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St. John Eudes was born in Normandy, France, in 1601. He was the oldest son of a farmer. Even as a child, he tried to copy the example of Jesus in the way he treated his family, friends and neighbors. When he was only nine, another boy slapped his face. John felt himself becoming angry. Then he remembered Jesus' words in the Gospel: to turn the other cheek. So he did.

John's parents wanted him to marry and have a family. He gently but firmly convinced them that he had a priestly call. He joined the congregation of the Oratory and studied for the priesthood. After John was a priest, the plague hit Normandy. It brought terrible suffering and death. Father Eudes volunteered to help the sick, caring for both their souls and bodies. Later, he became a popular preacher of missions in parishes. In fact, during his lifetime he preached 110 missions. St. John is responsible for the establishment of important religious congregations: the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity and the Good Shepherd nuns. Father Eudes also started the Congregation of Jesus and Mary for priests. This congregation was dedicated to training young men to become good parish priests.

St. John was very devoted to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and to the Holy Heart of Mary. He wrote a book about these devotions. John became sick after he preached an outdoor mission in very cold weather. He never fully recovered. John died in 1680. He was proclaimed "blessed" by Pope St. Pius X in 1908. This pope called John Eudes the apostle of devotions to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. He was proclaimed a saint by Pope Pius XI in 1925.


St. Bernard was born in 1090 in Dijon, France. He and his six brothers and sisters received an excellent education. His heart was broken when his mother died. He was just seventeen. He might have let sadness get the best of him had it not been for his lively sister Humbeline. She cheered him up and soon Bernard became a very popular man. He was handsome and intelligent, full of fun and good humor. People enjoyed being with him.

Yet one day, Bernard greatly surprised his friends by telling them he was going to join the very strict Cistercian order. They did all they could to make him give up the idea. But in the end, it was Bernard who convinced his brothers, an uncle and twenty-six friends to join him. As Bernard and his brothers left their home, they said to their little brother Nivard, who was playing with other children: "Good-bye, little Nivard. You will now have all the lands and property for yourself." But the boy answered: "What! Will you take heaven and leave me the earth? Do you call that fair?" And not too long after, Nivard, too, joined his brothers in the monastery. St. Bernard became a very good monk. After three years, he was sent to start a new Cistercian monastery and to be its abbot. The new monastery was in the Valley of Light and became known by that name. In French, the Valley of Light is "Clairvaux." Bernard was the abbot there for the rest of his life.

Although he would have liked to stay working and praying in his monastery, he was called out sometimes for special assignments. He preached, made peace between rulers, and went to advise popes. He also wrote beautiful spiritual books. He became the most influential man of his time. Yet Bernard's great desire was to be close to God, to be a monk. He was not trying to become famous. This saint had a great devotion to the Blessed Mother. It is said that he often greeted her with a "Hail Mary" when he passed her statue. One day, the Blessed Mother returned his greeting: "Hail, Bernard!" In this way, Our Lady showed how much his love and devotion pleased her.
St. Bernard died in 1153. People were saddened because they would miss his wonderful influence. He was proclaimed a saint in 1174 by Pope Alexander III. He was also named a Doctor of the Church in 1830 by Pope Pius VIII.


St. Pius X, the great pope, was named Joseph Sarto. He was born in 1835, the son of a mailman in Riese, Italy. Joseph was given the affectionate nickname of "Beppi." When Joseph felt that God wanted him to be a priest, he had to make many sacrifices for his education. But he didn't mind. He even walked miles to school barefoot to save his one good pair of shoes. After he was ordained a priest, Father Sarto labored for the people in poor parishes for seventeen years. Everybody loved him. He used to give away everything he had to help them. His sisters had to hide his shirts or he would have had nothing to wear. Even when Father Joseph became a bishop, and a cardinal, he still gave away what he owned to the poor. He kept nothing for himself.

When Pope Leo XIII died in 1903, Cardinal Sarto was chosen pope. He took the name of Pius X. He became known as the pope who loved the Holy Eucharist. Pope Pius X encouraged everyone to receive Jesus as often as they could. He also made a law permitting young children to receive Holy Communion too. Before that time, boys and girls had to wait many years before they could receive the Lord. He is also the pope of religious instruction. He believed in and loved our Catholic faith. He wanted every Catholic to share in the beauty of the truths of our faith. He really cared about every single person and their spiritual and material needs. He encouraged priests and religion teachers to help everyone learn about their faith.

When the terrible World War I broke out, St. Pius X suffered greatly. He knew so many people would be killed. He had said: "I would gladly give my life to save my poor children from this horrible suffering." Toward the end of his life, he also said: "I have lived poor, and I wish to die poor." He did so much to help the poor that people wondered where all the money came from. He never kept anything for himself, right to the end of his life. Pope Pius X died on August 20, 1914. The last pope before him to be declared a saint was Pope St. Pius V. Pope Clement X had canonized him in 1672. We celebrate the feast of St. Pius V on April 30. Joseph Sarto, Pope St. Pius X, was proclaimed a saint by Pope Pius XII in 1954.


St. Rose, the South American saint, was born in Lima, Peru, in 1586. Her real name was Isabel, but she was such a beautiful baby that she was called Rose. She received the sacrament of Confirmation from St. Turibius, archbishop of Lima. We celebrate his feast on March 23. As Rose grew older, she became more and more beautiful. One day her mother put a wreath of flowers on her head to show off her loveliness to friends. But Rose was not impressed. She only wanted Jesus to notice her and love her.

Rose did not think she was special because of her own beauty. She realized that beauty is a gift from God. She even became afraid that her beauty might be a temptation to someone. She noticed people staring at her with approval. She heard them say that her complexion was smooth and beautiful. So she did an unusual thing: she rubbed her face with pepper until her skin became all red and blistered. She certainly did not have to worry about receiving compliments for a while.

St. Rose worked hard to support her parents who were very poor. She humbly obeyed them, too, except when they tried to get her to marry. That she would not do. Her love for Jesus was so great that when she talked about him, her face glowed. Rose prayed that her parents would be more accepting of her way of life. She wanted to live for Jesus alone. She had many temptations from the devil. There also were times when she had to suffer terrible loneliness and sadness. During those times, God seemed far away. Yet she cheerfully offered all these troubles to him. She kept praying for her trust to grow stronger. In her last long, painful sickness, this heroic young woman used to pray: "Lord, increase my sufferings, and with them increase your love in my heart." She was just thirty-one when she died on August 24, 1617, in Lima.

St. Rose of Lima was proclaimed a saint by Pope Clement X in 1671. He also named her patroness of the Americas, Philippines and West Indies.


"Bartholomew" was one of the first followers of Jesus. This apostle's other name was Nathaniel. He came from Cana in Galilee. He became a disciple of Jesus when his friend Philip invited him to come and meet the Lord. Nathaniel received high praise from Jesus, who said, as soon as he saw him, "Here is a man in whom there is no guile." Jesus meant that Nathaniel was an honest, sincere man who would never deceive anyone. His one desire was to know the truth.

Nathaniel was very surprised to hear those words from the Lord. "How do you know me?" he asked. "Before Philip called you," Jesus answered, "I saw you under the fig tree." That was a favorite praying-place. Nathaniel must have realized then that Jesus had read his heart as he prayed. "Master!" he cried. "You are the Son of God, the King of Israel." And Nathaniel became one of the Lord's faithful apostles.

Like the other apostles, Nathaniel, or Bartholomew, preached the Gospel of Jesus at the risk of his life. It is believed that he went to India, Armenia and other lands. He preached with great zeal, until he gave his life for the faith. And so, to the reward of an apostle, St. Bartholomew added the martyr's crown.


St. Louis was born on April 25, 1214. His father was King Louis VIII of France and his mother was Queen Blanche. The story is told that when Prince Louis was small, his mother hugged him tightly. She said, "I love you, my dear son, as much as a mother can love her child. But I would rather see you dead at my feet than ever to have you commit a mortal sin." Louis never forgot those words. He grew to cherish his Catholic faith and his upbringing. When he was twelve, his father died and he became the king. Queen Blanche ruled until her son was twenty-one.

Louis became a remarkable king. He married Margaret, the daughter of a count. They loved each other very much. They had eleven children. Louis was a good husband and father. And as long as his mother, Queen Blanche lived, he showed her full respect. Busy as he was, the king found time for daily Mass and the recitation of the Divine Office. He was a Third Order Franciscan and lived a simple lifestyle. He was generous and fair. He ruled his people with wisdom, charity and true Christian principles. There was no separation between what he believed as a Catholic and how he lived. He knew how to settle arguments and disputes. He listened to the poor and the underprivileged. He had time for everybody, not just the rich and influential. He supported Catholic education and built monasteries.

The historian, Joinville, wrote a biography of St. Louis. He recalls that he was twenty-two years in the king's service. He was daily in the king's company. And he could say that he never heard King Louis swear or use any kind of profanity in all those years. Nor did the king permit bad language in his castle.

St. Louis felt an urgent obligation to help the suffering Christians in the Holy Land. He wanted to be part of the Crusades. Twice he led an army against the Turks. The first time, he was taken prisoner. But even in jail, he behaved as a true Christian knight. He was unafraid and noble in all his ways. He was freed and returned to take care of his kingdom in France. Yet as soon as he could, he started back to fight the enemies of the faith again. On the way, however, this greatly loved king contracted typhoid fever. A few hours before he died, he prayed, "Lord, I will enter into your house, worship in your holy temple, and give glory to your name." St. Louis died on August 25, 1270. He was fifty-six years old. He was proclaimed a saint by Pope Boniface VIII in 1297


St. Joseph was born in 1556, in his father's castle in Spain. He went to college and became a lawyer. He was ordained a priest at the age of twenty-eight. Joseph was given high positions and he did his work well. Yet he felt that God was calling him to do some special work for poor children in Rome. Obedient to the Lord's call, he gave up everything he had in Spain and went to Rome. There his heart was filled with pity for all the orphans and homeless children he saw everywhere. They were ignorant and neglected. Joseph began to gather them together to teach them all the regular subjects, and especially their religion. Other priests joined him. Soon Joseph became the superior of a new religious order. But he never let his duties as founder and superior stop him from teaching his beloved children. He would even sweep the classrooms himself. He often led the little ones to their homes after school was over.

St. Joseph had much to suffer from people who tried to take over his order. They wanted to run it their way. Once he was even led through the streets like a criminal. He was almost put in jail, although the good priest had done nothing wrong. When he was ninety years old, the saint received terrible news. His order had been forbidden to continue in the way he had started it. Yet despite this suffering, Joseph only said: "The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord. My work has been done simply out of love for God."

Two years later, in 1648, the saint died a calm, peaceful death. He was ninety-two years old. Several years afterward, his order, the Piarist Fathers, was allowed to continue St. Joseph's wonderful mission. He was proclaimed a saint by Pope Clement XIII in 1767. Pope Pius XII declared him patron of Christian schools in 1948.


St. Elizabeth was born in 1773. As a little girl, her favorite game was building castles in the sand. Many years later, this holy French woman had to take charge of building convents for the order of nuns she founded. "I guess building was meant to be my business," she joked, "since I started it so young!" In fact, by 1830, eight years before her death, Elizabeth had already opened over sixty convents.

During the time of the French Revolution, Elizabeth's family lost everything they owned. This was because the republicans were taking property from the nobility. But this intelligent young woman of nineteen studied law so she could fight her family's case in court. When she won and saved her family from ruin, the village shoemaker exclaimed: "All you have to do now is marry a good republican!" Elizabeth, however, had no intention of marrying anyone republican or noble. On the back of a picture of Our Lady, she had written: "I dedicate and consecrate myself to Jesus and Mary forever."

With the help of St. Andrew Fournet, Elizabeth started a new religious order called the Daughters of the Cross. We celebrate St. Andrew Fournet's feast on May 13. This new order taught children and cared for the sick. Elizabeth would face any danger to help people. Once she found a tramp lying sick in a barn. She brought him to the convent hospital and did all she could for him until he died. The next morning the police chief came to tell her she could be arrested for sheltering a man believed to be a criminal. Elizabeth was unafraid. "I only did what you yourself would have done, sir," she said. "I found this poor sick man, and took care of him until he died. I am ready to tell the judge just what happened." Of course, the saint's honesty and charity won her great respect. People admired her straight, clear answers. The order's co-founder, St. Andrew Fournet, died in 1834. St. Elizabeth wrote to the sisters, "This is our greatest and most sad loss." St. Elizabeth died on August 26, 1838. She was proclaimed a saint by Pope Pius XII in 1947.


St. Monica, the famous mother of St. Augustine, was born in 332 in Tagaste, northern Africa. She was brought up as a good Christian. Her strong training was a great help to her when she married the pagan Patricius. Patricius admired his wife, but he made her suffer because of his bad temper. Still Monica never answered back and never complained about him to anyone. Instead she prayed for him fervently. Patricius admitted his belief in Christianity in 371. He was baptized on his deathbed in 372. His mother, too, became a Christian.

St. Monica's joy over the holy way in which her husband had died soon changed to great sorrow. She found out that her son Augustine was living a bad, selfish life. This brilliant young man of nineteen had turned to a false religion and to immoral habits. Monica prayed and cried and did much penance for her son. She begged priests to talk to him. Augustine was brilliant, yet very stubborn. He did not want to give up his sinful life. But Monica would not give up either. When he went to Rome without her, she followed him. At Rome, she found he had become a teacher in Milan. So Monica went to Milan. And in all those years, she never stopped praying for him. What love and faith! After years of prayers and tears, her reward came when Augustine was converted. He not only became a good Christian, as she had prayed. Augustine also became a priest, a bishop, a great writer and a very famous saint. St. Monica died in Ostia, outside Rome, in 387. Augustine was at her bedside.


St. Augustine was born in Tagaste in modern Algeria on November 13, 354. This famous son of St. Monica spent many years in wicked living and in false beliefs. He was one of the most intelligent persons who ever lived. Augustine was brought up in a Christian atmosphere by his mother. Unfortunately, he became so proud and immoral that eventually he could not see or understand spiritual truths anymore. His mother Monica prayed daily for her son's conversion. The marvelous sermons of St. Ambrose made their impact too. Finally, Augustine became convinced that Christianity was the true religion. Yet he did not become a Christian then, because he thought he could never live a pure life. One day, however, he heard about two men who had suddenly been converted after reading the life of St. Anthony of the Desert. We celebrate his feast on January 17. Augustine felt ashamed. "What are we doing?" he cried to his friend Alipius. "Unlearned people are taking heaven by force. Yet we, with all our knowledge, are so cowardly that we keep rolling around in the mud of our sins!"

Full of bitter sorrow, Augustine went into the garden and prayed, "How much longer, Lord? Why don't I put an end to my sinning now?" Just then he heard a child singing, "Take up and read!" Thinking that God intended him to hear those words, he picked up the Bible and opened it. His eyes fell on St. Paul's letter to the Romans, chapter 13. It was just what Augustine needed. Paul says to stop living immoral lives and to live in imitation of Jesus. That did it! From then on, Augustine began a new life.

He was baptized and ordained a priest and bishop. He was a famous Catholic writer and founder of the Augustinian order. He became one of the greatest saints who ever lived. On the wall of his room, he had the following sentence written in large letters: "Here we do not speak evil of anyone." St. Augustine overcame strong heresies, lived simply and supported the poor. He preached very often, and prayed with great fervor right up until his death. "Too late have I loved you," he once cried to God. But Augustine spent the rest of his life in loving God and leading others to love him, too.


St. John the Baptist was a cousin of Jesus. His mother was St. Elizabeth and his father was Zechariah. The first chapter of Luke's Gospel tells of the wonderful event of John's birth. Mark's Gospel, chapter 6:14-29, records the cruel details of John the Baptist's death. What harsh consequences John accepted for teaching the truth.
King Herod and his wife refused to hear how they stood with God. They wanted to make their own rules and live their own lives. St. John the Baptist had to pay the price for his honesty. Yet he would have had it no other way. He would never have kept silent while sin and injustice were happening. He called people to repentance and wanted everyone to be reconciled to God. He recognized that true happiness comes from God.

John had preached a baptism of repentance, preparing people for the Messiah. He baptized Jesus in the Jordan River and watched with quiet joy as the Lord's public ministry began. John encouraged his own disciples to follow Jesus. He knew that Jesus' fame would grow, while his would fade away. In the first chapter of the Gospel of John, St. John the Baptist calls himself a voice crying in the desert to make straight the path of the Lord. He invited people to get ready, to prepare themselves to recognize the Messiah. His message is the same to each of us.


St. Pammachius was a distinguished Christian layman who lived in the fourth century. As a young student, he had become friends with St. Jerome. They remained friends all their lives and kept an ongoing correspondence. His wife was Paulina, the second daughter of St. Paula, another good friend of St. Jerome. When Paulina died in 397, St. Jerome and St. Paulinus of Nola wrote deeply moving letters filled with sympathy, support and the promise of prayers.

Pammachius was heart-broken about his wife's death. He spent the rest of his life serving in the hospice he and St. Fabiola built. There pilgrims coming to Rome were welcomed and made comfortable. Pammachius and Fabiola willingly accepted and even preferred the poor, the sick and the handicapped. Pammachius felt that his deceased wife was with him as he performed his works of mercy. Paulina had been known for her love for the poor and suffering. Her husband now believed that by caring for them, he was paying the best possible tribute to her memory.

St. Pammachius was much more gentle with his words and ways than the fiery St. Jerome. He often suggested to Jerome that he soften or reword his letters, but Jerome usually did not. For example, a man named Jovinian was teaching serious errors. Jerome wrote a harsh essay exposing Jovinian's errors. Pammachius read the essay and made some good suggestions about rewording the overpowering expressions. St. Jerome thanked his friend for his concern, but did not make the corrections. Pammachius also tried to heal a quarrel between his friend St. Jerome and a man named Rufinus. But it does not seem that he could move Jerome to become more mild in his handling of the person or issues.

St. Pammachius had a church in his house. Today it is the Passionist church of Saints John and Paul. St. Pammachius died in 410 as the Goths were taking over Rome. St. Pammachius knew how to be a good friend. He was supportive and honest. We can ask him to help us be true to our friends as he was.


St. Aidan was a seventh-century Irish monk. He lived at the great monastery of Iona, which St. Columban had founded. St. Oswald became king of North England in 634. He asked for missionaries to preach to his pagan people. The first missionary to go soon came back complaining that the English were rude, stubborn and wild. The monks got together to talk about the situation. "It seems to me," St. Aidan said to the returned monk, "that you have been too harsh with those people." He then explained that, as St. Paul says, first easy teachings are to be given. Then when the people have grown stronger on the Word of God, they can start to do the more perfect things of God's holy law.

When the monks heard such wise words, they turned to Aidan. "You should be the one to go to North England to preach the Gospel," they said. Aidan went willingly. He took on his new assignment with humility and a spirit of prayer. He began by preaching. King St. Oswald himself translated Aidan's sermons into English until the saint learned the language better. St. Aidan traveled all over, always on foot. He preached and helped the people. He did much good and was greatly loved by the people. After thirty years of St. Aidan's ministry, any monk or priest who came into the village was greeted with great joy by all the villagers.

On the island of Lindisfarne, St. Aidan built a large monastery. So many saints were to come from there that Lindisfarne became known as the Holy Island. Little by little, the influence of these zealous missionaries changed North England into a civilized, Christian land. St. Aidan died in 651. We can learn from St. Aidan's life that the witness of a joyful, kind person is a powerful influence on others. When we need help seeing the good in people, we can whisper a prayer to St. Aidan.


Blessed Junipero Serra was born in Petra, Spain, on November 24, 1713. The boy became a student at the Franciscan school in Palma 

St. Otto lived in the twelfth century. He was born in Swabia, present-day Bavaria. 

St. Thomas was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. His name in the Syriac language means "twin."

St. Elizabeth, a Spanish princess, was born in 1271. She married King Denis of Portugal at the age of twelve.


St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria was born in Italy in 1502. While he was still young, his father died.


St. Maria Goretti was born in 1890. Her father died when she and the other five children in her family were small. At twelve, Maria was already very pretty.


These three martyrs lived in England during the time of Church persecution by Queen Elizabeth I.


Blessed Eugene III was born near Pisa, Italy, in the twelfth century. He was baptized Peter.


St. Felicity was a noble Christian woman of Rome. She lived during the second century.


St. Benedict was born in 480. He was from a rich Italian family. His life was full of adventure and wonderful deeds.


St. John Gaulbert was born in Florence, Italy, at the end of the tenth century. He and his father were devastated when John's only brother, Hugh, was murdered.


St. Henry II was born in 972. He became the duke of Bavaria in 995. One night he had an unusual vision. St. Wolfgang, who had been his beloved teacher when he was a boy, appeared to him.


Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha was born in Auriesville, New York, in 1656. Her mother was a Christian Algonquin. Her father was a non-Christian Mohawk chief.


St. was born in 1221 in Tuscany, Italy, and was baptized John.


This feast was instituted by the Carmelites between 1376 and 1386 under the title "Commemoratio B. Marif Virg.


St. Leo IV lived in the ninth century. He was a Roman by birth and spent his life in that city. Leo was educated in the Benedictine monastery near St. Peter's Basilica.


St. Frederick lived in ninth-century Utrecht, in the central part of the Netherlands. When he was ordained a priest, Bishop Ricfried put him in charge of instructing converts.


St. Macrina was the first child of St. Basil the Elder and St. Emmelia.


St. Charbel was born to a poor Maronite Family on May 8, 1828 in a mountain village of Biqa-Kafra, Lebanon.


St. Lawrence was born Caesar Rossi in Brindisi, Italy, in 1559. Brindisi was part of the Kingdom of Naples, Italy.


St. Mary Magdalene was from Magdala near the Sea of Galilee. Some people identify her as a well-known sinner when she first saw Our Lord.


St. Bridget was born in Sweden in 1303. From the time she was a child, she was greatly devoted to the passion of Jesus.


St. Boris and St. Gleb, the brothers, were born toward the end of the tenth century.


St. James was a fisherman like his father Zebedee and his brother John.


St. Anne and St. Joachim are the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary.


St. Pantaleon came from Nicomedia, near the Black Sea, in Asia. He lived in the fourth century.


St. Martha was the sister of Mary and Lazarus.


St. Peter Chrysologus was born in the small town of Imola, Italy.


St. Ignatius, the famous founder of the Jesuits, was born in 1491.

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?


Holy Relics of Advent in Hawaii
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The Sacrament of Marriage
Bishops Shield Pope Against BBC Assault
Much Work Remains in Many Areas

Vatican Appeals for Least Developed Countries

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Memorial of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini

Feast of St Jude the Miraculous Saint
Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima

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