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Blessed John lived in the first half of the fourteenth century. He has a sister who is also "blessed," Blessed Lucy of Amelia. They were members of the Bufalari family from the Umbria region of Italy. John felt a call to religious life. He was attracted to the order of St. Augustine and wanted to be a brother. John was accepted into the order and found himself immediately at home. He loved to pray and to meditate about Jesus, Mary and the saints. He learned how to talk to God, his Father, and he especially took the opportunities to serve at Mass. People from the neighboring towns came to Mass at the church of the Augustinians. They noticed the brother who was always there. He was so peaceful and kind. Brother John went out of his way to welcome them. He made them feel at home.

When people came to the monastery in need, Brother John was there to greet and welcome them. For those who were staying overnight, he would bring them to the guest rooms and wait on them. He would make sure they had food, medicine and whatever else the monastery could give.

The years passed. Brother John continued his religious life with the quiet rhythm of a clock. He was steady and stable. Blessed John remained joyful in his vocation until his death in 1350. It was no surprise to anybody who had come to the monastery when miracles started to be reported at his tomb. Brother John was not going to let his death stop him from performing his ministry for Jesus.


St. Lawrence, the famous martyr of Rome, lived in the third century. He was one of seven deacons who were in charge of giving help to the poor and the needy. When a persecution broke out, Pope St. Sixtus II was condemned to death. As he was led to execution, Lawrence followed him weeping. "Father, where are you going without your deacon?" "I am not leaving you, my son," answered the pope. "In three days you will follow me." Full of joy, Lawrence gave to the poor the rest of the money he had on hand. He even sold expensive church vessels to have more to give away.

The prefect of Rome, a greedy man, thought the Church had a great fortune hidden away. He ordered Lawrence to bring the Church's treasure to him. The saint said he would, in three days. Then he went through the city and gathered together all the poor and sick people supported by the Church. He showed them to the prefect and said: "This is the Church's treasure." The prefect was furious. In his anger he condemned Lawrence to a slow, cruel death. The saint was tied on top of an iron grill over a slow fire that roasted him. God gave him so much strength and joy that Lawrence is said to have joked. "Turn me over," he said to the judge. Before he died, he prayed that the city of Rome might be converted to Jesus. He prayed that the Catholic faith would spread all over the world.

Lawrence died on August 10, 158. His feast spread throughout Italy and northern Africa. Emperor Constantine built a beautiful basilica in Lawrence's honor. St. Lawrence is among the saints mentioned in the First Eucharistic Prayer at Mass.


St. Clare was born around 1193 in Assisi, Italy. She lived at the time of St. Francis of Assisi. Clare became the foundress of an order of nuns called the "Poor Clares." When she was eighteen, she heard St. Francis preach. Her heart burned with a great desire to imitate him. She also wanted to live a poor, humble life for Jesus. So one evening, she ran away from home. In a little chapel outside Assisi, she gave herself to God. St. Francis cut off her hair and offered her a rough brown habit to wear. She stayed with the Benedictine nuns until more nuns would join her. Her parents tried in every way to make her return home, but Clare would not. Soon her fifteen-year-old sister Agnes joined her. Other young women wanted to be brides of Jesus, too. Before long there was a small religious community.

St. Clare and her nuns wore no shoes. They never ate meat. They lived in a poor house and kept silent most of the time. Yet they were very happy because they felt that Jesus was close to them. Once an army of rough soldiers came to attack Assisi. They planned to raid the convent first. Although very sick, St. Clare asked to be carried to the wall. She had the Blessed Sacrament placed right where the soldiers could see it. Then she knelt and begged God to save the nuns. "O Lord, protect these sisters whom I cannot protect now," she prayed. And a voice within her seemed to say: "I will keep them always in my care." At the same time, a sudden fright struck the attackers. They fled as fast as they could.

St. Clare was abbess of her convent for forty years. Twenty-nine of those years she was sick. But she said that she was joyful anyway because she was serving the Lord. Some people worried that the nuns were suffering because they were so poor. "They say that we are too poor, but can a heart which possesses the infinite God be truly poor?" St. Clare died on August 11, 1253. Just two years later she was proclaimed a saint by Pope Alexander IV


Raymond Kolbe was born in Poland in 1894. He joined the Franciscan order in 1907 and took the name that we know him by: Maximilian. Maximilian loved his vocation very much, and he especially loved the Blessed Mother. He added the name "Mary" when he pronounced solemn vows in 1914. Father Maximilian Mary was convinced that the world of the twentieth century needed their Heavenly Mother to guide and protect them. He used the press to make Mary more widely known. He and his fellow Franciscans published two monthly newsletters that soon went to readers around the world.

The Mother of God blessed Father Maximilian's work. He built a large center in Poland. This center was called "City of the Immaculate." By 1938, eight hundred Franciscans lived there and labored to make the love of Mary known. Father Kolbe also started another City of the Immaculate in Nagasaki, Japan. Still another was begun in India. In 1938, the Nazis invaded the Polish City of the Immaculate. They stopped the wonderful work going on there. In 1941, the Nazis arrested Father Kolbe. They sentenced him to hard manual labor at Auschwitz. He was at Auschwitz three months when a prisoner successfully escaped. The Nazis made the rest of the prisoners pay for the escape. They chose ten prisoners at random to die in the starvation bunker. All the prisoners stood at attention, while ten men were pulled out of line. One chosen prisoner, a married man with a family, begged and pleaded to be spared for the sake of his children. Father Kolbe, who had not been picked, listened and felt deeply moved to help that suffering prisoner. He stepped forward and asked the commander if he could take the man's place. The commander accepted his offer.

Father Kolbe and the other prisoners were marched into the starvation bunker. They remained alive without food or water for several days. One by one, as they died, Father Kolbe helped and comforted them. He was the last to die. An injection of carbolic acid hastened his death on August 14, 1941. Pope John Paul II proclaimed him a saint and a martyr in 1982.


This feast of Mary celebrates a special privilege of Mary, our Mother. The Assumption means that she entered into the glory of heaven not only with her soul, but also with her body. The Son of God took his body from Mary's pure womb. It was fitting, then, that her body should be glorified as soon as her life here on earth was ended.
Now Mary is in heaven. She is queen of heaven and earth. She is the Mother of Jesus' Church and queen of apostles. Every time Mary asks Jesus to give us graces, he listens to her request.

After the resurrection from the dead, we, too, can go to heaven with our bodies. If we use our bodies now to do good, those bodies will share in our heavenly reward.
After the resurrection, our bodies will be perfect. They will not be subject to illness anymore. They will not need any more food and drink to keep alive. They will be able to go every place without time or effort. They will be beautiful and splendid!

Mary's Assumption body and soul into heaven is a dogma of faith. This wonderful truth was proclaimed by Pope Pius XII on November 1, 1950.


St. Stephen was born around 969 in Hungary. This saint's name had been Vaik. When he became a Christian at the age of ten, he was given the name of Stephen. At the same time, his father, the duke of Hungary, and many nobles also became Christians. However, when Stephen himself became king, the country was still quite pagan. Some people were violent and fierce. So he decided to establish the Church solidly in Hungary. His efforts were blessed by God. The secret of St. Stephen's amazing success in leading his people to the Christian faith was his devotion to Mary. He placed his whole kingdom under her protection and built a magnificent church in her honor.

Pope Sylvester II sent a beautiful king's crown to Stephen. This treasure became known as the crown of St. Stephen. During the Second World War, American soldiers captured the crown. However, it was returned to Hungary in 1978.
Stephen was a strong, fearless ruler. He enforced just laws. But he was also gentle and kind to the poor. He tried to avoid war as much as he could. He loved to give gifts of money to beggars without letting them know who he was. Once he was giving these gifts in disguise when a crowd of rough beggars knocked him down and struck him. They pulled his hair and beard, and stole his money pouch. They never could have imagined they were bullying their king. And they never found out from him. He took the insult quietly and humbly. He forced his thoughts to turn to Mary and prayed: "See, Queen of heaven, how your people have treated him whom you made king. If they were enemies of the faith, I would know what to do with them. But since they are your Son's subjects, I will take this joyfully. I say thank you for it." In fact, King Stephen made a promise then and there to give more than ever to beggars. Stephen was king of Hungary for forty-two years. He died on August 15, 1038. St. Stephen was proclaimed a saint by Pope St. Gregory VII in 1083.


St. Joan Delanoue was born in 1666. Her family had a small but successful business. When her widowed mother died, she left the store to Joan. She was not an evil girl, but she thought only of making money. She committed many little sins to do it. She had once been devout, but now there was little love in her heart. Her mother had always been generous to beggars. Joan, instead, would buy food only just in time for dinner. This way she could tell any beggars who came to the door during the day: "I have nothing to give you."

Joan was not happy living like this. At last, when she was twenty-seven, a good priest helped her start living up to her faith with love and fervor. Then she finally saw that her "business" was to give away money, not hoard it. Joan began taking care of poor families and orphans. Eventually, she closed her shop entirely to devote her time to them. People called her house full of orphans, "Providence House." Later, she persuaded other young women to help her. They became the Sisters of St. Anne of Providence in Saumur, France, Joan's town.

Joan lived a very self-sacrificing life. She performed hard penances. St. Grignon de Montfort met Joan. He thought at first that her pride was causing her to be so hard on herself. But then he realized that her heart was really full of love of God. He said: "Go on in the way you have begun. God's Spirit is with you. Follow his voice and fear no more." Joan died peacefully on August 17, 1736. She was seventy years old. The people of Saumur said, "That little shopkeeper did more for the poor of Saumur than all the town councilors put together. What a woman! And what a holy person!" Joan was proclaimed "blessed" by Pope Pius XII in 1947, the same year St. Grignon de Montfort was declared a saint.


St. Jane was born in Dijon, France, in 1572. Her father was a devout man. He brought up his children well after the death of his wife. Jane, whom he dearly loved, married Christopher, the baron de Chantal. Jane and Christopher loved each other very much. God blessed them with six children, four of whom lived. Jane showed her love for God by loving her husband and children with her whole heart. Then, suddenly, a great sorrow fell upon that happy home. Baron Christopher was accidentally shot by a friend who had gone hunting with him. When he died, Jane was heart-broken. She forgave the man who had caused his death and even became his child's godmother.

St. Jane began to ask the Lord to send a holy priest into her life for guidance. In the meantime, she prayed and brought up her children in the love of God. She visited the poor and the sick and comforted the dying. When she met St. Francis de Sales, she knew this was the holy man God had sent to guide her. We celebrate his feast on January 24. Following his plan, Jane and three other young women started the order of the Visitation. But first, she had to make sure that her children, although older, were settled. She had other responsibilities and challenges too. But Jane tried to follow God's plan as she saw it, no matter how difficult.

St. Jane was courageous in all the difficulties she faced. She opened up many convents and struggled as well with her own temptations. She seems to have struggled with doubts. "Despite all her suffering," wrote St. Vincent de Paul, "her face never lost its peaceful look. And she was always faithful to God. So I consider her one of the holiest souls I have ever met." St. Jane died on December 13, 1641. She was proclaimed a saint by Pope Clement XIII in 1767.

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St. Felix II
St Felix II, the pope is an ancestor of the future Pope St. Gregory the Great who lived from 540 to 604.

Blessed Charles the Good
Count Charles of Flanders, was called "the good" by the people of his kingdom. They named him for what they found him to truly be.

Blessed Katharine Drexel
Blessed Katharine was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on November 26, 1858. Katharine's mother died when she was a baby.

St. Casimir
St. Casimir was born in 1458, son of Casimir IV, king of Poland. Casimir was one of thirteen children.

St. John Joseph of the Cross

St. John Joseph of the Cross was born in southern Italy on the feast of the Assumption, 1654. He was a young noble, but he dressed like a poor man.

St. Colette
St. Nicolette was named in honor of St. Nicholas of Myra. She was born in 1380. Her loving parents nicknamed her Colette from the time she was a baby.

St. Perpetua and St. Felicity

St. Perpetua and St. Felicity lived in Carthage, North Africa, in the third century. It was the time of the fierce persecution of Christians by Emperor Septimus Severus.

St. John of God

St. John was born in Portugal on March 8, 1495. His parents were poor, but deeply Christian. John was a restless boy.

St. Frances of Rome

St. Frances was born in 1384. Her parents were wealthy, but they taught Frances to be concerned about people and to live a good Christian life.

St. Simplicius

St. Simplicius became pope in 468. Sometimes it seemed to him that he was all alone in trying to correct evils that were everywhere.

St. Eulogius of Spain

St. Eulogius lived in the ninth century. His family was well-known and he received an excellent education. While he learned his lessons, he also learned from the good example of his teachers.

St. Fina (Seraphina)

St. Fina was born in a little Italian town called San Geminiano. Her parents had once been well off, but misfortune had left them poor.

St. Euphrasia

St. Euphrasia was born in the fifth century to deeply Christian parents. Her father, a relative of the emperor, died when she was a year old.

St. Matilda

St. Matilda was born about 895, the daughter of a German count. When she was still quite young, her parents arranged her marriage to a nobleman named Henry.

St. Zachary

St. Zachary was a Benedictine monk from Greece who lived in the eighth century. He became a cardinal and then pope.

Blessed Torello

Blessed Torello was born in 1202, in Poppi, Italy. His life as a child in the village was ordinary and uneventful. But after his father's death.

St. Patrick

St. Patrick was believed born in fifth-century Britain to Roman parents. When he was sixteen, he was captured by pirates and taken to Ireland.

St. Cyril of Jerusalem

St. Cyril was born around 315 when a new phase was beginning for Christians. Before that date, the Church was persecuted by the emperors.

St. Joseph

St. Joseph is a great saint. He was Jesus' foster-father and Mary's husband.

St. Cuthbert

St. Cuthbert lived in England in the seventh century. He was a poor shepherd boy who loved to play games with his friends.

St. Serapion

St. Serapion lived in Egypt in the fourth century. Those were exciting times for the Church and for St. Serapion.

St. Deogratias

St. Deogratias was ordained bishop of the City of Carthage when it was taken over by barbarian armies in 439.

St. Turibius of Mongrovejo

St. Turibius was born in 1538 in Leon, Spain. He became a university professor and then a famous judge.

Blessed Didacus

Blessed Didacus Joseph was born on March 29, 1743, in Cadiz, Spain. He was baptized Joseph Francis.


The time arrived for Jesus to come down from heaven. God sent the Archangel Gabriel to the town of Nazareth where Mary lived.

St. Ludger

St. Ludger was born in northern Europe in the eighth century. After he had studied hard for many years, he was ordained a priest.

St. John of Egypt

St. John was man who desired to be alone with God was to become one of the most famous hermits of his time.

St. Tutilo

St. Tutilo lived in the late ninth and early tenth centuries. He was educated at the Benedictine monastery of Saint-Gall.

St. Jonas and St. Barachisius

King Sapor of Persia reigned in the fourth century. He hated Christians and persecuted them cruelly. He destroyed their churches and monasteries.

St. John Climacus

St. John was believed born in Palestine in the seventh century. He seems to have been a disciple of St. Gregory Nazianzen.

Blessed Joan of Toulouse

In 1240, some Carmelite brothers from Palestine started a monastery in Toulouse, France.

St. Michael the Archangel Story
History of St. Michael the Archangel Prayer
St. Michael the Archangel Prayers
St. Michael the Archangel Apparitions
The Chaplet of St. Michael Archangel
Novena to St Micheal the Archangel
Litany of St. Michael the Archangel


St. Gabriel Prayer


St. Raphael Prayer

Tour of the Relics of the Passion
(International Center for Holy Relics)


“Jesus’ Baptism”

Why did Jesus, the sinless one sent from the Father in heaven, submit himself to John’s baptism? John preached a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke 3:3). In this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of the “baptism” of Jesus bloody death upon the cross. Jesus’ baptism is the acceptance and the beginning of his mission as God’s suffering Servant (Isaiah 52:13-15; 53:1-12). He allowed himself to be numbered among sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father’s will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust and submission to God?


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