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Blessed Junipero Serra was born in Petra, Spain, on November 24, 1713. The boy became a student at the Franciscan school in Palma, twenty-five miles away. He joined the Franciscan order on September 14, 1730, a few months before his seventeenth birthday. During the novitiate, Junipero read a biography of Franciscan saints. The saint whose life captivated him most was St. Francis Solano, who had lived from 1549 until 1610. This missionary priest to South America had just been declared a saint in 1726 by Pope Benedict XIII. The young novice decided that, if it was God's will, he too would be a missionary.

Junipero was ordained a priest in 1736. He became a professor of philosophy. After he had been in the order twenty years, he was given a wonderful opportunity. Franciscan friars were asked to volunteer for the mission territories called "New Spain" (Mexico and California). Junipero and his close friend, Friar Francisco Palou, joined the missionary band at Cadiz, Spain, a seaport city. From there they sailed the Atlantic Ocean to Vera Cruz, Mexico. They landed on December 6, 1749. Junipero and another friar walked the next part of the journey from Vera Cruz to Mexico City, a distance of 240 miles. They began on December 15, 1749, and arrived on January 1, 1750. From Mexico City, Junipero and Friar Francisco Palou were sent to work among the Pame Indians at the Franciscan Mission of the Sierra Gorda.

Several of the friars were then assigned to missions in Lower California. Junipero, Francisco and a handful of other Franciscans were asked to bring the Gospel to the native peoples in Upper California. Junipero started Mission San Diego on July 16, 1769, when he was fifty-six years old. The mission was an open invitation to his beloved people to come and meet Jesus. Gradually, they trusted the friars. Some people were baptized and began to live the Christian faith. Father Serra and the friars loved and protected their people. The golden chain of new missions grew: Mission San Carlos in Monterey on June 1, 1770; Mission San Antonio de Padua on July 14, 1771; Mission San Gabriel Archangel, September 8, 1771; Mission San Luis Obispo, September 1, 1772; Mission San Francisco de Asis, October 9, 1776; Mission San Juan Capistrano, November 1, 1776; Mission Santa Clara de Asis, January 12, 1777; Mission San Buenaventura, March 31, 1782. Eventually, six thousand native peoples were baptized. Blessed Junipero made his final tour of the missions in Upper California from the last part of 1783 until July of 1784. He died peacefully at Mission San Carlos on August 28, 1784, and is buried there. In 1988, Pope John Paul II declared Father Junipero Serra "blessed."


St. Otto lived in the twelfth century. He was born in Swabia, present-day Bavaria. He became a priest and was assigned to the service of Emperor Henry IV. Eventually, Father Otto acquired a high state office. He became Henry's chancellor. Otto tried to influence the emperor to act justly and to be moderate in his decisions. But Henry committed crimes and tried to cause division in the Church. He even appointed his own pope. Otto felt very bad and worked to help Henry reform. Henry IV took it upon himself to appoint Otto a bishop. Otto refused to be consecrated until he could go to Rome and receive the approval of the true pope, Paschal II. The pope did consecrate him. Bishop Otto became a great help to the people of Swabia, especially under Emperor Henry V. This emperor followed the ways of his father, Henry IV. But although he was harsh and severe, he respected Otto and often listened to his advice.

When King Boleslaus III of Poland conquered part of Pomerania, he asked Otto to go there. Pomerania was a province of Prussia in the Baltic area. The people were pagans. Bishop Otto welcomed the opportunity to bring them the Good News. In 1124, the bishop led a group of priests and catechists into Pomerania. Many people were instructed and baptized. Some say the number of conversions was over twenty thousand. Bishop Otto assigned priests to minister to the new Christians. He returned to his own country. After a while, some of the people of Pomerania began to return to their old pagan ways. Bishop Otto went back to Pomerania in 1128. He helped the people become fervent Christians again. He died on June 30, 1139, and was proclaimed a saint by Pope Clement III in 1189.


St. Thomas was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. His name in the Syriac language means "twin." St. Thomas loved Jesus greatly, even though at first his belief was not very strong. Once when Jesus was going to face the danger of being killed, the other apostles tried to keep the Master back. St. Thomas said to them, "Let us also go, that we may die with him."

When Jesus was captured by his enemies, Thomas lost his courage. He ran away with the other apostles. His heart was broken with sorrow at the death of his beloved Lord. Then on Easter Sunday, Jesus appeared to his apostles after he had risen from the dead. Thomas was not with them at the time. As soon as he arrived, the other apostles told him joyfully, "We have seen the Lord." They thought Thomas would be happy. Instead, he did not believe their message.

"Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails," he said, "and put my finger in the place of the nails, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe." Eight days later, Jesus appeared to his apostles again. This time, Thomas was there, too. Christ called him and told him to touch his hands and the wound in his side. Poor St. Thomas! He fell down at the Master's feet and cried out, "My Lord and my God!" Then Jesus said, "Because you have seen me, Thomas, you have believed. Blessed are they who have not seen, and yet have believed." After Pentecost, Thomas was strong and firm in his belief and trust in Jesus. It is said that he went to India to preach the Gospel. He died a martyr there, after making many converts.


St. Elizabeth, a Spanish princess, was born in 1271. She married King Denis of Portugal at the age of twelve. Elizabeth was beautiful and very lovable. She was also devout and went to Mass every day. Elizabeth was a charming wife. Her husband was fond of her at first, but soon he began to cause her great suffering. Though a good ruler, he did not have his wife's love of prayer and virtue. In fact, his sins of impurity were well-known scandals throughout his kingdom.

St. Elizabeth tried to be a loving mother to her children, Alphonso and Constance. She was also generous and loving with the people of Portugal. Even though her husband was unfaithful, she prayed that he would have a change of heart. Elizabeth refused to become bitter and resentful. She strengthened her own prayer life and followed the Franciscan spirituality. Gradually, the king was moved by her patience and good example. He began to live better. He apologized to his wife and showed her greater respect. In his last sickness the queen never left his side, except for Mass. King Denis died on January 6, 1325. He had shown deep sorrow for his sins and his death was peaceful.

Eiizabeth lived eleven more years. She performed loving acts of charity and penance. She was a wonderful model of kindness toward the poor. This gentle woman was also a peacemaker between members of her own family and between nations.
St. Elizabeth of Portugal died on July 4, 1336. She was proclaimed a saint by Pope Urban VIII in 1626.


St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria was born in Italy in 1502. While he was still young, his father died. His mother encouraged Anthony in the special love he felt for the sufferings of poor people. Mrs. Zaccaria sent her son to the University of Padua so that he could become a doctor. He was only twenty-two when he graduated.
The young doctor was very successful. Yet he did not feel satisfied. He realized that he wanted to become a priest. Anthony began to study theology. He also continued to care for the sick, to comfort and inspire the dying. He started to use all his spare moments to read and meditate on the letters of St. Paul in the Bible. He had read the life of the great apostle Paul many times, and had given much thought to his virtues. Now Anthony was burning with a strong desire to become a saint and to bring everyone to Jesus.

After he was ordained a priest, St. Anthony Mary moved to the great city of Milan. There he would be able to help many more people. He also started an order of priests. They are the Clerks Regular of St. Paul. People call them "Barnabites" after their headquarters at the Church of St. Barnabas in Milan. In imitation of the apostle Paul, St. Anthony and his priests preached everywhere. They repeated the words and sentences of Paul. They explained Paul's message with words that were easy to understand. The people loved and appreciated this. St. Anthony also had a great love for Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. In fact, he started the practice of the Forty Hours Devotion.

St. Anthony Mary was only thirty-seven when he died on July 5, 1539. Pope Leo XIII proclaimed him a saint in 1897.

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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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Vatican Appeals for Least Developed Countries

Immaculate Conception of Mary
Memorial of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini

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

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