years during the reign of Emperor Conatantine I. About three weeks after Constantine I's death, his eldest son Constantine invited Athanasius to return to the see of Alexandria. He was exiled a second time during the reign of Emperor Constantius. Athanasius was exiled a third time in 356 for a period of about six years. Athanasius returned to Alexandria on February 22, 362. Athanasius died on May 2, 373.[1]

Born: around c. 296-298 in Alexandria, Roman Egypt
Died: 2 May 373 (aged 77) in Alexandria, Roman Egypt
Honored in: Roman Catholicism, Oriental Orthodoxy, Eastern Orthodoxy, Lutheranism, Anglican Communion, and among the Continuing Anglican Movement
Major shrine: Saint Mark Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Cairo, Egypt
Feast: 15 May = 7 Pashons, 89 A.M. (Coptic Orthodox)
2 May (Western Christianity)
18 January (Eastern Orthodox Church)
Attributes: Bishop arguing with a pagan; bishop holding an open book; bishop standing over a defeated heretic


Saint Ephrem of Syria - Deacon, Confessor and Doctor of the Church; Venerable Father

Born: c. 306 in Nisibis (modern-day Turkey)
Died: 9 June 373 in Edessa (modern-day Turkey)
Honored in: All Christianity, Doctor of the Church
Feast: 28 January (Eastern Orthodox Church, Eastern Catholic Churches)
7th Saturday before Easter (Syriac Orthodox Church)
June 9 (Roman Catholic Church)
June 18 (Maronite Church)
Attributes: Vine and scroll, deacon's vestments and thurible; with Saint Basil the Great; composing hymns with a lyre
Patronage: Spiritual directors and spiritual leaders

Ephrem the Syrian (Aramaic / Syriac: ܐܦܪܝܡ ܣܘܪܝܝܐ, Mor/Mar Afrêm Sûryāyâ; Greek: Ἐφραίμ ὁ Σῦρος; Latin: Ephraem Syrus; ca. 306 – 373) was a Syriac and a prolific Syriac-language hymnographer and theologian of the 4th century. He is venerated by Christians throughout the world as a saint, especially in the Syriac Orthodox Church.

(born about 306, died in 373, Optional Memorial on June 9)[1]

Ephrem[2] was born about the year 306 in Nisibis, Mesopotamia,[3] while it was still part of the Roman Empire. He was the son of a pagan priest. Through the influence of St. James of Nisibis,[4] the city's first bishop,[5], he was baptised as a Christian when he was eighteen[6]. He became a deacon, and apparently was influential in the repulse of the Persian armies of the pagan Shapur II who besieged the city in 338, 346, and 350. One biographer relates that on one occasion he brought a cloud of flies and mosquitoes on the army and forced it to withdraw, and he is also attributed with relieving the city in the 350 by his prayers,[7] when an attempt of the Persian engineers to flood the city backfired and the inhabitants of the city drove them away. In 363 the Emperor Jovian ceded Nisibis, Singara, and the four satrapies east of the Tigris to Shapur II in exchange for an unmolested retreat of the Roman army[8], and the majority of the city's Christian population abandoned the city before the arrival of the Persians, who were severely persecuting Christians in their empire. Ephrem and most of the Christian populace eventually settled at Edessa, where Ephrem spent the rest of his life as a hermit. He died on June 9, 373, at Edessa, and is buried at the Der Serkis monastery to the west of Edessa. He was declared a Doctor of the Church on October 5, 1920 by Pope Benedict XV[9].


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. Also spelled Ephraem or Ephraim
  6. Catholic Encyclopedia mentions at least one other source said twenty-eight

Saint Ephrem of Syria - Deacon, Confessor and Doctor of the Church; Venerable Father

Prayer of Saint Ephrem

Κύριε καὶ Δέσποτα τῆς ζωῆς μου, πνεῦμα ἀργίας, περιεργίας, φιλαρχίας, καὶ ἀργολογίας μή μοι δῷς.,
Πνεῦμα δὲ σωφροσύνης, ταπεινοφροσύνης, ὑπομονῆς, καὶ ἀγάπης χάρισαί μοι τῷ σῷ δούλῳ.
Ναί, Κύριε Βασιλεῦ, δώρησαι μοι τοῦ ὁρᾶν τὰ ἐμὰ πταίσματα, καὶ μὴ κατακρίνειν τὸν ἀδελφόν μου, ὅτι εὐλογητὸς εἶ, εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων. Ἀμήν.
In English, this is:
O Lord and Master of my life, give me not the spirit of sloth, idle curiosity (meddling), lust for power and idle talk.
But grant unto me, Thy servant, a spirit of chastity (integrity), humility, patience and love.
Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see mine own faults and not to judge my brother. For blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen.
The Greek version is the standard form of the prayer, to be found in the Greek Orthodox Church.

Born: 316 AD in Savaria, Diocese of Pannonia (modern-day Hungary)

Died: November 8, 397 in Candes, Gaul (modern-day France)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Christianity
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Feast: November 11 (Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion)
November 12 (Eastern Orthodox Church)
Attributes: man on horseback sharing his cloak with a begger; man cutting cloak in half; globe of fire; goose
Patronage: against poverty; against alcoholism; Bahrija, Malta; beggars; Beli Manastir; Archdiocese of Bratislava; Buenos Aires; Burgenland; cavalry; Church Lads' and Church Girls' Brigade; Dieburg; Edingen equestrians; Foiano della Chiana; France; geese; horses; hotel-keepers; innkeepers; Kortrijk; diocese of Mainz; Montemagno; Olpe; Orense; Pietrasanta; Pontifical Swiss Guards; quartermasters; reformed alcoholics; riders; Taal, Batangas; Bocaue, Bulacan; Diocese of Rottenburg-Stuttgart; soldiers; tailors; Utrecht; vintners; Virje; wine growers; wine makers; Wissmannsdorf

(born about 316, died in 397, Memorial on November 11)[1]

Martin was born in Sabaria about 316. Martin went to Italy and joined the Roman Army while an adolescent. He went to Poiters in 361 to see St. Hilary. He was consecrated a bishop on July 4, ______. He died in Touraine about 397.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Saint Ambrose, Bishop

Appointed: 374 AD
Reign ended: April 4, 397
Predecessor: Auxentius
Successor: Simplician
Consecration: December 7, 374
Born: c. 340 AD in Augusta Treverorum, Gallia Belgica, Roman Empire (present-day Germany)
Died: April 4, 397 in Mediolanum, Italia annonaria, Roman Empire (present-day Italy)
Feast day: December 7
Venerated in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Oriental Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Title as Saint: Confessor and Doctor of the Church
Attributes: Beehive, a child, whip, bones
Patronage: bee keepers; bees; candle makers; domestic animals; French Commissariat; learning; Milan; students; wax refiners
Shrines: Basilica of Sant'Ambrogio

(born about 340, died April 4, 397, Memorial on December 7)[1] : Ambrose was the third and youngest child of Ambrosius, Prefect of Gallia (he had a sister named Marcellina and a brother named Satyrus). He was consecrated bishop of Milan on December 7, 374. He died April 4, 397.

Born: 329 or 330 in Caesarea, Cappadocia,

Died: January 1, 379 in Caesarea, Cappadocia
Honored in: Eastern and Western Christianity
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Feast: January 1[1][2] and January 30[3][4] (Eastern Orthodox Churches)
January 2 (Roman Catholic Church; Anglican Church)
January 15 / January 16 (leap year) (Coptic Orthodox Church and Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church)
June 14 (General Roman Calendar from 13th century to 1969; Episcopal Church; Lutheran Church)
Attributes: vested as bishop, wearing omophorion, holding a Gospel Book or scroll. St. Basil is depicted in icons as thin and ascetic with a long, tapering black beard.
Patronage: Russia, Cappadocia, Hospital administrators, Reformers, Monks, Education, Exorcism, Liturgists

(born in 330, died on January 1, 379, Memorial on January 2)

Basil the Great was born in the year 329[2] in Caesarea, Cappadocia, Asia Minor. He was the son of St. Basil the Elder and Emmelia, the grandson of his paternal grandmother St. Macrina the Elder, and the brother of St. Gregory of Nyssa, St Macrina the Younger,[3] and St. Peter of Sebastea.[4] His father died when he was young, and the family moved to live with St. Macrina the Elder at her estate in Pontus, Asia Minor. He was educated first in Caesarea, then in Constantinople, and finally in Athens. After meeting with Bishop Dianius of Caesarea, Basil visited the monks of Egypt, Palestine, Coele-Syria, and Mesopotamia. He was ordained a priest, and in 363 he was appointed to an administrative position in the diocese by its new bishop, Eusebius. He became the bishop of Caesarea in 370, and died on January 1, 379.[5][6]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. says the year 330
  6. Catholic-Forum Saints Index places it at on June 14, 379
(also born about 330, died on January 25 of either 389 or 390, Memorial on January 2)

Saint Gregory of Nazianzus (also referred to as Gregory the Theologian or Gregory Nazianzen)
Theologian, Doctor of the Church, Great Hierarch, Cappadocian Father, Ecumenical Teacher
Born: AD 329 in Arianzum, Cappadocia
Died: January 25, 389 in Arianzum, Cappadocia
Honored in: Eastern Christianity, Western Christianity and Oriental Orthodoxy
Canonized: Pre-congregation
Major shrine: Patriarchal Cathedral of St. George in the Fanar
Feast: Eastern Orthodox Church: January 25 (primary feast day)
January 30 (Three Great Hierarchs)
Roman Catholic Church: January 2 (c. 1500-1969 May 9)
Episcopal Church (USA): May 9
Attributes: Vested as a bishop, wearing an omophorion; holding a Gospel Book or scroll. Iconographically, he is depicted as balding with a bushy white beard.

Born: c. 347 in Antioch

Died: 14 September 407 in Comana in Pontus
Honored in: Eastern Orthodoxy
Roman Catholicism
Eastern Catholic Churches
Oriental Orthodoxy
Feast: Eastern Orthodoxy
13 November (Accession to the archbishopric of Constantinople)
27 January (Translation of Relics)
30 January (Three Holy Hierarchs)
Western Christianity
13 September (Repose—transferred from 14 September)
Attributes: Vested as a Bishop, holding a Gospel Book or scroll, right hand raised in blessing. He is depicted as emaciated from fasting, a high forehead, balding with dark hair and small beard. Symbols: beehive, a white dove, a pan, chalice on a bible, pen and inkhorn
Patronage: Constantinople, education, epilepsy, lecturers, orators, preachers

(born about 349, died on September 14, 407, Memorial on September 13)[1]

John Chrysostom was born about the year 347[2] in the city of Antioch in Asia Minor.[3] In 374 he began to live as an anchorite, and he did it for two years, after which his health compelled him to return to Antioch.[4] He was ordained a priest in 386 by Bishop Flavian of Antioch. On September 27, 397, Patriarch Nectarius of Constantinople died, and after several months, the Emperor ordered the Prefect of Antioch to bring John Chrysostom outside the town secretly and to send him to Constantinople immediately. John Chrysostom arrived to find that he was appointed Patriarch of Constantinople, and was consecrated a bishop by Patriarch Theophilus of Alexandria on February 26, 398. As a bishop, he terminated the frequent banquets of the episcopal household, reduced its expenditures, and lived much like he had as a priest and monk. He initiated reforms and made the monks remain in monasteries rather than roam the streets undisciplined. Patriarch Theophilus was summoned by the Emperor to appear at a synod to apologize for his false accusations against several Egyptian monks, but when he arrived in June of 403 he made alliances with Chrysostom's enemies, and when Chrysostom arrived to convene the synod, he found the bishops intended to prosecute him instead. Chrysostom left, and the synod declared him deposed. He was exiled, only to be recalled back by the Empress. After he returned, the Empress became upset with him again because he complained to the Prefect of Constantinople about a statue erected outside the cathedral. She told Theodosius to come depose him again, but Theododius replied that Chrysostom should not have returned to his see in the first place because of an article mandated by an Arian synod in 341. [5] Chrysostom was exiled again on June 24, 404. The pope and the Italian bishops declared their support of Chrysostom, and broke off communion with the Patriarchs of Alexandria, Antioch, and Constantinople until they repented. Nevertheless, his enemies had him exiled further to Pythius, and he died on the way on September 14, 407.[6]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. says about the year 344
  4. One source incorrectly says this return to Antioch was in 386, which would mean he lived as an anchorite for twelve years

Saint John Chrysostom
East: Great Hierarch and Ecumenical Teacher
West: Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Born: c. 349. in Antioch
Died: 14 September 407 in Comana in Pontus
Honored in: Anglicanism
Eastern Catholic Churches
Eastern Orthodoxy
Oriental Orthodoxy
Roman Catholicism
Feast: Eastern Orthodoxy: November 13 (Repose—transferred from 14 September)
January 27 (Translation of Relics)
January 30 (Three Holy Hierarchs) Western Christianity
September 13 (Repose—transferred from 14 September)
Attributes: Vested as a Bishop, holding a Gospel Book or scroll, right hand raised in blessing. He is depicted as emaciated from fasting, a high forehead, balding with dark hair and small beard. Symbols: beehive, a white dove, a pan, chalice on a bible, pen and inkhorn
Patron Saint of: Constantinople, education, epilepsy, lecturers, orators, preachers


January 27 — ST. JOHN CHRYSOSTOM. In 1894, this was his memorial day.
September 13 is the day his memorial is currently celebrated.

ST. JOHN was born at Antioch in 344. In order to break with a world which admired and courted him, he in 374 retired for six years to a neighboring mountain. Having thus acquired the art of Christian silence, he returned to Antioch, and there labored as priest, until he was ordained Bishop of Constantinople in 398. The effect of his sermons was everywhere marvellous. He was very urgent that his people should frequent the holy sacrifice, and in order to remove all excuse he abbreviated the long Liturgy until then in use. St. Nilus relates that St. John Chrysostom was wont to see, when the priest began the holy sacrifice, "many of the blessed ones coming down from heaven in shining garments, and with bare feet, eyes intent, and bowed heads, in utter stillness and silence, assisting at the consummation of the tremendous mystery." Beloved as he was in Constantinople, his denunciations of vice made him numerous enemies. In 403 these procured his banishment; and although he was almost immediately recalled, it was not more than a reprieve. In 404 he was banished to Cucusus in the deserts of Taurus. In 407 he was wearing out, but his enemies were impatient. They hurried him off to Pytius on the Euxine, a rough journey of nigh 400 miles. He was assiduously exposed to every hardship, cold, wet, and semi-starvation, but nothing could overcome his cheerfulness and his consideration for others. On the journey his sickness increased, and he was warned that his end was nigh. Thereupon, exchanging his travel-stained clothes for white garments, he received Viaticum, and with his customary words, "Glory be to God for all things. Amen," passed to Christ.

Reflection.—We should try to understand that the most productive work in the whole day, both for time and eternity, is that involved in hearing Mass. St. John Chrysostom felt this so keenly that he allowed no consideration of venerable usage to interfere with the easiness of hearing Mass.
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Born: Tagaste, Numidia, Roman Empire

Died: 387 in Ostia, Italy, Roman Empire
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Anglican Communion, and Lutheranism
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Basilica of Sant'Agostino, Rome, Italy
Feast: 27 August (Roman Catholic Church, Church of England, Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod)
4 May (pre-1969 General Roman Calendar, Eastern Orthodox Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Episcopal Church in the United States of America)
Patronage: Difficult marriages, disappointing children, victims of adultery or unfaithfulness, victims of (verbal) abuse, and conversion of relatives, Manaoag, Pangasinan, Philippines. Santa Monica, California, United States.

Mother of Saint Augustine (born in 331, died in 387, Memorial on August 27)[1]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
(born in 354, died in 430, Memorial on August 28)[1]
Augustine was born on November 13, 354 in Tagaste. He was the son of Patricus (a pagan, and a member of the curial class) and Saint Monica. He and his son Adeodatus were baptized by Saint Ambrose in 387. Augustine was ordained by Valerius, Bishop of Hippo, in Hippo in 391. He was consecrated a bishop on __________. He died in Hippo on August 28, 430.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Saint Augustine of Hippo - Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church
(Bishop; Theologian; Philosopher)
Born: November 13, 354 in Thagaste, Numidia (now Souk Ahras, Algeria)
Died: August 28, 430 (aged 75) in Hippo Regius, Numidia (now modern-day Annaba, Algeria)
Honored in: Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodoxy
Oriental Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Aglipayan Church
Major shrine: San Pietro in Ciel d'Oro, Pavia, Italy
Feast: August 28 (Western Christianity)
June 15 (Eastern Christianity)
Attributes: child; dove; pen; shell, pierced heart, holding book with a small church, bishop's staff, mitre
Patronage: brewers; printers; theologians
Bridgeport, Connecticut; Cagayan de Oro, Philippines;
Influences: Saint Monica, Plotinus, Ambrose, Anthony the Great, Saint Paul, Plato, Aristotle, Mani, Cicero, Virgil
Influenced: Bernard of Clairvaux, Thomas Aquinas, John Calvin, Martin Luther, René Descartes, Cornelius Jansen, Nicolas Malebranche, Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Hannah Arendt, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Antonio Negri, Jean-Paul Sartre, Saint Bonaventure, Hugh of Saint Victor, Modern Phenomenology and Hermeneutics
Major work(s): Confessions of St. Augustine
City of God
On Christian Doctrine
Era: Ancient/Medieval
Region: West
Nationality: Roman
Tradition or movement: Platonism, Neoplatonism, Christian philosophy, Stoicism

Born: c. 347 in Stridon (possibly Strido Dalmatiae, on the border of Dalmatia and Pannonia)

Died: 420 in Bethlehem, Palaestina Prima
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Oriental Orthodoxy
Aglipayan Church
Major shrine: Basilica of Saint Mary Major, Rome, Italy
Feast: 30 September (Western Christianity)
15 June (Eastern Christianity)
Attributes: lion, cardinal attire, cross, skull, trumpet, owl, books and writing material
Patronage: archeologists; archivists; Bible scholars; librarians; libraries; school children; students; translators
Major work(s): The Vulgate
De viris illustribus

author of the Vulgate Bible (born about 340, died in 420, Memorial on September 30)[1]

Jerome was born in the mid-300's in Stridon. He was baptized in Rome. He was ordained in Antioch. He died in Bethlehem on September 30, 420.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
founder of the Benedictine Order (born about 480, died March 21, 547, Memorial on July 11)[1]
Benedict was born in Nursia about the year 480. His sister was Saint Scholastica. Benedict left Rome behind and went to Enfide, and later Subiaco. He lived as a hermit for three years. A community of monks asked Benedict to come be their abbot after the previous abbot had died. He consented, but the monks were immoral, and, after an attempt to poison Benedict, Benedict returned to his hermitage. He later founded monasteries of his own. After encountering hostility from the locals, he left for Monte Cassino, where he founded another monastery. He was visited by Totila, King of the Goths, in 543. Benedict died at Monte Cassino.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Overall View from Various Sources

Saint Benedict, Abbot, Patron of Europe
Founder of Western Monasticism — 480-550 A.D. - (his death is also listed in other sources as being between 543 and 550 A.D.)
Feast: July 11
Born: 480 A.D. in Nusia (Italian: Norcia) (Umbria, Italy)
Died: 547 A.D. in Monte Cassino - (his death is also listed in other sources as being between 543 and 550 A.D.)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Eastern Orthodoxy
Lutheran Church
Canonized: 1220, Rome by Pope Honorius III
Major shrine: Monte Cassino Abbey, with his burial
Saint-Benoît-sur-Loire, near Orléans, France
Sacro Speco, at Subiaco, Italy
Feast: July 11 (Roman Catholic calendar of Saints), (Anglican Communion)
March 14 (Byzantine Rite)
March 21 (on local calendars and in the General Roman Calendar of 1962)
Attributes - Bell
-Broken tray
-Broken cup and serpent representing poison
-Broken utensil
-Man in a Benedictine cowl holding Benedict's rule or a rod of discipline
Patronage - Against poison
-Against witchcraft
-Agricultural workers
-Civil engineers
-Dying people
-Gall stones
-Heerdt (Germany)
-the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest
-Inflammatory diseases
-Italian architects
-Kidney disease
-Nettle rash
-Norcia (Italy)
-People in religious orders
-Servants who have broken their master's belongings

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

March 21. — ST. BENEDICT, Abbot. - His feast had been on March 21, but is now July 11.

ST. BENEDICT, blessed by grace and in name, was born of a noble Italian family about 480. When a boy he was sent to Rome, and there placed in the public schools. Scared by the licentiousness of the Roman youth, he fled to the desert mountains of Subiaco, and was directed by the Holy Spirit into a cave, deep, craggy, and almost inaccessible. He lived there for three years, unknown to any one save the holy monk Romanus, who clothed him with the monastic habit and brought him food. But the fame of his sanctity soon gathered disciples round him. The rigor of his rule, however, drew on him the hatred of some of the monks, and one of them mixed poison with the abbot's drink; but when the Saint made the sign of the cross on the poisoned bowl, it broke and fell in pieces to the ground. After he had built twelve monasteries at Subiaco, he removed to Monte Casino, where he founded an abbey in which he wrote his rule and lived until death. By prayer he did all things: wrought miracles, saw visions, and prophesied. A peasant, whose boy had just died, ran in anguish to St. Benedict, crying out, "Give me back my son!" The monks joined the poor man in his entreaties; but the Saint replied, "Such miracles are not for us to work, but for the blessed apostles. Why will you lay upon me a burden which my weakness cannot bear? " Moved at length by compassion he knelt down and, prostrating himself upon the body of the child, prayed earnestly. Then rising, he cried out, "Behold not, O Lord, my sins, but the faith of this man, who desireth the life of his son, and restore to the body that soul which Thou hast taken away." Hardly had he spoken when the child's body began to tremble, and taking it by the hand he restored it alive to its father. Six days before his death he ordered his grave to be opened, and fell ill of a fever. On the sixth day he requested to be borne into the chapel, and, having received the body and blood of Christ, with hands uplifted, and leaning on one of his disciples, he calmly expired in prayer on the 21st of March, 543. (His death is also listed in other sources as being between 543 and 550 A.D.)

Reflection.—The Saints never feared to undertake any work, however arduous, for God, because, distrusting self, they relied for assistance and support wholly upon prayer.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint Scholastica - Virgin

Born: c. 480 AD in Nursia, Umbria, Italy
Died: 10 February 547 near Monte Cassino
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Feast: 10 February
Attributes: nun with crozier and crucifix; nun with dove flying from her mouth[1]
Patronage: convulsive children; nuns; invoked against storms and rain; Le Mans[1]

(born about 480, died about 547, Memorial on February 10)[1]

Scholastica was born in the year 480 in Nursia,[2] and was the twin sister of St. Benedict of Nursia. Some time after her brother St. Benedict founded the monastery on Monte Cassino, she founded a convent for nuns at Plombariola, about five miles away from her brother's monastery.[3] She died in 543, and was buried in the tomb St. Benedict had prepared for himself.[4]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. The conclusion that she was born in Nursia is based on the fact that her twin brother, St. Benedict, was born in Nursia.

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

February 10 — ST. SCHOLASTICA, Abbess.

OF this Saint but little is known on earth, save that she was the sister of the great patriarch St. Benedict, and that, under his direction, she founded and governed a numerous community near Monte Casino. St. Gregory sums up her life by saying that she devoted herself to God from her childhood, and that her pure soul went to God in the likeness of a dove, as if to show that her life had been enriched with the fullest gifts of the Holy Spirit. Her brother was accustomed to visit her every year, for "she could not be sated or wearied with the words of grace which flowed from his lips." On his last visit, after a day passed in spiritual converse, the Saint, knowing that her end was near, said, "My brother, leave me not, I pray you, this night, but discourse with me till dawn on the bliss of those who see God in heaven." St. Benedict would not, break his rule at the bidding of natural affection; and then the Saint bowed her head on her hands and prayed; and there arose a storm so violent that St. Benedict could not return to his monastery, and they passed the night in heavenly conversation. Three days later St. Benedict saw in a vision the soul of his sister going up in the likeness of a dove into heaven. Then he gave thanks to God for the graces He had given her, and for the glory which had crowned them. When she died, St. Benedict, her spiritual daughters, and the monks sent by St. Benedict mingled their tears and prayed, "Alas! alas! dearest mother, to whom dost thou leave us now? Pray for us to Jesus, to Whom thou art gone." They then devoutly celebrated holy Mass, "commending her soul to God;" and her body was borne to Monte Casino, and laid by her brother in the tomb he had prepared for himself." And they bewailed her many days;" and St. Benedict said, "Weep not, sisters and brothers; for assuredly Jesus has taken her before us to be our aid and defence against all our enemies, that we may stand in the evil day and be in all things perfect." She died about the year 543.

Reflection.--Our relatives must be loved in and for God; otherwise the purest affection becomes inordinate and is so much taken from Him.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Born: 1090 in Fontaine-lès-Dijon, France

Died: August 20, 1153 (aged 62–63) in Clairvaux, France
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Church, Lutheran Church
Canonized: January 18, 1174, Rome by Pope Alexander III
Major shrine: Ville-sous-la-Ferté, religious vocations, preachers.
Feast: August 20
Attributes: White Cistercian habit, devil on a chain, white dog
Patronage: Cistercians, Burgundy, beekeepers, candlemakers, Gibraltar, Queens' College, Cambridge, Speyer Cathedral, Knights Templar

(born in 1090, died in 1153, Memorial on August 20)[1]

Bernard was born in 1090 at Fontaines-les-Dijon, Burgundy, France. He was the third child of Lord Tescelin of Fontaines and Aleth of Montbard. In 1113,[2] when he was twenty-two years old, he, four of his brothers, and twenty-five of his friends of noble birth[3][4] entered the Cistercian monastery at Cîteaux. Bernard made his profession in 1114. In 1115, he was sent by St. Stephen, the third abbot of Cîteaux, to found a monastery at the Vallée d'Absinthe in the Diocee of Langres with twelve other monks to accompany him. Bernard named the new monastery Claire Vallée on June 25, 1115, and the monastery came to be known as Clairvaux. His father and his remaining brother(s)[5] joined the monastery, and many others flocked to join the monastery too. Because Clairvaux could no longer house all those who wanted to join, the Monastery of the Three Fountains was founded in the Diocese of Châlons in 1118. He died on August 20, 1153,[6][7] in Clairvaux.


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  4. Catholic Encyclopedia and say he came with thirty other nobles, but they do not mention the makeup of the group.
  5. Catholic-Forum Patron Saints index says one more brother joined; the Catholic Encyclopedia says all his brothers joined the monastery, which infers that two joined.
  7. Catholic Encyclopedia says August 21, 1153.

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux - Abbot, Confessor, and Doctor of the Church Born: 1090 in Fontaine-lès-Dijon, France
Died: August 20, 1153 (aged 62–63) in Clairvaux, France
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Church, Lutheran Church
Canonized: January 18, 1174, Rome by Pope Alexander III
Major shrine: Ville-sous-la-Ferté
Feast: August 20
Patronage: Cistercians, Burgundy, beekeepers, candlemakers, Gibraltar, Queens' College, Cambridge, Speyer Cathedral, Knights Templar

Honored in: Roman Catholic Church

Eastern Orthodoxy
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church />Church of Ireland<br
Major shrine: Glastonbury Abbey; Armagh
Feast: 17 March (Saint Patrick's Day)
Patronage: Ireland, Nigeria, Montserrat, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York, Boston, Rolla, Missouri (USA), Loíza, Murcia (Spain), engineers, paralegals, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne; invoked against snakes, sins, witchcraft

(born about 385, died in 461, Optional Memorial on March 17)[1][2]

Patrick was born in 387 in Kilpatrick, Scotland. He was the son of Calphurnius and Conchessa. When Patrick was sixteen he was captured and sold as a slave in Ireland to Milchu, who was a chieftain and also a high priest of the Druids. He escaped after about six years. He was under the guidance of Saint Germain for several years, and was ordained a priest by him. At the suggestion of Saint Germain, Pope Saint Celestine I entrusted Patrick with the conversion of the Irish, a task originally assigned to Palladius. Patrick was consecrated a bishop by Saint Maximus in Turin, and arrived in Ireland in the summer of 433. Patrick decided to go to Dalriada to pay his ransom to his former master Milchu. He was intercepted on the way by Dichu, another chieftain, who wanted to slay Patrick, but Dichu's arm, sword in hand, was rendered immovable until Dichu promised his obedience to Patrick. Patrick later found that Milchu, aware of Patrick's coming, had gathered his belongings into his dwelling, set it on fire, and committed suicide. Dichu informed patrick of a pagan feast at Tara at which the Supreme Monarch of Ireland, Leoghaire, would be present. On his way there, Patrick stayed at the house of the chieftain Secsnen, who converted to Christianity and whose son Benen became a disciple of Patrick's. On the eve of Easter Patrick lit the Pascal Fire on the hill of Slane, on the other side of the valley from Tara, and the Druids were unable to extinguish it. In th morning Patrick and his companions advanced in a procession to Tara. The Druids summoned a dark cloud to cover the hill, but when challenged by Patrick to remove it they were unable to do so, after which Patrick prayed and light was restored. The Arch-Druid Lochru lifted himself high into the sky, but when Patrick prayer Lochru fell to his death. In the end, Leoghaire gave Patrick the freedom to preach thoughout all of Ireland. Patrick went to Tailten and baptized Leoghaire's brother Conall on April 5. He went to Killala and baptized about 12,000 persons. Patrick baptized two sons of the King of Leinster at Naas. Patrick's charioteer Odhran discovered a plot on the part of a local chieftain, Crom Cruach, to kill Patrick, so Odhran persuaded Patrick to take the reins of the chariot while Odhran took the place of honor. Unaware of either the plot or Odhran's true intentions, Patrick took the reins, and shortly thereafter Odhran was slain by a lance intended to kill Patrick. Patrick went to Munster, and while in the kingdom of Munster he baptised Aengus, son of the King of Munster. During the ceremony Patrick accidentally pierced the foot of Aengus with his crosier, which Aengus thought might be part of the ceremony. It is recorded that Patrick ordained at least 350 bishops before he died. Patrick died on March 17, 493 [3]at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland. [4]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. St. Joseph Weekday Missal, Volume I
  3. A editor's note in The Catholic Encyclopedia says some other sources say either 460 or 461.

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

March 17 — ST. PATRICK, Bishop, Apostle of Ireland.

IF the virtue of children reflects an honor on their parents, much more justly is the name of St. Patrick rendered illustrious by the innumerable lights of sanctity with which the Church of Ireland shone during many ages, and by the colonies of Saints with which it peopled many foreign countries; for, under God, its inhabitants derived from their glorious apostle the streams of that eminent sanctity by which they were long conspicuous to the whole world. St. Patrick was born towards the close of the fourth century, in a village called Bonaven Taberniæ, which seems to be the town of Kilpatrick, on the mouth of the river Clyde, in Scotland, between Dumbarton and Glasgow. He calls himself both a Briton and a Roman, or of a mixed extraction, and says his father was of a good family named Calphurnius, and a denizen of a neighboring city of the Romans, who not long after abandoned Britain, in 409. Some writers call his mother Conchessa, and say she was niece to St. Martin of Tours.

In his sixteenth year he was carried into captivity by certain barbarians, who took him into Ireland, where he was obliged to keep cattle on the mountains and in the forests, in hunger and nakedness, amidst snow, rain, and ice. Whilst he lived in this suffering condition, God had pity on his soul, and quickened him to a sense of his duty by the impulse of a strong interior grace. The young man had recourse to Him with his whole heart in fervent prayer and fasting; and from that time faith and the love of God acquired continually new strength in his tender soul. After six months spent in slavery under the same master, St. Patrick was admonished by God in a dream to return to his own country, and informed that a ship was then ready to sail thither. He went at once to the sea-coast, though at a great distance, and found the vessel; but could not obtain his passage, probably for want of money. The Saint returned towards his hut, praying as he went; but the sailors, though pagans, called him back and took him on board. After three days’ sail they made land, but wandered twenty-seven days through deserts, and were a long while distressed for want of provisions, finding nothing to eat. Patrick had often spoken to the company on the infinite power of God; they therefore asked him why he did not pray for relief. Animated by a strong faith, he assured them that if they would address themselves with their whole hearts to the true God He would hear and succor them. They did so, and on the same day met with a herd of swine. From that time provisions never failed them, till on the twenty-seventh day they came info a country that was cultivated and inhabited.

Some years afterwards he was again led captive, but recovered his liberty after two months. When he was at home with his parents, God manifested to him, by divers visions, that He destined him to the great work of the conversion of Ireland. The writers of his life say that after his second captivity he travelled into Gaul and Italy, and saw St. Martin, St. Germanus of Auxerre, and Pope Celestine, and that he received his mission and the apostolical benediction from this Pope, who died in 432. It is certain that he spent many years in preparing himself for his sacred calling. Great opposition was made against his episcopal consecration and mission, both by his own relatives and by the clergy. These made him great offers in order to detain him among them, and endeavored to affright him by exaggerating the dangers to which he exposed himself amidst the enemies of the Romans and Britons, who did not know God. All these temptations threw the Saint into great perplexities; but the Lord, Whose will he consulted by earnest prayer, supported him, and he persevered in his resolution. He forsook his family, sold his birthright and dignity, to serve strangers, and consecrated his soul to God, to carry His name to the ends of the earth. In this disposition he passed into Ireland, to preach the Gospel, where the worship of idols still generally reigned. He devoted himself entirely to the salvation of these barbarians. He travelled over the whole island, penetrating into the remotest corners, and_ such was the fruit of his preachings and sufferings that he baptized an infinite number of people. He ordained everywhere clergymen, induced women to live in holy widowhood and continence, consecrated virgins to Christ, and instituted monks. He took nothing from the many thousands whom he baptized, and often gave back the little presents which some laid on the altar, choosing rather to mortify the fervent than to scandalize the weak or the infidels. He gave freely of his own, however, both to pagans and Christians, distributed large alms to the poor in the provinces where he passed, made presents to the kings, judging that necessary for the progress of the Gospel, and maintained and educated many children, whom he trained up to serve at the altar. The happy success of his labors cost him many persecutions.

A certain prince named Corotick, a Christian in name only, disturbed the peace of his flock. This tyrant, having made a descent into Ireland, plundered the country where St. Patrick had been just conferring confirmation on a great number of neophytes, who were yet in their white garments after Baptism. Corotick massacred many, and carried away others, whom he sold to the infidel Picts or Scots. The next day the Saint sent the barbarian a letter entreating him to restore the Christian captives, and at least part of the booty he had taken, that the poor people might not perish for want, but was only answered by railleries. The Saint, therefore, wrote with his own hand a letter. In it he styles himself a sinner and an ignorant man; he declares, nevertheless, that he is established Bishop of Ireland, and pronounces Corotick and the other parricides and accomplices separated from him and from Jesus Christ, Whose place he holds, forbidding any to eat with them, or to receive their alms, till they should have satisfied God by the tears of sincere penance, and restored the servants of Jesus Christ to their liberty. This letter expresses his most tender love for his flock, and his grief for those who had been slain, yet mingled with joy because they reign with the prophets, apostles, and martyrs. Jocelin assures us that Corotick was overtaken by the divine vengeance.

St. Patrick held several councils to settle the discipline of the Church which he had planted. St. Bernard and the tradition of the country testify that St. Patrick fixed his metropolitan see at Armagh. He established some other bishops, as appears by his Council and other monuments. He not only converted the whole country by his preaching and wonderful miracles, but also cultivated this vineyard with so fruitful a benediction and increase from heaven as to render Ireland a most flourishing garden in the Church of God, and a country of Saints.

Many particulars are related of the labors of St. Patrick, which we pass over. 'in the first year of his mission he attempted to preach Christ in the general assembly of the kings and states of all Ireland, held yearly at Tara, the residence of the chief king, styled the monarch of the whole island, and the principal seat of the Druids, or priests, and their paganish rites. The son of Neill, the chief monarch, declared himself against the preacher; however, Patrick converted several, and, on his road to that place, the father of St. Benignus, his immediate successor in the see of Armagh. He afterwards converted and baptized the Icings of Dublin and Munster, and the seven sons of the king of Connaught, with the greatest part of their subjects, and before his death almost the whole island. He founded a monastery at Armagh; another called Domnach-Padraig, or Patrick's Church; also a third, named Sabhal-Padraig; and filled the country with churches and schools of piety and learning, the reputation of which, for the three succeeding centuries, drew many foreigners into Ireland. He died and was buried at Down in Ulster. His body was found there in a church of his name in 1185, and translated to another part of the same church.

Ireland is the nursery whence St. Patrick sent forth his missionaries and teachers. Glastonbury and Lindisfarne, Ripon and Malmesbury, bear testimony to the labors of Irish priests and bishops for the conversion of England. Iona is to this day the most venerated spot in Scotland. Columban, Fiacre, Gall, and many others evangelized the "rough places" of France and Switzerland. America and Australia, in modern times, owe their Christianity to the faith and zeal of the sons and daughters of St. Patrick.

Reflection.—By the instrumentality of St. Patrick the Faith is now as fresh in Ireland, even in this cold nineteenth century, as when it was first planted. Ask him to obtain for you the special grace of his children—to prefer the loss of every earthly good to the least compromise in matters of faith.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

(died in 615, Optional Memorial on November 23)[1]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Saint Columban or Saint Columbanus - Irish it means "the white dove"
Born: 540 in Nobber, County Meath, Ireland (the year Saint Benedict of Nursia died)
Died: November 23, 615
He was an Irish missionary that started monasteries in France and Italy.
Honored in: the Roman Catholic Church
Feast Day: November 23 in the Roman Rite
November 24 by Benedictines and in Ireland
Patron Saint of: motorcyclists
Attributes: with a white dove, bearded wearing the monastic cowl, in his hand is a book with an Irish satchel, stands in the midst of wolves, depicted in the attitude of taming a bear, or sun-beams over his head

Born: ca. 673 not recorded, possibly Monkton.

Died: 26 May 735 in Jarrow, Northumbria
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church
Canonized: 1899 recognised as Doctor of the Church, Rome by Pope Leo XIII
Major shrine: Durham Cathedral.
Feast: 25 May (Western Churches)
27 May (Orthodox Church and General Roman Calendar, between 1899–1969)
Patronage: English writers and historians; Jarrow

(commonly known as Venerable Bede, born in 673, died in 735, Optional Memorial on May 25)

Saint Boniface - Bishop and Martyr

Born: c. 7th century in Crediton, Devon
Died: 5 June 754 in Dokkum, Frisia
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church,
Eastern Orthodox Church,
Lutheran Church,
Anglican Communion
Major shrine: Fulda Cathedral
Feast: 5 June
Attributes: axe; book; oak; scourge; sword
Patronage: brewers; Fulda; Germany; World Youth Day

(born about 673, martyred in 754, Memorial on June 5)[1]

Boniface was originally born with the name Winfrid in England in the late 600's. He Joined the Benedictines and was ordained when he was thirty. He journeyed to Rome and on May 15, 719, he received Pope Gregory II's permission to preach to the pagan Germans on the east side of the Rhine. After successfuly converting many heathens and bringing many lapsed Christians back to the faith, he again returned to Rome and was consecrated a regional bishop. Boniface returned to Germany and continued his work in conversion and repentance, and also undertook the correction of heretics. Pope Gregory III appointed Boniface an Archbishop and permitted him to consecrate bishops as necessary. After further labors, Boniface went to Rome again to ask to resign, but Pope Gregory III congratulated Boniface for his work and would not permit Boniface to resign. Boniface returned to Germany again with additional authority as a legate of the Holy See and worked to reform the clergy. Boniface was appointed Archbishop of Mainz and Primate of Germany by Pope Zachary. Boniface resigned from the archbishopric of Mainz in 754 in order to work for the conversion of the Frisians. He was martyred by heathens while assembling new converts for confirmation.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  • Saints Cyril and Methodius, (Cyril died February 14, 869; Methodius died April 6, 885; Memorial on February 14) {In Slovakia, their feasts are celebrated on July 5 and February 14.]
Cyril and Methodius, the Apostles of the Slavs, were born in Thessalonica, Greece. [Thessaloniki (in Greek: Θεσσαλονίκη, IPA: [θe̞salo̞ˈnikʲi]) or Salonica, is the second-largest city in Greece. It is currently the capital of Macedonia, the nation's largest region. It is the largest city in the Macedonian region and one of the largest cities in southeastern Europe.]

Methodius, whose baptismal name was probably Michael, was the older brother. It is thought he was born between 815 and 820. Cyril, whose baptismal name was Constantine, is thought to have been born in 827 or 828.

They belonged to a senatorial family--their father being a senior official of the imperial administration. Because of his father's position, Methodius reached the rank of Archon or Prefect. But about the year 840, he decided to renounce his secular honors and remain at one of the monasteries in Bithynia at the foot of what was then known as the Holy Mountain (which is now known as Mount Olympus).
Cyril [Constantine's religious name] received the sacrament of Holy Orders in Byzantium after refusing a political career. Due to the intellectual gifts and talents God bestowed on him, he was given the ecclesiastical apponintment of the Librarian of the Archive which was attached to the great church of Holy Wisdom in Constantinople. At the same time, he also held the position of Secretary to the Patriarch in the same city. However, this did not last long, as Cyril did not want to be in any position of authority, but wanted to devote himself to the contemplative life, so he could concenrate on his studies learning more about God. Although he secretly went off to a monastery on the Black Sea coast, he was discovered about six months later and asked to teach philosophy at a school of higher learning in Constantinople. He became known as "The Philosopher" and the title remains his today. After this position, he was sent on a mission by the emperor and the Patriarch to the Saracens.
After this mission, he joined Methodius in a monastery on the Bosphorous, when the Khazars sent to Constantinople for a Christian teacher. Cyril was selected and was accompanied by his brother. They learned the Khazar language and converted many of the people.
At Kherson, they lodged at the Crimea and identified what was believed to be the church where Saint Clement, Pope of Rome and martyr, was buried. They returned to Rome and presented Saint Clement's relics to Pope Hadrian II at the end of their missionary journey to the West.
Soon after the Khazar mission, there was a request from Prince Rastislav of Greater Moravia to the Emperor Michael III for a "Bishop and teacher" of the Gospel in their own language. German missionaries had already labored among them, but without success. The Moravians wished a teacher who could instruct them and conduct Divine service in the Slavonic tongue. On account of their acquaintance with the language, Cyril and Methodius were chosen for their work. In preparation for it, Cyril invented an alphabet and, with the help of Methodius, translated the Gospels and the necessary liturgical books into Slavonic. They went to Moravia in 863, and labored for four and a half years. Despite their success, they were regarded by the Germans with distrust, first because they had come from Constantinople where schism was rife, and again because they held the Church services in the Slavonic language. Methodius, at one point, was even cruelly imprisoned. On this account, the brothers were summoned to Rome by Nicholas I, who died, however, before their arrival. His successor, Pope Hadrian II, received them kindly. Convinced of their orthodoxy, he commended their missionary activity, sanctioned the Slavonic Liturgy, and ordained Cyril and Methodius bishops. He also recommmended that their followers be ordained priests. Cyril, however, was not to return to Moravia. He died in Rome, Italy, ahortly after becoming a bishop on February 14, 869.
At the request of the Moravian princes, Rastislav and Svatopluk, and the Slav Prince Kocel of Pannonia, Adrian II formed an Archdiocese of Moravia and Pannonia, making it independent of the German Church. He also consecrated Methodius Archbishop of Moravia.
In 870 King Louis and the German bishops summoned Methodius to a synod at Ratisbon. Here he was deposed and condemned to prison. After three years he was liberated at the command of Pope John VIII and reinstated as Archbishop of Moravia. He zealously endeavoured to spread the Faith among the Bohemians, and also among the Poles in Northern Moravia. Soon, however, he was summoned to Rome again in consequence of the allegations of the German priest Wiching, who impugned his orthodoxy, and objected to the use of Slavonic in the liturgy. But Pope John VIII, after an inquiry, sanctioned the Slavonic Liturgy, decreeing, however, that in the Mass the Gospel should be read first in Latin and then in Slavonic. Wiching, in the meantime, had been nominated one of the suffragan bishops of Methodius. He continued to oppose his metropolitan, going so far as to produce spurious papal letters. The Pope, however, assured Methodius that these letters were false. Methodius obtained from Pope John VIII the publication of the Bull Industriae Tuae. This restored, in writing, prerogatives to celebrate the liturgy in Slavonic that had been granted by Pope Hadrian II.
Methodius went to Constantinople about this time, and with the assistance of several priests, he completed the translation of the Holy Scriptures, with the exception of the Books of Machabees. He also translated the "Nomocanon", i.e. the collection of Greek ecclesiastico-civil law [also known as ecclesiastical and Byzantine civil laws]. The enemies of Methodius did not cease to antagonize him. His health was worn out from the long struggle, and he died on April 6, 885, recommending as his successor Gorazd, a Moravian Slav who had been his disciple.
Born: c. 1030 in the Archdiocese of Cologne

Died: October 6, 1101
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Canonized: February 17, 1623 by Pope Gregory XV [1]
Feast: October 6
Attributes: Skull that he holds and contemplates, with a book and a cross, Carthusian habit
Patronage: Calabria, trade marks

Saint Bruno was the founder of the Carthusian Order (born about 1035, died in 1101, Optional Memorial on October 6)[1]

Bruno was born in Cologne about 1030. He was ordained to the priesthood about 1055. Bishop Gervais assigned him to Reims in 1056 to help direct the school. He became the head of the school in 1057. In 1075 Bruno was appointed to the position of Chancellor of the church in Reims. Bruno left Reims and built a little monastery with six other followers. Eudes of Châtillon was elected to the papacy in 1088 and took the name Pope Urban II, and because he was a former student of Bruno's, he summoned Bruno to come be one of his advisors. He died on October 6, 1101.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Saint Bruno - Confessor
Born: about 1030 - 1035 in the Archdiocese of Cologne
Died: October 6, 1101
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Canonized: February 17, 1623 by Pope Gregory XV [1]
Feast: October 6
Attributes: Skull that he holds and contemplates, with a book and a cross, Carthusian habit
Patron Saint of: Calabria, trade marks

(born about 907, assassinated in 935, Optional Memorial on September 28)[1]
Wenceslaus was born to Duke Wratislaw and Dragomir, probably in 903 (other source says about 907). He was murdered by his brother Boleslaw and buried at the scene of the murder. Three years later his brother repented and ordered for his brother's remains to be moved to the church of St. Vitus.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Saint Wenceslaus, Martyr
Born: c. 907 in Prague, Bohemia
Died: September 28, 935, Stará Boleslav, Bohemia
Honored in: Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox Church
Major shrine: St Vitus Cathedral, Prague
Feast: September 28
Attributes: Crown, dagger, eagle on a banner
Patron Saint of: Bohemia, Czech Republic, Prague

Honored in: Roman Catholic Church; Anglican Communion

Canonized: 1250 by Pope Innocent IV
Major shrine: Dunfermline Abbey
Feast: 16 November;
10 June (pre-1970 General Roman Calendar)
Attributes: reading
Patronage: Dunfermline; Scotland; The Queen's Ferry; Anglo-Scottish relations

(born about 1046, died in 1093, Optional Memorial on November 16)[1]

Margaret was born about 1045 (about 1046 in another source) and was the daughter of Edward "Outremere." When attempting to leave England, the ship on which she was travelling was blown off course to Scotland. She married Malcolm III of Scotland some time between 1067 and 1070. She died in Edinburgh, Scotland on November 16, 1093. She was canonized by Innocent IV in 1250.[2]


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Province: Canterbury

Diocese: Canterbury
See: Canterbury
Appointed: 24 May 1162
Enthroned: 3 June 1162
Reign ended: 29 December 1170
Predecessor: Theobald of Bec
Successor: Roger de Bailleul
Ordination: 2 June 1162
Consecration: 3 June 1162 by Henry of Blois
Birth name: Thomas Becket
Born: circa 1118 in Cheapside, London
Died: 29 December 1170 in Canterbury
Buried: Canterbury Cathedral
Nationality: English
Denomination: Roman Catholic
Parents: Gilbert Beket
Previous post: Archdeacon of Canterbury
Feast day: 29 December
Venerated in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Title as Saint: Bishop and Martyr
Beatified: 21 February 1173 by Pope Alexander III
Canonized: 21 February 1173 in St Peter's Church in Segni by Pope Alexander III
Attributes: Sword, Martyrdom, dressed in chancellor's robe and neck chain
Patronage: Exeter College, Oxford; Portsmouth; Arbroath Abbey; secular clergy Shrines: Canterbury Cathedral

(born in 1118, martyred in 1170, Optional Memorial on December 29)[1]

Thomas was born in London, possibly on December 21, 1118. He was ordained a deacon in 1154. When Thomas was thirty-six, King Henry II of England appointed him chancellor. After Archbishop Theobald died in 1161, Thomas was ordained to the priesthood on June 2, 1162, and was consecrated as archbishop the following day on June 3, 1162. Thomas resigned his position as chancellor. After several disputes with Henry II, Thomas fled England in late 1164 and went to see Pope Alexander III. Pope Alexander III refused to permit Thomas to resign his archbishopric, so on November 30, 1164, Thomas went to the Cistercians in Burgundy and lived with them for a year. Meanwhile, King Henry II of England confiscated the archbishop's property and banished Thomas Becket's relatives. Eventually, Thomas was required to leave the Cistercian abbey where he was residing, as King Henry threatened the Cistercian order with vengeance if they continued to permit Thomas to reside with them. Thomas returned to England after it appeared that a relative agreement on some of the disputes had been reached. He was martyred in Canterbury by four knights on December 29, 1170. He was canonized on February 21, 1173, and King Henry II of England performed public penance on July 12, 1174.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Born: 1170 in Calaruega, Province of Burgos, Kingdom of Castile (present-day Castile-Leon, Spain)

Died: August 6, 1221 in Bologna, Province of Bologna (present-day Emilia-Romagna, Italy)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church Anglican Church Lutheran Church
Canonized: 1234
Major shrine: San Domenico, Bologna
Feast: August 8
August 4 (pre-1970 General Roman Calendar)[1]
Attributes: Chaplet, dog, star, lilies, Dominican Habit, book and staff, tonsure[2]
Patronage: Astronomers; astronomy; Dominican Republic; falsely accused people; Santo Domingo Indian Pueblo, Valletta, Birgu (Malta)

founder of the Order of Preachers (Dominican Order, born about 1170, died August 6, 1221, Memorial on August 8)[1]

Dominic was born at Calaroga, in Old Castile. He was the son of Felix Guzman and Blessed Joanna of Aza (beatified by Leo XII in 1828). Dominic entered the University of Palencia in 1184. He founded the first convent of the Order of Preachers on April 25, 1215. He died August 6, 1221. He was canonized by Gregory IX on July 13, 1234.[2]


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Born: 1181 – 1182 in Assisi, Duchy of Spoleto, Holy Roman Empire

Died: October 3, 1226 (aged 43–45) in Assisi, Marche, Papal States;
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Lutheran Church
Old Catholic Church
New Age ecologists
Canonized: July 16, 1228, Assisi, Italy by Pope Gregory IX
Major shrine: Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi
Feast: October 4
Attributes: Tau cross, dove, birds, animals, wolf at feet, Pax et Bonum, Poor Franciscan habit, stigmata
Patronage: animals; the environment; Italy; merchants; stowaways; cub scouts; San Francisco, California

Saint Francis was founder of the Friars Minor (Franciscan Order)(born in 1182, died in 1226, Memorial on October 4)[1]

He was born in Assisi in the 1180's to Pietro and Pica Bernardone. He was originally baptized Giovanni, but his father soon changed the infant's name to Francis. While a young man, he went to fight against the Perugia, but was taken prisoner and held in custody for over a year. Francis later joined an expedition against the emperor, but in the course of the journey Francis was told in a dream to return to Assisi, which he did. Francis made a pilgrimage to Rome. Francis restored the church of San Damiano and several neighboring churches. After being joined by eleven other men, Francis and his companions journeyed to Rome and received the approval of Pope Innocent III. Francis founded the Second Franciscan Order of Poor Ladies in 1212 with Saint Clare. He attempted to journey to Syria to convert the Saracens, but was shipwrecked and forced to abandon the idea temporarily. He attempted to journey to Morocco in 1214, but was also prevented. In 1219 Francis and eleven companions managed to visit the sultan in Damietta, but appear to have accomplished little. When they returned to Italy, the Franciscan Orders were in disarray. Francis resigned as general of the order and Peter of Cattaneo became the next general of the order. Francis began the tradition of the Christmas scene in 1223, received the stigmata in 1224, and composed the Canticle of the Sun in 1225. He died on October 3, 1226 at the Porziunicola, and was canonized by Pope Gregory IX on July 16, 1228.[2]


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Born: ca. 1185 in Kamień Śląski, Lesser Poland

Died: 15 August 1257 in Kraków, Poland
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Aglipayan Church
Canonized: April 17, 1594 by Pope Clement VIII
Feast: 17 August
Attributes: statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary; Monstrance or Ciborium
Patronage: Lithuania, University of Santo Tomas-College of Tourism and Hospitality Management, invoked by those in danger of drowning; Basilica of St. Hyacinth

Saint Hyacinth was born in 1185 in the castle of Lanka and was the son of Eustachius Konski. He studied in Cracow, Prague, and Bologna. He went to Rome with his uncle (who was bishop of Cracow) and met St. Dominic. Hyacinth joined the Dominicans in 1220. He founded several communities and preached in Prussia, Pomerania, Lituania, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Lower Russia. He died in Cracow on August 15, 1257.[1]


(born in 1193, died in 1253, Memorial on August 11)[1]
Clare was born on July 16, 1194[2] in Assisi to Count Favorino Scifi of Sasso-Rosso and Blessed Ortolana[3] (from the Fiumi family). When she was eighteen years old, Saint Francis of Assisi came to preach at Saint Giorgio's in Assisi, and on March 20, 1212 (Palm Sunday night), she and her cousin Pacifica (accompanied by Clare's aunt Bianca went to the the Porziuncula[4], where Clare made her vows. Clare was originally placed with the Benedictine nuns of San Paolo (near Bastia), but on account of her father, who was against Clare's choice, she was moved to Sant Angelo' in Panzo, another Benedictine convent. She was joined by her younger sister St. Agnes of Assisi sixteen days later, and after the arrival of more women to the Franciscan way of life, they were allocated a dwelling at San Damiano. In 1234, soldiers from the army of Fredrick II were scaling the walls of San Damiano. Saint Clare went to the chapel and brought out a ciborium, and the soldiers fled. She died in Assisi on August 11, 1253,[5] and was canonized on September 26, 1255 by Pope Alexander IV.[6]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia and The Brievary says 1193, but does not specify the month or the day.
  3. also spelled Hortulana (
  4. also spelled Porzioncula, Porziuncola, and Portiuncula; sometimes also referred to as the church of Our Lady of the Angels (this can be researched further at

Saint Clare of Assisi (sometimes spelled Clair, Claire, etc.) - Virgin
Born: July 16, 1193 or 1194(?) in Assisi, Italy
Died: August 11, 1253 (aged 59) in Assisi, Italy
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion, Lutheran Church
Canonized: September 26, 1255, Rome by Pope Alexander IV
Major shrine Basilica of Saint Clare, Assisi
Feast: August 11
Attributes: Monstrance, pyx, lamp, habit of the Poor Clares
Patronage: Eye disease, goldsmiths, laundry, embroiderers, gilders, good weather, needleworkers, Santa Clara Pueblo, telephones, telegraphs, television

(born about 1206, died in 1280, Optional Memorial on November 15)

Born: ca. 1193/1206 in Lauingen, Duchy of Bavaria
Died: November 15, 1280 in Cologne, Holy Roman Empire
Honored in: Catholic Church
Beatified: 1622, Rome
Canonized: 1931, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Major shrine: Saint Andreas in Cologne
Feast: November 15
Patronage: Cincinnati, Ohio; medical technicians; natural sciences; philosophers; scientists; students; World Youth Day


Albert was born in either 1205 or 1206 at Lauingen, Swabia. He was the eldest son of the Count of Bollstädt. He joined the Dominicans in 1223. He taught theology in Hildesheim, Freiburg, Ratisbon, Strasburg, and Cologne. He was told to return to Paris in 1245, and received a doctorate. He was elected the Dominican Provincial of Germany in 1254. He resigned from his position as provincial in 1257. He was appointed Bishop of Ratisbon in 1260, and resigned from his position as bishop in 1262. He died in Cologne on November 15, 1280, was beatified by Pope Gregory XV in 1622, and was canonized in 1931.

(born in 1207, died in 1231, Memorial on November 17)[2]
Elisabeth was born in 1207 in Presburg[3] (now known as Bratislava)[4], Hungary. She was the daughter of her father King Andrew II of Hungary and her mother Gertrude. In 1211, when Elisabeth was only four years old, an embassy from Thuringia came to arrange a marriage between Elisabeth and Hermann, the son of the Landgrave Herman I of Thuringia. Not long after she was sent to the Thuringian court to grow up. Her husband-to-be died in 1216, so it was determined that she would marry the next son, Ludwig (also known as Louis). Landgrave Hermann I died on April 25, 1217, and Ludwig assumed the throne as Ludwig IV. He married Elisabeth in 1221, and they had three children: Hermann II, Sophia, and Gertrude. She died on November 17, 1231. [5]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  3. Also spelled Pressburg

Saint Elisabeth of Hungary - Widow
Born: July 7, 1207 in Pressburg, Kingdom of Hungary (modern-day Bratislava, Slovakia)
Died: November 17, 1231 (aged 24) in Marburg, Landgraviate of Thuringia, Holy Roman Empire (modern-day Hesse, Germany)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Church
Lutheran Church
Canonized: May 28, 1235, Perugia, Italy by Pope Gregory IX
Major shrine: Elisabeth Church (Marburg)
Feast: November 17
November 19 (General Roman Calendar 1670-1969)
Attributes: Roses, Crown, Food basket
Patron Saint of: hospitals, nurses, bakers, brides, countesses, dying children, exiles, homeless people, lacemakers, tertiaries and widows

Born: 25 April 1214 in Poissy, France

Died: 25 August 1270 (aged 56) Tunis in what is now Tunisia
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion
Canonized: 1297 by Pope Boniface VIII
Feast: 25 August
Attributes: Depicted as King of France, generally with a crown, holding a sceptre with a fleur-de-lys on the end, possibly with blue clothing with a spread of white fleur-de-leis (coat of arms of the French monarchy)
Patronage: Third Order of St. Francis, France, French monarchy; hairdressers; passementiers (lacemakers)

(born in 1214, died in 1270, Optional Memorial on August 25)[1]

Louis was born on April 25, 1215 (other source says 1214) in Poissy. He was the son of King Louis VIII of France and Blanche of Castile. Upon the death of his father King Louis VIII, he became king of France when he was eleven years old. While Louis was still a minor, his mother Blanche acted as regent from 1226 to 1234. Louis married Marguerite of Provence when he was nineteen and was the father of eleven children. He was involved in a crusade from 1248 to 1249. He concluded the treaty of Paris with King Henry III of England on May 28, 1258. He is remembered for the words of his mother which he followed: "I would rather see you dead at my feet than guilty of a mortal sin." While on another crusade in 1270, he succumbed to a plague and died near Tunis on August 25, 1270. He was canonized by Pope Boniface VIII in 1297.[2][3]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Born: 1221 in Bagnoregio, Province of Viterbo, Latium, Papal States

Died: July 15, 1274 in Lyon, Lyonnais, Kingdom of Arles
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Canonized: April 14, 1482, Rome by Pope Sixtus IV
Feast: 15 July
2nd Sunday in July (1482–1568)
14 July (1568–1969)
Attributes: Cardinal's hat on a bush; ciborium; Holy Communion; cardinal in Franciscan robes, usually reading or writing

(born about 1218, died in 1274, Memorial on July 15)[1]

He was born in 1221 (another source says 1218) in Bagnorea to Giovanni di Fidanza and Maria Ritella. He was originally baptized with the name of John. He joined the Franciscans in either 1238 or 1243. He received the licentiate in 1248, and lectured at the University of Paris until 1256, when he was compelled to cease on account of the secular teachers.[2] Upon the resignation of John of Parma, Bonaventure was elected Minister General of the Franciscans on February 2, 1257,[3] even though he was not even thirty-six years old, and he and Saint Thomas Aquinas received their doctorates on October 23, 1257.[4] In 1263 a general chapter was convoked in Pisa, at which the provincial boundaries were determined, a law was made whereby a bell was required to be rung every nightfall in honor of the Annunciation, the direction of the Poor Clares was renounced, a determination was made that only the biography of Saint Francis of Assisi writen by Bonaventure was officially approved, and a determination was made that other accounts of the life of Saint Francis of Assisi were to be excluded. Due to Cardinal Cajetan's request, Bonaventure resumed the direction of the Poor Clares in 1264. Bonaventure founded the Society of the Gonfalone in honor of the Blessed Virgin in 1264. Clement IV wanted to appoint Bonaventure to the vacant see of York and issued a Bull dated November 23, 1265, but Bonaventure, on account of his humility, did not wish to be promoted to the position, so the pope permitted him to decline to accept the position. In 1266 a general chapter was convoked in Paris, which required that all "legends" about Saint Francis of Assisi were to be destroyed. Bonaventure convoked the fourth general chapter in Assisi in 1269, and required that a Mass was to be offered every Saturday in honor of the Blessed Virgin. In 1272 a general chapter at Pisa determined that an anniversary was to be celebrated on August 25 in honor of King Louis IX of France, an act instrumental in the king's process for canonization. Bonaventure was created a cardinal on June 23, 1273 by Pope Gregory X. While a cardinal, Bonaventure retained his governance of the Franciscans until the General Chapter of Lyons on May 20, 1274, at which Jerome of Ascoli was elected to replace him. He died in Lyons on July 16, 1274. He was canonized by Pope Sixtus IV on April 14, 1482, and declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Sixtus V on March 14, 1557.[5][6][7][8]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. The Catholic Encyclopedia's article on St. Bonaventure had confused the date of the publication of William of St-Amour's book: it should be 1256, not 1265. The correct date is on the article about William of St-Amour
  3. The Catholic Encyclopedia also confused this date in its article on Saint Bonaventure. It was 1257, not 1267. The article on Blessed John of Parma has the correct date.
  4. The Catholic Encyclopedia's article on Saint Bonaventure also had this date wrong, and it should have been 1257, not 1267. The correct date is on the article about Saint Thomas Aquinas.
Born: c. 1225 in Roccasecca, Kingdom of Sicily (present-day Italy)

Died: 7 March 1274 in Fossanova Abbey, Kingdom of Sicily
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Canonized: July 18, 1323, Avignon, France by Pope John XXII
Major shrine: Church of the Jacobins, Toulouse, France
Feast: 28 January (new), 7 March (old)
Attributes: The Summa theologiae, a model church, the Sun
Patronage: Academics; against storms; against lightning; apologists; Aquino, Italy; Belcastro, Italy; book sellers; Catholic academies, schools, and universities; chastity; Falerna, Italy; learning; pencil makers; philosophers; publishers; scholars; students; theologians.

the writer of the Summa Theologica, a large set of volumes extensively used in theological studies (born about 1225, died March 7, 1274, Memorial on January 28)[1]

Thomas Aquinas was born to Landulph, Count of Aquino, and Theodora, Countess of Teano, in the 1220's in Rocca Secca in the Kingdom of Naples. He was educated by the Benedictines at Monte Cassino, and attended the University of Naples. He entered the Dominican order, but while still a novice he was seized by his two elder brothers and confined in the family castle. Eventually he was released and sent to Rome. Thomas studied under St. Albert the Great, and went to Paris and Cologne. Thomas stopped writing the Summa Theologica on December 6, 1273, although he had not yet finished it. He died on March 7, 1274, in Fossa Nuova. His body was moved to Toulouse on January 28, 1369.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

March 7 — ST. THOMAS AQUINAS. (His memorial is now on January 28)

ST. THOMAS was born of noble parents at Aquino in Italy, in 1226. At the age of nineteen he received the Dominican habit at Naples, where he was studying. Seized by his brothers on his way to Paris, he suffered a two years’ captivity in their castle of Rocca-Secca; but neither the caresses of his mother and sisters, nor the threats and stratagems of his brothers, could shake him in his vocation. While St. Thomas was in confinement at Rocca-Secca, his brothers endeavored to entrap him into sin, but the attempt only ended in the triumph of his purity. Snatching from the hearth a burning brand, the Saint drove from his chamber the wretched creature whom they had there concealed. Then marking a cross upon the wall, he knelt down to pray, and forthwith, being rapt in ecstasy, an angel girded him with a cord, in token of the gift of perpetual chastity which God had given him. The pain caused by the girdle was so sharp that St. Thomas uttered a piercing cry, which brought his guards into the room. But he never told this grace to any one save only to Father Raynald, his confessor, a little while before his death. Hence originated the Confraternity of the "Angelic Warfare," for the preservation of the virtue of chastity. Having at length escaped, St. Thomas went to Cologne to study under Blessed Albert the Great, and after that to Paris, where for many years he taught philosophy and theology. The Church has ever venerated his numerous writings as a treasure-house of sacred doctrine; while in naming him the Angelic Doctor she has indicated that his science is more divine than human. The rarest gifts of intellect were combined in him with the tenderest piety. Prayer, he said, had taught him more than study. His singular devotion to the Blessed Sacrament shines forth in the Office and hymns for Corpus Christi, which he composed. To the words miraculously uttered by a crucifix at Naples, "Well hast thou written concerning Me, Thomas. What shall I give thee as a reward?" he replied, "Naught save Thyself, O Lord." He died at Fossa-Nuova, 1274, on his way to the General Council of Lyons, to which Pope Gregory X. had summoned him.

Reflection.—The knowledge of God is for all, but hidden treasures are reserved for those who have ever followed the Lamb.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Saint Anthony of Padua

Titles: Evangelical Doctor
Hammer of Heretics
Professor of Miracles
Born: 15 August 1195 in Lisbon
Died: 13 June 1231 (aged 36) in Padua
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Canonized: 30 May 1232, Spoleto, Italy by Pope Gregory IX
Major shrine: Basilica of Saint Anthony of Padua in Padua, Italy
Feast: 13 June
Attributes: Book; bread; Infant Jesus; lily; fish; flaming heart
Patronage: American Indians; animals; barrenness; Brazil; Elderly people; faith in the Blessed Sacrament; Fishermen; Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land; Harvests; Horses; lost articles; lower animals; Mail; Mariners; oppressed people; poor people; Portugal; pregnant women; seekers of lost articles; shipwrecks; starvation; sterility; Swineherds; Tigua Indians; travel hostesses; travellers; Watermen

(born in late 1100's, died in 1231, Memorial on June 13)[1]

Anthony was born in Lisbon, Portugal, in the year 1195, and was originally given the name Ferdinand. He entered the Augustinians in 1210, when he was fifteen years old. Two years later, in 1212, he received permission to be transferred to the Convent of Sancta Croce in Cóimbra. He remained there eight years, then, when he was twenty-six, he joined the Franciscan order in 1220 and took the name Anthony. He then tried to sail for Morocco that same year (1220), but was struck by a severe illness, so resolved to go the following spring. When he attempted to sail there in 1221, a storm drove him to Sicily instead. When he heard that a general chapter was being held by the Franciscans at Assisi on May 30, he went there. Anthony was then assigned to Montepaolo. On one occasion he accompained his Provincial to an ordination in Forli, and when it was found that no one else had prepared a sermon or was willing to preach, he was commanded to preach. They were so astounded by his profound teaching that he was then assigned to preaching and instructing permanently. He taught in Bologna and Montpellier in 1224, and he later taught in Toulouse. He preached throughout Italy and France. He died on June 13, 1231, at Arcella. He was canonized on May 30, 1232, by Pope Gregory IX at Spoleto, Italy. He was declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Pius XII. That Pius XII declared him a Doctor of the Church is inferred by the date of the declaration (on January 16, 1946).

(born in 1256, died on November 17, 1301, Optional Memorial also on November 16)[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Saint Gertrude of Helfta, Saint Gertrude the Great, (Italian: Santa Gertrude) - Virgin
Born: January 6, 1256 in Eisleben, Thuringia, Holy Roman Empire
Died: November 17, 1302 (aged 46) in Helfta, Saxony
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Feast: November 16
Attributes: crown, lily, taper
Patron Saint of: West Indies; travelers; Naples (co-patron)

Saint Bridget (Birgitta) of Sweden - Widow

Born: 1303 in Uppland, Sweden
Died: 23 July 1373 in Rome, Papal States
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Lutheran Church
Canonized: 7 October 1391 by Pope Boniface IX
Major shrine: Vadstena
Feast: 23 July
8 October (Traditional Roman Catholics)
Attributes: Pilgrim's hat, staff & bag; crown, writing-book.
Patronage: Europe, Sweden, Widows

(born 1303, died in 1373, Optional Memorial on July 23)

15 Prayers of Saint Bridget of Sweden

The Fifteen Prayers of St. Bridget (1740) by Saint Birgitta, translated by Anonymous

First Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus Christ! Eternal Sweetness to those who love Thee, joy surpassing all joy and all desire, Salvation and Hope of all sinners, Who hast proved that Thou hast no greater desire than to be among men, even assuming human nature at the fullness of time for the love of men, recall all the sufferings Thou hast endured from the instant of Thy conception, and especially during Thy Passion, as it was decreed and ordained from all eternity in the Divine plan.

Remember, O Lord, that during the Last Supper with Thy disciples, having washed their feet, Thou gavest them Thy Most Precious Body and Blood, and while at the same time Thou didst sweetly console them, Thou didst foretell them Thy coming Passion. Remember the sadness and bitterness which Thou didst experience in Thy Soul as Thou Thyself bore witness saying: "My Soul is sorrowful even unto death."

Remember all the fear, anguish and pain that Thou didst suffer in Thy delicate Body before the torment of the crucifixion, when, after having prayed three times, bathed in a sweat of blood, Thou wast betrayed by Judas, Thy disciple, arrested by the people of a nation Thou hadst chosen and elevated, accused by false witnesses, unjustly judged by three judges during the flower of Thy youth and during the solemn Paschal season. Remember that Thou wast despoiled of Thy garments and clothed in those of derision; that Thy Face and Eyes were veiled, that Thou wast buffeted, crowned with thorns, a reed placed in Thy Hands, that Thou was crushed with blows and overwhelmed with affronts and outrages.

In memory of all these pains and sufferings which Thou didst endure before Thy Passion on the Cross, grant me before my death true contrition, a sincere and entire confession, worthy satisfaction and the remission of all my sins. Amen.

O IESU CHRISTE, aeterna dulcedo te amantium, iubilus excedens omne gaudium et omne desiderium, salus et amator peccatorum, qui delicias tuas testatus es esse cum filiis hominum, propter hominem homo factus es in fine temporum. Memento omnis praemeditationis et intimi moeroris quem in humano corpore sustinuisti instante saluberrimae Passionis tuae tempore in divino Corde praeordinato.

Memento tristitiae et amaritudinis, quam in anima, teipso testante, habuisti, quando in ultima cena Discipulis tuis Corpus et Sanguinem tuum tradidisti, pedes eorum lavisti, ac dulciter eos consolando, imminentem Passionem praedixisti.

Memento omnis tremoris, angustiae, et doloris, quem in tuo delicato corpore ante Passionem crucis tuae pertulisti, quando post trinam orationem et Sanguinem sudorem a Iuda tuo discipulo tradebaris, ab electa gente capiebaris, a falsis testibus accusabaris, a tribus iudicibus iniuste iudicabaris, in electa civitate, in Paschali tempore, in florida corporis iuventute innocenter damnabaris, veste propria exuebaris, et vestibus alienis induebaris, colaphizabaris, oculis et facie velabaris, alapis caedebaris, ad columnam ligabaris, flagellabaris, spinis coronabaris, arundine in capite feriebaris et innumerabilibus aliis calumniis lacerabaris.

Da Domine Deus mihi, quaeso, ob memoriam harum ante crucem tuam Passionum veram ante mortem meam Contritionem, puram Confessionem, dignam satisfactionem, ac omnium peccatorum remissionem. Amen.

Second Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! True liberty of angels, Paradise of delights, remember the horror and sadness which Thou didst endure when Thy enemies, like furious lions, surrounded Thee, and by thousands of insults, spits, blows, lacerations and other unheard-of-cruelties, tormented Thee at will.

In consideration of these torments and insulting words, I beseech Thee, O my Savior, to deliver me from all my enemies, visible and invisible, and to bring me, under Thy protection, to the perfection of eternal salvation. Amen.

O IESU, vera libertas angelorum, paradisus deliciarum, memento moeroris et horroris quos sustinebas cum omnes inimici tui quasi leones ferocissimi te circumsteterunt et colaphizationibus, conspuitionibus, ungulationibus, ceterisque poenis inauditis te molestaverunt.

Per has poenas et per omnia contumeliosa verba, durissimaque tormenta, quibus te Domine Iesu Christe, omnes inimici afflixerunt, deprecor te ut liberes me ab omnibus inimicis meis visibilibus et invisibilibus, et dones me sub umbra alarum tuarum ad perfectionem salutis aeternae pervenire. Amen.

Third Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Creator of Heaven and earth whom nothing can encompass or limit, Thou Who dost enfold and hold all under Thy Loving power, remember the very bitter pain Thou didst suffer when the Jews nailed Thy Sacred Hands and Feet to the Cross by blow after blow with big blunt nails, and not finding Thee in a pitiable enough state to satisfy their rage, they enlarged Thy Wounds, and added pain to pain, and with indescribable cruelty stretched Thy Body on the Cross, pulled Thee from all sides, thus dislocating Thy Limbs.

I beg of Thee, O Jesus, by the memory of this most Loving suffering of the Cross, to grant me the grace to fear Thee and to Love Thee. Amen.

O IESU, mundi fabricator, quem nulla dimensio vero in termino metitur, qui terram palmo concludis, recordare amarissimi doloris tui quem sustinebas cum Iudaei sanctissimas manus tuas ad crucem obtusis clavis primo afflixerunt, et ad perforandum delicatissimos pedes tuos, cum non esses conveniens voluntati eorum, dolorem super dolorem vulneribus tuis addiderunt, et sic te crudeliter distraxerunt et extenderunt in longum et latum crucis tuae, ut dissolverentur compages membrorum tuorum.

Deprecor te per huiusmodi sacratissimi et amarissimi in cruce doloris memoriam ut des mihi timorem et amorem tuum. Amen.

Fourth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Heavenly Physician, raised aloft on the Cross to heal our wounds with Thine, remember the bruises which Thou didst suffer and the weakness of all Thy Members which were distended to such a degree that never was there pain like unto Thine. From the crown of Thy Head to the Soles of Thy Feet there was not one spot on Thy Body that was not in torment, and yet, forgetting all Thy sufferings, Thou didst not cease to pray to Thy Heavenly Father for Thy enemies, saying: "Father forgive them for they know not what they do."

Through this great Mercy, and in memory of this suffering, grant that the remembrance of Thy Most Bitter Passion may effect in us a perfect contrition and the remission of all our sins. Amen.

O IESU, caelestis medice, recordare languoris, livoris, et doloris, quos in alto crucis patibulo levatus, passus es in omnibus dilaceratis membris tuis, quorum nullum in statu recte permanserat, ita ut nullus dolor similis tuo dolori inveniretur, quia a planta pedis usque ad verticem capitis non fuit in te sanitas, et tamen omnium doloris immemor, Patrem pro inimicis pie exorasti, dicens: "Pater, ignosce illis, quia nesciunt quod faciunt."

Per hanc misericordiam et ob memoriam illius doloris, concede, ut haec memoria Passionis tuae amarissimae sit omnium peccatorum meorum plena remissio. Amen

Fifth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Mirror of eternal splendor, remember the sadness which Thou experienced, when contemplating in the light of Thy Divinity the predestination of those who would be saved by the merits of Thy Sacred Passion, Thou didst see at the same time, the great multitude of reprobates who would be damned for their sins, and Thou didst complain bitterly of those hopeless lost and unfortunate sinners. Through the abyss of compassion and pity, and especially through the goodness which Thou displayed to the good thief when Thou saidst to him: "This day, thou shalt be with Me in Paradise." I beg of Thee, O Sweet Jesus, that at the hour of my death, Thou wilt show me mercy. Amen.

O IESU, speculum claritatis aeternae, memento illius moeroris quem habuisti quando in speculo serenissimae maiestatis tuae conspexisti praedestinationem electorum tuorum per merita tuae Passionis salvandorum et reprobationem malorum per sua demerita damnandorum, et per abyssum miserationis tuae, qua nobis perditis peccatoribus et desperatis tunc condoluisti, et quam latroni in cruce exhibuisti dicens. "Hodie mecum eris in Paradiso." Rogo te pie Iesu [ut] facias mecum misericordiam in hora mortis meae. Amen.

Sixth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Beloved and most desirable King, remember the grief Thou didst suffer, when naked and like a common criminal, Thou was fastened and raised on the Cross, when all Thy relatives and friends abandoned Thee, except Thy Beloved Mother, who remained close to Thee during Thy agony and whom Thou didst entrust to Thy faithful disciple when Thou saidst to Mary: "Woman, behold thy son!" and to Saint John: "Son, behold thy Mother!"

I beg of Thee O my Savior, by the sword of sorrow which pierced the soul of Thy holy Mother, to have compassion on me in all my affliction and tribulations, both corporal and spiritual, and to assist me in all my trials, and especially at the hour of my death. Amen.

O REX amabilis et amice totus desiderabilis, memento illius moeroris, quem habuisti quando nudus et miserabilis in cruce pependisti, et omnes amici et noti tui adversus te steterunt, et nullum consolantem inveniebas, nisi solum dilectam Genetricem tuam in amaritudine animae suae tibi fidelissimae astantem, quam Discipulo tuo commendasti, dicens, "Mulier, ecce filius tuus."

Rogo te, piissime Iesu, per gladium doloris, qui tunc eius animam pertransivit, ut compatiaris mihi in omnibus tribulationibus et afflictionibus meis corporalibus et spiritualibus, et da mihi consolationem in tempore tribulationis, et in hora mortis meae. Amen.

Seventh Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Inexhaustible Fountain of compassion, Who by a profound gesture of Love, said from the Cross: "I thirst!" suffered from the thirst for the salvation of the human race. I beg of Thee O my Savior, to inflame in our hearts the desire to tend toward perfection in all our acts; and to extinguish in us the concupiscence of the flesh and the ardor of worldly desires. Amen.

O IESU, fons inexhaustae pietatis, qui ex intimo dilectionis affectu in cruce dixisti: "Sitio", scilicet salutem generis humani, accende, quaeso, cordium nostrorum desideria ad omne opus perfectum, et sitim carnalis concupiscentiae, aestum mundanae delectationis in nobis penitus refrigera et exstingue. Amen.

Eighth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Sweetness of hearts, delight of the spirit, by the bitterness of the vinegar and gall which Thou didst taste on the Cross for Love of us, grant us the grace to receive worthily Thy Precious Body and Blood during our life and at the hour of our death, that they may serve as a remedy and consolation for our souls. Amen.

O IESU, dulcedo cordium, ingensque suavitas mentium, per amaritudinem aceti et fellis, quam pro nobis degustasti, in hora mortis nostrae, concede nobis Corpus et Sanguinem tuum digne percipere ad remedium et consolationem animarum nostrarum. Amen.

Ninth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Royal virtue, joy of the mind, recall the pain Thou didst endure when plunged in an ocean of bitterness at the approach of death, insulted, outraged by the Jews, Thou didst cry out in a loud voice that Thou was abandoned by Thy Father, saying: "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken me?"

Through this anguish, I beg of Thee, O my Savior, not to abandon me in the terrors and pains of my death. Amen.

O IESU, regalis virtus, iubilusque mentalis, memento angustiae et doloris quem passus es, quando prae mortis amaritudine et Iudaeorum insultatione cum magna voce te a Deo Patre derelictum clamasti, dicens : "Deus meus, Deus meus, ut quid dereliquisti me?" Per hanc angustiam peto a te, ut in angustiis nostris non derelinquas nos, Domine Deus noster. Amen.

Tenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Who art the beginning and end of all things, life and virtue, remember that for our sakes Thou was plunged in an abyss of suffering from the soles of Thy Feet to the crown of Thy Head.

In consideration of the enormity of Thy Wounds, teach me to keep, through pure love, Thy Commandments, whose way is wide and easy for those who love Thee. Amen.

O IESU, Alpha et Omega, vita et virtus in omni tempore, recordare, quod a summo capite usque ad plantam pedis te pro nobis in aqua Passionis demersisti.

Propter latitudinem et longitudinem vulnerum tuorum, doce me, per veram caritatem, custodire latum mandatum tuum, nimis peccatis demersum. Amen.

Eleventh Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Deep abyss of mercy, I beg of Thee, in memory of Thy Wounds which penetrated to the very marrow of Thy Bones and to the depth of Thy being, to draw me, a miserable sinner, overwhelmed by my offenses, away from sin and to hide me from Thy Face justly irritated against me, hide me in Thy Wounds, until Thy anger and just indignation shall have passed away. Amen.

O IESU, abyssus profundissima misericordiae, rogo te propter profunditatem vulnerum tuorum, quae pertransierunt medullam ossium ac viscerum tuorum, ut me submersum in peccatis emergas, abscondasque me in foraminibus vulnerum tuorum a facie irae tuae, donec pertranseat furor tuus, Domine. Amen.

Twelfth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Mirror of Truth, symbol of unity, link of Charity, remember the multitude of wounds with which Thou was covered from head to foot, torn and reddened by the spilling of Thy adorable Blood. O Great and Universal Pain which Thou didst suffer in Thy virginal Flesh for Love of us! Sweetest Jesus! What is there that Thou couldst have done for us which Thou hast not done!

May the fruit of Thy sufferings be renewed in my soul by the faithful remembrance of Thy Passion, and may Thy Love increase in my heart each day, until I see Thee in eternity, Thou Who art the treasury of every real good and every joy, which I beg Thee to grant me, O Sweetest Jesus, in Heaven. Amen.

O IESU, veritatis speculum, signum unitatis, caritatisque vinculum, memento multitudinis innumerabilium vulnerum tuorum, quibus a summo capitis usque ad imum pedis vulneratus fuisti, et sanctissimo Sanguine tuo rubricatus, quam magnitudinem doloris in virginea carne tua pertulisti pro nobis! Pie Iesu quid ultra debuisti facere et non fecisti?

Scribe, quaeso, o pie Iesu, omnia vulnera tua in corde meo pretiosissimo Sanguine tuo, ut in illis legam dolorem tuum et mortem, ut in gratiarum actione usque in finem iugiter perseverem. Amen.

Thirteenth Prayer


Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Strong Lion, Immortal and Invincible King, remember the pain which Thou didst endure when all Thy strength, both moral and physical, was entirely exhausted, Thou didst bow Thy Head, saying: "It is consummated!"

Through this anguish and grief, I beg of Thee Lord Jesus, to have mercy on me at the hour of my death when my mind will be greatly troubled and my soul will be in anguish. Amen.

O IESU, leo fortissime, Rex immortalis et invictissime : memento doloris quem passus es cum omnes vires cordis et corporis tui penitus defecerunt et inclinato capite, "Consummatum est", dixisti.

Per hanc angustiam et dolorem miserere mei cum anima mea in ultima consummatione exitus spiritus mei anxiata fuerit et conturbata. Amen.

Fourteenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! Only Son of the Father, Splendor and figure of His Substance, remember the simple and humble recommendation Thou didst make of Thy Soul to Thy Eternal Father, saying: "Father, into Thy Hands I commend My Spirit!" And with Thy Body all torn, and Thy Heart Broken, and the bowels of Thy Mercy open to redeem us, Thou didst Expire.

By this Precious Death, I beg of Thee O King of Saints, comfort me and help me to resist the devil, the flesh and the world, so that being dead to the world I may live for Thee alone. I beg of Thee at the hour of my death to receive me, a pilgrim and an exile returning to Thee. Amen.

O IESU, unigenite altissimi Patris, splendor et figura substantiae eius, memento obnixae commendationis, qua Patri spiritum commendasti, dicens : "In manus tuas, Domine, commendo spiritum meum". Et lacerato corpore, rupto corde cum valido clamore, patefactis visceribus misericordiae tuae pro nobis redimendis, expirasti.

Per hanc pretiosissimam mortem precor te, Rex sanctorum, conforta me ad resistendum diabolo, mundo, carni et sanguini, ut mundo mortuus tibi vivam, et in novissima hora exitus mei suscipe ad te revertentem spiritum meum exulem et peregrinum. Amen.

Fifteenth Prayer

Our Father - Hail Mary

O Jesus! True and fruitful Vine! Remember the abundant outpouring of Blood which Thou didst so generously shed, pressed down and running over as the grape crushed in the wine press.

From Thy Side, pierced with a lance by a soldier, blood and water issued forth until there was not lift in Thy Body a single drop, and finally, like a bundle of myrrh lifted to the very top of the Cross, Thy delicate Flesh was destroyed, the very Substance of Thy Body withered, and the Marrow of Thy Bones dried up. Through this bitter Passion and through the outpouring of Thy Precious Blood, I beg of Thee, O Sweet Jesus, to pierce my heart, so that my tears of penitence and love may be my bread night and day. May I be converted entirely to Thee, may my heart be Thy perpetual resting place, may my conversation be pleasing to Thee, and may the end of my life be so praiseworthy that I may merit heaven and there, with Thy saints, praise Thee forever. Amen.

O Jesus! Verus quod uber Vine! Memor uber outpouring of Cruor quod Sententia didst sic liberaliter effundo pressed down quod cursor super ut grape frendo obvius vinum.

Thy Pars pierced per a lancea per a miles militis , cruor quod unda proventus continuo insquequo illic eram non left in Thy Somes a singulus occumbo, quod denique, amo facis of myrrh levo ut valde caput capitis of crux crucis Thy tener tenera tenerum viscus eram pessum ire, valde substantia of Thy Somes vietus, quod matrimonium of Thy bones assus sursum. Per is acerbus Perturbatio quod per outpouring of Thy Precious Cruor, EGO precor of Thee O Dulcis Jesus, ut pierce meus pectus pectoris, ut meus lacrima of penitence quod diligo ero meus panis dies quod nox noctis. May EGO exsisto converted penitus ut Thee may meus pectus pectoris exsisto Thy perpetuus quietus locus may meus sermo exsisto gratus ut Thee, quod may terminus of meus vita exsisto sic laudabilis ut EGO may dignitas Olympus quod illic per Thy sanctus, laus Thee forever.

Born: March 25, 1347 in Siena, Republic of Siena

Died: April 29, 1380 (aged 33) in Rome, Papal States
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church; Anglican Communion; Lutheranism
Canonized: 1461, by Pope Pius II
Feast: April 29; April 30 (Roman Calendar, 1628–1960)
Attributes: Dominican tertiaries' habit, lily, book, crucifix, heart, crown of thorns, stigmata, ring, dove, rose, skull, miniature church, miniature ship bearing Papal coat of arms
Patronage: against fire, bodily ills, diocese of Allentown, Pennsylvania, USA, Europe, firefighters, illness, Italy, miscarriages, people ridiculed for their piety, sexual temptation, sick people, sickness, nurses

(born in 1347, died in 1380, Memorial on April 29)[1]

Catherine was born on March 25, 1347 in Siena, Tuscany, Italy.[2] She was the youngest in the family and the twenty-fifth child of her father Giacomo di Benincasa and her mother Lapa. In 1375, while she was in Pisa, she received the stigmata on the fourth Sunday of Lent (Laetare Sunday). Due to her influence, Pope Gregory XI left Avignon and returned to Rome on January 17, 1377, ending the "Avignon Captivity." She died in Rome on April 29, 1380,[3] was found to be incorrupt in 1430,[4] was canonized by Pope Pius II in 1461, and was declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Paul VI on October 4, 1970.



  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Saint Vincent Ferrer - Confessor, Angel of the Last Judgment

Born: 23 January 1350 in Valencia, Kingdom of Valencia
Died: 5 April 1419 (aged 69) in Vannes, Brittany
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion
Canonized: 3 June 1455, Rome by Pope Calixtus III
Major shrine: Vannes Cathedral
Feast: 5 April
Attributes: pulpit; cardinal's hat; trumpet; captives; Bible
Patronage: builders construction workers, plumbers

(born in 1350, died in 1419, Optional Memorial is April 5)[1]

Vincent was born on in Valencia, Spain[2] on January 23[3] in the 1350's.[4] He was the fourth child of William Ferrer and Constantia Miguel.[5] He received his education at Valencia, beginning his course of philosophy when he was twelve and his course of theology when he was fourteen.[6] He entered the Dominicans at the beginning of his eighteenth year,[7][8] and was later sent to Barcelona for further studies.[9] He died on April 5, 1419 at Vannes, Brittany, France.


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  4. Catholic Encyclopedia and Catholic Forum Patron Saints Index say 1350, while Butler's Lives of the Saints and say 1357.
  7. and Butler's Lives of the Saints say it was in 1374, while the Catholic Encyclopedia says 1367, which would also imply he was either sixteen or seventeen.
  8. Butler's Lives of the Saints says his parents conducted him to the Dominican monastery with joy; Catholic Forum Patron Saints Index says he entered against his family's wishes
  9. The Catholic Encyclopedia says "the following year" after 1367, which would be 1368 and eighteen years after his birth; Butler's Lives of the Saints hints that he was at least twenty-four years of age, which would be about the year 1371 if he was born in 1367.

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894


CH's wonderful apostle, the "Angel of the Judgment," was born at Valencia in Spain, in 1350, and at the age of eighteen professed in the Order of St. Dominic. After a brilliant course of study he became master of sacred theology. For three years he read only the Scriptures, and knew the whole Bible by heart. He converted the Jews of Valencia, and their synagogue became a church. Grief at the great schism then afflicting the Church reduced him to the point of death; but Our Lord Himself in glory bade him go forth to convert sinners, "for My judgment is nigh." This miraculous apostolate lasted twenty-one years. He preached throughout Europe, in the towns and villages of Spain, Switzerland, France, Italy, England, Ireland, Scotland. Everywhere tens of thousands of sinners were reformed; Jews, infidels, and heretics were converted. Stupendous miracles enforced his words. Twice each day the " miracle bell " summoned the sick, the blind, the lame to be cured. Sinners the most obdurate became Saints; speaking only his native Spanish, he was understood in all tongues. Processions of ten thousand penitents followed him in perfect order. Convents, orphanages, hospitals, arose in his path. Amidst all, his humility remained profound, his prayer constant. He always prepared for preaching by prayer. Once, however, when a person of high rank was to be present at his sermon he neglected prayer for study. The nobleman was not particularly struck by the discourse which had been thus carefully worked up; but coming again to hear the Saint, unknown to the latter, the second sermon made a deep impression on his soul. When St. Vincent heard of the difference, he remarked that in the first sermon it was Vincent who had preached, but in the second, Jesus Christ. He fell ill at Vannes in Brittany, and received the crown of everlasting glory in 1419.

Reflection.—"Whatever you do," said St. Vincent, "think not of yourself, but of God." In this spirit he preached, and God spoke by him; in this spirit, if we listen, we shall hear the voice of God.
----Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Born: January 6, c. 1412 in Domrémy, Duchy of Bar, Kingdom of France.

Died: 30 May 1431 (aged approx. 19) in Rouen, France (then controlled by England)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Beatified: 18 April 1909, Notre Dame de Paris by Pope Pius X
Canonized: 16 May 1920, St. Peter's Basilica, Rome by Pope Benedict XV
Feast: 30 May
Patronage: France ; martyrs; captives; military personnel; people ridiculed for their piety; prisoners; soldiers, women who have served in the WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service); and Women's Army Corps

Joan was born in Domremy in Champagne in the early 1400's. She lead the French forces that raised the siege of Orléans. Joan was captured on May 24, 1430 outside the walls of Compiègne. She was executed on May 30, 1431. Pope Benedict XV canonized her in 1920.[1]




AT Domremy, on the Upper Meuse, was born on January 6, 1412, of pious parentage, the illustrious heroine of all time, St. Joan of Arc. Taught by her mother from earliest years to pray each night "O God, save France," she could not help but conceive that ardent love for her country which later consumed her life. While the English were overrunning the north of France, their future conqueror, untutored in worldly wisdom, was peacefully tending her flock, and learning the wisdom of God at a wayside shrine. But hearing Voices from heaven and bidden by St. Michael, who appeared to her, to deliver her country from the enemy, she hastened to the King and convinced him of her divine mission. Scarcely did her banner, inscribed "Jesus, Mary," appear on the battlefield than she raised the siege of Orleans and led Charles VII. to be crowned at Rheims. Later, abandoned by her King, she fell into the hands of the English, who gave her a mock trial and burned her as a heretic.

But the Maid of Orleans has at last come into her own, for with greater pomp than ever a king was crowned, and amid the acclamations of the whole world, on May 13, 1920, Pope Benedict XV. proclaimed her St. Joan of Arc.
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints,1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Born: October 23, 1491 in Loyola, Gipuzkoa, Basque Country, Kingdom of Castille (actually Spain)

Died: July 31, 1556 (aged 65) in Rome, Papal States
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion
Beatified: July 27, 1609 by Pope Paul V
Canonized: March 12, 1622 by Pope Gregory XV
Feast: July 31
Attributes: Eucharist, chasuble, book, cross
Patronage: Dioceses of San Sebastián and Bilbao, Biscay & Guipúzcoa, Basque Country, Military Ordinariate of the Philippines, Society of Jesus, soldiers, Educators and Education.

founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuit Order, born 1491, died in 1556, Memorial on July 31)[1]

Ignatius was born in the Castle of Loyola to Don Beltrán Yañez de Oñez y Loyola and Marina Saenz de Lieona y Balda (their youngest son). He was originally baptized Iñigo (he took the name Ignatius later). On May 20, 1521 he was injured by a cannonball. He was taken to Loyola, and while convalescing, he read the lives of Christ and the Saints because there were no chivalric romances to read in the castle. He entered the University of Salamanca in 1527. He died in Rome on July 31, 1556. He was beatified on July 27, 1609 by Pope Paul V and canonized on May 22, 1622 by Pope Gregory XV.[2]


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Born: 7 April 1506 in Xavier, Kingdom of Navarre, (Spain)

Died: 3 December 1552 (aged 46)at the Portuguese Base at São João Island, China
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Lutheran Church, Anglican Communion
Beatified: 25 October 1619 by Pope Paul V
Canonized: 12 March 1622 by Gregory XV
Feast: 3 December
Attributes: crucifix; preacher carrying a flaming heart; bell; globe; vessel; young bearded Jesuit in the company of Saint Ignatius Loyola; young bearded Jesuit with a torch, flame, cross and lily
Patronage: African missions; Agartala, India; Ahmedabad, India; Alexandria, Louisiana; Apostleship of Prayer; Australia; Bombay, India; Borneo; Cape Town, South Africa; China; Dinajpur, Bangladesh; East Indies; Fathers of the Precious Blood; foreign missions; Freising, Germany; Goa, India; Green Bay, Wisconsin; India; Indianapolis, Indiana; Sophia University, Tokyo, Japan; Joiliet, Illinois; Kabankalan, Philippines; Nasugbu, Batangas, Philippines; Alegria, Cebu, Philippines; diocese of Malindi, Kenya; missionaries; Missioners of the Precious Blood; Navarre, Spain; navigators; New Zealand; parish missions; plague epidemics; Propagation of the Faith; Zagreb, Croatia; Indonesia

Saint Francis Xavier was one of the first members of the Society of Jesus (born in 1506, died in 1552, Memorial on December 3)[1]

Francis was born in the castle of Xavier on April 7, 1506. He went to Paris in 1525 and entered the collège de Sainte-Barbe. Francis, Saint Ignatius of Loyola, and five others took their vow on August 15, 1534. Francis left Paris on November 15, 1536. Francis and Saint Ignatius of Loyola were ordained on July 24, 1537. Francis left Rome for Lisbon, Portugal on March 16, 1540. Francis left for India by boat on April 7, 1541. He arrived at Goa on May 6, 1542. Francis landed in arrived in Kagoshima, Japan on August 15, 1549. Francis died on December 2, 1552 on the Island of Sancian. He was canonized in 1622 by Pope Gregory XV, but the Bull was not published until the following year.[2]


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Born: March 28, 1515 in Gotarrendura, Ávila, Crown of Castile (today Spain)

Died: October 4, 1582 (aged 67) in Alba de Tormes, Salamanca, Spain
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Lutheran Church
Anglican Communion
Beatified: April 24, 1614, Rome by Pope Paul V
Canonized: March 12, 1622, Rome by Pope Gregory XV
Major shrine: Convent of the Annunciation, Alba de Tormes, Spain
Feast: October 15
Attributes: habit of the Discalced Carmelites, Book and Quill, arrow-pierced heart
Patronage: bodily ills; headaches; chess; lacemakers; laceworkers; loss of parents; people in need of grace; people in religious orders; people ridiculed for their piety; Pozega, Croatia; sick people; sickness; Spain

(born in 1515, died in 1582, Memorial on October 15)[1]

Teresa Sanchez Cepeda Davila y Ahumada was born on March 28, 1515, at Avila, Castile, Spain. She was the daughter of Don Alonso Sanchez de Cepeda and Doña Beatriz Davila y Ahumada. In November of 1535,[2] when she was seventeen,[3] she entered the Carmelite Convent of the Incarnation, which was also in Avila[4] and was already inhabited by one hundred forty nuns. She eventually established reformed convents, which were greatly opposed by many of the other lax Carmelites.[5] She died at Alba de Tormes on October 4, 1582, was beatified by Pope Paul V on April 24, 1614, and was canonized by Pope Gregory XV on March 12, 1622. She was declared a Doctor of the Church on September 27, 1970, by Pope Paul VI.[6]


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  3. says sixteen.
  4. The Catholic Encyclopedia and the Patron Saints index say that she entered the convent secretly against the will of her father, while says that her father forced her to enter because she was getting out of control.
(born in 1521, died in 1597, Optional Memorial on December 21)[1]


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Saint Peter Canisius- Confessor and Doctor of the Church
Born: 8 May 1521 in Nijmegen, Duchy of Guelders, Netherlands
Died: 21 December 1597 (aged 76)
Honored in: Catholic Church
Beatified: 1864, Rome by Pope Pius IX
Canonized; 21 May 1925, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Feast: December 21; April 27 (General Roman Calendar, 1926-1969)
Patron Saint of: Catholic press, Germany

Native name: Carlo Borromeo

Archdiocese: Milan
See: Milan
Appointed: 12 May 1564
Reign ended: 3 November 1584
Predecessor: Giovanni Angelo de’ Medici
Successor: Gaspare Visconti
Other posts: Cardinal-Priest of Santa Prassede
Ordination: 4 September 1563 by Federico Cesi
Consecration: 7 December 1563 by Giovanni Serbelloni
Created Cardinal: 31 January 1560
Rank: Cardinal-Priest
Birth name: Count Carlo Borromeo di Arona
Born: 2 October 1538 in the Castle of Arona, Duchy of Milan
Died: 3 November 1584 (aged 46) in Milan
Buried: Milan Cathedral
Denomination: Roman Catholic
Parents: Gilberto Borromeo, 7th Count of Arona
Margherita de' Medici di Marignano
Previous post: Administrator of Milan (1560-1564)
Cardinal-Deacon of Santi Vito, Modesto e Crescenzia (1560)
Cardinal-Deacon of Santi Silvestro e Martino ai Monti (1560-1563)
Cardinal-Priest of Santi Silvestro e Martino ai Monti (1563-1564)
Archpriest of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore (1564-1572)
Feast day: 4 November
Venerated in: Catholic Church
Beatified: 12 May 1602 by Pope Paul V
Canonized: 1 November 1610 by Pope Paul V
Attributes: cord, red cardinal robes
Patronage: against ulcers; apple orchards; bishops; catechists; catechumens; colic; intestinal disorders; Lombardy, Italy; Monterey California; seminarians; spiritual directors; spiritual leaders; starch makers; stomach diseases; São Carlos city in Brazil (as the name indicates) Shrines Milan Cathedral

(born in 1538, died on November 3, 1584, Memorial on November 4)[1]

Charles Borromeo was born on October 2, 1538 in the Castle of Arona in Italy. He was the son of Count Gilberto Borromeo and Margherita (of the Medici family). He received the tonsure when he was twelve, and eventually became the titular abbot of SS. Gratinian & Felinus. His uncle was elected pope in December of 1559, and Charles received a summons to Rome on January 3, 1560. Charles was assigned the administrative duties of the papal states, and was created a cardinal on January 31, 1560. Charles was made the Cardinal Protector[59] of the following: the Kingdom of Portugal, Lower Germany, the Catholic cantons of Switzerland, the Franciscans, the Carmelites, the Humiliati, the Canons Regular of the Holy Cross of Coimbra, the Knights of Jerusalem/Malta, and the Portuguese order of the Holy Cross of Christ [2]. He worked strenuously to reassemble the Council of Trent (which had been suspended since 1552), which resumed again on January 18, 1562. After his brother died on November 28, 1562, Charles was the head of his ancestral family and pressure was laid on him to get married, even from his uncle the pope. Charles did not wish to do so, however, and instead chose to be secretly ordained as priest by Cardinal Federigo Cesa at Santa Maria Maggiore on September 4, 1563.[3] He was consecrated a bishop on December 7, 1563, received the pallium on March 23, 1564, and was preconized[4] on May 12. Charles finally received permission from the pope to visit his diocese, departed September 1, 1565, and arrived in Milan on September 23, 1565, becoming the first resident archbishop of Milan in eighty years. He was met with great rejoicing by the populace. The first provincial council met on October 15, 1565, and was finished on November 3, 1565. Charles then went to Trent as a legate on November 6, 1565. His uncle Pope Pius IV died on December 10, 1565. Cardinal Michele Ghislieri was elected pope on January 7, 1566, taking the name Pius V. Charles returned to Milan on April 5, 1566. Charles began his visits of the three Swiss valleys of Levantina, Bregno, and La Riviera. The second diocesan synod was held in August of 1568, and the second provincial council was held in April of 1569. In October of 1569 an attempt was made to take is life by a member of the Humiliati, and led to the suppression of the order by Pope Pius V (Bull dated February 7, 1571). Pope Pius V died on May 1, 1572, and Charles went to attend the conclave, in which Pope Gregory XIII was elected on May 13, 1572. He arrived again in Milan on November 12, 1572, held the third provincial council in April of 1573, and held the fourth diocesan synod in November of 1574. Charles began his journey to Rome on December 8, 1574 on account of the Jubilee Year of 1575. A plague came to Milan in August of 1576, began to abate in 1577, and mostly disappeared by early 1578. Charles held the fifth diocesan synod in 1578, and also made a pilgrimage to Turin in 1578. He set out for Rome in 1582, and left Rome in January of 1583. He visited the cantons of Switzerland again. He left Turin on October 8, 1584 and went to Monte Varallo. The Cardinal of Vercelli summoned him to Arona on October 18, 1584, and Charles returned to Monte Varallo on October 20, 1584. He died on November 3, 1584 in Milan. He was canonized by Pope Paul V on November 1, 1610.[5]


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  2. might be the Croisers
  3. The source says September 4, 1563, but the source also says his first Mass was on the Assumption. There may be an error in this case.
Born: 4 October 1542 in Montepulciano, Italy

Died: 17 September 1621 (aged 78) in Rome, Italy
Honored in: Catholic Church
Beatified: 13 May 1923, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Canonized: 29 June 1930, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Major shrine: Chiesa di Sant'Ignazio, Rome, Italy
Feast: 17 September; 13 May (General Roman Calendar, 1932–1969)
Patronage: Bellarmine University; Fairfield University; Bellarmine College Preparatory; canonists; canon lawyers; catechists; catechumens; Archdiocese of Cincinnati,

Saint Robert Bellarmine (born in 1542, died in 1621, Optional Memorial on {September 17)[1] was a Cardinal and an Italian Jesuit.

(born about 1542, died in 1591, Memorial on December 14)[2]


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Saint John of the Cross - Confessor and Doctor of the Church
Born: 24 June 1542 in Fontiveros, Spain
Died: December 14, 1591 (aged 49) in Ubeda, Andalusia, Spain
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church; Anglican Communion; Lutheran Church
Beatified: 25 January 1675 by Pope Clement X
Canonized: 27 December 1726 by Pope Benedict XIII
Major shrine: Tomb of Saint John of the Cross, Segovia, Spain
Feast: December 14
November 24 (General Roman Calendar, 1738-1969)
Patron Saint of: contemplative life; contemplatives; mystical theology; mystics; Spanish poets

Saint Aloysius Gonzaga

Born: March 9, 1568 in Castiglione delle Stiviere, Duchy of Mantua, Holy Roman Empire
Died: June 21, 1591 (aged 23) Rome, Papal States
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: October 19, 1605, Rome, Papal States by Pope Paul V
Canonized: December 31, 1726, Rome, Papal States by Pope Benedict XIII
Major shrine: Church of Sant'Ignazio, Rome, Italy
Feast: 21 June
Attributes: Lily, cross, skull, rosary
Patronage: Young students, Christian youth, Jesuit novices, the blind, AIDS patients, AIDS care-givers

(born in 1568, died in 1591, Memorial on June 21)[1]

Aloysius was born on March 9, 1568 in the castle of Castiglione. Aloysius went to Spain with his father in 1581, and was made a page of Philip II's son James. He presented himself to the General of the Society of Jesus on November 25, 1585, and professed his vows on November 25, 1587. He died on June 21, 1591, was beatified by Pope Gregory XV in 1621, and was canonized by Pope Benedict XIII in 1726.

Born: 7 February 1478 in the City of London, London, Kingdom of England

Died: 6 July 1535 (aged 57) at Tower Hill, Liberties of the Tower of London, Tower Hamlets, Kingdom of England
Religion: Roman Catholicism
Honored in: Catholic Church; Anglican Communion
Beatified: 1886, Florence by Pope Leo XIII
Canonized: 19 May 1935, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Feast: 22 June (Catholic Church)
6 July (on some local calendars) 9 July on the traditionalist Catholic (Latin Mass) calendar
Attributes: dressed in the robe of the Chancellor and wearing the Collar of Esses; axe
Patronage: Adopted children; civil servants; court clerks; difficult marriages; large families; lawyers, politicians, and statesmen; stepparents; widowers; Ateneo de Manila Law School; Diocese of Arlington; Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee; Kerala Catholic Youth Movement; University of Malta; University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Arts and Letters

Thomas was born to Sir John More and his wife Agnes in either 1477 or 1478 on February 7. He entered Caterbury hall at Oxford about the year 1492, and he entered New Inn as a law student about the year 1494. He became a member of Parliament in 1501, and was married in 1505. He became Under-Sheriff of London in 1515, and became Speaker of the House of Commons in 1523. In 1529, he succeeded Cardinal Wolsey as Chancellor of England, and became the first layman to hold the position. After King Henry VIII's determination to divorce his wife Catherine and marry Anne Boleyn, Thomas More resigned the chancellorship in 1532 and stayed out of the public scene. He was eventually imprisoned in the Tower of London, and was executed on July 6, 1535. He was beatified by Pope Leo XIII in the Decree of December 29, 1886, and was canonized by Pope Pius XI in 1935.[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Saint Juan Diego was born in Mexico.

Born: c. July 12, 1474 in Calpulli of Tlayacac, Cuauhtitlan, Mexico
Died: May 30, 1548 (aged 73) in Tenochtitlan, Mexico City, Mexico
Honored in: the Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: April 9, 1990, Vatican City, Rome by Pope John Paul II
Canonized: July 31, 2002, Basilica of Guadalupe, Mexico City, Mexico by Pope John Paul II
Major shrine: Basilica of Guadalupe, Mexico City, Mexico
Feast: December 9
Attributes: tilma

(born in 1579, died in 1639, Optional Memorial on November 3)[1]


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Martin of Charity
Saint of the Broom
Born: December 9, 1579 in Lima, Viceroyalty of Peru
Died: November 3, 1639 (aged 59) in Lima, Viceroyalty of Peru (modern-day Peru)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Lutheran Church, Anglican Communion
Beatified: 1837 by Pope Gregory XVI
Canonized: May 6, 1962 by Pope John XXIII
Major shrine: Church and Convent of Santo Domingo, Lima, Peru;
St. Martin De Porres National Shrine in Chicago, Illinois
Feast: November 3
Attributes: a dog, a cat, a bird, and a mouse eating together from a same dish; broom, crucifix, rosary, a heart
Patron Saint of : diocese of Biloxi, Mississippi, black people, hair stylists, innkeepers, mixed-race people, Peru, poor people, public education, public health, public schools, race relations, social justice, state schools, television, Mexico Peruvian Naval Aviators

(born about 1580, martyred in 1623, Memorial on November 12)[1]
Josaphat was born in either 1580 or 1584 in Volodymyr, Lithuania. In 1604, He entered a Basilian Monastery when he was twenty-four. He was ordained in 1609, was consecrated as bishop of Vitebsk on November 12, 1617, and was made an archbishop in 1618. He was martyred on November 12, 1623. He was beatified in 1643 and canonized in 1867.[2]


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Saint Josaphat Kuntsevych - Bishop and Martyr
Saint Josaphat is often depicted wearing the pallium and holding the palm of martyrdom.
Church: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church
See: Eparch of Polotsk
Appointed: January 9, 1618
Reign ended: November 12, 1623
Predecessor: Gedeon Brolnicki
Successor: Antin Sielawa
Consecration: November 12, 1617 (Bishop)
Personal details
Born: 1580 or 1584 in Volodymyr, Volhynia, Grand Duchy of Lithuania
Died: November 12, 1623 in Vitebsk, Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (present day Belarus) Sainthood
Feast day: November 12 (Roman Catholic Church)
November 14 (The General Roman Calendar, 1882-1969)
November 25 (Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church)
Beatified: May 16, 1643 in Rome by Pope Urban VIII
Canonized: June 29, 1867 in Rome by Pope Pius IX

(born in 1580, died on September 8, 1654, Memorial on September 9)[1]

Saint Peter Claver - Confessor
Born: 26 June 1580 in Verdu, Catalonia, Kingdom of Spain
Died: 8 September 1654 (aged 74) in Cartagena, Colombia
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Beatified: 16 July 1850, Rome by Pope Pius IX
Canonized: 15 January 1888, Rome by Pope Leo XIII
Major shrine: Church of Saint Peter Claver
Feast: 9 September
Patronage: Slaves, Colombia, race relations, African-Americans


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(born in 1581, died in 1660, Memorial on September 27)[1]

Saint Vincent de Paul - Confessor, Priest and Founder
Born: 24 April 1581, Pouy, Guyenne and Gascony, Kingdom of France
Died: 27 September 1660 (aged 79), Paris, Kingdom of France
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion
Beatified: 13 August 1729, Rome by Pope Benedict XIII
Canonized: 16 June 1737, Rome by Pope Clement XII
Major shrine: St Vincent de Paul chapel, Rue de Sèvres, Paris, France
Feast: 27 September, 19 July (Roman Calendar, 1737-1969)
Patronage: charities; horses; hospitals; leprosy; lost articles; Madagascar; prisoners; Richmond, Virginia; spiritual help; Saint Vincent de Paul Societies; Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory; Vincentian Service Corps; volunteers


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Born: April 20, 1586 in Lima, Viceroyalty of Peru, Spanish Empire

Died: August 24, 1617 (aged 31) in Lima, Viceroyalty of Peru, Spanish Empire
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion
Beatified: April 15, 1667 or 1668, Rome by Pope Clement IX
Canonized: April 12, 1671, Rome by Pope Clement X
Major shrine: Monastery of St. Dominic in Lima, Peru
Feast: August 23
August 30 (some Latin American countries and pre-1970 General Roman Calendar)
Attributes: rose, anchor, Infant Jesus
Patronage: embroiderers; gardeners; florists; India; Latin America; people ridiculed or misunderstood for their piety; for the resolution of family quarrels; indigenous peoples of the Americas; Peru; Philippines; Santa Rosa, California; against vanity; Lima; Peruvian Police Force

(born in 1586, died August 24, 1617, Optional Memorial on August 23)[1]

Rose was born in Lima, Peru on April 20, 1586. She received the Dominican habit in her twentieth year. She died in Lima on August 30, 1617, was beatified by Pope Clement IX in 1667, and was canonized by Pope Clement X in 1671.[2]


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Born: January 15, 1607 in Slough (Orléans, France)

Died: October 18, 1646 (aged 39) in Auriesville, New York
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: June 21, 1925, Rome, Italy by Pope Pius XI
Canonized: June 29, 1930, Rome, Italy by Pope Pius XI
Major shrine: National Shrine of the North American Martyrs, Auriesville, New York, USA (where he was martyred)
Feast: September 26 (Canada), October 19 (General calendar)

(martyred on October 18, 1647, Memorial in US dioceses)[1]


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  1. REDIRECT Category:Saint John de Brébeuf
Saint Louis de Montfort - Confessor

also known as Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort
Born: 31 January 1673 in Montfort-sur-Meu, France
Died: 28 April 1716 (aged 43) in Saint-Laurent-sur-Sèvre
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: 1888 by Pope Leo XIII
Canonized: 1947 by Pope Pius XII
Feast: 28 April

Louis was born in Montfort on January 31, 1673. He went to Paris when he was nineteen, and was ordained when he was twenty-seven. He founded the Company of Mary and the Sisters of Wisdom. He died on April 28, 1716 at Saint Laurent sur Sevre. He was beatified in 1888 by Pope Leo XIII and canonized in 1947 by Pope Pius XII.[1]


Born: 22 July 1515 in Florence

Died: 27 May 1595 (aged 79)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: 11 May 1615 by Pope Paul V
Canonized: 12 March 1622 by Pope Gregory XV
Feast: 26 May
Patronage: Rome, US Special Forces, ICRSS, Laughter, humor, joy

(born in 1515, died in 1595, Memorial on May 26)

Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque - Virgin

Born: 22 July 1647 in L'Hautecour, Burgundy, France, and given the name Marguerite Marie Alacoque
Died: 17 October 1690 (aged 43) in Paray-le-Monial, Burgundy, France
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: 18 September 1864, Rome by Pope Pius IX
Canonized: 13 May 1920, Rome by Benedict XV
Feast: October 16
Patronage: those suffering with polio, devotees of the Sacred Heart, loss of parents
Promoted: devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

(born in 1647, died on October 17, 1690, Optional Memorial on October 16)

See also: Sacred Heart of Jesus
Category:Sacred Heart Symbol
Category:Sacred Heart
Category:Jesus Christ
Category:Promises of the Sacred Heart

Sacred Heart of Jesus

Saint Paulo Miki - Martyr

Born: c. 1562 in Tounucumada, Japan
Died: February 5, 1597 in Nagasaki, Japan
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: September 14, 1627 by Pope Urban VIII
Canonized: 8 June 1862 by Pope Pius IX
Feast: February 6

(born between 1564 and 1566, martyred February 5, 1597, Memorial on February 6)[1]


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The Twenty-six Martyrs of Japan (日本二十六聖人 Nihon Nijūroku Seijin?) refers to those who were executed by crucifixion on February 5, 1597 at Nagasaki, Japan.

Saint Antonio Dainan
Saint Bonaventura of Miyako
Saint Cosme Takeya
Saint Francisco Branco
Saint Francisco of Nagasaki
Saint Francisco of Saint Michael
Saint Gabriel de Duisco
Saint Gaius Francis
Saint Gundisalvus (Gonsalvo) Garcia
Saint Isabel Fernandez
Saint Ignatius Jorjes
Saint James Kisai
Saint Joaquim Saccachibara
Saint Juan Kisaka
Saint Juan Soan de Goto
Saint Leo Karasumaru
Saint Luis Ibaraki
Saint Martin of the Ascension
Saint Mathias of Miyako
Saint Miguel Kozaki
Saint Paulo Ibaraki
Saint Paul Miki or Saint Paulo Miki – Born in Japan in 1562, he joined the Society of Jesus in 1580 and was the first Japanese member of any Catholic religious order. He died one year before his ordination to the Catholic priesthood. Miki's remaining ashes and bones are now located in Macau, China.
Saint Pablo Suzuki
Saint Pedro Bautista or Saint Peter Baptist – He was a Spanish Franciscan who had worked about ten years in the Philippines before coming to Japan. St. Peter was a companion of St. Paul Miki when Christianity was made illegal.[5]
Saint Pedro Sukejiroo
Saint Philip of Jesus - Born in Mexico in 1572 (at the time "New Spain"). Upon his martyrdom he became the first Mexican saint and patron saint of Mexico City.
Saint Thomas Kozaki
Saint Thomas Xico

(Born in 1567, died December 28, 1622, Memorial on January 24)[1]

Native name: François de Sales
Diocese: Geneva
See: Geneva
Appointed: 15 July 1602 (Coadjutor)
Enthroned: 8 December 1602
Reign ended: 28 December 1622
Predecessor: Claude de Granier
Successor: Jean-François de Sales
Ordination: 18 December 1593 by Claude de Granier
Consecration: 8 December 1602 by Vespasien Gribaldi
Born: 21 August 1567 in Château de Sales, Duchy of Savoy
Died: 28 December 1622 (aged 55) in Lyon, France
Denomination: Roman Catholic
Previous post: Titular Bishop of Nicopolis ad Iaterum (1602)
Motto: non excidet
Feast day: 24 January
23 January Anglican Church of Wales
29 January (local communities and among Traditional Roman Catholics)
Venerated in: Roman Catholic Church
Anglican Communion
Title as Saint: Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church and tertiary of the Order of Minims
Beatified: 8 January 1661 in Rome by Pope Alexander VII
Canonized: 8 April 1665 in Rome by Pope Alexander VII
Attributes: Heart of Jesus, Crown of Thorns
Patronage: Baker, Oregon; Cincinnati, Ohio; Catholic press; Columbus, Ohio; confessors; deaf people; educators; Upington, South Africa; Wilmington, Delaware; writers; journalists; the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest
Shrines: Annecy, France


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

Excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894

January 29 — ST. FRANCIS OF SALES. In 1894, this was the day of his Memorial.
January 24 is the day his Memorial is currently celebrated.

FRANCIS was born of noble and pious parents, near Annecy, 1566, and studied with brilliant success at Paris and Padua. On his return from Italy he gave up the grand career which his father had marked out for him in the service of the state, and became a priest. When the Duke of Savoy had resolved to restore the Church in the Chablais, Francis offered himself for the work, and set out on foot with his Bible and breviary and one companion, his cousin Louis of Sales. It was a work of toil, privation, and danger. Every door and every heart was closed against him. He was rejected with insult and threatened with death. But nothing could daunt or resist him, and ere long the Church burst forth into a second spring. It is stated that he converted 72,000 Calvinists. He was then compelled by the Pope to become Coadjutor Bishop of Geneva, and succeeded to the see in 1602. At times the exceeding gentleness with which he received heretics and sinners almost scandalized his friends, and one of them said to him, "Francis of Sales will go to Paradise, of course; but I am not so sure of the Bishop of Geneva: I am almost afraid his gentleness will play him a shrewd turn." "Ah," said the Saint, "I would rather account to God for too great gentleness than for too great severity. Is not God all love? God the Father is the Father of mercy; God the Son is a Lamb; God the Holy Ghost is a Dove—that is, gentleness itself. And are you wiser than God?" In union with St. Jane Frances of Chantal he founded at Annecy the Order of the Visitation, which soon spread over Europe. Though poor, he refused provisions and dignities, and even the great see of Paris. He died at Avignon, 1622.

Reflection.—"You will catch more flies," St. Francis used to say, "with a spoonful of honey than with a hundred barrels of vinegar. Were there anything better or fairer on earth than gentleness, Jesus Christ would have taught it us; and yet He has given us only two lessons to learn of Him—meekness and humility of heart."
----excerpt from Lives of the Saints, 1894
by Alban Butler, Benziger Brothers edition, 1894

Born: 28 January 1572 in Dijon, Burgundy, France

Died: 13 December 1641 (aged 69) in Moulins, France
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: 21 November 1751, Rome by Pope Benedict XIV
Canonized: 16 July 1767, Rome by Pope Clement XIII
Major shrine: Annecy, Savoy
Feast: 12 August
21 August (General Roman Calendar 1769-1969)
12 December (General Roman Calendar 1970-2001)
Patronage: forgotten people; in-law problems; loss of parents; parents separated from children; widows

(born in 1572, died in 1641, Optional Memorial on December 12)[1]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Saint Alphonsus Liguori - (born in 1696, died in 1787, Memorial on August 1)[1]
Alphonsus was born on September 27, 1696 in Marianella. He was the son of Don Joseph de Liguori, the Captain of the Royal Galleys. He received his doctorate in Law on January 21, 1713, at the age of sixteen. He was extremely successful in his legal career, and won the majority of his cases. In 1723, a sudden loss of a case soured his interest in the legal profession. He was ordained a deacon on April 6, 1726, and a priest on December 21, 1726. In 1762 the Pontiff required Alphonsus to accept a bishopric. Pius VI permitted Alphonsus to resign his see in May of 1775. He died in Nocera de' Pagani on August 1, 1787, was beatified by Pope_________ in 1816, and was canonized by Pope___________ in 1839.

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton - Foundress and Educator

Born: August 28, 1774 in New York City
Died: January 4, 1821 (aged 46) in Emmitsburg, Maryland
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Episcopal Church (United States)
Beatified: March 17, 1963 by Pope John XXIII
Canonized: September 14, 1975 by Pope Paul VI
Feast: January 4
Patronage: Catholic Schools; Shreveport, Louisiana; and the State of Maryland

(born August 28, 1774, died January 4, 1821, Memorial is on January 4 in US dioceses)[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Born: May 8, 1786 in Dardilly, France

Died: August 4, 1859 (aged 73) in Ars-sur-Formans, France
Honored in: Catholic Church
Beatified: January 8, 1905, Rome, Italy by Saint Pius X
Canonized: 1925, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Major shrine: Shrine of St. John Vianney; Ars-sur-Formans, France
Feast: August 4
August 8 (General Roman Calendar, 1928-1969)
Patronage: all priests, parish priests; Personal Apostolic Administration of Saint John Mary Vianney; Archdiocese of Dubuque, Iowa; confessors; archdiocese of Kansas City, Kansas

parish priest (born in 1786, died in 1859, Memorial on August 4)[1]

John Vianney was born in Dardilly, France on May 8, 1786, to a poor farming family (he had other siblings). As a youth he worked as a shepherd, and did not begin his education until the age of 20. John entered the seminary when he was significantly older than many of the other students, and he had a very difficult time learning Latin. While a seminarian at _________, he was drafted into the Napoleonic army. He had gone into a church to pray, and the army had already left the town. The officers told him to follow after them until he rejoined them. In the course of the journey he stopped to rest and another man offered to lead him on the route. Rather than lead him to the army, the man lead John to a small town where deserters were gathered. The mayor of the town persuaded John to stay, and John remained hidden there until ____________. After reentering the seminary, he was ordained on August 13, 1815 by the Bishop of Grenoble (Mgr. Simon) at ___________. He was assigned as an assistant in Ecully, then as pastor to Ars in 1818. Although there were still a few faithful souls in Ars, it was a poor state of affairs when he arrived. John Vianney fasted greatly, eating a few boiled potatoes. He tried to leave Ars for good several times. He had the ability to read souls. He was frequently tormented by Satan through loud noises and disturbances. He spent about 18 hours a day in the confessional. He was instrumental in promoting devotion to St. Philomena. Eventually, a large number of penitents came to Ars to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation from him. He died on August 4, 1859 at Ars, was buried (where), was proclaimed Venerable by Pius IX on October 3, 1874, was beatified on January 8, 1905 by Pope _____________, and was canonized on May 31, 1925 by Pope Pius XI. He has been classified as one of the Incorruptibles.[2][3][4]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Saint Anthony Claret
Born: May 2, 1806 in Fain-lès-Moutiers, Côte-d'Or, France

Died: December 31, 1876 (aged 70) in Enghien-les-Bains, Seine-et-Oise, France
Honored in: Roman Catholicism
Beatified: May 28, 1933 by Pope Pius XI
Canonized: July 27, 1947 by Pope Pius XII
Feast: 25 November
28 November
31 December
Attributes: Miraculous Medal

Saint Catherine was born in France.

Saint John Neumann - Fourth Bishop of Philadelphia - Bishop and Confessor

Born: 28 March 1811 in Prachatitz, Bohemia, Austrian Empire
Died: 5 January 1860 (aged 48) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: October 13, 1963, Rome, Italy by Pope Paul VI
Canonized: June 19, 1977, Rome, Italy by Pope Paul VI
Major shrine: National Shrine of Saint John Neumann, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Feast: January 5, March 5 (celebrated by the Bohemians)
Attributes: Redemptorist habit, Episcopal vestments

(born March 20, 1811, died January 5, 1860, Memorial on January 5 in US dioceses)[1]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Born: 16 August 1815 in Castelnuovo d'Asti, Piedmont, Italy

Died: 31 January 1888 (aged 72) in Turin, Italy
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church,
Anglican Communion
Beatified: 2 June 1929[1], Rome by Pius XI
Canonized: 1 April 1934[2], Rome by Pius XI
Major shrine: The Tomb of St John Bosco, Basilica of Our Lady Help of Christians, Turin, Italy
Feast: 31 January
Patronage: Christian apprentices, editors, publishers, schoolchildren, young people, magicians

(born in 1815, died in 1888, Memorial on January 31)[1]

The Preventive System in the Education of the Youth

and Advantages of the Preventive System

On several occasions I have been asked to express verbally or in writing some thoughts about the so-called preventive system, which is in general use in our houses. Through lack of time I have so far been unable to meet these wishes; but as I now intend to print the rules of the houses, which until now have nearly always been used traditionally, I think it opportune to give a brief sketch, which may perhaps serve as an outline to a small book which I am preparing and hope to finish, if God gives me life enough, my sole purpose being to help in the difficult art of the education of the young. Wherefore I shall explain: in what the preventive system consists; why it ought to be preferred; and its practical application and its advantages.

1. In what the preventive system consists and why it should be preferred

There are two systems which have been in use through all ages in the education of youth: the preventive and the repressive. The repressive system consists in making the law known to the subjects, and afterwards watching to discover the transgressors of these laws and inflicting, when necessary, the punishment deserved. According to this system, the words and looks of the superior must always be severe and even threatening, and he must avoid all familiarity with his dependents. In order to give weight to his authority the Rector must rarely be found among his subjects, and as a rule only when it is a question of punishing or threatening. This system is easy, less troublesome, and especially suitable in the army and in general among adults and the judicious, who ought of themselves to know and remember what the law and its regulations demand. Quite different from this and I might even say opposed to it, is the preventive system. It consists in making the laws and regulations of an institute known, and then watching carefully so that the pupils may at all times be under the vigilant eye of the Rector or the assistants, who like loving fathers can converse with them, take the lead in every movement and in a kindly way give advice and correction; in other words, this system places the pupils in the impossibility of committing faults. This system is based entirely on reason and religion, and above all on kindness; therefore it excludes all violent punishment, and tries to do without even the slightest chastisement. This system seems preferable for the following reasons:
1. Being forewarned the pupil does not lose courage on account of the faults he has committed, as is the case when they are brought to the notice of the superior. Nor does he resent the correction he receives or the punishment threatened or inflicted, because it is always accompanied by a friendly preventive warning, which appeals to his reason, and generally enlists his accord, so that he sees the necessity of the chastisement and almost desires it.
2. The primary reason for this system is the thoughtlessness of the young, who in one moment forget the rules of discipline and the penalties for their infringement. Consequently, a child often becomes culpable and deserving of punishment, which he had not even thought about, and which he had quite forgotten when heedlessly committing the fault he would certainly have avoided, had a friendly voice warned him.
3. The repressive system may stop a disorder, but can hardly make the offenders better. Experience teaches that the young do not easily forget the punishments they have received, and for the most part foster bitter feelings, along with the desire to throw off the yoke and even to seek revenge. They may sometimes appear to be quite unaffected but anyone who follows them as they grow up knows that the reminiscences of youth are terrible; they easily forget punishments by their parents but only with great difficulty those inflicted by their teachers, and some have even been known in later years to have had recourse to brutal vengeance for chastisements they had justly deserved during the course of their education. In the preventive system, on the other hand, on the contrary, the pupil becomes a friend, and the assistant, a benefactor who advises him, has his good at heart, and wishes to spare him vexation, punishment, and perhaps dishonour.
4. By the preventive system pupils acquire a better understanding, so that an educator can always speak to them in the language of the heart, not only during the time of their education but even afterwards. Having once succeeded in gaining the confidence of his pupils he can subsequently exercise a great influence over them, and counsel them, advise and even correct them, whatever position they may occupy in the world later on.

2. Application of the preventive system

The practice of this system is wholly based on the words of St Paul who says: Caritas patiens est, benigna est. Omnia suffert, omnia sperat, omnia sustinet.1 "Love is patient and kind. … Love bears all things… hopes all things, endures all things." Hence only a Christian can apply the preventive system with success. Reason and religion are the means an educator must constantly apply; he must each them and himself practise them, if he wishes to be obeyed and to attain his end.
1. It follows that the Rector must devote himself entirely to the boys; he should therefore never accept engagements which might keep him from his duties, and he should always be with his pupils whenever they are not engaged in some occupation, unless they are already being properly supervised by others.
2. Teachers, craftmasters and assistants must be of acknowledged morality. They should strive to avoid as they would the plague every kind of affection or sentimental friendship for their pupils, and they should also remember that the wrongdoing of one alone is sufficient to compromise an educational institute. Care should be taken that the pupils are never alone. As far as possible the assistants ought to precede the boys to the place where they assemble; they should remain with them until others come to take their place, and never leave the pupils unoccupied.
3. Let the boys have full liberty to jump, run and make as much noise as they please. Gymnastics, music, theatricals and outings are most efficacious means of obtaining discipline and of benefiting spiritual and bodily health. Let care be taken however that the games, the persons playing them as well as the conversation are not reprehensible. "Do anything you like," the great friend of youth, St Philip, used to say, "as long as you do not sin."
4. Frequent confession and communion and daily Mass are the pillars which must support the edifice of education, from which we propose to banish the use of threats and the cane. Never force the boys to frequent the sacraments, but encourage them to do so, and give them every opportunity. On occasions of retreats, triduums, novenas, sermons and catechism classes let the beauty, grandeur and holiness of the Catholic religion be dwelt on, for in the sacraments it offers to all of us a very easy and useful means to attain our salvation and peace of heart. In this way children take readily to these practices of piety and will adopt them willingly with joy and benefit.
5. Let the greatest vigilance be exercised so as to prevent bad books, bad companions or persons who indulge in improper conversations from entering the college. A good door-keeper is a treasure for a house of education.
6. Every evening after night prayers before the boys go to rest, the Rector or someone in his stead shall address them briefly, giving them advice or counsel concerning what is to be done or what is to be avoided. Let him try do draw some moral reflection from events that have happened during the day in the house or outside; but his words should never take more than two or three minutes. This is the key to good behaviour, to the smooth running of the school and to success in education.
7. Avoid as a plague the opinion that the first communion should be deferred to a late age, when generally the Devil has already gained possession of a boy's heart, with incalculable prejudice to his innocence. According to the discipline of the early Church, it was the custom to give little children the consecrated hosts that remained over after the Easter communion. This serves to show us how much the Church desires children to be admitted to holy communion at an early age. When a child can distinguish between Bread and bread, and shows sufficient knowledge, give no further thought to his age, but let the heavenly King come and reign in that happy soul.
8. Catechisms invariably recommend frequent communion. St Philip Neri counselled weekly and even more frequent communion. The Council of Trent clearly states that it greatly desires that every faithful Christian should receive holy communion whenever he hears Mass, and that this communion should not only be spiritual but also sacramental, so that greater fruit may be reaped from this august and divine sacrifice (Conc. Trid., Sess. XXII, Chap. VI).

3. Advantages of the preventive system

Some may say that this system is difficult in practice. I reply that for the pupils it is easier, more satisfactory and more advantageous. To the teacher it certainly does present some difficulties, which however can be diminished if he applies himself to his task with zeal. An educator is one who is consecrated to the welfare of his pupils, and therefore he should be ready to face every difficulty and fatigue in order to attain his object, which is the civic, moral and intellectual education of his pupils.
In addition to the advantages already mentioned, the following may be added:
1. The pupil will always be respectful towards his educators, and will ever remember their care with pleasure. He will look upon them as fathers and brothers. Wherever they may go, Salesian pupils are generally the consolation of their families, useful citizens and good Christians.
2. Whatever may be the character, disposition and moral state of a boy at the time of his admittance, parents can rest assured that their son will not become worse; indeed, it can be held as certain that he will always make some improvement. In fact, certain boys who for a long time had been the scourge of their parents, and had even been refused admittance to houses of correction, have changed their ways and habits when trained according to these principles, and begun to live upright lives, and are now filling honorable positions in society, and are the support of their families and a credit to the country they live in.
3. If it should happen that any boys who have already contracted bad habits enter the institute, they could not have a bad influence on their companions, nor would the good boys suffer any harm from association with them, since there is neither time, place nor opportunity, because the assistant, whom we suppose to be present, would speedily intervene.

A word on punishments

What rules should be followed in inflicting punishments? First of all never have recourse to punishments if possible, but whenever necessity demands stern measures, let the following be borne in mind:
1. An educator should seek to win the love of his pupils if he wishes to inspire fear in them. When he succeeds in doing this, the withholding of some token of kindness is a punishment which stimulates emulation, gives courage and never degrades.
2. With the young, punishment is whatever is meant as a punishment. It has been noticed that in the case of some boys a reproachful look is more effective than a slap in the face would be. Praise of work well done, and blame in the case of carelessness are already a reward or punishment.
3. Except in very rare cases, corrections and punishments should never be given publicly, but always privately and in the absence of companions; and the greatest prudence and patience should be used to bring the pupil to see his fault, with the aid of reason and religion.
4. To strike a boy in any way, to make him kneel in a painful position, to pull his ears, and other similar punishments, must be absolutely avoided, because the law forbids them, and because they greatly irritate the boys and degrade the educator.
5. The Rector shall make sure that the disciplinary measures, including rules and punishments, are known to the pupils, so that no one can make the excuse that he did not know what was commanded or forbidden.

If this system is carried out in our houses, I believe that we shall be able to obtain good results, without having recourse to the use of the cane and other corporal punishments. Though I have been dealing with boys for forty years, I do not recall having used punishments of any kind; and yet by the help of God I have always obtained not only what duty required, but also what was simply a wish on my part, and that from the very boys in regard to whom all hope of success seemed lost.

Regolamento per le case della Società di S. Francesco di Sales, Torino, Tipografia Salesiana, 1877 p. 3-13 [OE XXIX, 99-109].

A Prayer to St. John Bosco

O glorious Saint John Bosco, who in order to lead young people to the feet of the divine Master and to mould them in the light of faith and Christian morality didst heroically sacrifice thyself to the very end of thy life and didst set up a proper religious Institute destined to endure and to bring to the farthest boundaries of the earth thy glorious work, obtain also for us from Our Lord a holy love for young people who are exposed to so many seductions in order that we may generously spend ourselves in supporting them against the snares of the devil, in keeping them safe from the dangers of the world, and in guiding them, pure and holy, in the path that leads to God. Amen.

Born: April 2, 1842 in San Giovanni, a frazione of Riva presso Chieri, Piedmont, Italy

Died: March 9, 1857 (aged 14) in Mondonio, a frazione of Castelnuovo d’Asti (today Castelnuovo Don Bosco), Piedmont, Italy
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: 5 March 1950 by Pope Pius XII
Canonized: 12 June 1954 by Pope Pius XII
Major shrine: The Basilica of Mary Help of Christians in Turin (his tomb)
Feast: 9 March (formerly 6 May)
Patronage: choirboys, falsely accused people, juvenile delinquents, Pueri Cantores

Saint Dominic Savio was one of the students of Saint John Bosco.

(Martyred in 1880's, Memorial on June 3)

Born: 1860 or 1865 in Buganda, Uganda
Died: June 3, 1886 in Namugongo, Uganda
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Communion, Lutheranism
Beatified: 1920 by Pope Benedict XV
Canonized: October 18, 1964 by Pope Paul VI
Major shrine: Basilica Church of the Uganda Martyrs, Namugongo
Feast: June 3
Patronage: African Catholic Youth Action, converts, torture victims

Saint Francesca Xavier Cabrini, M.S.C. - Virgin, Foundress

also known as Saint Francesca Xavier Cabrini or Mother Cabrini
Born: July 15, 1850 in Sant'Angelo Lodigiano, Italy
Died: December 22, 1917 (aged 67) in Chicago, Illinois
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: November 13, 1938
Canonized: July 7, 1946 by Pope Pius XII
Major shrine: Chapel of Mother Cabrini High School, New York City
Feast: November 13
Patronage: immigrants, hospital administrators
Beatified by: Pope Pius XI in 1938
Canonized by: Pope Pius XII in 1946.

(born in 1850, died on December 22, 1917, Memorial on November 13)[2]


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
  2. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Born: 2 January 1873 in Alençon, France

Died: 30 September 1897 (aged 24) in Lisieux, France
Honored in: Catholic Church
Beatified: April 29, 1923 by Pope Pius XI
Canonized: May 17, 1925 by Pope Pius XI
Major shrine: Basilica of St. Thérèse in Lisieux, France
Feast: October 1st
October 3rd in General Roman Calendar 1927–1969, Melkite Catholic Church
Attributes: Roses
Patronage: Missionaries; France; Russia; HIV/AIDS sufferers; florists and gardeners; loss of parents; tuberculosis; the Russicum.

(born in 1873, died September 30, 1897, Memorial on October 1)[1]

Thérèse was born on January 2, 1873 to Louis and Zélie Martin in Alençon, France. She entered the Carmelite Order on April 9, 1888. She died in Lisieux on September 30, 1897. She was beatified by Pope ____________ on _________ and canonized by Pope Pius XI (?) on ____________.

She once wrote:
"Love proves itself by deeds, so how am I to show my love? Great deeds are forbidden me. The only way I can prove my love is by scattering flowers and these flowers are every little sacrifice, every glance and word, and the doing of the least actions for love."


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
Born: 7 January 1844 in Lourdes, Hautes-Pyrénées, France

Died: 16 April 1879 (aged 35) in Nevers, Nièvre, France
Honored in: Catholicism
Beatified: 14 June 1927, Rome, by Pope Pius XI
Canonized: 8 December 1933, Rome, by Pope Pius XI
Feast: 16 April (18 February in France)
Patronage: Bodily illness, Lourdes, France, shepherds and shepherdesses, against poverty, people ridiculed for their faith

Saint Bernadette Soubirous was born in France. See also:
Our Lady of Lourdes

Born: October 16, 1890 in Corinaldo, Province of Ancona, Marche, Kingdom of Italy

Died: July 6, 1902 (aged 11) in Nettuno, Province of Rome, Lazio, Kingdom of Italy
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church
Beatified: April 27, 1947[1], Rome by Pope Pius XII
Canonized: June 24, 1950, Rome by Pope Pius XII
Major shrine: Nettuno, Province of Rome, Lazio, Italy
Feast: July 6
Attributes: Fourteen lilies; farmer's clothing; (occasionally) a knife
Patronage: Crime victims, teenage girls, modern youth, Children of Mary

(born in 1890, murdered in 1902, Optional Memorial on July 6)[1]

Saint Maximilian Kolbe

Saint Maximilian Kolbe, O.F.M., Polish Conventual Franciscan friar - Religious, priest, and martyr
Born: 8 January 1894 in Zduńska Wola, Kingdom of Poland, Russian Empire
Died: 14 August 1941 (aged 47) in Auschwitz concentration camp, General Government, Third Reich (Nazi-occupied Poland)
Honored in: Roman Catholic Church, Lutheran Church, Anglican Church
Beatified: 17 October 1971, St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City by Pope Paul VI
Canonized: 10 October 1982, St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City by Pope John Paul II
Major shrine: Basilica of the Immaculate Mediatrix of Grace, Niepokalanów, Teresin, Masovian Voivodeship, Poland
Feast: 14 August
Attributes: Prison uniform, needle being injected into an arm
Patronage: Against drug addictions, drug addicts, families, imprisoned people, journalists, political prisoners, prisoners, pro-life movement, amateur radio.

Saint Maximilian Kolbe was born in Poland and was killed in the Auschwitz concentration camp after he volunteered to take the place of a man that had a family who had been ordered to be killed. He was beatified by Pope Paul VI as a Confessor of the Faith and is also known as the Apostle of Consecration to Mary. (list is close to chronological, but may be slightly mixed up)

Other Topics


The pope beatifies and canonizes certain individuals who have led a life of heroic example. Recent canonizations and beatifications are documented on the Vatican website.[60]

Vatican City

Vatican City State is an independent nation where the pope resides. Saint Peter's Basilica and many of the papal offices are located in Vatican City State. Vatican City State is approximately 108 acres inside the city of Rome, Italy. Included in the nation are several non-adjacent basilicas and the pope's summer residence.

Ecumenical Councils

Currently there have been only twenty-one Ecumenical Councils. They were: First Council of Nicaea; First Council of Constantinople; Council of Ephesus; Council of Chalcedon; Second Council of Constantinople; Third Council of Constantinople; Second Council of Nicaea; Fourth Council of Constantinople; First Lateran Council; Second Lateran Council; Third Lateran Council; Fourth Lateran Council; First Council of Lyon; Second Council of Lyon; Council of Vienne; Council of Constance; Council of Basel, Ferrara, and Florence; Fifth Lateran Council; Council of Trent; First Vatican Council; Second Vatican Council.

An ecumenical council's decrees do not have an obligatory force unless they have been approved by both the council fathers and the pontiff, and the pontiff has ordered the decrees to be promulgated.[61]

The Evangelical Counsels

The evangelical counsels are poverty, chastity, and obedience. Priests in a religious order take vows to observe all three; diocesan priests take vows of only chastitiy and obedience. Although not an evangelical counsel, the Jesuits also take a fourth vow of obedience to the Pope regarding assignments.

Religious orders

Some major religious orders are the Dominicans, Franciscans, Jesuits, Trappists, Benedictines, Augustinians, and Carmelites. There are many more religious orders of many sizes, some of which are derived from another order.

The Code of Canon Law

The Code of canon Law is a policy book used in the Church's administration. The current version is available on the Vatican's website.[62]

The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

The seven gifts of the Hoy Spirit are: Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, and Fear of the Lord.

The Twelve Fruits of the Holy Spirit

The Twelve Fruits of the Holy Spirit are: Charity, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Generosity, Gentleness, Faithfulness, Modesty, Self-control, Chastity.

The Four Last Things

The Four Last things are: Death, Judgement, Heaven, and Hell.

Marian Images

  • Saint Juan Diego's Tilma (image of Our Lady of Guadalupe)
  • The Black Madonna of Częstochowa


  1. Liturgy of the Hours, 1976

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