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Showing posts from November, 2009

St. Andrew the Apostle

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Andrew, like his brother Simon Peter, was a fisherman. He became a disciple of the great St. John the Baptist, but when John pointed to Jesus and said, "Behold the Lamb of God!" Andrew understood that Jesus was greater. At once he left John to follow the Divine Master. Jesus knew that Andrew was walking behind him, and turning back, he asked, "what do you seek?" When Andrew answered that he would like to know where Jesus lived, Our Lord replied, "Come and see." Andrew had been only a little time with Jesus when he realized that this was truly the Messiah.
From then on, he chose to follow Jesus. Andrew was thus the first disciple of Christ. Next, Andrew brought his brother Simon (St. Peter) to Jesus and Jesus received him, too, as His disciple. At first the two brothers continued to carry on their fishing trade and family affairs, but later, the Lord called them to stay with Him all the time. He promised to make them fishers of men, and this time, they lef…

St. Saturnin of Toulouse

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Born to the third century Roman nobility. Missionary to Gaul, the Pyrenees, and the Iberian peninsula. Worked with Saint Papoul. He converted many, including the farmer now known as Saint Honestus who joined him as a missionary. Imprisoned in Carcassone by the prefect Rufinus, Saturninus and his group were freed by an angel. He became the first bishop of Toulouse in modern France), where he teamed with Saint Martial to perform miraculous healings. Converted and baptized Saint Firminus of Amiens.

When Saturninus began his work in Toulouse, the local pagan priests stopped receiving oracular messages from their gods. One day in 257, when the priests were hopelessly frustrated, Saturninus passed by in the street. The priests blamed the bishop, and ordered the crowd of heathens to seize him and force him to offer sacrifice to their gods. The idols fell to pieces in front of the bishop, and the crowd murdered him.

PRAYER
Lord you have given Saturnin the grace of entering into your eternal kin…

Pope Gregory III

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A Syrian by birth (the last pope to date born outside of Europe), he succeeded Gregory II in March 731. His pontificate, like that of his predecessor, was disturbed by the iconoclastic controversy in the Byzantine Empire, in which he vainly invoked the intervention of Charles Martel.
Pope Gregory III - Pontyfikats medal of the 8th century - obvers.
Pope Gregor III - Pontyfikats medal of the 8th century - reverse.Elected by popular acclamationy, he was the last pope to seek the Byzantine exarch's mandate. Gregory immediately appealed to the Byzantine Emperor Leo III to moderate his position on the iconoclastic controversy. When this elicited no response, Gregory called a synod in November 731, the latter decided to bring the Pope under control. This included appropriating papal territories, and transferring ecclesiastical jurisdictions to the Patriarch of Constantinople.
Gregory's support of the empire led him to help contribute to the recapture of Ravenna after it had fallen to …

The Feast of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal

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The Miraculous Medal was a medal invented by Saint Catherine of Labouré, after the Virgin Mary appeared to her. The virgin told her that times of evil were in France and in the world. On November 27 1830 Catherine reported the Virgin had appeared again in an oval frame, standing upon a globe, wearing many rings of different colors, most of which shone rays of light over the globe, and stepping on a head of a serpent. On the frame it said in Latin Ô Marie, conçue sans péché, priez pour nous qui avons recours à vous. Meaning in English O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee. Catherine saw the frame rotate there was a cross with a letter M, surrounded by twelve stars, and had the Sacred Heart of Jesus and The Immaculate Heart of Mary. Catherine asked why some of the Virgin's rings were not shedding light.The Virgin said those were graces people forgot to ask for. The Virgin asked to take the image to the priest. So they can put on medallions so the peopl…

St. John Berchmans

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St. John Berchmans was born the eldest son of a shoemaker in 1599 at Diest, Belgium. At a very young age he wanted to be a priest, and when thirteen he became a servant in the household of one of the cathedral canons at Malines. After his mother's death, his father and two brothers followed suit and entered religious life. In 1615 he entered the Jesuit college there, becoming a novice a year later. In 1618 he was sent to Rome for more study and was known for his diligence and piety, and his stress on perfection even in small things. That year his father was ordained and died six months later. John was so poor and humble that he walked from Antwerp to Rome. He died at the age of 22 on August 13. Many miracles were attributed to him after his death; he was canonized in 1888 and is the patron saint of altar boys.
Although he longed to work in the mission fields of China, he did not live long enough to permit it. After completing his course work, he was asked to defend the "ent…

St. Catherine Labourne

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St. Catherine Laboure, virgin, was born on May 2, 1806. At an early age she entered the community of the Daughters of Charity, in Paris, France. Three times in 1830 the Virgin Mary appeared to St. Catherine Laboure, who then was a twenty-four year old novice.

On July 18, the first apparition occurred in the community's motherhouse. St. Catherine beheld a lady seated on the right side of the sanctuary. When St. Catherine approached her, the heavenly visitor told her how to act in time of trial and pointed to the altar as the source of all consolation. Promising to entrust St. Catherine with a mission which would cause her great suffering, the lady also predicted the anticlerical revolt which occurred at Paris in 1870.

On November 27, the lady showed St. Catherine the medal of the Immaculate Conception, now universally known as the "Miraculous Medal." She commissioned St. Catherine to have one made, and to spread devotion to this medal. At that time, only her spiritual direc…

St. Catherine of Alexandria

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Catherine was born 282, Alexandria, Egypt. Catherine was was virgin. She was very beautiful. Once the Emperor Maximinus of Rome was taking over Egypt, he saw how beautiful she was. He want her to marry him. He asked her to marry him she refused because, she took her vows of virginity. So he got angry he sent her to be tortured. She was imprisoned and the people who visited her converted when she spoke to them. The emperor was frustrated, so he had tortured on the breaking wheel. Once she touched the wheel the wheel broke it self. Finally she was beheaded. She died on earth but born in the glory of Christ 305, Alexandria, Egypt. She has many patronages here are some of them educators, girls, jurists, knife sharpeners, lawyers,and librarians. She is part of the fourteen holy helpers.

It dosen't say when or by who she was canonized.

Prayer
Father may the blood of Catherine of Alexandria
be a seed for us to be better christians
so we too can give our blood for you.
We ask this through Chris…

Vietnamese Martyrs

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There were 117 catholics martyred in Vietnam from the years of 1625-1886. They were either Crucified, flogged, beheaded, starved and in the 1886 they were shot to death. There were many of our brothers and sisters that were killed for loving the Virgin Mary, Christ and adoring the Blessed Sacrament. Here are the names of all 117 of Our Fallen brothers and sister which were martyred in Vietnam,
Agnes Le Thi Thanh, the mother of six
Andrew Dung-Lac An Tran
Andrew Thong Kim Nguyen
Andrew Trong Van Tram
Andrew Tuong
Anthony Dich Nguyen
Anthony Quynh Nam
Augustine Huy Viet Phan
Augustine Moi Van Nguyen
Augustin Schoeffer
Bernard Due Van Vo
Dominic Hanh Van Nguyen
Dominic Henares, a Dominican bishop from Spain
Dominic Nicholas Dat Dinh
Dominic Trach Doai
Dominic Uy Van Bui
Dominic Xuyen Van Nguyen
Dominic Kham Viet Pham
Dominic Tran Duy Ninh
Dominic Cam
Dominic Huyen
Dominic Toai
Dominic Mau
Dominic Nhi
Dominic Nguyen
Dominic Mao
Emmanuel Trieu Van Nguyen
Francis Chieu Van Do
Francis Gil de Frederich
Francis Isidore Gag…

Blessed Miguel Agustin Pro

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Miguel Agustin Pro was born in Guadalupe, Zacatecas, Mexico on January 13, 1891. He was the eldest son to Miguel Pro Sr. and Josefa Pro de Juarez. Pro belonged to the Society of Jesus(Jesuits), he study some time in Mexico up until the Persecution of the Catholics in Mexico, now known as the Cristero War. As a child he had many adventures with his 11 sibilings ;some of which died during infancy. Miguel had many talents such as playing the guitar, encouraging a public, speaking without fear, ETC. In 1914 Pro had to move from Mexico to California to study the religious life, due to the Anti-Catholic Government of Mexico. He later went to Europe to continue his studies, in Spain and Belguim. He was ordained on August 31st, 1925. Here is an exerpt from a letter he wrote after his ordination,"How can I explain to you the sweet grace of the Holy Spirit, which invades my poor miner's soul with such heavenly joys? I could not keep back tears on the day of my ordination, above all at …

St.Cecilia

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Born in second century AD Rome. Cecilia was a marvelous musician. Cecilia was a virgin and also beautiful. Cecilia was to be wed at the age of thirteen. Every young man wanted to marry her. But her parents chose who she would marry. They chose a man named Valerian. In the evening of her wedding-day, with the music of the marriage-hymn ringing in her ears, Cecilia renewed the vow by which she had consecrated her virginity to God "Pure be my heart and undefiled my flesh; for I have a spouse you know not of—an angel of my Lord." She, her husband,and her brother were arrested.Her husband,and brother were killed first."Do you not know," was her answer to the threats of the prefect, "that I am the bride of my Lord Jesus Christ ?" The death appointed, for her was suffocation, and she remained a day and a night in a hot-air bath, heated seven times its wont. But "the flames had no power over her body, neither was a hair of her head singed." The lictor s…

The Presentation of the Virgin Mary

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The feast is associated with an event recounted not in the New Testament, but in the apocryphal Infancy Narrative of James. According to that text, Mary's parents, Joachim and Anne, who had been childless, received a heavenly message that they would bear a child. In thanksgiving for the gift of their daughter, they brought her, when still a child, to the Temple in Jerusalem to consecrate her to God. Mary remained in the Temple until puberty, at which point she was assigned to Joseph as guardian. Later versions of the story (such as the Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew and the Gospel of the Nativity of Mary) tell us that Mary was taken to the Temple at around the age of three in fulfillment of a vow. Tradition held that she was to remain there to be educated in preparation for her role as Mother of God. This feast commemorates the dedication of the church of Saint Mary, which was built in Jerusalem near the site if the Temple. With Christians of the East, the Latin Church also recalls on t…

Saint Bernward of Hildesheim

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Bernward of Hildesheim (b c.960; d Hildesheim, 20 Nov. 1022). German ecclesiastic and art patron. He was abbot of the Benedictine monastery at Hildesheim in Saxony from 993 until his death, and for the church of St Michael there (begun 1001) he commissioned the famous bronze doors and a great bronze column, probably intended to support the paschal candle. They are important not only for being among the outstanding European works of their period, but also for marking the revival of the cire-perdue technique of casting, which had virtually disappeared since the time of Charlemagne. A contemporary biographer records that Bernward himself practised metalwork and manuscript illumination, but no work can be attributed to him. He was canonized in 1192 and is a patron saint of goldsmiths.

PRAYER
Lord you have blessed your beloved servant Bernward
with the gift of Sainthood, let us also enter your kingdom, and also let us answer the calling of Sanctity
AMEN

St.Raphael Kalinowski

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Raphael Kalinowski was September 1, 1835 Vilnius, Lithuania. He was a Polish Discalced Carmelite friar born as Józef Kalinowski inside the Russian partition of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, in the city of Vilnius.He was also in the military. He was a teacher, engineer, prisoner of war, royal tutor, and priest. He was ordained as priest at Czerna in 1882 by Bishop Albin Dunajewski.He also founded a Carmelite Sisters convent in Przemyśl in 1884, and Lvov in 1888 .Who founded many monasteries around Poland after the suppression by the Russians. He died November 15, 1907 in Poland. He lived to be seventy two years old. He was beatified in 1983, Kraków, Poland and canonized 17 November 1991, St. Peter's Basilica, Rome by Pope John Paul The II. He was the first man to be so recognized in the order of the Discalced Carmelites, since Saint John of the Cross.

Prayer
God almighty you gave us St.Saint Raphael Kalinowski to be an example of a person of great sacrifice. May his life be an exam…

St. Romanus of Antioch

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Saint Romanus of Antioch is venerated as a martyr. In 303 at the beginning of the Diocletian persecution, a deacon called Romanus in Palestine suffered martyrdom at Antioch. He was taken prisoner, was condemned to death by fire, and was bound to the stake however, as the Emperor Galerius was then in Antioch. Romanus was brought before him. At the emperor's command Romanus' tongue was cut out. Tortured in various ways in prison he was finally strangled.

Eusebius speaks of his martyrdom in De martyribus Palestin.Relates other details and gives Romanus a companion in martyrdom, a Christian by name Barulas. On this account several historians, among them Baronius, consider that there were two martyrs named Romanus at Antioch, though more likely there was but the one whom Eusebius mentions. Prudentius has introduced legendary features into his account, and his connection of the martyrdom of Barulas with that of Romanus is probably arbitrary.

The feast day of St. Romanus is observed on…

St. Elizabeth of Hungary

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St. Elizabeth was born in Hungary in 1207, the daughter of Alexander II, King of Hungary. At the age of four she was sent for education to the court of the Landgrave of Thuringia, to whose infant son she was betrothed. As she grew in age, her piety also increased by leaps and bounds. In 1221, she married Louis of Thuringia and in spite of her position at court began to lead an austerely simple life, practiced penance, and devoted herself to works of charity.

Her husband was himself much inclined to religion and highly esteemed her virtue, encouraging her in her exemplary life. They had three children when tragedy struck - Louis was killed while fighting with the Crusaders. After his death, Elizabeth left the court, made arrangements for the care of her children, and in 1228, renounced the world, becoming a tertiary of St. Francis. She built the Franciscan hospital at Marburg and devoted herself to the care of the sick until her death at the age of 24 in 1231.

St. Elizabeth is the patr…

St. Margaret of Scotland

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Margaret was born in 1048 in Hungary. Daughter of a prince, Margaret was born royalty. Her family were Anglo-Saxon. She had one brother and sister. Once her uncle died who was Saint Edward The Confessor, she was already living in England with her brother. Margaret later on got married to King Malcolm the III ,she had become a queen. They had eight children. Margaret was known for inviting the English Benditine Monks to Scotland nad estblished the very first holy ordes to th nation. She admired their work and learning. After her eldest son and husband had been killed on November 13 she died three days later she died. She died November 16 1093 in Scotland. In 1250 she was canonized by Pope Innocent IV. She is the patron saint of the nation of Scotland.

PRAYER
Lord you gave us one of your holy queens to give an example. The example to love and serve you in desperate times. May Saint Margaret of Scotland be a life to follow. We ask this through Christ Our Lord And Savior.
AMEN

St. Leopold III , Margrave of Austria

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Leopold was born in 1073 Melk Austria. Saint Leopold III was the Margrave of Austria in 1095-1136. He is the patron saint of Austria, of the city of Vienna, of Lower Austria, and, jointly with Saint Florian, of Upper Austria. His feast day is November 15.
Leopold was the son of Margrave Leopold II and Ida of Formbach-Ratelnberg. He married twice. His first wife may have been one of the von Perg family, who died in 1105. His second wife was Agnes, the widowed sister of Emperor Henry V whom he had supported against her father Henry IV. This connection to the Salians raised the importance of the House of Babenberg, to which important royal rights over the margravate of Austria were granted. Also, Agnes had influential connections through her previous marriage, one of her sons being Conrad III of Germany.
Leopold called himself "Princeps Terræ", a reflection of his sense of territorial independence. He was considered a candidate in the election of the Kaiser of The Holy Roman Empi…

St. Serapion of Algiers

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Saint Serapion of Algiers was born in Ireland in 1179. He was a Mercedarian friar who is venerated as a martyr by the Catholic Church, and as a proto-martyr by the Mercedarian Order. According to tradition, he was born either in Ireland or England and served in the armies of Richard the Lion-Heart and Leopold VI during the Crusades.
He then participated in the Reconquista, serving in the army of Alfonso VIII.
He met St. Peter Nolasco and became a Mercedarian in 1222.
The Mercedarians’ goal was to free Christian captives held by Muslim states, and Serapion offered himself as a hostage at Algiers in exchange for some Christian captives. When the ransom money did not arrive in time Serapion was killed. According to Christian tradition, he was nailed on an X-shaped cross and was dismembered. He died on November 14 1240 in Algiers.

Prayer
Father may the martyrdom of your proto-martyr of the order devoted to our mother of mercy. Be an example of strength in faith in you forever. We ask yhis in…

St.Frances Xavier Cabrini

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Francesca Cabrini was born on July 15, 1850, in the village of Sant’ Angelo. At Codongno, Italy, in the diocese of Lodi, she founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart in 1880. In 1887 she established many schools, hospitals and orphanages. With the encouragement of Pope Leo XII, she set out for the United States of America in 1889, where for the next 28 years, she established many schools, hospitals and orphanages. Her missionary zeal also led her to South America where she founded schools in Argentina, Brazil and Nicaragua. Mother Cabrini died in Chicago on December 22nd, 1917, and on July 7, 1946 she became the first United States citizen to be cannonized

PRAYER
Lord let us not shy away from your divine service and let the spirit of your beloved Sister Francesca Cabrini be an example to spread your word to those in all areas of this earth. Whether It'd be in schools, hospitals, orphanages, churches, and even to those who roam the earth and have never heard of your divine …

St. Josaphat

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Saint Josaphat Kuntsevych was born in the Ukraine of Orthodox parents about the year 1580. Embracing the Catholic faith, he became a Basilian Monk. Ordained to the priesthood and chosen bishop of Polock, he worked faithfully for unity of the Church. Enemies plotted his death, and he was martyred in 1623.

Prayer
Lord,
fill your Church with the Spirit
that gave Saint Josaphat Kuntsevych courage
to lay down his life for his people.
By his prayers may your Spirit make us strong
and willing to offer our lives for our brothers and sisters.
We ask that you grant this through Christ.AMEN.

St. Martin of Tours

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Martin was born in Savaria, Pannonia(which is now Hungary) in the year of 316. His father was part of the Roman Army, he was stationed in what is now Pavia, Italy; where Martin grew up. At the young age of 10 Martin went against his parents' wishes and enlisted in catechism to receive baptism. Since his father was a part of the Roman Army, at age 15 Martin had to enlist into the Calvary division. In the year 334 he was stationed in what is now Amiens, France.
While in Amiens, Martin and his soldiers were making their way through the city, when they came to the gates he saw a beggar, at his Martin cut his cloak in half and gave the half to the beggar. That very same night Martin had a dream, in his dream he saw Jesus the half of the cloak he had given the man. Christ also said to his angels "This is Martin, a Roman soldier, who is not baptized but still comes to me." Also when Martin was asked why he had done that act of charity, he said "I have seen the face of Chri…

St.Andrew Avellino

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Born in 1521 in Basilicata,Italy. Baptized with the name of Lancillotto. Andrew was a ecclesiastical lawyer. He then left his career of being a lawyer, to become a priest. Andrew was ordained priest at age twenty four. Andrew encountered with the Society of Jesus or the Jesuits.Andrew becam a part of the Theatines. Andrew was assigned to a convent in Naples,Italy that becaome a brothel. When he became a priest a local man threatened to murder Andrew. Andrew traveled all of the nation of Italy, reforming other religious orders. Andrew was giving a mass when he had a heart attack and died during mass. He died Nvember 10, 1608 at age eighty eight. In 1624, only 16 years after his death, he was beatified by Pope Urban VIII, and in 1712 was canonized by Pope Clement XI. His patronages are Naples, Sicily; invoked against sudden death.

Prayer
God Almighty in this year of the Priest,
may your servant St. Andrew Avellino be an example to live by.
Grant this through Christ our Lord. AMEN.

The Dedication Of The Basilica Of St. John Lateran

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The anniversary of the dedication of the Lateran Basilica, which was erected by Emperor Constantine, has been observed on this day since the Twelfth Century. This feast was at first observed only in Rome but later in honor of the basilica, which is called the mother church of Christendom, the celebration was extended to the whole Latin Church. This action was taken as a sign of devotion to and of unity with the Chair of Peter which, as Saint Ignatius of Antioch wrote, "presides over the whole assembly of charity."

This Basilica is know for its many different works of art. It is known to have many Papal tombs/remains, but it also holds St. Helen's remains in a sarcophagus. By decree of Pope Clement XI the basilica added all 12 apostles made by 7 different artist.

Prayer
Father,
Each year we recall the dedication of this church to
your service.
Let our worship, always be sincere
and help us to find your saving love in this church.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.
AMEN.

The Four Crowned Martyrs

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Born in the Third century AD Claudius, Nicostratus, Castorius,and Simpronian were brothers. They were stone cutters from Hungary,because of their great skill to make statues, Roman Emperor Diocletian wanted them to work for him. After Emperor Diocletian wanted them to make statues of a Pagan god. The brothers refused to make the statues because of their Catholic faith. Emperor Diocletian said if they refused he would have all four of them killed. They refused again. Emperor Diocletian had them killed by cutting one's head, burned on a stake, eaten by wild beasts,and beating one to death. The brothers died in 305 at Sava River,Hungary. Their patronages are sculptors, stonemasons, stone cutters; against fever; cattle.

Prayer
Father almighty you have crowned these four martyrs with the crown of their martyrdom to give their blood for Jesus Our Lord an Savior we ask this in your Holy name. AMEN

St. Prosdocimus of Padua

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Prosdocimus of Padua is venerated as the first bishop of Padua. Of Greek origin, tradition holds that he was sent from Antioch by Saint Peter the Apostle. Thus, he is often depicted in art with this Apostle. The cathedral at Feltre is dedicated to him and Saint Peter the Apostle, and the artist Il Pordenone created a work depicting Prosdocimus with Peter.

He evangelized the region and is said to have founded the parish church at Isola Vicentina. He was the first bishop of Padua and survived the persecutions of Emperor Nero.

His tomb is situated at the basilica of Santa Giustina at Padua. The chapel dedicated to him there was built over his tomb outside the walls of Padua. The church also once contained the relics of Prosdocimus's deacon, Saint Daniel, though these were moved to the Paduan church of Santa Sofia in the 11th century.

Prayer
Lord you led your servant Prosdocimus of Padua, to evangelize the nation Italy and Northern Europe, let us be guided by the Spirit and proclaim your …

St. Leonard of Noblac

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(from left to right: St. Peter, St. Martha, St. Mary Magdalene, and St. Leonard)

St. Leonard was born in France sometime during the 5th century and died in the half way through the 6th century. He was part of the nobelman of King Clovis I. A Frankish noble, Leonard was converted by Remigius, bishop of Rheims in the 6th century. Through this Clovis he was able to liberate many of the prisoners. He then became a hermit in Noblac in the forest of Limousin where he made a cell for himself. One day Clovis and his pregnant wife were out hunting, and through the prayers of St. Leonard she gave birth in his hermitage cell. To this Clovis was very greatful, to the extent of giving him the land surrounding the area to build a monastery. According to legend, prisoners who invoked him from their cells saw their chains break before their eyes. Many came to him afterwards, bringing their heavy chains and irons to offer them in homage. A considerable number remained with him, and he often gave them p…

Ss.Elizabeth And Zacharias

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Elizabeth And Zacharias were born in the first century BC. Elizabeth was a cousin of the Virgin Mary. When Mary was three months pregnant with Jesus Elizabeth was six months pregnant with John The Baptist.When mary got to Elizabeth's house, Elizabeth said "Blessed are thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.""How could I deserve the visit of the mother of my Lord?""I heard your salutations and the baby jumped in my womb!"When Mary heard this she recited the Magnificat.During that time Zacharias had lost his voice. Zacharias was a Jewish priest he was blessing the altar when an angel told him he was going to have son. Zacharias didn't believe the angel because he was an elderly person. The angel told him his son was going to be named John. Three months later John The Baptist was born. A lot of people said the baby should be named like his father. After three months Zacharias finally spoke He said The baby would be named John. Elizab…

St. Charles Borromeo

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Charles was born in Arona, Italy in 1538. He came from a very renowned family the Borromeo Family, his father was the count of the region and his mother was the sister of Pope Pius IV, meaning he was the nephew of the Pope. When Borromeo was about twelve years old, his uncle Giulio Cesare Borromeo, resigned to him an abbacy, during this time he studied the charity towards the poor. He studied the civil and canon law at Pavia. In 1554 his father died, and although he had an elder brother, Count Federigo, he was requested by the family to take the management of their domestic affairs. After a time, he resumed his studies, and in 1559 he took his doctoral degree. In 1560 his uncle, Cardinal Angelo de' Medici, was raised to the pontificate as Pope Pius IV. Pope Pius IV then named Borromeo to the post of Cardinal of Romagna and the March of Ancona, and supervisor of the Franciscans, Carmelites and Knights of Malta. Borromeo declined the proposal. He worked even harder for the welfare o…

St. Martin de Porres

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St. Martin was born as Juan Martin De Porres, who was born in Lima, Peru on December 9th in 1579, and was also the illegitimate son to Spanish nobleman and a black slave. He grew up in poverty; when his mother could not support him and his sister, Martin was confided to a primary school for two years, then placed with a barber/surgeon to learn the medical arts. This caused him great joy, though he was only ten years old, for he could exercise charity to his neighbor while earning his living. Already he was spending hours of the night in prayer, a practice which increased rather than diminished as he grew older. Until his death he would flagellate himself three times every night, for his own failings and for the conversion of pagans and sinners. At the age of 15 he asked for admission to the Dominican Convent of the Rosary in Lima and was received first part of their Third Order. His piety and miraculous cures led his superiors to drop the racial limits on admission to the Order, and h…

All Souls Day

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All Souls day is based on the doctrine that the souls of the faithful which at death have not been cleansed from the temporal punishment due to venial sins, or have not fully been purged from attachment to mortal sins, cannot attain the beatific vision in heaven yet, and that they may be helped to do so by prayer and by the sacrifice of the Mass. November 2nd was chosen by St. Odilo of Cluny at his grave, his decree was printed on the Acta Sanctorum. From Cluny it spread all across Europe and was finally accepted by Rome in the 14th Century. During the whole month of November the names of the deceased loved ones would be prayed for during mass and offered special prayer so that the Lord may have mercy on their souls. A legend became associated with the institution of the celebration. According to Jesse Voyles in his Life of St Odilo, a pilgrim returning from the Holy Land was cast by a storm on a desolate island. A hermit living there told him that amid the rocks was a chasm communica…

All Saints Day

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The origin of the festival of All Saints celebrated in the West dates to May 13, 609 or 610, when Pope Boniface IV consecrated the Pantheon at Rome to the Blessed Virgin and all the martyrs; the feast of the dedicatio Sanctae Mariae ad Martyres has been celebrated at Rome ever since. The chosen day, May 13, was a pagan observation of great antiquity, the culmination of three days of the Feast of the Lemures, in which the malevolent and restless spirits of the dead were propitiated. Liturgiologists of the Middle Ages based the idea that this Lemuria festival was the origin of that of All Saints on their identical dates and on the similar theme of "all the dead". The feast of All Saints, on its current date, is traced to the foundation by Pope Gregory III of an oratory in St. Peter's for the relics "of the holy apostles and of all saints, martyrs and confessors, of all the just made perfect who are at rest throughout the world", with the day moved to November 1.

I…