Monday, May 31, 2010

Visitation of Mary

The Virgin Mary, illuminated by God, he felt anxious to go visit her cousin Elizabeth. In his advanced age, was pregnant with God nothing is impossible.

He had in mind the words of Paul to the Corinthians: "Charity is kind, does not seek only their own interest, and endures all things."

A great apostle of the Universal Church, St. Ambrose, says these words about this day: "It was Mary who came forward to greet the first. She is the one who always comes forward to give demonstrations of affection to those you love."

Mary does not seek reputation, fame or praise as in many of the views of our day.

As I was filled with the grace of God, filled the house of her cousin of blessings.

"As soon as Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leapt in her womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit."
Her cousin, very grateful, he said: "Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of the womb. Whence to me that the mother of my Lord should come to visit me? Barely reached my ears the sound of your greeting leapt the child in my belly. "

The Virgin Mary took Jesus to the house. If you were a believer as God, would do exactly the same. The Christian is a bearer of the Good News of God, his messenger, the herald who announces the good news.

Another universal saint who was distinguished by his pure love of the Virgin he says: "From this moment of the Visitation of Mary was formed in" Canal huge "by which the goodness of God sends to us the most admirable amounts of thanks, favors and blessings ".

One of the keys of the Bible is able to communicate to others the message of God. Sometimes people feel shame. It is unfortunate that, with so much misfortune as advertised social media, not believers who are dedicated to preach good news.

References: Catholic.Net

Sunday, May 30, 2010

St. Joan of Arc

St. Joan of Arc is the patroness of soldiers and of France. On January 6, 1412, Joan of Arc was born to pious parents of the French peasant class, at the obscure village of Domremy, near the province of Lorraine. At a very early age, she heard voices: those of St. Michael, St. Catherine and St. Margaret.

At first the messages were personal and general. Then at last came the crowning order. In May, 1428, her voices "of St. Michael, St. Catherine, and St. Margaret" told Joan to go to the King of France and help him reconquer his kingdom. For at that time the English king was after the throne of France, and the Duke of Burgundy, the chief rival of the French king, was siding with him and gobbling up evermore French territory.

After overcoming opposition from churchmen and courtiers, the seventeen year old girl was given a small army with which she raised the seige of Orleans on May 8, 1429. She then enjoyed a series of spectacular military successes, during which the King was able to enter Rheims and be crowned with her at his side.

In May 1430, as she was attempting to relieve Compiegne, she was captured by the Burgundians and sold to the English when Charles and the French did nothing to save her. After months of imprisonment, she was tried at Rouen by a tribunal presided over by the infamous Peter Cauchon, Bishop of Beauvais, who hoped that the English would help him to become archbishop.

Through her unfamiliarity with the technicalities of theology, Joan was trapped into making a few damaging statements. When she refused to retract the assertion that it was the saints of God who had commanded her to do what she had done, she was condemned to death as a heretic, sorceress, and adulteress, and burned at the stake on May 30, 1431. She was nineteen years old. Some thirty years later, she was exonerated of all guilt and she was ultimately canonized in 1920, making official what the people had known for centuries. Her feast day is May 30.

It is said that after her body was burnt, they all beleived that nothing remained there, but they were thing did remain there...the loveliest part of the human body remained there...her heart. Her heart remained uncorrupted by the fire and remain whole in the love for God.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

St. Bona of Pisa

A native of Pisa, she is reported as having experienced visions from an early age. On one occasion, the figure on the crucifix at the Holy Sepulchre church held out his hand to her. At another church, she saw a vision of Jesus, the Virgin Mary, and three saints, including James the Greater. She was frightened by the light around these figures, and ran away. James pursued her, and led her back to the image of Jesus. Bona observed a very pronounced devotion to James for the rest of her life. By the age of ten, she had dedicated herself as an Augustinian tertiary. She regularly fasted from an early age, taking only bread and water three days a week. Four years later, she made the first of her many journeys, going to see her father who was fighting in the Crusades near Jerusalem. On her trip home, she was captured by Muslim pirates on the Mediterranean Sea, wounded, and subsequently imprisoned.
Remains of Santa Bona, in Church of San Martino, PisaShe was later rescued by some of her countrymen, and completed her trip home. Shortly thereafter, she set out on another pilgrimage, this time leading a large number of pilgrims on the long and dangerous thousand-mile journey to Santiago de Compostela, where James the Greater is honored. After this, she was made one of the official guides along this pilgrimage route by the Knights of Saint James. She successfully completed the trip nine times. Despite being ill at the time, she took and completed a tenth trip, and returned home to Pisa, dying shortly thereafter in the room she kept near the church of San Martino in Pisa, where her body has been conserved up to nowadays.

References: Wikipedia.Org

Friday, May 28, 2010

St. Bernard of Menthon

Born in 923, probably in the Château de Menthon near Annecy, in Savoy; died at Novara, 1008. He was descended from a rich, noble family and received a thorough education. He refused an honorable marriage proposed by his father and decided to devote himself to the service of the Church. Sneaking away from the chateau the day before the wedding, he fled to Italy and joined the Benedictine order. Placing himself under the direction of Peter, Archdeacon of Aosta, under whose guidance he rapidly progressed, Bernard was ordained priest and on account of his learning and virtue was made Archdeacon of Aosta in 966, having charge of the government of the diocese under the bishop. Seeing the old pagan ways still prevailing among the people of the Alps, he resolved to devote himself to their conversion. For forty-two years he continued to preach the Gospel to these people and even into many cantons of Lombardy, effecting numerous conversions and working many miracles. In popular legend it is said that during his flight from Château de Menthon, Bernard cast himself from his window only to be captured by angels and lowered gently to the ground forty feet below. He is the patron saint of skiing, snowboarding, hiking, backpacking and mountaineering

Thursday, May 27, 2010

St. Augustine of Canterbury

Ethelbert, He married Berta Christian princess, daughter of the king of Paris, he asked her to be erected a church and some Christian priests hold sacred rites there. When Pope Gregory the Great heard the news, concluded that the time was ripe for the evangelization of the island. Entrusted with the mission to the prior of the Benedictine monastery of Saint Andrew, whose main characteristic was not courage, but humility and docility. That monk was Augustine. In 597 out of Rome leading a group of forty monks. He stopped at the island of Lerins. Here is discussed the bellicose temperament of the Saxons, and it terrified him to the point of him back to Rome to ask the pope to change his program. To encourage him, Gregory was appointed abbot and soon after, almost to make him take the final step, as soon came to Gaul, he consecrated bishop. He continued his journey with short steps. Finally he came to the British island of Thenet, where the king was personally welcome the invitation of his pious wife. The missionaries moved into the royal procession in procession and singing the litany, as recently introduced the rite in Rome. For all it was a happy surprise. The king accompanied the monks to the residence that had been prepared in Canterbury, halfway between London and the sea, where stood the famous abbey which later carried the name of Augustine, heart and sanctuary of English Christianity. The work of missionary monks had an unexpected success because the king asked for baptism, leading by example to thousands of subjects to embrace Christianity. The Pope was delighted with the news that reached Rome, and expressed satisfaction with the letters written to Augustine and the queen. The holy pontiff sent a group of new partners the pallium and the appointment of Augustine as archbishop primate of England, while the paternally admonished not to pride in the successes and the honor of high office conferred upon him . Following the instructions of the Pope to the distribution in ecclesiastical territories, Augustine erected other episcopal sees, the London and Rochester, consecrating bishops to Melito and Justo.

References: Catholic.Net

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

St. Philip Neri

Born in 1515 in Florence, he showed the impulsiveness and spontaneity of his character from the time he was a boy. In fact one incident almost cost him his life. Seeing a donkey loaded with fruit for market, the little boy had barely formed the thought of jumping on the donkey's back before he had done it. The donkey, surprised, lost his footing, and donkey, fruit, and boy tumbled into the cellar with the boy winding up on the bottom! Miraculously he was unhurt.

His father was not successful financially and at eighteen Philip was sent to work with an older cousin who was a successful businessman. During this time, Philip found a favorite place to pray up in the fissure of a mountain that had been turned into a chapel. We don't know anything specific about his conversion but during these hours of prayer he decided to leave worldly success behind and dedicate his life to God.

After thanking his cousin, he went to Rome in 1533 where he was the live-in tutor of the sons of a fellow Florentine. He studied philosophy and theology until he thought his studies were interfering with his prayer life. He then stopped his studies, threw away his books, and lived as a kind of hermit.

Night was his special time of prayer. After dark he would go out in the streets, sometimes to churches, but most often into the catacombs of St. Sebastiano to pray. During one of these times of prayer he felt a globe of light enter his mouth and sink into his heart. This experience gave him so much energy to serve God that he went out to work at the hospital of the incurables and starting speaking to others about God, everyone from beggars to bankers.

In 1548 Philip formed a confraternity with other laymen to minister to pilgrims who came to Rome without food or shelter. The spiritual director of the confraternity convinced Philip that he could do even more work as a priest. After receiving instruction from this priest, Philip was ordained in 1551.

At his new home, the church of San Girolamo, he learned to love to hear confessions. Young men especially found in him the wisdom and direction they needed to grow spiritually. But Philip began to realize that these young men needed something more than absolution; they needed guidance during their daily lives. So Philip began to ask the young men to come by in the early afternoon when they would discuss spiritual readings and then stay for prayer in the evening. The numbers of the men who attended these meetings grew rapidly. In order to handle the growth, Philip and a fellow priest Buonsignore Cacciaguerra gave a more formal structure to the meetings and built a room called the Oratory to hold them in.

Philip understood that it wasn't enough to tell young people not to do something -- you had to give them something to do in its place. So at Carnival time, when the worst excesses were encouraged, Philip organized a pilgrimage to the Seven Churches with a picnic accompanied by instrumental music for the mid-day break. After walking twelve miles in one day everyone was too tired to be tempted!

In order to guide his followers, Philip made himself available to everyone at any hour -- even at night. He said some of the most devout people were those who had come to him at night. When others complained, Philip answered, "They can chop wood on my back so long as they do not sin."

Not everyone was happy about this growing group and Philip and Buonsignore were attacked by the priests they lived with. But eventually Philip and his companions were vindicated and went on with their work.

In 1555, the Pope's Vicar accused Philip of "introducing novelties" and ordered him to stop the meetings of the Oratory. Philip was brokenhearted but obeyed immediately. The Pope only let him start up the Oratory again after the sudden death of his accuser. Despite all the trouble this man had caused, Philip would not let anyone say anything against the man or even imply that his sudden death was a judgment from God.

One church, for Florentines in Rome, had practically forced him to bring the Oratory to their church. But when gossip and accusations started, they began to harass the very people they had begged to have nearby! At that point, Philip decided it would be best for the group to have their own church. They became officially known as the Congregation of the Oratory, made up of secular priests and clerics.

Philip was known to be spontaneous and unpredictable, charming and humorous.

He seemed to sense the different ways to bring people to God. One man came to the Oratory just to make fun of it. Philip wouldn't let the others throw him out or speak against him. He told them to be patient and eventually the man became a Dominican. On the other hand, when he met a condemned man who refused to listen to any pleas for repentance, Philip didn't try gentle words, but grabbed the man by the collar and threw him to the ground. The move shocked the criminal into repentance and he made a full confession.

Humility was the most important virtue he tried to teach others and to learn himself. Some of his lessons in humility seem cruel, but they were tinged with humor like practical jokes and were related with gratitude by the people they helped. His lessons always seem to be tailored directly to what the person needed. One member who was later to become a cardinal was too serious and so Philip had him sing the Misere at a wedding breakfast. When one priest gave a beautiful sermon, Philip ordered him to give the same sermon six times in a row so people would think he only had one sermon.

Philip preferred spiritual mortification to physical mortification. When one man asked Philip if he could wear a hair shirt, Philip gave him permission -- if he wore the hair shirt outside his clothes! The man obeyed and found humility in the jokes and name-calling he received.

There were unexpected benefits to his lessons in humility. Another member, Baronius, wanted to speak at the meetings about hellfire and eternal punishment. Philip commanded him instead to speak of church history. For 27 years Baronius spoke to the Oratory about church history. At the end of that time he published his talks as a widely respected and universally praised books on ecclesiastical history!

Philip did not escape this spiritual mortification himself. As with others, his own humbling held humor. There are stories of him wearing ridiculous clothes or walking around with half his beard shaved off. The greater his reputation for holiness the sillier he wanted to seem. When some people came from Poland to see the great saint, they found him listening to another priest read to him from joke books.

Philip was very serious about prayer, spending hours in prayer. He was so easily carried away that he refused to preach in public and could not celebrate Mass with others around. But he when asked how to pray his answer was, "Be humble and obedient and the Holy Spirit will teach you."

Philip died in 1595 after a long illness at the age of eighty years.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

St. Toribio Romo González

Toribio was born April 16, 1900 in Santa Ana De Guadalupe, Jalostotitlán, Jalisco, Mexico. He was baptized April 18, 1900 two days after he was born. He was baptized by Fr. Miguel Diaz Orozco. In August of 1901 Toribio was confirmed by Francisco Campos Bishop of Tabasco. Toribio was part of a very religious family. In a special way his sister Maria took care of him and inspired Toribio to the Religious life of a Priest. When he was seven one Easter morning he received his First Holy Communion. When he was nine his parents let him go to Jalostotitlán where Toribo attended school named Escuela De Rayitos. In this time he was an altar server in the church of La Santisima Virgen De la Asuncion, who he prayed to all his life. When the bells rang for Mass at 6 AM Toribio accompanied by his sister; he assisted in the Holy Sacrifice of Mass, where Toribio borrowed his service as an altar server with great devotion. Before returning to school at night Toribio went to visited the blessed sacrament. In 1912 he entered the Auxiliary Seminary in San Juan De Los Lagos. He was a very playful and happy seminarian who loved to joke around. When he was established in San Juan, Toribio and other seminarians formed the A.C.J.M. Toribio was a very loved seminarian but there was people who hated him; once they even tried by shooting him in an alley. Luckily Toribio did not die. Being President of the A.C.J.M. it corresponded to him to give the Welcome to Archbishop Francisco Orozco Jimenez whom which he had received his first holy orders. When Toribio was on vacation he went to his land of Santa Ana De Guadalupe he gave catechism to all the children. In 1920 we has moved to the Auxiliary Seminary of Guadalajara to continue and concluded his studies in the space of two years. On August 7, 1921 he went up one more step to becoming a priest; that day he became a sub-deacon. From that day forward he lived a more radical life and greater offering by visiting the Blessed Sacrament daily. September 3, 1921 he became a full deacon. Three months later Toribio and four other deacons took his vows of obedience. In 1922 Fr. Toribio was ordained a preist . On January 5, 1922 Fr. Toribio gave his first mass a priest. He primarily emphasized the catechesis. He underwent severe trials, however, as he was ordered by the government when the Cristero War began in 1927 to confine himself to his residence and was not allowed to pray the Rosary in public or to say Mass. A man of intense prayer, Fr. Toribio carried out his pious works in an exemplary manner with emphasis on examination of conscience, meditation, spiritual exercises and visits to the Holy Sacrament. He always demonstrated a great spirit of faith, a certainty in hope of reaching Heaven, and a compassion that moved him to suffer along with others (to the point of depriving himself of his own basic necessities). Obedience and desire shone in him, he was austere, quiet and sometimes troubled. He was ready to die for God, but he did feel fear and asked for God’s grace and strength. In 1927 he was transferred to Tequila for his safety. He set up residence in a factory, and his sister, María, and brother, Román, (also a priest) came to live with him. On Friday, February 24th, 1928, he spent his day organizing the parish registry. Two days before he had sent his brother away for safety. Fr. Toribio finished his work at 4:00am on February 25 and decided to sleep a little. An hour later the government troops arrived and broke into the bedroom where Fr. Toribio was sleeping. One soldier shouted: “Here is the priest, kill him!” He said, “Here I am, but do not kill me.” One soldier fired, and Fr. Toribio rose from his bed and took a few steps until a second bullet caused him to fall into the arms of his sister, who cried in a loud voice: “Courage, Father Toribio...merciful Christ, receive him! Long live Christ the King!” He is the patron saint of Mexican migrants, border crossers. He was Beatified November 22, 1992 by Pope John Paul II. He was Canonized May 21, 2000 by Pope John Paul II.

Monday, May 24, 2010

St. Quintin

St. Quintin was a Roman, descended of a senatorial family, and is called by his historian the son of Zeno. Full of zeal for the kingdom of Jesus Christ, and burning with a holy desire to make his powerful name and the mysteries of his love and mercy known among the infidels, he left his country, renounced all prospects of preferment, and, attended by St. Lucian of Beauvais, made his way to Gaul. They preached the faith together in that country till they reached Amiens, in Picardy, where they parted. Lucian went to Beauvais, and having sown the seeds of divine faith in the hearts of many, received the crown of martyrdom in that city.

St. Quintin stayed at Amiens, endeavouring by his prayers and labours to make that country a portion of our Lord's inheritance. God made him equally powerful in words and works, and his discourses were authorized and strongly recommended by great numbers of miracles, and illustrated and enforced by a most holy and mortified life. The reward of his charitable labours was the crown of martyrdom, which he received in the beginning of the reign of Maximian Herculeus, who was associated in the empire by Diocletian, in the year 286. Maximian made Rictius Varus prefect of the praetorium, whose hatred of the Christian religion has stored the Martyrology with lists of many illustrious martyrs. Varus seems to have resided at Triers, the metropolis of the Belgic Gaul; but, making a progress into the Second Gaul, when he was near Soissons he had intelligence of the great progress the Christian faith had made at Amiens, and resolved to cut him off who was the author of this great change. When he arrived at Amiens, he ordered St. Quintin to be seized, thrown into prison, and loaded with chains. The next day the holy preacher was brought before the prefect, who assailed his constancy with promises and threats; and, finding him proof against both, ordered him to be whipped unmercifully and then confined to a close dungeon without the liberty of receiving either comfort or assistance from the faithful. The holy martyr, strengthened by Him whose cause he defended, remained superior to all the cruel arts of his barbarous persecutor, and preserved a perfect tranquillity of mind in the midst of such torments as filled the spectators with horror.

When Rictius Varus left Amiens he commanded Quintin to be conducted to the territory of the Veromandui, whither he was directing his course in his return. The capital of that country was called Augusta Veromanduorum. In this city of the Veromandui the prefect made fresh attacks upon the champion of Christ with threats and promises; and being ashamed to see himself vanquished by his courage and virtue, caused his body to be pierced with two iron wires from the neck to the thighs, and iron nails to be struck under his nails, and in his flesh in many places, particularly into his skull; and, lastly, his head to be cut off. This was executed on the 31st of October in 287. The martyr's body was watched by the soldiers till night, and then thrown into the river Somme; but it was recovered by the Christians some days after, and buried on a mountain near the town; fifty-five years after, it was discovered by Eusebia, a devout lady, and a certain blind woman recovered her sight by the sacred relics.1 The knowledge of the place was again lost in the persecution of Julian the Apostate, though a chapel which was built near it remained, when, in the beginning of the year 641, St. Eligius, Bishop of Noyon and the Vermandois, caused the holy relics to be sought; and when they were discovered, together with the great nails with which the body had been pierced, he distributed these nails, the teeth, and hair in other places, and enclosed the rest of the sacred treasure in a rich shrine of his own work, which he placed behind the high altar, as St. Owen relates in his life. A new stately church of St. Quintin was built in the reign of Lewis Debonnaire, and another translation of the relics was made on the 25th of October 825. They were removed to Laon for fear of the Normans, but brought back on the 30th of October 885, and are still kept in the great church, which was in the hands of monks from the time of Ebertran, the first abbot, till these were afterwards dispersed by the inroads of the Normans. In the following age, secular canons were put in possession of this famous church.

Martyrdom, when we are called to it, is an homage we owe to God, and a debt due to faith and religion. How great is the honour and happiness for a poor mortal man and a poor sinner to lay down his mean miserable life for Him who, out of infinite love for us, gave his most precious life! Martyrs are holocausts offered to the divine love and glory. They are witnesses, as the word imports in the original Greek, bearing testimony to the infinite power and goodness of God, in which they place an entire confidence, and to the truth of his holy revealed faith, which they confirm with their blood. No testimony can be more authentic, more glorious to God, more edifying to the faithful, or more convincing to infidels. It is by the constancy of martyrs that our holy religion is established.

Sunday, May 23, 2010


The Jews held a feast to give thanks for the harvest, 50 days after Easter. Hence the name Pentecost. Then the meaning of the celebration changed to give thanks for the Law given to Moses.

In this event recalled the day when Moses went to Mount Sinai and received the tablets of the law and taught the people of Israel what God wanted of them. And celebrated the alliance of the Old Testament God established with the people: they are committed to live according to His commandments and God promised to be with them forever.

People came from many places at the Temple of Jerusalem, the feast of Pentecost.

As part of this Jewish holiday is where comes our Christian festival of Pentecost.

The Promise of the Holy Spirit

At the Last Supper, Jesus promised to his apostles: "My Father will give you another Advocate, who will be with you forever-the Spirit of Truth" (John 14, 16-17).

Later they said: "I have said these things while I am with you, but the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, that will teach you everything and bring to your remembrance all that I have told you." (John 14, 25-26).

After dinner, we again make the same promise: "I agree that I am gone, will go for the Advocate ... I have yet many things to tell you, but is not to say now. When comes the One, the Spirit of Truth, will guide you into all truth ... and will communicate things to come " (John 16, 7-14).

In the calendar of the liturgical year, after the feast of the Ascension, at fifty days after the Resurrection of Jesus, we celebrate the feast of Pentecost.

Explanation of the party:

After the Ascension of Jesus, the apostles were gathered with the Mother of Jesus. It was the day of the feast of Pentecost. They were afraid to go out and preach. Suddenly, we heard a strong wind and small tongues of fire resting on each one of them.

They were filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in unknown languages.

In those days, there were many foreign visitors to Jerusalem who came from all over the world to celebrate the Jewish feast of Pentecost. Everyone heard the apostles speak in their own language and understood perfectly what they were talking.

All of them, since that day, and were not afraid and went out to preach to the world the teachings of Jesus. The Holy Spirit gave them strength to the great mission that had to meet: Take the word of Jesus to all nations, and baptize all men in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
It is this day when the Church began to exist as such.

Who is the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit is God, is the Third Person of the Trinity. The Church teaches that the Holy Spirit is the love that exists between the Father and the Son. This love is so great and so perfect that a third person. The Holy Spirit fills our souls in baptism and later, perfectly, in Confirmation. With the divine love of God within us, we are able to love God and neighbor. The Holy Spirit helps us fulfill our commitment to life with Jesus.

Signs of the Holy Spirit

Wind, fire, the dove.

These symbols reveal the powers that the Holy Spirit gives us: The wind is an invisible but real force. This is the Holy Spirit. Fire is an element clean. For example, set fire to the field to remove weeds and to plant good seeds. In medical laboratories to purify the instruments were on fire.

The Holy Spirit is an invisible and powerful force that lives in us and purify us from our selfishness to make way for love.

Names of the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit has received several names throughout the New Testament: the Spirit of truth, the Advocate, the Paraclete, the Comforter, the sanctifying.

Mission of the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is sanctifying: To achieve the Holy Spirit to fulfill its function, we need to give ourselves totally to him and let ourselves be led meekly for his inspirations and be further and grow daily in holiness.

The Holy Spirit dwells in us: In San Juan 14, 16, find the following sentence: "I will ask the Father and give them another lawyer who will be with you forever." Also, in I Corinthians 3. 16 says, "Do not you know they are God's temple and that the Holy Spirit dwells in you?". It is for this reason that we should respect our body and soul. It is for us to act because it is "giver of life and love is. This acceptance is subject to our acceptance and open collaboration. If we surrender to love and sanctifying action, will do wonders in us.

The Holy Spirit prays in us: We need a great interior silence and a deep spiritual poverty to ask that we pray in the Holy Spirit. Let us pray God to be docile to the Spirit. God intervenes for the good of those who love him.

The Holy Spirit leads us to the full truth, strengthens us so that we can be witnesses of the Lord shows us the wonderful richness of the Christian message, fills us with love, peace, joy, faith and growing hope.

The Holy Spirit and the Church:

Since the founding of the Church on the day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit who builds, animates and sanctifies, gives life and unity and enriched by their gifts.
The Holy Spirit continues to work on the Church in many different ways, inspiring, motivating and encouraging Christians, individually or as a whole Church, to proclaim the Good News of Jesus.
For example, can inspire the Pope to give an important message to mankind, inspiring the bishop of a diocese to promote an apostolate, etc..

The Holy Spirit assists particularly the representative of Christ on earth, the Pope, to lead straight to the Church and to fulfill its task of shepherd of the flock of Christ.
The Holy Spirit building, sanctifies and gives life and unity to the Church.
The Holy Spirit has the power to encourage and sanctify us and make us act which, for us, not fulfill. It does this through its seven gifts.

The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit

These gifts are gifts from God and only through our efforts we can not grow or develop. They need direct action of the Holy Spirit to act with them.

WISDOM: It allows us to understand, experience and savor the things of God, to judge righteously.

UNDERSTANDING: Through him, our intelligence is apt to understand intuitively the natural truths revealed and according to the supernatural end have. It helps us understand why the things that God commands us.

SCIENCE: last able to judge correctly our understanding of created things according to their supernatural end. It helps us to think and understand things in the world faith.

TIP: Let the soul rightly intuit what to do in a given circumstance. It helps to be good advisors to the other, guiding the path of good.

STRENGTH: strengthens the soul to practice all sorts of heroic virtue with invincible confidence in overcoming the greatest dangers and difficulties that may arise. It helps us avoid falling into the temptations that we put the devil.

PIETY: It is a gift that God gives the soul to help you love God as Father and men as sisters, respect and collaboration.
FEAR OF GOD: It gives the soul to depart from sin docile for fear of displeasing God which is its highest good. It helps us to respect God, to give him his place as the most important and good in the world, to never say anything against Him

Prayer to the Holy Spirit
Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love, send your Spirit Lord Creator and renew the face of the earth.
OH God, who wanted to illustrate the hearts of your faithful by the light of the Holy Spirit, grant that, guided by this same Spirit, let us rejoice straight and your comfort.
Through Christ our Lord


St. Didier of Vienna

Etymologically means "God willing." It comes from the Latin language.
This young bishop died in 603 such a day like today. Given their merits, virtues and its unconditional surrender to the other, agreed to be a young bishop.
When his apostolate was brilliant and everyone will profess a great affection, he had the terrible Brunehaut, the woman who ruled Austrasia in the name of his grandson Thierry II had only fifteen.
Didier had no hairs on the tongue. So he had no choice but to strike hard the vices of the court, especially the rapes and all other scandals of the sort.
The Brunhault, on their own, convened a council at Chalon with the sole intention that this man of God may be silent. The year was 602.
The holy bishop was faced with a woman named Justa - that its name has only letters - which complained to everyone that Didier had raped her.
To confirm his claim, he was an employee of Thierry, to say that he witnessed the rape.
Speak to what the bishops speak of Lyon and other towns, the decision was already predetermined.
At the end, Didier was sentenced to exile. But it turns out that the woman and her partner died three years of his false accusation. The queen saw this as a punishment from heaven. Fearing the same fate for her, made Didier return to his episcopal see.
Again he ordered the queen by his intrigues and bad intentions.
Tired and angry, ordered the soldiers not to speak. They entered the cathedral, he was caught and killed him with stones outside the town that bears his name. Two years later, King Clotaire II Brunhault dragged by the hair tied to a horse. This all that is known about this saint.

References: Catholic.Net

Saturday, May 22, 2010

St. Rita of Cascia

Known as the "Saint of the Impossible". Rita Lotti was born in 1381 in the tiny hamlet of Roccaporena, near Cascia, in the Province of Umbria, Italy. Her parents Antonio and Amata looked upon their only child as a very special gift from God since she was born to them as they were already getting on in years.
The Lottis were a devout Christian couple, offering their daughter the witness of strong faith in God and a practical example of Gospel living, especially in their role as official peacemakers or reconcilers among their fellow citizens. It should not have been surprising then that Rita, who shared her parents strong faith and religious devotion, would have desired to dedicate her life to God as a nun. Unexpected, rather, was the response of Antonio and Amata, who preferred to see Rita married, and who, in fact, had arranged a suitable husband for her.

Though initially disappointed, Rita understood this choice to be the expression of God’s will for her and so she consented. Both the civil and ecclesiastical climates at the time were not healthy ones - frequent conflicts and family rivalries were routinely settled by the rule of vendetta on the social level - and the scandal of antipopes and their rival bishops dominated the life of the Church. The only child of aging parents would have been far safer under the protection of a good husband, they thought, than she would be behind the unguarded walls of a convent.

Thus Rita was married to Paolo Mancini, a good man though of strong and impetuous character. Their marriage was blessed with two sons, perhaps twins, and Rita’s days were soon filled with the typical concerns of wife, mother and housekeeper, while Paolo was employed as a watchman for the town. As a minor civil servant, Paolo often found himself drawn into the conflicts that existed between rival political factions, and this may account for the tragedy which eventually touched the Mancini family. One day as he was returning from work Paolo was ambushed and killed. The pain which this unexpected and violent death inflicted upon Rita was only compounded by the fear that her sons would seek to avenge their father’s death.

Her example of forgiveness, her words of instruction and pleading, her prayers for their change of heart, were unable to move the two boys to forego any act of retaliation, and so Rita entrusted the cause totally to God, asking him to handle the situation which was beyond her control. As it happened, both sons died within the year.

Now alone, Rita gave herself to works of charity and to a more intense life of prayer. Eventually the desire to enter the convent once more grew in her, but her request for entrance among the Augustinian Nuns of Cascia was refused, not once but three times. Though Rita was known to the nuns of the Monastery of Saint Mary Magdalene, her good character and religious spirit were outweighed, in the judgment of the community, by the violence that surrounded Paolo’s death. The nuns were afraid of tempting the peace of convent life, possibly because one of their members belonged to the family responsible for Paolo’s murder. But Rita felt deeply that this was the vocation to which she was called and she turned to her three patron saints to intercede for her. After the third refusal of the nuns, Rita recognized that she herself must put their fears to rest. She approached Paolo’s family as well as their rivals, and persuaded them to put an end to their hostility and to live in peace.

The example of her own forgiving spirit, no doubt, was an inspiration and - perhaps an embarrassment - to them. The families were reconciled. They signed a document to this effect, and when Rita presented the document to the nuns, they no longer had reason to refuse her. Rita Lotti Mancini now became Sister Rita.

For the next forty years Rita lived the life of an Augustinian Nun, according to the Rule of the saint she had chosen years before as her spiritual father, Saint Augustine of Hippo. His was a gentle Rule which invited the members of the community to strive in every way possible to achieve communion of mind and heart with God and one another. Her days were spent in prayer and contemplation, in service to the sick and the poor, and in activities necessary to support the life of the small community.

After twenty-five years of religious life, Rita was given what she considered a most treasured and singular gift from God. Always devoted to Jesus crucified, her desire constantly grew to share in his great act of love for her and for all humanity by helping to carry his cross. One day as she knelt in prayer, her forehead was pierced by a violent wound, a thorn from the crown that covered Jesus’s own head. She bore this wound for fifteen years until the day of her death.

For the last several years of her life Rita was confined to bed. The last of the many crosses she was presented in life was now the humbling condition of an invalid, totally dependent upon the charity of her sisters. Finally, on May 22,1457 Rita’s life on earth came to an end. The various crosses she had born as wife, widow, mother and nun were now put aside once and for all as she met the embrace of her Risen Lord.

Friday, May 21, 2010

St. Maria Magdalena de Pazzi

The Pazzi family, whose name is linked to the conspiracy against the Medici Grand Duke, in times of our holy, it was still the most important in Florence. Catherine de 'Pazzi (Mary Magdalene is the name of the holy Carmelite who took the day of her religious profession) was born in 1566 in a century rich in events in the civil and religious history in Italy and characterized by exceptional flowering of great saints.

Maria Magdalena de Pazzi also participated in the historical and social situation of his time writing letters very brave to the Pope, cardinals, bishops and princes, noting the causes of the evils afflicting the Church, which she attributed to spiritual shortcomings of Christians and their pastors.
This is a wonderful side of the saint associated with the passion of Christ with the stigmata and other mystical phenomena as visions, ecstasy, rapture, during which was difficult theological issues.

Three sisters, responsible for the spiritual director, transcribed the revelations of Sister Mary Magdalene. The book, entitled Contemplations and written that way so exceptional is considered an important treatise of mystical theology, and also reveals the spiritual journey of the saint, who at 18 had entered the more austere Florentine convent, that of Carmelites.
From a very young girl, Catherine de 'Pazzi was more inclined to devotion to the comfortable life of his time. Indeed, had the privilege, at that time very rare, making her First Communion at the age of ten years.

After giving the farewell to the world and have changed the name, Sister Mary Magdalene was a docile instrument of divine grace, through all stages of mystical experience, from the boldness of contemplation to the torturous test of the night of the senses, in the dark abyss of spiritual aridity, which lasted for five years, during which it was tested in faith, hope and charity. And finally, at Pentecost in 1590, his spirit was again submerged by the bright light of ecstasy, strengthened for the new test successively, the physical pain.

Martyred in the painful body sores, when the pain became unbearable, Sister Mary Magdalene, who had been appointed master of novices, he found the strength to repeat the words that became the motto of his life: "Pati, non mori" , to suffer and die. He died on May 25, 1607, in the convent of Santa Maria degli Angeli in Florence.

He was canonized on April 28, 1669 by Pope Clement IX.

She is an incorruptable.

The Incorrupt body of St. Maria Magdalena de Pazzi

References: Catholic.Net

Thursday, May 20, 2010

St. Bernandino of Siena

In 1408 St. Vincent Ferrer once suddenly interrupted his sermon to declare that there was among his hearers a young Franciscan who would be one day a greater preacher than himself, and would be set before him in honor by the Church. This unknown friar was Bernardine. Of noble birth, he had spent his youth in works of mercy, and had then entered religion. Owing to a defective utterance, his success as a preacher at first seemed doubtful, but, by the prayers of Our Lady, this obstacle was miraculously removed, and Bernardine began an apostolate which lasted thirty-eight years. By his burning words and by the power of the Holy Name of Jesus, which he displayed on a tablet at the end of his sermons, he obtained miraculous conversions, and reformed the greater part of Italy. But this success had to be exalted by the cross. The Saint was denounced as a heretic and his devotion as idolatrous. After many trials he lived to see his innocence proved, and a lasting memorial of his work established in a church. The Feast of the Holy Name commemorates at once his sufferings and his triumph. He died on Ascension Eve, 1444, while his brethren were chanting the antiphon, "Father, I have manifested Thy Name to men." St. Bernardine, when a youth, undertook the charge of a holy old woman, a relation of his, who had been left destitute. She was blind and bedridden, and during her long illness could only utter the Holy Name. The Saint watched over her till she died, and thus learned the devotion of his life. In his life he was offered to become Bishop three times, to all three times he rejected the offer. He lived a life of humility and of charity, like any good franciscan preacher does. St. Bernandino was a model example of a great Christ-ish pastor.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

St. Maria Bernarda Bütler

Maria Bernarda (of first name: Verena) was born and baptized in Auw (canton of Aargau, Switzerland) on May 28, 1848. It was the fourth daughter of Henry and Catherine Butler, humble peasants and practicing Catholics.

At the end of basic school education, was devoted to domestic chores and work in the field. In his youth entered a nunnery. Feeling that God called her to live in that place, returned to her parents, where, our work, prayer and apostolate, continued to feed his vocation until, on November 12, 1867, at 19 years old, entered the Franciscan Monastery of Mary Help of Christians, in Altstätten (Switzerland). On May 4, 1868 took the Franciscan habit, taking the religious name Maria Bernarda of the Sacred Heart of Mary. He made his religious profession on October 4, 1869.

Noted for his profound virtue and his human qualities, therefore, soon to be appointed master of novices and, later, superior service, who served until his departure for missions.

When Archbishop Peter Schumacher, Bishop of Portoviejo (Ecuador), wrote recounting the total abandonment in which people lived in those lands and offering his diocese as a field missionary, Mary Bernard was convinced that this invitation was a clear call from God proclaim the Gospel and to found a monastery home Altstätten subsidiary of Ecuadorian land. After overcoming initial resistance from religious leaders and papal permission to leave the monastery, June 19, 1888, he went with six companions, to Le Havre, France, where he sailed the seven bound for Ecuador.

That way, intended as only the beginning of the founding of a missionary branch of Swiss monastery, was, in fact, the beginning of a process that made Maria Bernarda founder of a new institute, the Congregation of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary Help.

When they arrived in Ecuador, the bishop assigned to the seven religious Chone population, rather difficult and spiritually abandoned, which had about 13,000 inhabitants. He based his prayer missionary activity, poverty, fidelity to the Church and the exercise of the works of mercy. Were responsible for the education of children and youth, preaching the Gospel, enlivened the liturgy, visiting and attending the sick and the poor.

The seed shed by this great woman germinated and bore fruit. There were several houses subsidiaries in Ecuador. But the work was also marked by the mystery of the cross: absolute poverty, hot climate, uncertainties and difficulties of all kinds, were added to a misunderstanding by some Church authorities and the separation of the institute of some of its first founding sisters out of Ecuador.

In 1895, Mother Maria Bernarda and more than 15 sisters had to flee to Ecuador, because of a violent persecution against the church. In the port of Bahia sail for Colombia. During the crossing received an invitation from Archbishop Eugenio Biffi, Bishop of Cartagena de Indias, to work in his diocese. On August 2, 1895 arrived at the port of Cartagena. Biffi the paternally attended Bishop and assigned as a residence a women's wing of the hospital, called Obra Pia, where Maria Bernarda died years later.

The number of sisters founded the congregation grew and houses in Colombia, Austria and Brazil. Bernarda's mother remained seasons with the sisters in various places, shared with them his work and his life was a living example of evangelical simplicity, edified and encouraged them all. Attended with tenderness and mercy to all those in need in the soul or body, but his favorites were the poor and the sick. Praying, exhorting, evangelizing with amazing writing and delivery and intensity.

He directed his congregation, for 32 years. And when he resigned with gratitude and humility to the service, the sisters continued encouraging his example, his word, and his many writings, which are a source of doctrine and spiritual fruitfulness.

He died on May 19, 1924, in the Obra Pia, at 76 years of age, 56 and 36 Franciscan religious life of a missionary in Latin America.

Its proven Intercession

Two miracles have been expressly recognized by the Catholic Church, attributed to the intercession of Mother Maria Bernarda Butler, who served first, for the beatification and then canonization. It should be noted that the Church asks in these cases the official testimony of a medical board, which confirms that there is no scientific explanation for the healing.

The miracle took for her beatification occurred in 1969: the small Liliana Sanchez, who by then had only 15 days old, showed a loss of the bones of the cranial vault and was going to die in the short term. A religious congregation, Sister Filomena Martinez, the mother gave the girl a relic of Mother Bernarda and ninth. The lady put the relic in his daughter's head and prayed. In the overnight, there was a complete bone regeneration, verified by doctors.

Moreover, in 2002, Mirna Khazim Correa, a doctor of 29 years old Cartagena, atypical pneumonia complicated by bilateral pleural effusion and respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Despite the medical and pharmacological treatments did not improve and on July 5 was completely hopeless, connected to machines, while their vital signs were declining.

As he did at the time the girl's mother Liliana Sánchez, Mirna's mother put on her daughter's head as a relic of Blessed Maria Bernarda and called all day healing. Witnesses refer to prayer joined the staff of the intensive care unit.
The surprise came the day after, when the patient noted an improvement in general, which intensified with the passage of days, leaving no sequelae in the lungs after a picture of extreme gravity.

Several doctors testified Health Center: "No explanation of that natural or clinical cure. What we expected so complicated in the table of Dr. Mirna was death. The recovery was surprising. "

On July 6, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI authorized the promulgation of the decree on the miracle, which was the last step in the process now will end with the canonization of Blessed Mother Maria Bernarda Butler.

He was canonized on October 12, 2008, by SS Benedict XVI.

We bless you, Lord,
because you chose to Saint Maria Bernarda,
to make this your merciful love
and cooperate in the extension of your Kingdom.
Grant us the graces for their
intercession we ask,
make his life example
help us grow in goodness
service and love of the brethren.
Says, Lord, on us,
faith, hope and charity.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Saint Venantius

Saint Venantius was according to Christian tradition a 15-year old who was tortured, and martyred by decapitation at Camerino during the persecutions of Decius. Martyred with him were 10 other Christians, including the priest Porphyrius, Venantius' tutor; and Leontius, bishop of Camerino.

Before Venantius was killed, he was scourged, burned with flaming torches, hanged upside-down over a fire, had his teeth knocked out and his jaw broken, thrown to the lions, and tossed over a high cliff. His 11th century Acts state additionally that he managed to briefly escape from Camerino and hide at Raiano, where a church was later dedicated to him.

Monday, May 17, 2010

St. Paschal Baylon

The son of humble peasants, Martin Baylon and Elizabeth Yubero, St. Paschal was born on May 16, 1540 in Torrehermosa, Aragón (Spain). The second of six children. Pascual called him because he was born on the eve of Pentecost.
From 7 to 24 years as a shepherd.
Such was his love for the Eucharist that the owner of the herd said the best gift you could give the child was one day enable him to attend weekday Mass.
From the field where the pastor could see the steeple of the village church. Every now and then knelt to adore the Blessed Sacrament from afar.
One day, while the priest consecrated, other shepherds heard him shout: "There he comes, there it is!". He fell to his knees. He had seen Jesus coming at the time. The Lord appeared to him several times as manly or bright star.
Since childhood was harsh penances, such as walking barefoot through stony roads. When a sheep going to the paddock next door, paid the low wages of the grass that the sheep had eaten.
Sign in with Franciscans.
At 24 he entered the convent of Friars Minor (Franciscans) of Alvatera. At first was not accepted by their low education. Just had learned to read to recite the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary that she always wore while pastoring. His favorite prayer was the Blessed Sacrament and the Blessed Virgin.
The Franciscans assigned humble offices. It was porter, cook, porter and janitor.
His spare time was devoted to Eucharistic adoration, kneeling with arms outstretched. In the evening he spent hours before the Blessed Sacrament. He continued his worship late at night and at dawn was in the chapel before the others.
He spoke little, but when it came to the Holy Eucharist, the Holy Spirit inspired him. He was always cheerful, but never felt so happy as when serving Mass or when they could rest a while praying before the tabernacle of the altar. Arriving at a village went first to church and stayed there for a while kneeling adoring the Blessed Sacrament.
On one occasion, a religious brother looked out the window and saw Pascual dancing before a statue of the Blessed. Virgin and said saying: "Madam, I can not offer great qualities, because I have them, but I offer you my peasant dance in your honor." The priest saw that the saint was overjoyed.
Pascual wrote beautiful prayers to the Blessed Sacrament. The Archbishop of San Luis Rivera, admired cried when reading: "These simple souls who make themselves the best seats in the sky. Our human wisdom is worth little when compared with divine wisdom that God gives to the humble."
He was sent to Paris to deliver a letter to general order. On the way the Eucharist defended against the heresies of a Calvinist preacher, so that almost killed him a Huguenot mob. He was glad to have had the honor to suffer for their faithfulness to the Lord and not complain.
Although Pascual could barely read and write, was able to speak with great eloquence about the presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. He had the gift of infused knowledge. His teachers were amazed at the precision with which responded to the most difficult questions of theology.
I dedicate this verse: From science infused gifted
"You are being lego Doctor
Prophet and preacher;
Theologian accompli ... "
It was noted for his humility and love for the poor and afflicted. He was famous for his miracles and his gift for bringing souls to Christ. Martín Crespo told how the saint had escaped his determination to avenge his father's murderers. Having heard the Good Friday sermon on the passion, urging his friends to forgive. He remained immovable. St. Paschal then took his arm, took him aside and said: "My son, do not you just see the representation of the Passion of Our Lord?". "Then," writes Martin, "with a look that penetrated my soul said," For the love of Jesus Crucified, my son, forgive them. "
"Yes, Father," I replied, lowering my head and crying. "For the love of God I forgive them with all my heart I felt no longer the same person"
When he was dying he heard a bell and asked: "What is it?". "They are on the rise in the Holy Mass". "Oh what a beautiful moment!" And was dead at that moment. It was May 15, 1592, Pentecost Sunday. Villareal, Spain.
During his Mass the coffin were discovered and at the time of the double lift, these were opened and closed his eyes twice. His body even after death, he expressed his love for the Eucharist. So many who wanted to leave of which he had exposed for three days.
He worked many miracles after his death.
Beatified on October 29, 1618 by Pope Paul V
Canonized October 16, 1690 by Pope Alexander VIII
Declared Patron of Eucharistic Congresses and Eucharistic associations by Leo XIII, is also the patron saint of cooks and the municipality of Obando (Philippines). He is an incorruptable.

Dear St. Paschal:
Get us the good Lord
an immense love for the Holy Eucharist,
great fervor
in our frequent visits to the Blessed
and a great esteem for the Holy Mass.

References: Catholic.Net

Sunday, May 16, 2010

St. Simon Stock.

Saint Simon Stock was born of one of the most illustrious Christian families of England, at the castle of Harford in 1164. Certain prodigies marked him, while an infant in the cradle, as a soul chosen by the Mother of God for Her own. Not yet one year old, he was heard to say the Angelic Salutation distinctly, before he had reached the age to learn it. As soon as he could read he began to recite the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin, and he would never cease to do so daily. He read Holy Scripture on his knees at the age of six. He became the object of the jealous persecution of one of his brothers, and at the age of twelve determined to leave and go to live in a forest.

He found a very large hollow tree which became his oratory; and there Simon Stock lived like an angel of the desert. There he triumphed over the demon, as he would later tell his religious, only by the assistance of the Most Holy Virgin. When, deprived in his retreat of the Sacraments, he suffered sharp remorse and fear of his danger amid demoniac visions of criminal pleasures, Mary showed him the wiles of his enemy’s intentions in these harassments.

After twenty years he returned to his parents and resumed his studies, in particular those of theology. He was ordained a priest to obey the orders of Heaven, then went back to his retreat, which he left definitively in the year 1212. The incentive for his departure was a revelation the Blessed Virgin made to him that the Carmelite Fathers of Palestine would come to found monasteries in England. When two Carmelite monks arrived in the company of two English lords returning from a crusade, he hastened to join them, but troubles prevented the foundation of their projected monastery. The three hermits therefore lived in cells near Oxford. The University of Oxford, by recourse to obedience, prevailed upon Simon’s Superiors to allow him to teach theology there, but he did not remain for long.

During a time of difficulty for England which resulted from the Britannic king’s conflicts with the Pope, he composed the famous hymn, Alma Redemptoris Mater, in honor of the Mother of God, to ask for the king’s conversion; his prayers were heard and suddenly the prince accepted all conditions of peace which a papal legate proposed. Saint Simon was soon made Vicar General of his Order for all of Europe. But opposition to the spread of the ancient Order of the Virgin was raised up by the enemy of souls, until Pope Honorius III put an end to it by bulls approving, confirming and protecting the Order from its enemies. He did so, he said, to conform to a command of the Mother of God Herself.

When a General Chapter of the Order was assembled on Mount Carmel itself, Saint Simon attended it. The question of the flight of the monks from the persecutions of the infidels was debated; Saint Simon won out over another opinion by saying that it was a great evil to expose one’s faith to the dangers of persecution without a specific order from heaven, according to the Gospel: “When you are persecuted in one city, flee to another.” The Order had already lost many of its houses, burnt and desecrated. So the monks dispersed to join an army of Crusaders, not without suffering the loss of the lives of several among them at the hands of the infidels. The Christian army, however, found its waters were poisoned by the hand of its enemies, and retired with Saint Simon and his religious to the Mountain of Carmel once again; there the ancient fountain of Elias gave water in abundance, in answer to their prayers. For six years Saint Simon remained on Carmel before returning to Aylesford in England.

The Order afterwards multiplied its foundations, making several in France, under its pious king Saint Louis IX. So prodigiously did it multiply under Saint Simon, that a few years after his death, towards the end of the 13th century, it numbered, according to William of Tyre, several thousand monasteries or solitudes, which the same author estimated were peopled with some 125,000 religious. Saint Simon visited many of them in his extreme old age; he died at Bordeaux during his journeys in 1265.

Ascension of Christ

"On the fortieth day after the resurrection, he ascended into heaven with his body, in which he had risen, and his soul, and took his seat at the right hand of the Father; thence on the tenth day he sent the Holy Spirit" (Profession of Faith by Pope St. Leo IX, 1053).

Jesus ascended into heaven body and soul, by His own power. He now sits at the right hand of His Father, enthroned, even insofar as He is man, as King of the Universe. From heaven, He sent the Holy Spirit to assist His Church, and there He pleads for us as our Mediator and Advocate with the Father. He remains present in His Church through the Mass and the sacraments, the liturgy, the Gospels, and especially through His real presence, body, blood, soul and divinity, in the Holy Eucharist.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

St. Isidore the Laborer

Isidore was born in Madrid April 4 1082. He lived humbly. Because of the Arabic invasions he moved to a small village near Seville. A little after he moved he got married to Maria De la Cabeza, who was also declared a saint. Around 1109 he returned to Madrid and worked for a rich family. During that time his only son Juan was born. His boss told him he can not go to daily mass. His neighbors accused him to his boss that he would leave work to hear mas; but Isidore responded to him "I know sir,that I am your servant; but but I have another calling, the one of service and obedience." His life as a laborer was a good one. He also demonstrated his devotion to Saint Mary Madelene. One day he went to work very early. That morning he had gone to mass. the other worker saw he was not there so they all left. Isidore got there but saw no one. He did four times the work; his work and three others work. He started to pray when two angels came and helped him work. His boss was going out side when he saw the angels; he asked "Who are these men who are here with you?" Isidore responded "I have seen no one. I did not ask for help only to God every morning in holy mass." His boss saw that these "men" were angels sent by God to help his servant, in return for hearing mass very deeply. He did many miracles during his life; like when he squeezed water out of a rock to give to the thirsty. Or when a boy fell in a well and everybody prayed so the boy could get out and he made the water rise up so the boy can float up to the surface. Or the time he and his co-workers were thirsty and he touched the ground and water came from the ground. The plantations he worked on were incredibly abundant and he would give crops to those in need. That's how he lived with his son and wife. Until he died in 1172. He died at 90 years old. A long time before he died he was already declared a saint. He was canonized by Pope Gregory XV and his wife was proclamed a saint 1752.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Sts. Victor and Corona

Their legend states that Victor was a Roman soldier of Italian ancestry, serving in the city of Damascus in Syria during the reign of Emperor Antoninus Pius. He was tortured -including having his eyes gouged out- by a commander named Sebastian.

While he was suffering from these tortures, the sixteen-year old spouse of one of his brothers-in-arms, named Corona, comforted and encouraged him. For this, she was arrested and interrogated. According to the passio of Corona, which is considered largely fictional, Corona was bound to two bent palm trees and torn apart as the trunks were released.Victor was beheaded in Damascus in 160 AD. Other sources state that they were husband and wife.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Our Lady of Fatima

On Sunday, 13 May 1917, ten year old Lúcia Santos and her younger cousins, siblings Jacinta and Francisco Marto, were tending sheep at a location known as the Cova da Iria near their home village of Fátima in Portugal. Lúcia described seeing a woman "brighter than the sun, shedding rays of light clearer and stronger than a crystal ball filled with the most sparkling water and pierced by the burning rays of the sun." Further appearances are reported to have taken place on the thirteenth day of the month in June and July. In these, the woman exhorted the children to do penance and to make sacrifices to save sinners. The children subsequently wore tight cords around their waists to cause pain, abstained from drinking water on hot days, and performed other works of penance. Most importantly, Lúcia said that the lady had asked them to pray the rosary every day, repeating many times that the rosary was the key to personal and world peace. This had particular resonance since many Portuguese men, including relatives of the visionaries, were then fighting in World War I. According to Lúcia's account, in the course of her appearances, the woman confided to the children three secrets, now known as the Three Secrets of Fátima.
Thousands of people flocked to Fátima and Aljustrel in the ensuing months, drawn by reports of visions and miracles. On 13 August 1917, the provincial administrator and anticlerical Freemason (although it should be noted that he was a self professed atheist which is strictly forbidden by masonry, Artur Santos (no relation), believing that the events were politically disruptive, intercepted and jailed the children before they could reach the Cova da Iria that day. Prisoners held with them in the provincial jail later testified that the children, while upset, were first consoled by the inmates, and later led them in praying the rosary. The administrator interrogated the children and unsuccessfully attempted to get them to divulge the content of the secrets. In the process, he tried to convince the children that he would boil them one by one in a pot of oil unless they confessed. The children, however, resisted. That month, instead of the usual apparition in the Cova da Iria on the 13th, the children reported that they saw the Virgin Mary on 19 August at nearby Valinhos

References: Wikipedia.Org

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

St. Nereus, Achilleus and Domitilla

It was under the persecution of Domitian, during which John the Evangelist was condemned to be burned alive in the cauldron of boiling oil, that Flavia Domitilla was honored with banishment and death for the sake of our Redeemer, whom she had chosen for her Spouse. She was of the imperial family, being a niece of Flavius Clemens, who adorned the consular dignity by martyrdom. She was one of the Christians belonging to the court of the Emperor Domitian, who show us how rapidly the religion of the poor and humble made its way to the highest classes of Roman life. A few years previous to this, St Paul sent to the Christians of Philippi the greetings of the Christians of Nero's palace. There is still extant, not far from Rome, on the Ardeatine Way, the magnificent subterranean cemetery which Flavia Domitilla ordered to be dug on her praedium, and in which were buried the two martyrs, Nereus and Achilleus, whom the Church honors today together with the noble virgin who owes her crown to them. Nereus and Achilleus were in Domitilla's service. Hearing them one day speaking of the merit of virginity, she there and then bade farewell to all worldly pleasures, and aspired to the honor of being the Spouse of Christ. She received the veil of consecrated virgins from the hands of Pope St Clement: Nereus and Achilleus had been baptized by St Peter himself.

The bodies of these three Saints reposed, for several centuries, in the Basilica, called the Fasciola, on the Appian Way; and we have a Homily which St Gregory the Great preached in this Church on their feast. The holy Pontiff dwelt on the vanity of the earth's goods; he encouraged his audience to despise them by the example of the three martyrs whose relics lay under the very altar around which they were that day assembled. "These Saints," said he, "before whose tomb we are now standing, trampled with contempt of soul on the world and its flowers. Life was then long, health was uninterrupted, riches were abundant, parents were blessed with many children; and yet, though the world was so flourishing in itself, it had long been a withered thing in their hearts."

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

St. Francis Jerome

Saint Francis was born in Grottaglie, near Taranto, on December 17, 1642.
This eloquent Jesuit missionary, who was called "the apostle of Naples", distinguished himself by his boundless zeal for the conversion of sinners and his love for the poor, the sick and the oppressed.
In 1666, before the age of 24 years, San Francisco was ordained a priest. During the next five years, he taught at the "Collegio dei Nobili" which the Jesuits had in Naples.
At 28 he entered the Society of Jesus. From 1671-1674, he assisted in the missionary work to the famous preacher Agnello Bruno. After completing his studies in theology, he was named the top man of the Church of the Gesu Nuovo in Naples.
It is said that made at least 400 per year sinners. The Holy visiting prisons, hospitals and did not hesitate to follow the sinners to the dens of vice, where sometimes he was brutally abused.
St. Francis died on May 11, 1716 and was buried in the Church of the Jesuits in Naples.
His canonization took place on May 26, 1839 by Pope Gregory XVI.

References: Catholic.Net

Monday, May 10, 2010

St. Damien of Molokai

The Leper Priest, the Hero of Molokai. Born in Tremelo, Belgium, on January 3, 1840, he joined the Sacred Hearts Fathers in 1860. He was bom Joseph and received the name Damien in religious life. In 1864, he was sent to Honolulu, Hawaii, where he Was ordained. For the next nine years he worked in missions on the big island, Hawaii. In 1873, he went to the leper colony on Molokai, after volunteering for the assignment. Damien cared for lepers of all ages, but was particularly concerned about the children segregated in the colony. He announced he was a leper in 1885 and continued to build hospitals, clinics, and churches, and some six hundred coffins. He died on April 15 , on Molokai. Slandered by a Protestant minister, Mr. Hyde, Damien was defended by Robert Louis Stevenson, who wrote an impassioned defense of Damien in 1905. He was declared venerable in 1977. Pope John Paul II declared him beatified on June 4, 1995.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

St. Pachomius

St. Pachomius was born about 292 in the Upeer Thebaid in Egypt and was inducted into the Emperor's army as a twenty-year-old. The great kindness of Christians at Thebes toward the soldiers became embedded in his mind and led to his conversion after his discharge. After being baptized, he became a disciple of an anchorite, Palemon, and took the habit. The two of them led a life of extreme austerity and total dedication to God; they combined manual labor with unceasing prayer both day and night. Later, Pachomius felt called to build a monastery on the banks of the Nile at Tabennisi; so about 318 Palemon helped him build a cell there and even remained with him for a while. In a short time some one hundred monks joined him and Pachomius organized them on principles of community living. So prevalent did the desire to emulate the life of Pachomius and his monks become, that the holy man was obliged to establish ten other monasteries for men and two nunneries for women. Before his death in 346, there were seven thousand monks in his houses, and his Order lasted in the East until the 11th century. St. Pachomius was the first monk to organize hermits into groups and write down a Rule for them. Both St. Basil and St. Benedict drew from his Rule in setting forth their own more famous ones. Hence, though St. Anthony is usually regarded as the founder of Christian monasticism, it was really St. Pachomius who began monasticism as we know it today. Other saints whose feast day is May 9th are St. Gregory Nazianzen and St. Beatus.

References: Catholic.Org

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Saint Agathius

Saint Agathius also known as Achatius or Acacius of Byzantium. was a Cappadocian centurion of the imperial army. He was arrested for his faith on charges by Tribune Firmus in Perinthus, Thrace, tortured, and then brought to Byzantium where he was scourged and beheaded, being made a martyr because he would not give up his Christian Faith. Constantine the Great built a church in his honour. His relics were translated ca. 630 to a spring at Squillace, close by the Vivarium, the monastery founded in the previous century by Cassiodorus in the heel of Italy. He was known in Squillace as San Agario. A relic of his arm was brought to Guardavalle in 1584 by the bishop of Squillace, Marcello Sirleto, hence Agathius' patronage of this city. Relics from Squillace were also brought to Cuenca and Ávila in Spain, where he is known as San Acato.

Friday, May 7, 2010

St. Stanislaus of Szczepanów

The story reminds the King Boleslaw II of Poland (1058-1079) for his military victories that solidified its young state and expanded, the development of land which he promoted a new regional organization, and legal and economic reforms. But the first Polish historian, Vicente Kadlubeck, this king also recalls the grave injustices and private conduct immoral.
But on his way Boleslav found a severe censor. Like John the Baptist for Herod, the brave bishop of Krakow, Stanislaw, raised his voice, warning the sovereign power over the duty to respect the rights of others.
Stanislaus was born in Szczepanowski (Poland) by the year 1030, of parents rather poor. He made his first studies with the Benedictines of Krakow, and then perfected in Belgium and Paris. When he returned to his country, was distinguished for his zeal and by the charitable initiatives carried out with charity and intelligence. Dead Bishop of Krakow, Pope Alexander III appointed him his successor. His appointment was promoted not only by the people and clergy, but also by the same Boleslav II, who in the early years contributed to the work of evangelization of the whole region and the training of clergy
Stanislaus of Kraków, Saint
local, secular, which should gradually take the place of the Benedictine monks in the administration of the Polish Church.
The good rapport between the bishop and the sovereign lasted until the brave Estanislao had to put their duties as pastor to the tolerance for the faults of a friend, as the reprehensible conduct of the sovereign could encourage bad habits of the subjects.
Indeed, the chronicles of the time tell the king fell in love with the beautiful Christine, the wife of Mieszko and, without thinking twice, made her kidnapping with serious scandal to the whole country. Estanislao threatened him with excommunication and then excommunicated him, then the King Boleslav became enraged and ordered the murder of Stanislaus in Krakow, in the church of Saint Matilda, during the celebration of mass. It seems that the horrible "murder in the cathedral" was committed by the same sovereign, after the guards were forced to retreat by a mysterious force. It was the April 11, 1079.
From the day of his martyrdom, the Poles began to worship him.
St. Stanislaus was canonized on August 17, 1253 in the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi, and since then her cult spread throughout Europe and America. St. Stanislaus of Szczepanów is a National Symbol to Poland.

Father may the life and death
of your martyr St. Stanislaus of Szczepanów
help us understand that we must
all ways protect the holy Catholic
Church nad your name.

References: Catholic.Net

Thursday, May 6, 2010

St. Dominic Savio

St. Dominic Savio was born in Italy in 1842. One day when he was just four, he disappeared and his good mother went looking for him. She found the little fellow in a corner praying with his hands joined and his head bowed. He already knew all his prayers by heart! At five, he was an altar boy. When he was seven, he received his First Holy Communion. On that solemn day, he chose a motto: "Death, but not sin!" and he kept it always.

"A teenager such as Dominic, who bravely struggled to keep his innocence from Baptism to the end of his life, is really a saint," said Pope St. Pius X.
Yes, Dominic was an ordinary boy with an extraordinary love for God. At the age of twelve, Dominic entered the school run by John Bosco. Everyone in the school saw from the way he prayed that this boy was different. He greatly loved all the boys, and even though he was younger, he used to worry about them. He was afraid that they would lose the grace of God by sinning. One day, a fellow brought a magazine full of bad pictures to school. In a minute, a group of boys had gathered around him to see it. "What's up?" wondered Dominic, and he, too, went to look. Just one peek was enough for him. He grabbed the magazine and tore it to pieces! "Poor us!" he cried in the meantime, "Did God give us eyes to look at such things as this? Aren't you ashamed?"
"Oh, we were just looking at these pictures for the fun of it," said one boy.
"Sure, for fun," answered Dominic, "and in the meantime you're preparing yourselves to go to hell!"
"Oh, what's so wrong about looking at these pictures anyway?" another fellow demanded.
Dominic had a ready answer. "If you don't see anything wrong," he said sadly, "this is even worse." It means you're used to looking at shameful things!"
No one said anything after that. They all realized that Dominic was right. Another time he stopped a terrific stone-throwing fight between two angry boys. Holding up a little crucifix between them, he said, "Before you fight, look at this and say, 'Jesus Christ was innocent and He died forgiving His murderers. I am a sinner, and I am going to hurt Him by not forgiving my enemies.' Then you can start - and throw your first stone at me!"
The two boys were so ashamed of themselves that they apologized, and promised to go to confession too.
One day Dominic began to feel sick and was sent home to get better. While at home he grew worse, instead, and received the last Sacraments. He was only fifteen then, but he did not fear death. In fact, he was overjoyed at the thought of going to Heaven. Just before he died, he tried to sit up.
"Goodbye," he murmured to his good father. Suddenly his face lit up with a smile of great joy and happiness. "I am seeing such wonderful things!" he exclaimed. Then he spoke no more, for he had gone to Heaven.
One time, two boys filled the school stove with snow and garbage during the cold winter months. When the teacher came back into the room, they falsely accused Dominic of doing the "dirty" deed. Although disciplined in front of the entire class, Dominic refused to tell on the two mischievous boys. When the truth was later revealed, Dominic was asked why he didn't confess to his innocence. He remarked that he was imitating Our Lord, Who remained silent during His persecutions and crucifixion.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

St. Angelus of Jerusalem

Born in Jerusalem, within a family of Jewish converts.
In the early death of his twin brother, St. Angelus decided to enter the Carmelite Order, and is admitted to the monastery on Mount Caramel in Palestine.
In the thirteenth century, the Carmelites went from being a contemplative order to become a mendicant order, remember that it was the century of the spiritual revolution of St. Francis of Assisi and Saint Dominic de Guzman.
San Angel is eventually sent to Rome to deliver a message to Pope Honorius III. Then get the commission to go to Sicily to help preach against the heresy of the Cathars, who had taken control of the island.
However, shortly after his landing in Sicily, St. Angelus was killed by treachery with five stab wounds in the back, ordered by the leader of heretics. At the site where a church was built died, and his tomb soon became a pilgrimage site.
The Carmelite Order St. Angelus venerated as a saint at least since 1456. In 1459 Pope Pius II approved his cult.
St. Angelus is among the first Carmelites who came from Mount Caramel to Sicily, where, according to traditional sources credible, died Licata stabbed to death at the hands of wicked men, in the first half of the thirteenth century.
Revered as a martyr, he soon built a church on the place of his martyrdom, and his body was placed there.
Only in 1662 his remains were moved to the church of the Carmelites of Licata.
The cult of St. Angelus spread throughout the Order and also among the people. He and St. Albert of Trapani are considered the "fathers" of the decree as the first two saints who worship in the order received, and thus were often represented in medieval iconography next to the Virgin Mary.
In Sicily there are many places that have a patron St. Angelus , and the people relies on the needs, addressing him with affection and love.
St. Angelus provides an example of mysticism and obedience.

Father may the life of
your martyr Angelus help
us grow in the faith so
we all can love the
holy Catholic Church.

References: Catholic.Net

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Saint Cyriacus of Ancona

The principal patron of Ancona, St. Judas Cyriacus, may possibly have been a local bishop who died or was killed during a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. On the other hand, he has been conjecturally identified with Judas, bishop of Jerusalem, who was slain during a riot in the year 133. The local tradition of Ancona, however, connects its patron with Judas Quiriacus, a legendary Jew who is supposed to have revealed to the Empress Helen, the place in which the Holy Cross lay hidden, and after being baptized and made bishop of Jerusalem, to have suffered martyrdom under Julian the Apostate. A fantastic account of his dialogue with the emperor Julian, and of the torments endured by him and his mother Anna, is furnished in the so-called "Acts" of his martyrdom. Ancona is said to owe to the Empress Galla Placidia the relics of its patron, but the saint's head was brought over from Jerusalem by Henry, Count of Champagne, who built a church in the town of Provins to contain it.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Ss. Philip and James the Less

St. Philip was from Bethsaida in Galilee. St. John speaks of him several times in the Gospel. Recounts that the Lord Jesus called Philip the day after the vocations of St. Peter and St. Andrew. In the Gospels it is clear that the Holy answered the call of the Lord. Writers of the early Church and Eusebius, historian of the Church, affirm that St. Philip preached the Gospel in Phrygia and died in Hierapolis. Papias, bishop of this place, known by the daughters of the apostle, which was attributed to Philip the miracle of the resurrection of the dead.
A James is called "the Younger" to distinguish it from other apostle James the Major (who was martyred shortly after the death of Christ).
The gospel says that he was from Cana in Galilee, that his father's name was Alpheus and family of our Lord. It is called "the brother of Jesus", not because he was the son of the Virgin Mary, who had but one Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, but because the Bible is called "brothers" that come from the same grandfather : cousins, uncles and nephews (and probably James was "cousin" of Jesus, the son of a sister of the Blessed. Virgen). In S. Bible we read that Abraham called "brother" a Lot, but Lot was the nephew of Abraham. And you see also that Jacob called "brother" Laban, but Laban was Jacob's uncle. So to say that any were "big brother" of Jesus does not mean that Mary had other children, but these so-called "brothers" were simply relatives: cousins, etc.
St. Paul says that one of the apparitions of the Risen Jesus went to James. And the book of Acts tells how the Jerusalem Church was highly esteemed this apostle. (They called him "Bishop of Jerusalem"). St. Paul has him, the first time went up to Jerusalem after his conversion, went to visit San Pedro and did not see any of the other apostles, but only to Santiago. When Peter was released by an angel from prison, he ran to the house where the disciples were staying and left them the task of "communicating to Santiago and the other", who had been released and was going to another city (Acts 12:17). And the Holy Book tells us that the last time that St. Paul went to Jerusalem, before everything went "to visit James, and there at his house met all the heads of the Church of Jerusalem" (Acts 21.15 .) St. Paul in his letter to the Galatians states: "Santiago is, along with John and Peter, one of the pillars of the Church." (For all this it follows that it was much revered among Christians).
When the apostles met in Jerusalem for the first Council or meeting of all heads of the Church, was the apostle James who wrote the letter addressed to all Christians (Acts 15).
Hegesippus, historian of the second century says: "James was called 'The Saint'. The people were sure he had never committed a grave sin. He never ate meat or drank liquor. Spent so much time kneeling in prayer in the temple, which at last did you calluses on their knees. prayed many hours worshiping God and asking the Lord to forgive the sins of the people. People called him: 'He who intercedes for the people'. " Many Jews believed in Jesus, moved by the words and the good example of Santiago. Therefore, the High Priest Annas II and the heads of the Jews, a day of great celebration and great crowd said, "We pray that as the people feel great admiration for you, you appear before the crowd and tell them that Jesus is not the Messiah or Redeemer. " And James appeared before the crowd and said: "Jesus is the messenger of God for salvation to those who want to save. And we'll see one day on the clouds, sitting at the right hand of God." Upon hearing this, the chief priests were enraged and said: "If this man is speaking, all Jews are going to make followers of Jesus." They took it to the top of the temple and from there threw him down the precipice. James did not die suddenly but prayed on his knees saying, "Father God, please forgive me that they know not what they do."
The Jewish historian Josephus says that he came to Jerusalem great punishment from God, for the murder of James who was considered the holiest man of his time.
The apostle wrote one of the most pleasant and helpful writings of S. Bible. The so-called "Letter of James." It is a beautiful and highly practical message. Hopefully none of us stop reading it. At the end of the Bible. He said how are you so important phrases: "If someone pretends to be religious person and do not speak their language, their religion is wrong and futile." "Oh rich: If you do not share their wealth with the poor, get ready to great punishment from heaven." "If anyone is sad to read. If anyone gets sick, they call for the elders and anoint him with holy oil, and that prayer will draw much the patient" (hence the Church took the habit of doing the anointing of the sick .) The most famous sentence of the Letter of James is this: "Faith without works is dead."

References: Catholic.Net