Saturday, December 31, 2011


St. Ergnad

Feastday: January 8
5th century

Ergnad of Ulster V (AC)
(also known as Ercnacta)
Born in Ulster, Ireland in the 5th century. Irish nun who received the veil from St. Patrick. In some lists she is called Ercnacta. She followed the monastic tradition of performing prayer and penance in seclusion.


St. Carterius

Feastday: January 8

Priest martyr of Caesarea in Cappadocia. He suffered in the persecution conducted by Emperor Diocletian.

Saint Carterius lived during the reign of Diocletian, and was a teacher in Caesarea of Cappadocia. He stood before a statue of Serapis and prayed to Christ, and the idol shattered to pieces. The procurator Urbanus ordered St Carterius to be tortured and then beheaded. Some, however, say he was killed with a spear.

Friday, December 30, 2011


Born 410
Southern Italy or Africa
Died 8 January 482
Favianae, Noricum

Severinus of Noricum ( 410-482) is a Roman Catholic saint, known as the "Apostle to Noricum". It has been speculated that he was born in either Southern Italy or in the Roman province of Africa, after the death of Attila in 453. Severinus himself refused to discuss his personal history before his appearance along the Danube in Noricum. However, he did mention experiences with eastern desert monasticism, and his vita draws connections between Severinus and St. Anthony of Egypt.

The mysterious high-born Severinus is first recorded as travelling along the Danube in Noricum and Bavaria, preaching Christianity, procuring supplies for the starving, redeeming captives and establishing monasteries at Passau and Favianae, and hospices in the chaotic territories that were ravaged by the Great Migrations, sleeping on sackcloth and fasting severely. His efforts seem to have won him wide respect, including that of the Germanic chieftain Odoacer. Eugippius credits him with the prediction that Odoacer would become king of Rome. However, Severinus warned that Odoacer would rule not more than fourteen years.
The coat of arms of San Severo, Apulia, feature Saint Severinus.

Severinus also supposedly prophesied the destruction of Astura, Austria by the Huns under Attila. He established refugee centers for people displaced by the invasion, and founded monasteries to re-establish spirituality and preserve learning in the stricken region.

He died at in his monastic cell at Favianae while singing Psalm 150. Six years after his death, his monks were driven from their abbey, and his body was taken to Italy, where it was at first kept in the Castel dell'Ovo, Naples, then eventually interred at the Benedictine monastery rededicated to him, the Abbey of San Severino near Naples.

from the book of Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume I: January.
The Lives of the Saints.  1866.

January 8
St. Severinus, Abbot, and Apostle of Noricum, or Austria

         From his life, by Eugippius his disciple, who was present at his death. See Tillemont, T. 16. p. 168. Lambecius Bibl. Vend. T. 1. p. 28. and Bollandus, p. 497.

A.D. 482.

WE know nothing of the birth or country of this saint. From the purity of his Latin, he was generally supposed to be a Roman; and his care to conceal what he was according to the world, was taken for a proof of his humility, and a presumption that he was a person of birth. He spent the first part of his life in the deserts of the East; but inflamed with an ardent zeal for the glory of God, he left his retreat to preach the gospel in the North. At first he came to Astures, now Stokeraw, situate above Vienna; but finding the people hardened in vice, he foretold the punishment God had prepared for them, and repaired to Comagenes, now Haynburg on the Danube, eight leagues westward of Vienna. It was not long ere his prophecy was verified; for Astures was laid waste, and the inhabitants destroyed by the sword of the Huns, soon after the death of Attila. St. Severinus’s ancient host with great danger made his escape to him at Comagenes. By the accomplishment of this prophecy, and by several miracles he wrought, the name of the saint became famous. Favianes, a city on the Danube, twenty leagues from Vienna, distressed by a terrible famine, implored his assistance. Saint Severinus preached penance among them with great fruit, and he so effectually threatened with the divine vengeance a certain rich woman, who had hoarded up a great quantity of provisions, that she distributed all her stores amongst the poor. Soon after his arrival, the ice of the Danube and the Ins breaking, the country was abundantly supplied by barges up the rivers. Another time by his prayers he chased away the locusts, which by their swarms had threatened with devastation the whole produce of the year. He wrought many miracles; yet never healed the sore eyes of Bonosus, the dearest to him of his disciples, who spent forty years in almost continual prayer, without any abatement of his fervour. The holy man never ceased to exhort all to repentance and piety; he redeemed captives, relieved the oppressed, was a father to the poor, cured the sick, mitigated, or averted public calamities, and brought a blessing wherever he came. Many cities desired him for their bishop, but he withstood their importunities by urging, that it was sufficient he had relinquished his dear solitude for their instruction and comfort.  
  He established many monasteries, of which the most considerable was one on the banks of the Danube, near Vienna; but he made none of them the place of his constant abode, often shutting himself up in an hermitage four leagues from his community, where he wholly devoted himself to contemplation. He never eat till after sunset, unless on great festivals. In Lent he eat only once a week. His bed was sackcloth spread on the floor in his oratory. He always walked barefoot, even when the Danube was frozen. Many kings and princes of the Barbarians came to visit him, and among them Odoacer, king of the Heruli, then on his march for Italy. The saint’s cell was so low that Odoacer could not stand upright in it. St. Severinus told him that the kingdom he was going to conquer would shortly be his; and Odoacer seeing himself, soon after master of Italy, sent honorable letters to the saint, promising him all he was pleased to ask; but Severinus only desired of him the restoration of a certain banished man. Having foretold his death long before it happened, he fell ill of a pleurisy on the 5th of January, and on the fourth day of his illness, having received the viaticum, and arming his whole body with the sign of the cross, and repeating that verse of the psalmist, Let every spirit praise the Lord, 1 he closed his eyes and expired in the year 482. Six years after, his disciples, obliged by the incursions of Barbarians, retired with his relics into Italy, and deposited them at Luculano, near Naples, where a great monastery was built, of which Eugippius, his disciple, and author of his life, was soon after made the second abbot. In the year 910 they were translated to Naples, where to this day they are honoured in a Benedictin abbey, which bears his name. The Roman and other Martyrologies place his festival on this day, as being that of his death.  
  A perfect spirit of sincere humility is the spirit of the most sublime and heroic degree of Christian virtue and perfection. As the great work of the sanctification of our souls is to be begun by humility, so must it be completed by the same. Humility invites the Holy Ghost into the soul, and prepares her to receive his graces; and from the most perfect charity, which he infuses, she derives a new interior light, and an experimental knowledge of God and herself, with an infused humility far clearer in the light of the understanding, in which she sees God’s infinite greatness, and her own total insufficiency, baseness, and nothingness, after quite a new manner; and in which she conceives a relish of contempt and humiliations as her due, feels a secret sentiment of joy in suffering them, sincerely loves her own abjection, dependence, and correction, dreads the esteem and praises of others, as snares by which a mortal poison may imperceptibly insinuate itself into her affections, and deprive her of the divine grace; is so far from preferring herself to any one, that she always places herself below all creatures, is almost sunk in the deep abyss of her own nothingness, never speaks of herself to her own advantage, or affects a show of modesty in order to appear humble before men; in all good, gives the entire glory to God alone, and as to herself, glories only in her infirmities, pleasing herself in her own weakness and nothingness, rejoicing that God is the great all in her and in all creatures.  

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


St. Deacon

Feastday: January 8
In Libya, the holy martyrs Theophilus, deacon, and Helladius, who, after having their bodies lacerated and cut with sharp pieces of earthenware, were cast into the fire, and rendered their souls unto God.

Two martyrs put to death in Libya, Africa. They were killed by being thrown into a furnace. Theophilus was a deacon and Helladius was a layman.


St. Theophilus

Feastday: January 8
In Libya, the holy martyrs Theophilus, deacon, and Helladius, who, after having their bodies lacerated and cut with sharp pieces of earthenware, were cast into the fire, and rendered their souls unto God.

Two martyrs put to death in Libya, Africa. They were killed by being thrown into a furnace. Theophilus was a deacon and Helladius was a layman.


St. Helladius

Feastday: January 8
In Libya, the holy martyrs Theophilus, deacon, and Helladius, who, after having their bodies lacerated and cut with sharp pieces of earthenware, were cast into the fire, and rendered their souls unto God.

Two martyrs put to death in Libya, Africa. They were killed by being thrown into a furnace. Theophilus was a deacon and Helladius was a layman.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


St. Wulsin
Feastday: January 8

Wulsin Jan 8 + 1002. A monk whom St Dunstan loved as a son and made Abbot of Westminster in 980. In 993 he became Bishop of Sherborne.

Wulsin (d. 1002) + Benedictine bishop and monk also called Ultius and Vulsin. A disciple of St. Dunstan, he was named by the saint to serve as superior over the restored community of Westminster, England, circa 960, and eventually became abbot in 980. In 993 he was named bishop of  Sherborne, although he remained abbot of Westminster. Feast day: January 8.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


St. Atticus  patriarch of Constantinople
Feastday: January 8

Bishop and opponent of St. John Chrysostom. Atticus was born in Sebaste. lie was trained in a heretical sect but converted and was ordained in Constantinople. He and one Arsacacius aided in deposing St. John Chrysostom from the see of Constantinople at the Council of the Oak in 405. Atticus succeeded to the see of Constantinople in 406, recognized by Pope St. Innocent I. He was a tireless foe of heretics, called a "true successor of Chrysostom" by Pope St. Celestine I. Atticus died in Constantinople on October 10.
Commemorated on January 8

Born in Sebaste in Armenia, he was reared by monks who held to the heresy of Macedonius, which denied the uncreated divinity of the Holy Spirit; but when he came of age he rejected this error and embraced the Orthodox faith. He settled in Constantinople and became a priest in the Great Church. Though he had little formal education, his amazing memory, his zeal for Christ, and his powerful sermons recommended him to all, and he was elected Patriarch in 406, during the reign of the Emperor Arcadius. He served as shepherd to the Church for twenty years, ruling always with wisdom and moderation. Though he was unbending in upholding the Faith exactly, he took a conciliatory, persuasive approach to heretics and schismatics; in this way he was able to restore many to the Church rather than driving them away. His best-known single act is his restoration of the name of St John Chrysostom to the diptychs. Saint John had been unjustly denied commemoration in the Patriarchate since his exile, which had led to a schism; restoration of his commemoration not only corrected a grave injustice but healed a schism. Saint Atticus also presided over the rededication of the Agia Sophia, which had been burned in 404 in the rioting that followed St John Chrysostom's exile. He reposed in peace in 425.


St. Athelm

Feastday: January 8

Archbishop of Canterbury and uncle of St. Dunstan. A Benedictine, Atheim served as a monk at Glastonbury, England, becoming abbot of the famous monastery. In 909, Athelm was named the first bishop of Wells. He became the archbishop of Canterbury in 914.

Athelhelm (Athelm) Jan 8 + 923. Paternal uncle of St Dunstan. A monk and then Abbot of Glastonbury in England, he became first Bishop of Wells in Somerset and in 923 twenty-first Archbishop of Canterbury.


St. Albert of Cashel
Feastday: January 8
Patron of Cashel, Ireland

Patron saint of Cashel, Ireland. Listed traditionally as an Englishman who labored in Ireland and then in Bavaria, Albert went to Jerusalem and died in Regensburg on his return journey.

Friday, December 2, 2011


Saint Apollinaris Claudius
Apologist and Bishop of Hierapolis
Died 2nd century
Feast January 8

Saint Apollinaris Claudius, otherwise Apollinaris of Hierapolis or Apollinaris the Apologist, was a Christian leader and writer of the 2nd century.

A Christian apologist, Bishop of Hierapolis in Phrygia in the second century. He became famous for his polemical treatises against the heretics of  his day, whose errors he showed to be entirely borrowed from the pagans. He wrote two books against the Jews, five against the pagans, and two on "Truth." In 177 he published an eloquent "Apologia" for the Christians, addressed to Marcus Aurelius, and appealing to the Emperor's own  experience with the "Thundering Legion", whose prayers won him the victory over the Quadi. The exact date of his death is not known, but it was probably while Marcus Aurelius was still Emperor. None of his writings is extant. His feast is  8 January.


St. Thorfinn Feastday: January 8 Thorfinn of Hamar (died 1285) was the Bishop of the Ancient Diocese of Hamar in medieval Norway. Thorfinn was born at Trondheim in Norway, and may have been a Cistercian monk before becoming Bishop of Hamar. Although he achieved a fair amount of fame as a saint, comparatively few details of his life are clearly known. In the year 1285, there died in the Cistercian monastery at TerDoest, near Bruges, a Norwegian bishop named Thorfinn. He had never attracted particular attention and was soon forgotten. But over fifty years later, in the course of some building operations, his tomb in the Church was opened and it was reported that the remains gave out a strong and pleasing spell. The Abbot made inquiries and found that one of his monks, and aged man named Walter de Muda, remembered Bishop Thorfinn staying in there monastery and the impression he had made of gentle goodness combined with strength. Father Walter had in fact, written a poem about him after his death and hung it up over his tomb. It was then found that the parchment was still there, none the worse for the passage of time. This was taken as a direction from on high that the Bishop's memory was to be perpetuated, and Father Walter was instructed to write down his recollections of him. For all that, there is little enough known about St. Thorfinn. He was a Trondhjem man and perhaps was a Canon of the Cathedral of Nidaros, since there was such a one named Thorfinn among those who witnessed the agreement of Tonsborg in 1277. This was an agreement between King Magnus VI and the Archbishop of Nidaros confirming certain privileges of the clergy, the freedom of episcopal elections and similar matters. Some years later, King Eric repudiated this agreement, and a fierce dispute between Church and state ensued. Eventually the King outlawed the Archbishop, John, and his two chief supporters, Bishop Andrew of Oslow and Bishop Thorfinn of Hamar. Bishop Thorfinn, after many hardships, including shipwreck, made his way to the Abbey of TerDoest in Flanders, which had a number of contacts with the Norwegian Church. It is possible that he had been there before, and there is some reason to suppose he was himself a Cistercian of the Abbey of Tautra, near Nidaros. After a visit to Rome he went to TerDoest, in bad health. Indeed, though probably still a youngish man, he saw death approaching and so made his will; he had little to leave, but what there was, he divided between his mother, his brothers and sisters, and certain monasteries, churches and charities in his dioceses. He died shortly after on January 8, 1285. After his recall to the memory of man as mentioned in the opening paragraph of this notice, miracles were reported at his tomb and St. Thorfinn was venerated by the Cistercians and around Bruges. In our own day, his memory has been revived among the few Catholics of Norway, and his feast is observed in his episcopal city of Hamar. The tradition of Thorfinn's holiness ultimately rests on the poem of Walter de Muda, where he appeared as a kind, patient, generous man, whose mild exterior covered a firm will against whatever he esteemed to
be evil and ungodly. His feast day is January 8th.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011


St. Nicetas of Remesiana

Feastday: January 7 OR His feast day as a saint is on 22 June, the day on which Saint Paulinus of Nola also is celebrated

Bishop and missionary. A friend of St. Paulinus of Nola, he was named bishop of Remesiana in Dacia, and was dedicated to advancing the Christian faith in the region. He was also the author of several theological works, and has been credited by many scholars with the authorship of the great hymn, Te Deun.

Saint Nicetas (ca. 335–414) was Bishop of Remesiana, present-day Bela Palanka in the Pirot District of modern Serbia, but which was then in the Roman province of Dacia Mediterranea.Whether born a Greek or a Dacian.he promoted Latin sacred music for use during the eucharistic worship and reputedly composed a number of liturgical hymns, among which some twentieth-century scholars number the major Latin Christian hymn of praise, Te Deum, traditionally attributed to Saints Ambrose and Augustine.

Because of his missionary activity, his contemporary and friend, Saint Paulinus of Nola lauded him poetically for instructing in the Gospel barbarians changed by him from wolves to sheep and brought into the fold of peace, and for teaching to sing of Christ with a Roman heart bandits who previously had no such ability.engthy excerpts survive of his principal doctrinal work, Instructions for Candidates for Baptism, in six books. They show that he stressed the orthodox position in Trinitarian doctrine. They contain the expression "communion of saints" in reference to the belief in a mystical bond uniting both the living and the dead in a confirmed hope and love. No evidence survives of previous use of this expression, which has since played a central role in formulations of the Christian creed.


St. Reinold

Feastday: January 7
Reinold was a Benedictine monk who lived in the 10th century. Supposedly a direct descendant of Charlemagne, and the fourth son mentioned in the romantic poem Aymon, by William Caxton.he began his religious life by entering the Benedictine monastery of Pantaleon in Cologne, Germany, where he was appointed head of a building project occurring in the abbey. He often joined the stonemasons in their work, at times surpassing them. This led to the unsavoury event of his murder at the hands of the same stonemasons he worked with. Reinold was beaten to death with hammers and his body deposited into a pool near the Rhine. His body was later found through divine means, leading to the attribution of Reinold as the Patron of Stonemasons.


Born  240
traditionally Samosata (now Samsat, Turkey)
Died  January 7, 312 possibly Nicomedia

St. Lucian, Priest and Martyr

A.D. 312.

A priest of the Church of Antioch who suffered martyrdom (7 January, 312), during the reign of Maximinus Daza. According to a tradition preserved by Suidas (s.v.), Lucian was born at Samosata, of pious parents, and was educated in the neighbouring city of Edessa at the school of a certain Macarius. Not much faith can be attached to these statements, which are not corroborated by any other author; Suidas very probably confounded the history of Lucian with that of his famous namesake, the pagan satirist of a century earlier. The confusion is easily pardoned, however, as both exhibited the same intellectual traits and the same love for cold literalism.

Early in life Lucian took up his residence at Antioch, where he was ordained presbyter, and where he soon attained a commanding position as head of the theological school in that city. Though he cannot be accused of having shared the theological views of Paul of Samosata, he fell under suspicion at the time of Paul's condemnation, and was compelled to sever his communion with the Church. This breach with the orthodox party lasted during the episcopates of three bishops, Domnus, Timaeus, and Cyril, whose administration extended from 268 to 303. It seems more likely that Lucian was reconciled with the Church early in the episcopate of Cyril (perhaps about 285) than in that of his successor; otherwise it is hard to understand how bishops in the Orient could have received his pupils. Very little is known about the life of Lucian, though few men have left such a deep print on the history of Christianity. The opposition to the allegorizing tendencies of the Alexandrines centred in him. He rejected this system entirely and propounded a system of literal interpretation which dominated the Eastern Church for a long period. In the field of theology, in the minds of practically all writers (the most notable modern exception being Gwatkin, in his "Studies of Arianism", London, 1900), he has the unenviable reputation of being the real author of the opinions which afterwards found expression in the heresy of Arius. In his Christological system — a compromise between Modalism and Subordinationism — the Word, though Himself the Creator of all subsequent beings was a creature, though superior to all other created things by the wide gulf between Creator and creature. The great leaders in the Arian movement (Arius himself, Eusebius, the court bishop of Nicomedia, Maris, and Theognis) received their training under him and always venerated him as their master and the founder of their system.

ST. LUCIAN, surnamed of Antioch, was born at Samosata, in Syria. He lost his parents whilst very young; and being come to the possession of his estate, which was very considerable, he distributed all among the poor. He became a great proficient in rhetoric and philosophy, and applied himself to the study of the holy scriptures under one Macarius at Edessa. Convinced of the obligation annexed to the character of priesthood, which was that of devoting himself entirely to the service of God and the good of his neighbour, he did not content himself with inculcating the practice of virtue both by word and example; he also undertook to purge the scriptures, that is, both the Old and New Testament, from the several faults that had crept into them, either by reason of the inaccuracy of transcribers, or the malice of heretics. Some are of opinion, that as to the Old Testament, he only revised it, by comparing different editions of the Septuagint: others contend, that he corrected it upon the Hebrew text, being well versed in that language. Certain, however, it is that St. Lucian’s edition of the scriptures was much esteemed, and was of great use to St. Jerom.    
  St. Alexander, bishop of Alexandria, says, that Lucian remained some years separated from the Catholic communion, 2 at Antioch, under three successive bishops, namely, Domnus, Timæus, and Cyril. If it was for too much favouring Paul of Samosata, condemned at Antioch in the year 269, he must have been deceived, for want of a sufficient penetration into the impiety of that dissembling heretic. It is certain, at least, that he died in the Catholic communion; which also appears from a fragment of a letter written by him to the church of Antioch, and still extant in the Alexandrian Chronicle. Though a priest of Antioch, we find him at Nicomedia, in the year 303, when Dioclesian first published his edicts against the Christians. He there suffered a long imprisonment for the faith; for the Paschal Chronicle quotes these words from a letter which he wrote out of his dungeon to Antioch: “All the martyrs salute you. I inform you that the pope Anthimus (bishop of Nicomedia) has finished his course of martyrdom.” This happened in 303. Yet Eusebius informs us, that St. Lucian did not arrive himself at the crown of martyrdom till after the death of St. Peter of Alexandria, in 311, so that he seems to have continued nine years in prison. At length he was brought before the governor, or, as the acts intimate, the emperor himself, for the word 3 which Eusebius uses, may imply either. On his trial, he presented to the judge an excellent apology for the Christian faith. Being remanded to prison, an order was given that no food should be allowed him; but, when almost dead with hunger, dainty meats that had been offered to idols, were set before him, which he would not touch. It was not in itself unlawful to eat of such meats, as St. Paul teaches, except where it would give scandal to the weak, or when it was exacted as an action of idolatrous superstition, as was the case here. Being brought a second time before the tribunal, he would give no other answer to all the questions put to him, but this: “I am a Christian.” He repeated the same whilst on the rack, and he finished his glorious course in prison, either by famine, or according to St. Chrysostom, by the sword. His acts relate many of his miracles, with other, particulars; as that, when bound and chained down on his back in prison, he consecrated the divine mysteries upon his own breast, and communicated the faithful that were present: this we also read in Philostorgius, 4 the Arian historian. St. Lucian suffered at Nicomedia, where Maximinus II. resided.   
  His body was interred at Drepanum, in Bithynia, which, in honour of him, Constantine the Great soon after made a large city, which he exempted from all taxes, and honoured with the name of Helenopolis, from his mother. St. Lucian was crowned in 312, on the 7th of January, on which day his festival was kept at Antioch immediately after his death, as appears from St. Chrysostom. 5 It is the tradition of the church of Arles, that the body of St. Lucian was sent out of the East to Charlemagne, who built a church under his invocation at Arles, in which his relics are preserved.    
  The first thing that is necessary in the service of God, is earnestly to search his holy will, by devoutly reading, listening to, and meditating on his eternal truths. This will set the divine law in a clear and full light, and conduct us by unerring rules, to discover and accomplish every duty. It will awake and continually increase a necessary tenderness of conscience, which will add light and life to its convictions, oblige us to a more careful trial and examination of all our actions, keep us not only from evil, but from every appearance of it, render us steadfast and immovable in every virtuous practice, and always preserve a quick and nice sense of good and evil. For this reason, the word of God is called in holy scripture, Light, because it distinguisheth between good and evil, and, like a lamp, manifesteth the path which we are to choose, and disperseth that mist with which the subtlety of our enemy and the lusts of our heart have covered it. At the same time, a daily repetition of contrition and compunction washes off the stains which we discover in our souls, and strongly incites us, by the fervour and fruitfulness of our following life, to repair the sloth and barrenness of the past. Prayer must be made our main assistant in every step of this spiritual progress. We must pray that God would enable us to search out and discover our own hearts, and reform whatever is amiss in them. If we do this sincerely, God will undoubtedly grant our requests; will lay open to us all our defects and infirmities, and, showing us how far short we come of the perfection of true holiness of life, will not suffer any latent corruptions in our affections to continue undiscovered, nor permit us to forget the stains and ruins which the sins of our life past have left behind them.   

Note 1. St. Hier. Catal. Vir. illustr. c. 77. Ep. 107. et Præf. in Paralip. Item Synopsis ap. St. Athan, ad fin.
  The Greek translation of the Old Testament, commonly called of the seventy, was made by the Jews living at Alexandria, and used by all the Hellenist Jews. This version of the Pentateuch appeared about two hundred and eighty-five years before Christ, according to Dr. Hody, (de Bibliorum Textibus, Original. et Versionibus, p. 570, &c.) that of the other parts somewhat later, and at different times, as the style seems to prove. The Jews even of Palestine at first gloried in this translation, as Philo testifies; but it being employed by the Christians against them, they began soon after the beginning of the second century to condemn it, alleging that it was not always conformable to the Hebrew original. This text had then suffered several alterations by the blunders, and, according to Kennicott, some few by the wilful malice of transcribers; though these differences are chiefly ascribed by Origen to alterations of the Hebrew text, introduced after the version was made. The seventy being exploded by the Jews, three new versions were set on foot amongst them. The first was formed in 129, by Aquila, of Synope, in Pontus, whom the Emperor Adrian, when he built Jerusalem, under the name of Ælia, appointed overseer of that undertaking. He had been baptized; but for his conduct being expelled from amongst the Christians, became a Jew, and gave his new translation out of hatred to the Christians. A second was published about the year 175, by Theodotion, a native of Ephesus, some time a Christian, but a disciple first of the heretic Tatian, then of Marcion. At length he fell into Judaism, or at least connected obedience to the Ritual Law of Moses with a certain belief in Christ. His translation, which made its appearance in the reign of Commodus, was bolder than that of Aquila. The third version was framed about the year 200, by Symmachus, who having been first a Samaritan, afterwards, upon some disgust, turned Jew. In this translation he had a double view of thwarting both the Jews and Christians. St. Jerom extols the elegance of his style; but says he walked in the steps of Theodotion; with the two former translators, he substituted [Greek] for [Greek] in the famous prophecy of Isaiah, (c. vii. v. 14.) and in that of Jacob, (Gen. xlix. 10.) [Greek] for [Greek]. Both which falsifications St. Justin Martyr charges upon Aquila, (Dial. cum Tryphon. p. 224. 284. 395. ed. Thirlbii.) and St. Irenæus reproaches Aquila and Theodotion with the former, (p. 253, ed. Grabe.)
  Many additions from these versions, and several various readings daily creeping into the copies of the seventy, which were transcribed, to apply a remedy to this danger, Origen, compiled his Hexapla, &c. of which see some account in the appendix to April 21. Before the year 300 three other corrected editions of the old Greek version were published, the first by Lucian, the second by Hesychius, and the third by Pamphilus the martyr. The first was made use of in the churches, from Constantinople 

From his panegyric by St. Chrysostom, at Antioch, in 387, and pronounced on his festival, T. 2. p. 524. As also from St. Jerom de Script. c. 77. Eusebius, l. 8. c. 12. l. 9. c. 6., and Rufinus. See Tillemont, T. 5. p. 474. Pagi, an. 311.


January 7
St. Kentigerna, Widow, of Ireland

SHE is commemorated on the 7th of January, in the Aberdeen Breviary, from which we learn, that she was of royal blood, daughter of Kelly, prince of Leinster in Ireland, as Colgan proves from ancient monuments. She was mother of the holy abbot St. Fœlan, or Felan. After the death of her husband, she left Ireland, and consecrated herself to God in a religious state, and lived in great austerity and humility, and died on the 7th of January, in the year 728. Adam King informs us, that a famous parish church bears her name at Locloumont, in Inchelroch, a small island into which she retired some time before her death, that she might with greater liberty give herself up to heavenly meditation. See Brev. Aberdon. et Colgan ad 7 Jan. p. 22.
Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume I: January.
The Lives of the Saints.  1866.


Saint Julian of Cagliari

Feastday: January 7

   Believed to have been a count. Martyr.

Died martyred, date unknown

    Relics discovered at Cagliari, Sardinia in 1615, and are enshrined there today

Canonized Pre-Congregation

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Emilian (Aemilio)

+ 767. Born in Vannes in France, he was a monk at Saujon near Saintes and died as a hermit in the forest of Combes near Bordeaux.

Recluse of Bordeaux, France, also called Aemilio. He was native of Vannes and a Benedictine.


Bl. Edward Waterson

Feastday: January 7

An English martyr and a convert. He was born in London, England, and ordained in Reims, France. In 1592, he was returned to England to serve hidden Catholics. Edward was arrested the following year and executed at Newcastle. He was beatified in 1929.

Bl. Edward Waterson

(Martyred 1593)

Little is known Of the English martyr Blessed Edward Waterson before 1588. In that year this young English Protestant, apparently a man of some status, stopped off at Rome on the way back from a trip he had made to Turkey in the company of some British merchants. He had an unusual story to tell about the Turkish visit. There he had met a wealthy Turk who had taken such a shine to him that he offered him the hand of his daughter in marriage. With one proviso. If he chose the girl, he must first become a Mohammedan.

Whether the young lady appealed to Edward, the proviso did not. Sorry, he answered, he would not abandon his faith in Christ.

Waterson must have told the tale of his refusal at the English College in Rome. This college was an ancient hospice for British pilgrims, which in 1579 had also been turned into a seminary for the training of English Catholic young men for the secular priesthood and the dangerous apostolate of the English mission. Even though now a seminary, the college still had accommodations for pilgrims to Rome and visitors. Edward's name is entered in its Pilgrims' Book from November 29 to December 11, 1588.

For the young Englishman who had refused to convert to Islam, that was a momentous fortnight. While at the College, he asked to be instructed in the Catholic beliefs. He received the instructions and converted to the Catholic faith of his English forefathers. Whether this decision was impromptu or long-maturing is not known.

Edward was not even content to remain a layman. In December he left Rome for the English College at Reims, France, to enroll as a student for the priesthood. On completing his training, he was ordained a priest on March 11, 1592. He had not shown himself to be a brilliant student, but he was acknowledged to be a model of humility and self-denial.

In June 1592, the church authorities at Reims sent the new priest to England to begin his work. He knew, of course, that he was courting death. Particularly over the past seven years, many English seminary priests had been executed for treason as a result of a law enacted against priests in 1585. But so great was Edward's zeal that he declared that if given the choice between owning all France for a year or going to England on the mission, he would choose the latter.

Father Waterson's stint as a missionary was very creditable. It was also very brief. In the summer of 1593 he was arrested and put in harsh confinement at Newcastle-upon-Tyne. At Newcastle, too, he was tried and condemned to death for functioning as a priest. Execution was set for January 7, 1593.

Those who attended his execution at Newcastle reported some unusual happenings. Catholic Archdeacon Trollope said that when the young priest was tied down to the hurdle (the wicker sled used to drag traitors to the place of execution), the horses refused to pull it, so he had to be walked to the scaffold. At the gallows, too, the ladder by which he had to mount the platform began to jerk free and twist about on its own. Only when Father Waterson made the sign of the cross over it did it come to rest against the stage. According to the law of execution in treasonable cases, his body was cut down from the hangman's rope before he was dead, disemboweled, and cut into four quarters.

Edward Waterson was beatified by Pope Pius XI in 1929. Twice tested for his Christian faith, he had passed the test. He is an interesting illustration of how varied in background were the men and women who were martyred during the English Reformation. Their witness to the faith is a many-splendored memory


Cronan Beg Jan 7
7th cent. A Bishop of Aendrum in County. Down in Ireland.


St. Crispin
Feastday: January 7
Saint Crispin (433 - 467)
5th century. Bishop of Pavia in Italy, he signed the acts of the Council of Milan
Two brothers bore this name, both canonized. One served Pavia, in Lombardy, Italy, fro thirty years. The other was bishop in the reign of Pope St. Leo I the Great.


St. Clerus
Feastday: January 7

Clerus of Antioch, deacon and martyr, killed at Antioch in Syria in 300.
For having professed faith in Christ, he was tortured seven times, kept in prison a long while, and finally beheaded.


St. Canute Lavard

Canute Lavard in a fresco in Vigersted Church near Ringsted.
Born 1096
Roskilde, Denmark
Died 7 January 1131
forest of Haraldsted near Ringsted in Zealand, Denmark.
Honored in Roman Catholic Church
Canonized 1169 by Pope Alexander III
Feastday: January 7


Martyred nephew of St. Canute and son of King Eric the Good of Denmark. Raised in the Saxon court, he was made the duke of Jutland when he came of age. Canute supported the efforts of St. Vicelin and defended his area against Viking raids. In 1129, Canute became king of the Western Wends, recognized by King Lothair 111. King Nils of Denmark, Canute’s uncle, opposed this and plotted his death. He was slain by Magnus Nielsen and Henry Skadelaar, his cousins, near Ringsted.

Canute Lavard ( Danish: Knud Lavard) (March 12, 1096 – 7 January 1131) was a Danish prince. Later he was the first Duke of Schleswig and the first border prince who was both a Danish and a German vassal, a position leafing towards the historical double position of Southern Jutland. Canute Lavard was also the ancestor of the Valdemarian Kings (Valdemarerne) and of their subsequent royal line.

Canute was the only legitimate son of Eric I of Denmark and Boedil Thurgotsdatter but as a minor he was bypassed in the election of 1104. He grew up in close contact with the noble family of Hvide, who were later on to be among his most eager supporters. In 1115, his uncle, King Niels of Denmark, placed him in charge of the Duchy of Schleswig (jarl af Sønderjyll') in order to put an end to the attacks of the Slavic Obotrites. During the next fifteen years, he fulfilled his duty of establishing peace in the border area so well that he was titled Duke of Holstein (Hertug af Holsten) and became a vassal of the Holy Roman Empire.

He seems to have been the first member of the Danish royal family who was attracted by the knightly ideals and habits of medieval Germany, indicated by his changing his title to Duke of Schleswig (Hertug af Slesvig) . His appearance made him a popular man and a possible successor of his uncle, but he also acquired mighty enemies among the Danish princes and magnates, who apparently questioned his loyalty and feared his bond with Emperor Lothair III, who had recognized him as sovereign over the western Wends. Whether these suspicions were just or not is impossible to say.

Both Niels and his son, Magnus the Strong, seem to have been alarmed by Canute's recognition by the emperor. On 7 January 1131, Canute was trapped in the Haraldsted Forest (Haraldsted Skov) near Ringsted in Zealand and murdered by Magnus. Ringsted Abbey, one of the earliest Benedictine houses in Denmark, became the initial resting place of Canute Lavard. In 1157, Canute Lavard's remains were moved into a new chapel at St. Bendt's Church in Ringsted. A chapel (Knut Lavards Kapel) was erected at the site of his death during medieval times but disappeared after the Reformation. The ruins were rediscovered in 1883. In 1902 a memorial in the form of a 4-metre crucifix was erected near the site of the death of Canute Lavard.

After the death of Canute Lavard, the Obotrite lands were partitioned between Pribislav and Niklot (1090–1160), both chiefs of the Obotrites. Some sources consider the death of Canute to be a murder committed by Magnus; some attribute it to Niels himself. The death provoked a civil war that intermittently lasted until 1157, ending only with the triumph of Canute’s posthumous son Valdemar I. The fate of Canute and his son’s victory formed the background for his canonisation in 1170, which was requested by the same Valdemar. His feast day (Knutsdagen) is celebrated on the day of his death, January 7.


St. Tillo
Feastday: January 7

Benedictine monk, also called Theau in France, Filman in Flanders, Belgium, and Hillonius in Germany. A native of Saxony, he was kidnapped by raiders and brought to the Low Countries as a slave. Ransomed by St. Eligius of Noyon, he entered the Benedictines at Solignac, where he received ordination, and labored as a missionary in the regions around Courtrai, France. He became a recluse at Solignac in his later years.


St. Theodore of Egypt

Feastday: January 7
4th century

Monk and disciple of St. Ammonius in Egypt. He was one of the early desert hermits on the Nile.

Saint Theodorus of Tabennese (ca. 314–368), also known as Abba Theodorus and simply Theodore was the spiritual successor to Pachomius and played a crucial role in preventing the first Christian cenobitic monastic federation from collapsing after the death of its founder.


According to hagiography, Theodorus was born into a wealthy Christian family and was well educated from a young age. Early in life he denied the excesses of his parents, and at the age of fourteen joined a monastery in the diocese of Sne, near the modern town of Esna, Egypt. A brother from Theodorus’ monastery stayed with Pachomius in Tabennese while traveling and preached of the virtues of the Koinonia upon his return to Sne. Praying and weeping, Theodorus became determined that his destiny lay with Pachomius. Although initially denied passage to Tabennese by a Pachomian monk due to his wealthy background, Theodorus opted to follow the visiting monk, and his persistence (and lack of obedience) paid off. He was welcomed by Pachomius upon his arrival, and quickly integrated into the community at Tabennese around 328.

Quickly becoming a favorite of Pachomius, Theodorus lived an enviably ascetic life in the monastery, and took on the title of the "brothers’ comforter". Theodorus asserted his influence openly (which resulted in reprimands from Pachomius) and generally maintained himself as a prominent figure at Tabennese for several years, despite never being given a position of power in the monastic hierarchy. Finally, Pachomius called on him to preach to the brothers despite his youth, and eventually appointed him steward of Tabennese after several new monasteries had been built. Retiring to the monastery of Phbow, Pachomius gave Theodorus complete control over Tabennese, though recalled him from the position after witnessing several monks under Theodorus’ watch violating the monastic rules without reprimand. Having failed to prove his governing ability and once more in a position no higher than when he had entered the monastery, Theodorus became a personal assistant to Pachomius and remained relatively quiet for some years. Despite his clear potential and popularity, Pachomius refused to grant Theodorus any kind of authority; though the old man's failing health soon changed things forever.

After Theodorus had been assisting Pachomius at Tabennese for several years following his demotion, Pachomius became very ill and seemed to be on the verge of death. Pachomius had not named a successor, and several brothers pleaded with Theodorus to assert himself as head of the Koinonia when the sickly man died. Despite the assertion that Theodorus apparently did not want the rank of a father or this world's glory, he consented. Unfortunately for the would-be leader, Pachomius recovered, and upon hearing of Theodorus’ decision, exiled the ambitious young man. After living a life of constant weeping and prayer in solitude, Pachomius forgave Theodorus and allowed him to live among the brothers once more. Normalcy returned, though never again would Pachomius fully trust his former protégé.

In 348 Pachomius died, naming the brother Petronios as his successor rather than the clearly qualified Theodorus. The death of Petronios later that year would leave Apa Horsiesios in charge, and the popular Theodorus would retreat to the distant monastery of Phnoum. Although it seems Theodorus practiced complete submission to the new leader of the Koinonia, problems soon arose in several Pachomian monasteries that viewed Horsiesios as a weak leader. Refusing to work or communicate and demanding a new leader, many of the elder monks completely abandoned any notion of obedience to Horsiesios. The federation of monasteries was falling apart, and Theodorus rushed to Tabennese to placate the rebels. Soon after his arrival, Theodorus was the new de facto leader, though he claimed to be only acting on behalf of Horsiesios. For eighteen years Theodorus administered from Pachomius’ old headquarters in Phbow, using techniques far more assertive than his predecessors, such as constantly shuffling the offices and locations of the most ambitious monks. Yet in spite of this somewhat unstable shifting, the Koinonia was ruled peacefully for nearly two decades, at which point Theodorus predicted he would soon die. Within a few months his prediction came true, and Apa Horsiesios once more took his place as the head of the communities in both title and authority.

Personal writings

Like those of Pachomius and the other leaders of the Koinonia, Theodorus’ sermons were recorded by his followers and some chronicles of his correspondence with contemporary Christian figures have survived intact. The most substantial of these documents, which are in Coptic and believed to have come from Theodorus' hand, is a set of three instructions. These instructions consist of several small lessons and rules, which Theodorus presumably taught to the brothers, and while segments of each are incomprehensible because the original texts are mutilated and the reconstruction is conjectural, many segments remain intact. A variety of subjects are covered in these texts, though few passages offer any insight beyond the well-known facts that Theodorus greatly admired Pachomius and endorsed a very ascetic lifestyle for the brothers whom he guided. Scripture is cited liberally, though there is ultimately little to distinguish these texts from the writings of other early Christians under the Alexandrian sphere of influence. The same can be said for the two short letters Theodorus composed to the other monasteries of the federation that he inherited from Pachomius, which deal with the topics of Passover and vigilance against sin. Certainly these texts all offer insight into the values of the Pachomian monastic system as a whole and early Christianity itself, but little is intrinsically evident about the man who penned them

The letter of Ammon

The letter of Ammon is the only firsthand description of what it was like to be within a monastery during the time in which Theodorus was in charge of the Koinonia. Ammon spent three years living with Theodorus in the monastery of Phbow, which served as the headquarters of the Koinonia starting when Pachomius relocated there around 336. Most of the letter consists of sayings Ammon heard from brothers who had personally interacted with Pachomius and Theodorus, much of which is praise for the two men with little real substance. Although Ammon was a diligent man who would later become a well-known bishop, his knowledge of the workings of the Koinonia was limited by his inability to understand Coptic. Pachomius and Theodorus were native Egyptians, and spoke the native Egyptian language known as Sahidic Coptic, as did a vast majority of the brothers who came to them. However, individuals who spoke other languages began to be accepted after Athanasius referred a Greek convert who had served him in Alexandria to Pachomius. This Greek man, who was known as Theodorus the Alexandrian, sought an ascetic life, and quickly impressed Pachomius with his piety. Although Pachomius was unable to easily communicate with him, he appointed this new Theodorus as the housemaster for the strangers who were also coming to become monks with him in Phbow, and gave him full authority over those who spoke Greek. Theodorus the Alexandrian eventually learned Coptic and was able to communicate with Pachomius and serve as the official translator of the Koinonia, but the community he administered always remained semi-autonomous from the main population of the monastery. Greek monks were forced to rely on Theodorus to communicate with anyone outside their small circle, and a distinct language barrier manifested itself. As the sources indicate, Ammon and the brothers he interacted with were on the side of this barrier opposite Theodorus.

All accounts of Theodorus’ sayings reported in Ammon's letters are described only as they were translated to him. Ammon acknowledges that when Theodorus spoke to him, he did so in the Egyptian language, while Theodorus the Alexandrian translated into Greek, and that all his communications were thus indirect. It was a burden for Ammon to ask Theodorus questions, since both the inquiry and response had to pass through Theodorus the Alexandrian, and as such most of his descriptions involve observable actions rather than speech. Furthermore, the stories and miracles he chronicles hearing from his brothers could not have come directly to them from an Egyptian brother, and must have filtered to them through Theodorus the Alexandrian. Since little is known or recorded about the intention of the Greek Theodorus, it is impossible to judge how his position as head translator may have affected information received by the community he headed, or how accurately they understood the words of Pachomius and the Egyptian Theodorus

The monastic chronicle

The monastic chronicle of the Pachomian federation is by far the most detailed source that mentions Theodorus. The chronicle was completed sometime after the deaths of Pachomius and Theodorus, who are presented as the two centermost figures in the history of the Koinonia. Versions of this chronicle has been found in several different translations and pieced together from fragments but the Bohairic version has become the most frequently consulted. This is because it is by far the most detailed and comprehensible version, and written in a language more similar to the Sahidic Coptic spoken by most Pachomian monks than the Greek version. It can be estimated that the chronicle composed sometime between 368, when the last of the recorded events is believed to have transpired, and 404, when Saint Jerome is known to have translated a version of the chronicles into Latin. Many questions remain about the origins of this text, but since it is the only substantial biography about Theodorus, it remains a fundamental source


St. Valentine
Feast day: February 14
Patron of Love, Young People, Happy Marriages

Valentine was a holy priest in Rome, who, with St. Marius and his family, assisted the martyrs in the persecution under Claudius II. He was apprehended, and sent by the emperor to the prefect of Rome, who, on finding all his promises to make him renounce his faith ineffectual, commanded him to be beaten with clubs, and afterwards, to be beheaded, which was executed on February 14, about the year 270. Pope Julius I is said to have built a church near Ponte Mole to his memory, which for a long time gave name to the gate now called Porta del Popolo, formerly, Porta Valetini. The greatest part of his relics are now in the church of St. Praxedes. His name is celebrated as that of an illustrious martyr in the sacramentary of St. Gregory, the Roman Missal of Thomasius, in the calendar of F. Fronto and that of Allatius, in Bede, Usuard, Ado, Notker and all other martyrologies on this day. To abolish the heathens lewd superstitious custom of boys drawing the names of girls, in honor of their goddess Februata Juno, on the fifteenth of this month, several zealous pastors substituted the names of saints in billets given on this day.
The Origin of St. Valentine

The origin of St. Valentine, and how many St. Valentines there were, remains a mystery. One opinion is that he was a Roman martyred for refusing to give up his Christian faith. Other historians hold that St. Valentine was a temple priest jailed for defiance during the reign of Claudius. Whoever he was, Valentine really existed because archaeologists have unearthed a Roman catacomb and an ancient church dedicated to Saint Valentine. In 496 AD Pope Gelasius marked February 14th as a celebration in honor of his martyrdom.

The first representation of Saint Valentine appeared in a The Nuremberg Chronicle, a great illustrated book printed in 1493. [Additional evidence that Valentine was a real person: archaeologists have unearthed a Roman catacomb and an ancient church dedicated to Saint Valentine.] Alongside a woodcut portrait of him, text states that Valentinus was a Roman priest martyred during the reign of Claudius the Goth [Claudius II]. Since he was caught marrying Christian couples and aiding any Christians who were being persecuted under Emperor Claudius in Rome [when helping them was considered a crime], Valentinus was arrested and imprisoned. Claudius took a liking to this prisoner -- until Valentinus made a strategic error: he tried to convert the Emperor -- whereupon this priest was condemned to death. He was beaten with clubs and stoned; when that didn't do it, he was beheaded outside the Flaminian Gate [circa 269].

Saints are not supposed to rest in peace; they're expected to keep busy: to perform miracles, to intercede. Being in jail or dead is no excuse for non-performance of the supernatural. One legend says, while awaiting his execution, Valentinus restored the sight of his jailer's blind daughter. Another legend says, on the eve of his death, he penned a farewell note to the jailer's daughter, signing it, "From your Valentine."

St. Valentine was a Priest, martyred in 269 at Rome and was buried on the Flaminian Way. He is the Patron Saint of affianced couples, bee keepers, engaged couples, epilepsy, fainting, greetings, happy marriages, love, lovers, plague, travellers, young people. He is represented in pictures with birds and roses.


St. Brannock
Born 6th century supposedly Wales
Died Braunton in North Devon
Feast 7 January

Welsh monk who migrated to Devon, England. He founded a monastery at Braunton, and was famed for his holiness and zeal.

Brannoc of Braunton or Saint Brannock was a Christian saint associated with the village of Braunton in the English county of Devon.
Brannock is believed to have migrated from South Wales to establish a monastery at Braunton in the 6th century. He is believed to have been buried there. It is also believed that he built his church on a hill overlooking Braunton, but it has since collapsed. In a dream he was told to look for a sow and piglets for the site to build his new church. This story is commemorated in one of the stained glass windows and in a roof boss of the present St Brannock's Church in Braunton.
Braunton celebrates St Brannock's Day each 26 June, but Exeter Cathedral celebrates his feast day on 7 January and 7 April. The latter may be a conflation with Saint Brynach with whom some identify him.


St. Anastasius XVIII
Feastday: January 7

Archbishop of Sens. He served the archdiocese from 968-977, started the cathedral, and promoted the monks of Saint-Pierre-le-Vin. His relics are in the monastic church.


St. Aidric
Feastday: January 7

Bishop and court diplomat, raised at Aix-la-Chapelle, Germany, the royal residence of Charlemagne. Aidric, or Aldericus, grew up serving Charlemagne and his son and successor, Louis. At twenty-one, Aidric left the honors of the court to study for the priesthood at Metz, France. After his ordination, he was recalled to the court by Louis. Nine years later he was made the bishop of Le Mans, where he became known for his sanctity and for his efforts on behalf of his people. When Louis died, Aidric supported Charles the Bald, one of Louis' sons fighting for the throne, and for this reason was forced out of Le Mans, only to be reinstalled by Pope Gregory IV. Aidric served as a legate to the court of King Pepin of Aquitaine, France, where he convinced that monarch to restore vast amounts of Church property stolen by the royal family. Aidric also took part in the councils of Paris and Tours. He was paralyzed for the last two years of his life.


St. Raymond of Pennafort

Feastday: January 7
Patron of Canonists

St. Raymond of Pennafort, Patron Saint of Canonists (Feast day - January 7) Born in Spain, St. Raymond was a relative of the King of Aragon. From childhood he had a tender love and devotion to the Blessed Mother. He finished his studies at an early age, and became a famous teacher. He then gave up all his honors and entered the Order of the Dominicans. St. Raymond was very humble and very close to God. He did much penance and was so good and kind that he won many sinners to God. With King James of Aragon and St. Peter Nolasco he founded the Order of Our Lady of Ransom. The brave religious of this Order devoted themselves to saving poor Christians captured by the Moors.

Once he went with King James to the Island of Majorca to preach about Jesus. King James was a man of great qualities, but he let himself be ruled by passions. There on the Island, too, he was giving bad example. The Saint commanded him to send the woman away. The King said he would, but he did not keep his promise. So St. Raymond decided to leave the Island. The King declared he would punish any ship captain who brought the Saint back to Barcelona. Putting all his trust in God, Saint Raymond spread his cloak upon the water, tied up one corner of it to a stick for a sail, made the Sign of the Cross, stepped onto the cloak, and sailed along for six hours until he reached Barcelona. This miracle moved the King. He was sorry for what he had done, and he became a true follower of St. Raymond. St. Raymond was one hundred years old at the time of his death.


Peter of Canterbury Jan 6
+ c 607. A monk from St Andrew's in Rome, he was one of the first missionaries sent to England. He became first Abbot of Sts Peter and Paul (later St Augustine's), founded in Canterbury. While travelling to France he was drowned off Ambleteuse near Boulogne, where his relics are still honoured.

Peter of Canterbury or Petrus(died c. 607 AD or after 614) was a Benedictine abbot and companion of Augustine in the Gregorian mission to England. He became the first abbot of what would become St Augustine's Abbey. Augustine sent Peter as an emissary to Rome around 600 to convey news of the mission to Pope Gregory I. Peter's death has traditionally been dated to around 607, but evidence suggests that he was present at a church council in Paris in 614, so he probably died after that date.

It is presumed that Peter was a native of Italy, like the other members of the Gregorian mission.This mission was dispatched by Pope Gregory the Great in 596 to Christianize the Anglo-Saxons from their native Anglo-Saxon paganism. It landed in Kent in 597, and soon converted King Æthelberht of Kent, who gave Augustine the land on which he founded the abbey that later became St Augustine's, Canterbury.The medieval chronicler Bede records that sometime after the mission's arrival in England,probably in late 600,Peter, along with fellow-missionary Laurence, was sent back to Gregory. This deputation was to relay the news of Augustine's successes in Kent, and to request more missionaries.They also conveyed to the pope a number of inquiries from Augustine about how to proceed with the mission, and when they returned in 601, they brought back Gregory's replies to Augustine.Peter became the abbot of the monastery that Æthelberht founded in Canterbury, originally dedicated to the saints Peter and Paul, but later rededicated as St Augustine's, after the leader of the mission.Bede describes Peter as both abbot and presbyter, a word usually translated as priest.

Death and veneration

Peter drowned while crossing the English Channel on the way to Gaul,at a place called Ambleteuse, near BoulogneAt first he was buried hastily nearby, but Bede reports that after a light illuminated the grave every night, the locals realised Peter was a saint and exhumed him and re-interred him in Boulogne. The actual date of death is unknown, and since his feast day was celebrated on two different days, 30 December or 6 January, that information does not clear up the mystery. The date of his death is reported to have been 1 year, 7 months and 3 weeks after Augustine's, by Thomas of Elmham, a 15th century chronicler. If this is true, this would give a year of death between 605 and 611.his information, however, is contradicted by the fact that Peter was present at the Council of Paris in 614, convened by Chlothar II.It is possible that he died during his return from the Council of Paris.

Peter is a considered a saint, with a feast day on 6 January. His cult was confirmed in 1915.A Vita Petri, or Life of Peter, written by Eadmer in the 12th century, exists in manuscript form, but it is unreliable.There is evidence that Peter was the object of veneration in Boulogne in the 15th century, and a church in that town was associated with Peter, although probably not from the start of his cult.


St. Merinus

6th cent. A disciple of Dunawd at Bangor in Wales and venerated there and in Brittany.

Feast day: January 6
Patron of Paisley, Scotland

Titular patron of churches in Wales and Brittany. He was a hermit of Bangor and a disciple of Abbot Dunawd.


St. Melanius

Feastday: January 6

Also called Mullion, bishop of Rennes, France, when the Franks were invading Gaul. He was a Breton by birth, much respected by the Frankish ruler Clovis. Born in Brittany, he was Bishop of Rennes and succeeded in overcoming idolatry in his diocese.
St. Melanius, Bishop and Confessor.

HE was a native of Placs or Plets, in the diocess of Vannes in Brittany, and had served God with great fervour in a monastery for some years, when, upon the death of St. Amandus, bishop of Rennes, he was compelled by the clergy and people to fill that see, though his humility made great opposition. His virtue was chiefly enhanced by a sincere humility, and a spirit of continual prayer. The author of his life tells us, that he raised one that was dead to life, and performed many other miracles. King Clovis, after his conversion, held him in great veneration. The almost entire extirpation of idolatry in the diocess of Rennes was the fruit of our saint’s zeal. He died in a monastery which he had built at Placs, the place of his nativity, according to Dom Morice, in 490. He was buried at Rennes, where his feast is kept on the 6th of November. In the Roman Martyrology he is commemorated on the 6th of January. St. Gregory, of Tours, mentions a stately church erected over his tomb. Solomon, sovereign prince of Brittany, in 840, founded a monastery under his invocation, which still subsists in the suburbs of Rennes, of the Benedictin order. See the anonymous ancient life of St. Melanius in Bollandus; also St. Greg. Tour l. de glor. Conf. c. 55. Argentre, Hist. de Bretagne. Lobineau, Vies des Saints de Bretagne, p. 32. Morice, Hist. de Bretagne, note 28, p. 932.


St. Macra

Feastday: January 6
+ 287. A holy virgin martyr from Rheims in France, she was tortured cruelly and martyred at Tismes, Champagne before the persecution under Diocletian began.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


St. John de Ribera
Feastday: January 6

Archbishop and Vice-roy of Valencia, Spain. He was the son of the duke of Alcala, and was born in Seville, Spain. Ordained a priest in 1557, he became archbishop in 1568, serving for more than four decades until he died on January 6, in Valencia. John ordered the Moors deported from his see. He was revered by Pope Pius V and King Philip II of Spain. Pope John XXIII canonized him in 1959.

Saint Juan de Ribera was born in the city of Seville, Spain, on March 20, 1532, and died in Valencia on January 6, 1611. Ribera was one of the most influential figures of his times, holding appointments as Archbishop and Viceroy of Valencia, patriarch of Antioch, Commander in Chief, president of the Audiencia, and Chancellor of the University of Valencia. He was beatified in 1796 and canonized by Pope John XXIII in 1960.

His father was Pedro de Ribera, Viceroy of Naples and Duke of Alcala. He became an orphan from mother's side at a very young age.

Juan de Ribera studied at the University of Salamanca. Ordained as priest in 1557, Pope Pius IV appointed him Bishop of Badajoz on May 27, 1562, at the age of 30. There he dedicated himself to teaching the catechism to Roman Catholics and counteracting Protestantism. He was appointed as the Archbishop of Valencia on December 3, 1568. King Philip III of Spain later appointed him Viceroy of Valencia in 1602, and thus he became both the religious and the civil authority. In this role he founded the Museum of the Patriarch, known among Valencians as College of Saint John, entrusted to the formation of priests according to the spirit and the dispositions of the Council of Trent.

As Archbishop, Ribera dealt with the issue of Valencia's large morisco population, descendants of Muslims who converted to Christianity at threat of exile. The moriscos had been kept separate from the main population by a variety of decrees that prohibited them from holding public office, entering the priesthood, or taking certain other positions; as a result, the moriscos had maintained their own culture rather than assimilated. Some of them did, in fact, still practice forms of crypto-Islam

Ribera despised the moriscos as heretics and traitors, a dislike he shared with much of Valencia's Christian populace.With the Duke of Lerma, Ribera helped convince Philip III to at least expel the moriscos instead. Ribera helped sell the plan by noting that all the property of the moriscos could be impounded to provide money for the treasury.[2] In 1609, the expulsion of the moriscos from Spain was decreed. Ribera's original proposal was in fact more extreme: he favored enslaving the entire morisco population for work in galleys, mines, and abroad. Ribera said that Philip III could do so "without any scruples of conscience," but this proposal was rejected.If the moriscos were to be expelled, Ribera favored enslaving and Christianizing at least the children of the moriscos "for the good of their souls" and exiling the parents. This was also rejected, though children under 16 years of age who wished to remain in Spain were allowed, an offer very few took.


Efforts to canonize Ribera, who himself had been active in attempting to canonize Ignatius of Loyola, began shortly after his death.Two concerns were raised about his possible sainthood: his failure to hold a provincial council as mandated by the Council of Trent, and his role in the expulsion of the Moriscos. His supporters played up Ribera's adherence to other parts of the Council of Trent, and tried to present the Moriscos as unconvertible ("[His conversion attempts] had no more effect on the moriscos as if they had been stones".Still), efforts proceeded apace, with various admiring biographies (vidas) of Ribera being published. Ribera was beatified in 1796. In 1960, his canonization was completed under the auspices of Pope John XXIII.


St. Hywyn
Feastday: January 6
Probably a companion of St Cadfan on his return journey from Brittany to Cornwall and Wales. By tradition he founded Aberdaron in Gwynedd.

Welsh founder and patron of churches in western England. He was a disciple of St. Cadfan, who founded monasteries in Wales. Hywyn founded Aberdaron in Gwynedd, Wales. He is sometimes called Ewen or Owen. No other details of his Ire extant.


The tomb of St. Erminold

 St.  Erminold

Born Germany
Died 7 January 1121 Prüfening Abbey near Regensburg, Germany

Feastday: January 6

Benedictine abbot martyred by a member of his own monastery. Erminold was given to Hirschau Monastery, in Wurzburg Germany, as a small child. In 1110, he became the abbot of Lorsch, resigning and returning to Hirschau when his election was disputed. In 1117, Erminold became abbot of Pruffening There he was assaulted by a lay brother and slain on January 7.

St. Erminold Benedictine abbot A large number of miracles are recorded at his tomb after death.St. Erminold Benedictine abbot A large number of miracles are recorded at his tomb after death.
Erminold was given to Hirschau Monastery, in Wurzburg Germany, as a small child. In 1110, he became the abbot of Lorsch, resigning and returning to Hirschau when his election was disputed. In 1117, Erminold became abbot of Pruffening There he was assaulted by a lay brother and slain on January 7.
1121 ST ERMINOLD, ABBOT A large number of miracles are recorded at his tomb after death.
THE medieval Life of St Erminold represents a. rather unsatisfactory type of spiritual biography. The writer seems to have been intent only on glorifying his hero, and we cannot be quite satisfied as to his facts. Erminold, brought to the monastery of Hirschau as a child, spent all his life in the cloister. Being conspicu­ous for his strict observance of rule, he was chosen abbot of Lorsch, but a dispute about his election caused him to resign within a year. In 1114, at the instance of St Otto of Bamberg, he was sent to the newly founded monastery of Prufening, and there he exercised authority, first as prior, and from 1117 onwards as abbot. He is described in local calendars and martyrologies as a martyr, but his death, which took place on January 6, 1121, resulted from the conspiracy of an unruly faction of his own subjects who resented the strictness of his government. One of them struck him on the head with a heavy piece of timber, and Erminold, lingering for a few days, died on the Epiphany at the hour he had foretold. He was famed both for his spirit of prayer and for his charity to the poor. A large number of miracles are recorded at his tomb after death.

See Acta Sanctorum, January 6 and also the MCH., Scriptores, vol. xii, pp. 481—500.


St. Eigrad

Feastday: January 6
6th century

Founder of a church in Anglesey, Wales, the brother of St. Samson of York, trained by St. Illtyd.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


St. Edeyrn

6th cent. Born in Britain, he was hermit and the patron saint of a church in Brittany
Feastday: January 6

A hermit who is patron of a church in Brittany, France. Tradition states that he was a Briton who was a companion of King Arthur before becoming a recluse in Armonica, an area in Brittany.


Feastday: January 6
Diman (Dimas, Dima) Jan 6
+ 658. A monk with St Columba and afterwards Bishop of Connor in Ireland. St. Diman
Abbot-bishop of Connor, Ireland, also called Diman Dubh or “Diman the Black,” Dimas, or Dima. He was a monk under St. Columba. Diman was one of the bishops who received a letter from the Roman Church in 640, concerning the Easter controversy and the Pelagian heresy.


Feastday: January 6
Diman (Dimas, Dima) Jan 6
+ 658. A monk with St Columba and afterwards Bishop of Connor in Ireland. St. Diman
Abbot-bishop of Connor, Ireland, also called Diman Dubh or “Diman the Black,” Dimas, or Dima. He was a monk under St. Columba. Diman was one of the bishops who received a letter from the Roman Church in 640, concerning the Easter controversy and the Pelagian heresy.


Saint Schotin

FEAST DAY 6 January
Born in Ireland
Died 6th century of natural causes
Saint Schotin

Also known as Scarthin ;Schottin Left his homeland to become a spiritual student of Saint David of Wales. Hermit on Mount Mairge in Ireland. Founded a boy's school in Kilkenny, Ireland.

Also Scarthin,a hermit and disciple of St. David of Wales. Born in Ireland, he left the island to become a student of David. Returning home, he lived for many years as a hermit and is traditionally believed to have established a boy's school in Kilkenny.


St. Wiltrudis

Feastday: January 6

Widow and Benedictine nun. The wife of Duke Berthold of Bavaria, she became a nun after her husband's death (c. 947) and founded the convent of Bergen, near Neuburg, Germany, on the Danube about 976. She was well-Imown for her goodness and her abilities as an artisan.

+ c 986. After her husband's death (c 947), she founded (c 976) the convent of Bergen near Neuburg in Germany and herself became a nun and the first abbess.


St. Anastasius VIII
Died 302 Antioch
4th century
Feast day 9 January

Martyr. Anastasius was a Christian who was arrested, tortured, and slain at Syrmium, Pannonia. Anastasius was a Christian convert who suffered martyrdom with Anthony, Julian, Celsus and Marcionilla, during the persecutions of Diocletian


St. Melanie

Feastday: January 6

Born in Placet Brittany, he was a monk when called to succeed St. Amand in the see of Rennes. He wiped out idolatry in his diocese , helped draw up the canons of the Council of Orleans in 511 and was highly revered by King Clovis. Feastday Jan 6.


Saint André Bessette
Feast Day: January 6
Born: 9 August 1845 near Montreal, Canada
Died: 6 January 1937
Beatified: 23 May 1982 by Pope John Paul II

Canonized October 17, 2010, Saint Peter's Square, Rome, by Pope Benedict XVI

Feast January 6

Saint André Bessette, CSC (French: Frère André; August 9, 1845 – January 6, 1937), born Alfred Bessette and since his canonisation sometimes known as Saint André of Montreal.was a Holy Cross Brother and a significant figure of the Roman Catholic Church among French-Canadians, credited with thousands of reported miraculous healings.He was declared venerable in 1978 and was beatified in 1982.

This Holy Cross Brother, known as "Frere Andre," has been credited with thousands of cures. He was the founder of St. Joseph's Oratory in Montreal, Canada, perhaps the world's principal shrine in honor of St. Joseph. When he died at the age of 91, it was estimated that close to a million people came to the Oratory to pay their last respects. He was beatified in 1982.

Andre was the eighth child in a family of 12 and at baptism he was given the name Alfred. Orphaned at the age of 12, he tried his hand at various trades but was not successful in any of them. He could barely read and write and was sickly most of his life. At the age of 15 he became a Brother of Holy Cross but was rejected at the end of the novitiate. At the insistence of the bishop of Montreal, however, Brother Andre was allowed to make religious profession. For forty years he worked as porter at the College of Notre Dame, until he was needed full time at the shrine of St. Joseph. People from all over Canada came to him for cures or for spiritual direction. The Oratory that he built in honor of St. Joseph was solemnly dedicated in 1955 and raised to the rank of a minor basilica.

The Opening Prayer of the Mass describes two characteristics of the spirituality of Brother Andre: his deep devotion to St. Joseph and his "commitment to the poor and afflicted. " For many years he gathered funds to replace the primitive chapel with a suitable church, even cutting the hair of the students at five cents each. His concern for those who needed spiritual healing and support led him to spend 8 to 10 hours a day receiving clients. He became so well known that secretaries had to be assigned to answer the 80,000 letters he received annually.

If one were to seek the outstanding virtue of Brother Andre one would have to say that it was his humility. He once said: "I am ignorant. If there were anyone more ignorant, the good God would choose him in my place. " And when the power of healing was attributed to him, he responded: "It is St. Joseph who cures. I am only his little dog."

The significance of the life and works of Brother Andre for today's Christian is the fact that this humble Brother, who could scarcely read or write, was chosen by God as an instrument for good. As we read in the Preface for Martyrs, God reveals his power shining through our human weakness.

Opening Prayer Lord our God, friend of the lowly, you gave your servant, Brother Andre, a great devotion to St. Joseph and a special commitment to the poor and afflicted. Through his intercession help us to follow his example of prayer and love and so come to share with him in your glory.

Alfred Bessette was born in Mont-Saint-Grégoire, Quebec.then Canada East), a small town situated 40 kilometers south-east of Montreal. He was so frail when he was born that the curé baptized him on an emergency basis and then conditionally the following day.He was from a working class family; his father, Isaac Bessette, was a carpenter and lumberman and his mother, Clothilde Foisy Bessette, saw to the education of her ten children (two others died in infancy). In 1849, with employment scarce and his family living in poverty, Alfred's father decided to move to Farnham (in Quebec) where he hoped to earn a living as a lumberman. Tragically, he lost his life in an accident, crushed by a falling tree, when Alfred was only nine years old. His mother found herself widowed at the age of forty with ten children in her care. She died of tuberculosis within three years, and Alfred found himself orphaned at the age of twelve.ater Brother André would say, "I rarely prayed for my mother, but I often prayed to her."He was sent to live with his mother's sister, Rosalie Nadeau, and her husband Timothée, who attempted to establish Alfred in various trades, but the boy's fragile health (which would afflict him throughout his life) made sustained manual labor difficult.Since he obviously did not have a trade, Alfred began a thirteen-year odyssey wandering from job to job with few belongings and little education. He was barely able to write his name or to read his prayer book.At various times he worked as a tinsmith, blacksmith, baker, shoemaker and wagon driver.From his earliest days, Alfred exhibited an unusually intense spirituality.He would often spend his scant free time praying before a crucifix or evangelizing his friends, and his many self-imposed penances drew the admiring rebuke of his gentle aunt, who was concerned that the boy was endangering his already poor health.

he Pastor of his parish, Fr. André Provençal, noticed the devotion and generosity of the young man. He decided to present Alfred to the Congregation of Holy Cross in Montreal, writing a note to the superior, "I'm sending you a saint."ndré was given the task of porter (doorman) at Notre Dame College in Côte-des-Neiges, Quebec. He fulfilled this function for some forty years while at the same time doing innumerable odd jobs for the community.[citation needed] At the end of his life, he would joke that when he came, he was shown the door, and stayed for forty years.In addition to his duties as receptionist, his tasks included washing floors and windows, cleaning lamps, bringing in firewood and carrying messages.His great confidence in Saint Joseph inspired him to recommend this saint's devotion to all those who were afflicted in various ways. On his many visits to the sick in their homes, he would recommend them in prayer to St. Joseph, and would anoint them lightly with oil from the lamp in the college chapel which always burned before the St. Joseph altar.People claimed that they had been cured through the prayers of the good Brother and Saint Joseph, and they were grateful their prayers had been heard. Brother André steadfastly refused to take any credit for these cures, and, although usually a gentle man, he was known to become enraged at those who suggested that he possessed any healing powers.Because he wanted St. Joseph to be honored, in 1904 Bessette began the campaign to erect a chapel to honor the saint.Brother André's reputation grew, and soon he was known as the miracle worker of Mount-Royal.He had to face the attacks and the criticism of numerous adversaries.He had the strong support, however, of the diocesan Church, and thousands of cures without apparent medical explanation made him the object of popular acclaim.In 1924 construction of a basilica named Saint Joseph's Oratory, began on the side of the mountain, near Bessette's chapel.

Bessette died in 1937, at the age of 91. A million people filed past his coffin.he remains of Bessette lie in the church he helped build. His body lies in a tomb built below the Oratory's Main Chapel,except for his heart, which is preserved in a reliquary in the same Oratory. The heart was stolen in March 1973, but recovered in December 1974.Brother André was beatified by Pope John Paul II on May 23, 1982.The miracle cited in support of his beatification was the healing in 1958 of Giuseppe Carlo Audino, who suffered from cancer.On December 19, 2009, Pope Benedict XVI promulgated a decree recognizing a second miracle at Blessed André's intercession.and on October 17, 2010, Pope Benedict XVI formally declared sainthood for Blessed Andre. Along with Saint André, sainthood was also approved for Stanislaw Soltys, a 15th-century Polish priest; Italian nuns Giulia Salzano and Camilla Battista da Varano; Spanish nun Candida Maria de Jesus Cipitria y Barriola and an Australian nun, Mother Mary MacKillop.

                              PAPAL MASS FOR THE CANONIZATION OF NEW SAINTS:

St. Peter's Square
Sunday, 17 October 2010

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The celebration of holiness is renewed today in St Peter's Square. I joyfully address my cordial welcome to you who have come from even very far away to take part in it. I offer a special greeting to the Cardinals, to the Bishops and to the Superiors General of the Institutes founded by the new Saints, as well as to the Official Delegations and to all the Civil Authorities. Let us seek together to understand what the Lord tells us in the Sacred Scriptures proclaimed just now. This Sunday's Liturgy offers us a fundamental teaching: the need to pray always, without tiring. At times we grow weary of praying, we have the impression that prayer is not so useful for life, that it is not very effective. We are therefore tempted to throw ourselves into activity, to use all the human means for attaining our goals and we do not turn to God. Jesus himself says that it is necessary to pray always, and does so in a specific parable (cf. Lk 18: 1-8).
This parable speaks to us of a judge who does not fear God and is no respecter of persons: a judge without a positive outlook, who only seeks his own interests. He neither fears God's judgement nor respects his neighbour. The other figure is a widow, a person in a situation of weakness. In the Bible, the widow and the orphan are the neediest categories, because they are defenceless and without means. The widow goes to the judge and asks him for justice. Her possibilities of being heard are almost none, because the judge despises her and she can bring no pressure to bear on him. She cannot even appeal to religious principles because the judge does not fear God. Therefore this widow seems without any recourse. But she insists, she asks tirelessly, importuning him, and in the end she succeeds in obtaining a result from the judge. At this point Jesus makes a reflection, using the argument a fortiori: if a dishonest judge ends by letting himself be convinced by a widow's plea, how much more will God, who is good, answer those who pray to him. God in fact is generosity in person, he is merciful and is therefore always disposed to listen to prayers. Therefore we must never despair but always persist in prayer.
The conclusion of the Gospel passage speaks of faith: "When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?" (Lk 18: 8). It is a question that intends to elicit an increase of faith on our part. Indeed it is clear that prayer must be an expression of faith, otherwise it is not true prayer. If one does not believe in God's goodness, one cannot pray in a truly appropriate manner.
Faith is essential as the basis of a prayerful attitude. It was so for the six new Saints who are held up today for the veneration of the universal Church: Stanisław Sołtys, André Bessette, Cándida María de Jesús Cipitria y Barriola, Mary of the Cross MacKillop, Giulia Salzano and Battista Camilla Varano.
St Stanisław Kazimierczyk, a religious of the 15th century, can also be an example and an intercessor for us. His whole life was bound to the Eucharist, first of all in the Church of Corpus Domini in Kazimierz, known today as Krakow, where, beside his mother and father, he learned faith and piety. Here he made his religious vows with the Canons Regular; here he worked as a priest and educator, attentive to the care of the needy. However, he was linked in a special way to the Eucharist through his ardent love for Christ present under the species of the Bread and the Wine; by living the mystery of his death and Resurrection, which is fulfilled in an unbloody way in the Holy Mass; by the practice of love for neighbour, of which Communion is a source and a sign.
Bro. André Bessette, a native of Quebec in Canada, and a religious of the Congregation of the Holy Cross, experienced suffering and poverty at a very early age. They led him to have recourse to God through prayer and an intense inner life. As porter of the College of Notre Dame in Montreal, he demonstrated boundless charity and strove to relieve the distress of those who came to confide in him. With very little education, he had nevertheless understood where the essential of his faith was situated. For him, believing meant submitting freely and through love to the divine will. Wholly inhabited by the mystery of Jesus, he lived the beatitude of pure of heart, that of personal rectitude. It is thanks to this simplicity that he enabled many people to see God. He had built the Oratory of St Joseph of Mount Royal, whose faithful custodian he remained until his death in 1937. He was the witness of innumerable cures and conversions. "Do not seek to have your trials removed", he said, "ask rather for the grace to bear them well". For him, everything spoke of God and of God's presence. May we, in his footsteps, seek God with simplicity in order to discover him ever present in the heart of our life! May the example of Bro. André inspire Canadian Christian life!
When the Son of man comes to do justice to the chosen ones, will he find this faith on earth? (cf. Lk 18: 8). Today, contemplating figures such as Mother Cándida María de Jesús Cipitria y Barriola, we can say "yes" with relief and firmness. That girl of simple origins on whose heart God had set his seal and whom he brought very soon, with the guidance of her Jesuit spiritual directors, to make the firm decision to live "for God alone". She faithfully kept to her decision as she herself recalled when she was about to die. She lived for God and for what he most desires: to reach everyone, to bring everyone the hope that does not disappoint, especially to those who need it most. "Where there is no room for the poor, there is no room for me either" the new Saint said, and with limited means she imbued the other Sisters with the desire to follow Jesus and to dedicate themselves to the education and advancement of women. So it was that the Hijas de Jesús [Daughters of Jesus] came into being; today they have in their Foundress a very lofty model of life to imitate and an exciting mission to carry on Mother Cándida's apostolate with her spirit and aspirations, in many countries.
"Remember who your teachers were from these you can learn the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus". For many years countless young people throughout Australia have been blessed with teachers who were inspired by the courageous and saintly example of zeal, perseverance and prayer of Mother Mary MacKillop. She dedicated herself as a young woman to the education of the poor in the difficult and demanding terrain of rural Australia, inspiring other women to join her in the first women's community of religious sisters of that country. She attended to the needs of each young person entrusted to her, without regard for station or wealth, providing both intellectual and spiritual formation. Despite many challenges, her prayers to St Joseph and her unflagging devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, to whom she dedicated her new congregation, gave this holy woman the graces needed to remain faithful to God and to the Church. Through her intercession, may her followers today continue to serve God and the Church with faith and humility!
In the second half of the 19th century, in Campania, in the south of Italy, the Lord called a young elementary teacher, Giulia Salzano, and made her an apostle of Christian education, Foundress of the Congregation of the Catechist Sisters of the Sacred Heart. Mother Gulia understood well the importance of catechesis in the Church and, combining pedagogical training with spiritual fervour, dedicated herself with generosity and intelligence, contributing to the formation of people of every age and social class. She would repeat to the Sisters that she wished to catechize to the very last hour of her life, showing with her whole self that if "God created us to know him, love him and serve him in this life", it is necessary to put nothing before this task. May the example and intercession of St Giulia Salzano sustain the Church in her perennial duty to proclaim Christ and to form authentic Christian consciences.
St Battista Camilla Varano, a Poor Clare nun of the 15th century, witnessed to the deep evangelical meaning of life, especially through persevering prayer. She entered the monastery in Urbino at the age of 23, fitting into that vast movement of the reform of Franciscan female spirituality which aimed to recover fully the charism of St Clare of Assisi. She promoted new monastic foundations in Camerino where she was several times elected Abbess, in Fermo and in San Severino. St Battista's life, totally immersed in divine depths, was a constant ascent on the way of perfection, with a heroic love of God and neighbour. She was marked by profound suffering and mystic consolation; in fact she had decided, as she herself writes, "to enter the most Sacred Heart of Jesus and to drown in the ocean of his most bitter suffering". In a period in which the Church was undergoing a period of moral laxity, she took with determination the road of penance and prayer, enlivened by an ardent desire for the renewal of the Mystical Body of Christ.
Dear brothers and sisters, let us thank the Lord for the gift of holiness that is resplendent in the Church and today shines out on the faces of these brothers and sisters of ours. Jesus also invites each one of us to follow him in order to inherit eternal life. Let us allow ourselves to be attracted by these luminous examples and to be guided by their teaching, so that our life may be a canticle of praise to God. May the Virgin Mary and the intercession of the six new Saints whom we joyfully venerate today obtain this for us. Amen.

      IN VARIOUS  

Une histoire comme on les aime: celle d’un petit garçon issu d’un
milieu peu favorisé, se battant pour grandir mais surtout pour
survivre, convaincu qu’un ange le protégeait, s’acharnant à poursuivre
le chemin qu’il cherchait devant lui, ouvrant son coeur à tous
qui l’approchaient, finalement reconnu et acclamé comme le saint
qui enrichissait la vie de ceux qui l’approchaient.
Mais cette fois, ce n’est ni un roman ni une fantaisie de cinéma.
Plutôt le vrai récit d’un homme de chez nous, à la vie aussi simple que
merveilleuse, qui est devenu l’ami de millions de personnes sans
jamais s’attribuer le moindre pouvoir, le moindre mérite. C’est grâce
à sa confiance en quelqu’un de plus grand, de plus puissant que lui
qu’il pouvait soulager ses visiteurs. Soulager leur corps, souvent;
leur coeur, toujours. Il aimait et faisait aimer. Il conduisait à Dieu
ceux qui savaient accueillir son grand ami, saint Joseph, dans leur
vie. L’histoire d’un saint d’aujourd’hui, incarné dans notre histoire
où il est resté présent et vivant.
ALFRED BESSETTE est né à Saint-Grégoire au sud de Montréal,
travaillé à Saint-Césaire, émigré un temps aux États-Unis, comme
des foules de jeunes de son temps, pour participer à l’essor des usines
de la Nouvelle-Angleterre. Plusieurs de ses compagnons ont adopté
cette nouvelle terre d’accueil et sont devenus les Franco-américains,
qui ont gardé leur nom françaiset un peu de la culture qui s’y
« Je vous envoie un saint… »
Le jeune Alfred est revenu au pays. Il s’est rapproché de celui en
qui il avait une confiance totale et qui représentait le don de soi qu’il
désirait pour lui même: le curé André Provençal. Ce dernier se dit un
jour: «Je sais où le placer ». Il écrivit alors aux religieux de la

congrégation de Sainte-Croix, qui enseignaient aux enfants de Côtedes-
Neiges, face au mont Royal. Il leur dit: « Je vous envoie un
saint… ».
Le jeune ouvrier timide, illettré, voit s’ouvrir une voix qu’il
désirait sans pourtant y croire: il serait un religieux! Sans savoir
comme il servirait le Dieu qui remplissait sa vie depuis son enfance,
il s’abandonnait à Lui. Peut-être surtout à saint Joseph: son ami, son
confident, depuislongtemps . Il devint frère André.
Si le début paraît banal, peut-être semblable à la vie de plusieurs
jeunesau parcours du jeune Alfred, ce qui suit demeure unique,
exceptionnel. On aura rarement vu, dansnotre histoire nordaméricaine,
un cheminement aussi extraordinaire. Au point que
mille choses paraissent presque incroyables dans l’évolution d’une
vie, d’une renommée, d’une petite chapelle. Car petit à petit, au long
desjours et despèlerins qu’il recevait, frère André s’est acquis une
réputation de thaumaturge à nulle autre pareille.
Le petit frère, le petit garçon frêle et malade, est mort le 6 janvier
1937, à l’âge de 91 ans. Un million de personnes sont venues le
remercier pour sa présence dans leur vie. Frère André demeure,
depuis ce jour, fidèle à des millions d’autres. Il n’a jamais cessé de
dire à ceux qui l’invoquaient: « Priez saint Joseph… ».

Who can resist a good story? Especially one about a young boy
from an underprivileged family, struggling to grow up but mainly
just to survive, convinced that he had a guardian angel, striving to
follow the path before him, opening his heart to all those who sought
him out, and finally gaining the recognition and acclaim that he
deserved as a saint who touched the lives of everyone he met.
But, this story isn’t a novel, or even a Hollywood movie. It’s the
true story of a man of the people, who led a humble but amazing life,
and who wasbefriended by millions of people without ever seeking
the least bit of power or recognition. Thanks to his faith in a higher
power, he was able to heal his followers-often their bodies, but
always their hearts. He loved, and was loved in return. He showed
everyone who welcomed hisbeloved Saint Joseph into their lives the
path to God. His is the story of a modern-day saint who lives on in our
collective history.
ALFRED BESSETTE wasborn in the town of Saint-Grégoire, south
of Montreal. He worked for a period in Saint-Césaire, and later, like
countless other young people at the time, moved to the United States
to work in the booming factoriesof New England. Many of his peers
settled permanently in this new land, becoming Franco-Americans
and keeping their French namesand shades of their native culture.
“I am sending you a saint...”
The young Alfred, however, returned to hisnative Canada. He
developed a close relationship with a man in whom he had complete
faith and who possessed the selflessness to which he aspired: Father
André Provençal. One day, Father Provençal said to himself: “I know
where I’m going to send him”. He wrote to the priests at the
Congregation of Holy Cross, teachers of the children in the district of

Côte-des-Neiges, facing Mount Royal. He told them, “I am sending
you a saint...”.
In disbelief, the shy and illiterate young worker suddenly saw
hislife’s calling appear before him: he would become a religious!
Without knowing exactly how he would serve the God who had been
such a central part of his life since childhood, Alfred dedicated
himself totally to Him, but perhaps mostly to Saint Joseph, his
long-time friend and confidante. He became Brother André.
While the early yearsof his career were somewhat mundane, not
unlike the livesof many other young men on the same path, the
eventsthat followed were truly exceptional. Very few people in the
history of North America can claim to have led such an extraordinary
life, to the extent that the myriad of eventsthat shaped the evolution
of the man, the legend and the tiny chapel seem almost unbelievable.
Slowly but surely, as the years went by and the pilgrims travelled to
the mountain, Brother André began to be known asa miracle
Then, on January 6, 1937, the sick and frail old man—the beloved
son and brother of the people—passed away at age 91. One million
people came to pay homage to him. And, since that day, millions of
othershave remained devoted to Brother André. To all those who
came to him in their hour of need, he spoke these immortal words:
“Pray to Saint Joseph”.

Una storia che ci piace tanto: quella di un ragazzino che proveniva
da una famiglia disagiata, che si è battuto per crescere ma soprattutto
per sopravvivere, convinto che un angelo lo proteggeva,
accanendosi a perseguire il cammino che cercava, aprendo il suo
cuore a tutti quelli che lo avvicinavano, finalmente riconosciuto e
acclamato come il santo che arricchiva la vita di coloro che lo
Ma questa volta, non é né un romanzo né una fantasia del cinema.
Ma è la storia vera di un uomo delle nostre parti, dalla vita cosi
semplice e meravigliosa, che è diventato l’amico di milioni di persone
senza mai attribuirsi il minimo potere, il minimo merito. È grazie alla
sua fiducia in qualcuno di più grande, di più potente di lui che poteva
dare sollievo ai suoi visitatori. Spesso dava sollievo al loro corpo ma
sempre al loro cuore. Amava e faceva amare. Portava a Dio quelli che
sapevano accogliere nella loro vita il suo grande amico, San
Giuseppe. La storia di un santo di oggi, incarnato nella nostra storia
dove è rimasto presente e vivo.
Il Beato ALFRED BESSETTE è nato a Saint-Grégoire nel sud di
Montreal, ha lavorato a Saint-Césaire, è emigrato negli Stati Uniti
per un periodo di tempo come tanti giovani del suo periodo per
partecipare allo sviluppo delle industrie della Nuova Inghilterra.
Tanti dei suoi compagni hanno adottato questa nuova terra di
accoglienza e sono diventati franco-americani, hanno tenuto il loro
cognome francese e un po’ della loro cultura.
«Vi mando un santo… »
Il giovane Alfred è tornato al suo paese. Si è avvicinato a colui nel
quale aveva una fiducia totale e che rappresentava il dono di se stesso
che desiderava per lui: il curato André Provençal. Quest’ultimo un

giorno si è detto: «So dove mandarlo ». Scrisse quindi ai religiosi della
congregazione di Santa Croce che insegnavano ai bambini della
Côte-des-Neiges, di fronte al Monte Royal dicendo « Vi mando un
Il giovane operaio timido, analfabeta, vede aprirsi una porta che
desiderava senza nemmeno crederci: diventerà un religioso! Senza
sapere come servirà il Dio che riempiva la sua vita dalla sua infanzia,
si abbandonava a lui. Soprattutto a San Giuseppe: suo amico, suo
confidente da tanto tempo. Diventa fratello André.
Se l’inizio sembra banale, simile alla vita di tanti giovani, ciò che
segue è unico ed eccezionale. Si è visto raramente nella nostra storia
nord americana, un cammino cosi straordinario. Al punto che mille
cose sembrano quasi incredibili nell’evoluzione di una vita, di una
fama, di una piccola cappella. Lungo la sua vita e grazie ai pellegrini
che riceveva, fratello André ha acquisito una reputazione di taumaturgo
uguale a nessun’altra.
Il fratellino, il ragazzino gracile e malato è morto il 6 gennaio
1937, all’età di 91 anni. Un milione di persone sono venute a
ringraziarlo per la sua presenza nella loro vita. Fratello André rimane
da quel giorno fedele a milioni di altre persone. Non ha mai smesso
di dire a coloro che lo invocavano: « Pregate San Giuseppe… ».

¿Quién se puede resistir a una buena historia? Especialmente una
acerca de un niño proveniente de una familia desfavorecida, que
luchó para crecer pero sobretodo para sobrevivir, que estaba
convencido de que tenía un ángel guardián, que se esforzó en seguir
el camino que se le presentó, que abrió su corazón a todas las
personas que lo buscaron, y que finalmente se ganó el reconocimiento
y la aclamación que merecía, como el santo que tocó las
vidasde todos aquellos que lo conocieron.
Sin embargo, esta historia no es una novela ni mucho menos una
película de Hollywood. Esta es la verdadera historia de un hombre
del pueblo que tuvo una vida humilde pero maravillosa, y que se
convirtió en amigo de millones de personas sin siquiera buscar un
poco de poder o reconocimiento. Graciasa que tenía fe en alguien
más poderoso, él pudo sanar a sus seguidores--la mayoría de veces a
sus cuerpos pero siempre a sus corazones. Él amó y fue amado.
Mostró el camino hacia Dios a todo aquel que daba la bienvenida a
sus vidas a su querido San José. Su historia es la de un santo moderno
que vive en nuestra historia colectiva.
ALFRED BESSETTE nació en el pueblo de Saint-Grégorie al sur de
Montreal. Trabajó por un tiempo en Saint-Cesáire, y más adelante,
como muchos otros jóvenes de su tiempo, se mudó a los Estados
Unidospara trabajar en las crecientes fábricasde Nueva Inglaterra.
Muchos de sus compañeros se mudaron definitivamente a esta tierra
nueva, convirtiéndose en franco americanos y conservando sus
nombres franceses y sombras de su cultura nativa.
«Les estoy enviando un santo... »
Sin embargo, el joven Alfred regresó a su nativa Canadá.
Desarrolló una cercana relación con un hombre a quien le tenía una

confianza total y que poseía el desinterés que él aspiraba: Padre
André Provençal. Un día el Padre Provençal se dijo a sí mismo: «Ya
sé a donde lo voy a enviar » Les escribió a los curas de la
Congregación de la Santa Cruz, maestros de los niños del distrito de
Côte-des-Neiges, al frente del Mount Royal. Les dijo, « les estoy
enviando un santo... ».
Sin creerlo, el joven trabajador tímido y analfabeto de pronto
vio el llamado de su vida aparecerse frente a él: ¡se convertiría en
religioso! Sin saber exactamente cómo serviría a Dios quien había
sido una parte central de su vida desde su niñez, Alfred se dedicó
totalmente a Él, pero quizá en mayor parte a San José, su viejo amigo
y confidente. Se convirtió en el Hermano André.
Aunque los primeros años de su carrera fueron algo mundanos,
parecidosa los de la vida de otros jóvenes en el mismo camino, los
acontecimientosque siguieron fueron verdaderamente excepcionales.
Muy pocas personas en la historia de Norteamérica pueden
afirmar que han tenido una vida tan extraordinaria, en la medida que
losinnumerables acontecimientos que formaron la evolución del
hombre, la leyenda y la pequeña capilla parecen casi increíbles. Poco
a poco conforme losañospas aban y losperegrinos viajaban a la
montaña, el Hermano André comenzó a ser conocido como el
trabajador milagroso.
Luego, el 6 de enero de 1937, el viejo y débil hombre —el hijo y
hermano adorado de las personas— falleció a los 91 años. Un millón
de personas vinieron a rendirle homenaje. Y, desde ese día, millones
de personas continuaron siendo devotas del Hermano André. A todas
aquellas personas que fueron a él en su momento de necesidad, les
dijo estas palabras inmortales: «Recen a San José ».