Saturday  Saints of this Day April 16 Sextodécimo Kaléndas Maii  

Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum.
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!
(Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)

The saints are a “cloud of witnesses over our head”, showing us life of Christian perfection is possible.

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We are the defenders of true freedom.
  May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.
40 days for Life Campaign saves lives Shawn Carney Campaign Director
Please help save the unborn they are the future for the world

It is a great poverty that a child must die so that you may live as you wish -- Mother Teresa
 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'

Even though you possess plenty, you are still indigent. You abound in temporal possessions, but you need things eternal. You listen to the needs of a human beggar, yet yourself are a beggar of God. What you do with those who beg from you is what God will do with His beggar. You are filled and you are empty.
Fill your empty neighbor with your fullness, so that your emptiness may be filled from God's fullness. -- St. Augustine

Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List

Acts of the Apostles

Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

How do I start the Five First Saturdays?

Mary Mother of GOD 15 Promises of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary

CAUSES OF SAINTS April 16  2014

"The Blessed Virgin chose me only because I was the most ignorant."
"I am getting on with my joy," she would say.

"What is that?" someone asked. "Being ill," was the reply. Saint Bernadette

Since God leads each of us in our own way, our spiritual life will assume an pattern totally different from that of anyone else. Each of us is one of a kind. Our spirituality then should also be one of a kind. This is shown dramatically in various people's lives.
April 16 - Our Lady of the Vines (Genoa, Italy, 1816) -
Bernadette Soubirous (d. 1879) in Nevers (body in a state of perfect preservation)

April 16 – Wednesday of Holy Week. Our Lady of the Vines (Genoa, Italy, 1816) - Death of Saint Bernadette Soubirous (1879) 
The weapon of the Christian is the Rosary!
 Predestinate souls, you who are of God, cut yourselves adrift from those who are damning themselves by their impious lives, laziness and lack of devotion—and, without delay, recite often your Rosary, with faith, with humility, with confidence and with perseverance.

Anyone who really gives heed to this Our Master's commandment will surely not be satisfied with saying the Rosary once a year or once a week but will say it every day and will never fail in this—even though the only obligation he has is that of saving his own soul.
 Saint Louis de Montfort
The Secret of the Rosary, Rose 47

Mary is a Woman Who Loves (II)
Mary is a woman of hope: only because she believes in God's promises and awaits the salvation of Israel, can the angel visit her and call her to the decisive service of these promises. Mary is a woman of faith: "Blessed are you who believed", Elizabeth says to her (cf. Lk 1:45). The Magnificat--a portrait, so to speak, of her soul--is entirely woven from threads of the Holy Scriptures, threads drawn from the Word of God. Here we see how completely at home Mary is with the Word of God, with ease she moves in and out of it. She speaks and thinks with the Word of God; the Word of God becomes her word, and her word issues from the Word of God. Here we see how her thoughts are attuned to the thoughts of God, how her will is one with the will of God. Since Mary is completely imbued with the Word of God, she is able to become the Mother of the Word Incarnate.
Benedict XVI, Encyclical Letter, Deus Caritas Est #41 (2005)

The covetous claim to be Christian, yet they have no trust in Christ. For they are always afraid of want
in the time to come, no matter how much they have. -- St. Thomas More

 --  Saint Benedict Joseph Labré beggar
Saint Vincent de Paul understood that the beggar needs us
and deprives himself of us because we deprive ourselves of him.
A beggar is a man who is completely at our mercy, whom we never thank for the opportunity to act in God's Name.

April 16 – Death of Saint Bernadette Soubirous in Nevers, France (1879) 
A statue of the Virgin in each Nutella factory
 The founder of Nutella died on February 14, 2015, in Monte Carlo (Monaco). Michele Ferrero, 89, was the father of Nutella, Mon Chéri, Kinder, and other Rocher products, all made by the Italian company started in Alba in 1946, in the aftermath of World War II.
Michele Ferrero, the richest man in Italy with a fortune estimated at $26.8 billion, was also a man of faith – a faith as strong as granite. As he stated for the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Ferrero Company in 1996, "We owe the success of Ferrero to Our Lady of Lourdes. Without her, it would not have happened."
In fact, there is a statue of the Virgin in each of the group's factories worldwide. Every year, Michele Ferrero would make a pilgrimage to Lourdes with the company’s senior executives. Visits of the famous Marian shrine were also organized for employees.
Under his leadership, Nutella has become one of the world's leading confectionery, present in 53 countries with over 34,000
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3rd v St. Callistus & Charisius Martyrs with 7 companions Corinth Greece for their faith
       The Holy Martyress Irene suffered in Greece in the year 258
 304 The Holy Martyrs Agape, Irene, and Chione sisters
 304 18 Martyrs of Saragossa relics were found at Saragossa in 1389 (RM)
 304 Caius and Crementius Martyrs at Saragossa  died 2nd persecution that same year MM (RM)
      Ibídem sancti Lambérti Mártyris.      In the same place, the martyr St. Lambert.
 304 St. Encratia Spanish virgin martyr "her ardor in suffering for Christ."
      The Martyrdom of the 150 believers by the hand of king of Persia. {Coptic church}
 460 St. Turibius of Astorga Bishop stern disciplinarian opponent of the heretical Priscillianist
5th v Paternus of Wales bold opponent of pagan kings never tiring preaching hoped they convert )
 500 Vaise by his family for distributing his property among the poor M (AC)
 528 Turibius of Palencia abbot-founder of the great abbey of Liébana in Asturias Abbot (AC)
 564 St. Paternus bishop of Avranches organized community of hermits; Paternus was elected abbot and busied himself founding other religious houses that had an excellent influence upon the paganism around him. At age seventy, Paternus was appointed bishop of Avranches and lived for thirteen years afterwards. We know that he attended a council in Paris, and he was probably brought into personal relation with King Childebert. He is said to have died at Eastertide on the same day as his friend St Scubilio, and they were both buried together in the church at Scissy.
 665 Fructuosus of Braga Visigoth priest monk hermit B Abbot (RM)
 900 St. Lambert of Saragossa servant Martyred by his Saracen master in Spain
1021 St. Herve Hermit monk at St. Martin of tours Abbey
1042 Blessed Elias of Cologne monk abbot archbishop OSB Abbot (AC)
1058 St. Paternus predicted death by fire in monastery would not break his vow of enclosure
1116 Magnus of Orkney Magnus stood against wanton violence and racism against foreigners)
1186 St. Drogo Flemish humble noble hermit 40 yrs penitential pilgrim, visiting shrines
1294 St. Contardo “the Pilgrim.” miracles were reported at his grave
1305 Blessed Joachim Piccolomini singular devotion to the Blessed Virgin charity for poor perfect model of conspicuous virtue OSM (RM)
1317 Blessed William Gnoffi extremely penitential life Hermit (AC)
1378 The Nun Theodora of Nizhegorod, in the world Anastasia (Vassa) entered the Nizhegorod Zachat'ev monastery attained the gift of humility and love
1513 Blessed Archangelo Canetuli archbishop-elect natural gift of fraternal love supernatural gift of prophecy OSA
1658 Ilyin_Chernigov_Icon_of_the_Mother_of_God
1692  Tambov Icon of the Mother of God
1772 The Holy Martyr Michael Burliotes
1783 St. Benedict Joseph Labré "the Beggar of Rome," a pilgrim recluse devoted to the Blessed Sacrament miracles soaring over the ground, as well as bilocation, is frequently attested in Benedict's case

1879 St. Bernadette Mary appeared to Bernadette 18 times and spoke with her above a rose  bush in a grotto  called Massabielle dressed in blue and white with a rosary of ivory and gold

1923 Isabella Gilmore wurde 1887 war die erste Diakonisse in der anglikanischen Kirche und bildete in Clapham in einem später Gilmore House genannten Gebäude Diakonissen
April16 - Our Lady of Victories in the Church of St Mark (Venice, Italy) at  Notre-Dame des Victoires
During her pilgrimage to Rome, St Therese of Lisieux experienced Mary’s faithful tenderness,
through Notre-Dame des Victoires (Our Lady of Victories):

"The graces that she granted to me moved me so deeply and I was so happy, I cried like on the day of my First Communion. The Blessed Virgin led me to believe that it was really she herself who had smiled at me and had cured me. I understood that she had been watching over me, that I was her child, so much so that I could only call her “Mommy” because that name seemed to me so much tenderer than that of “Mother”.
With what enthusiasm did I pray her to always keep me with her and to fulfill my dream by hiding me under her virginal cloak! Ah! This was one of my first desires as a child (...) as I grew older, I understood that it would be possible for me to find the Blessed Virgin’s cloak in the Carmel Convent and from that moment on all my desires were directed towards that fertile mountain."
Excerpt from Saint Therese of Lisieux, Complete Works, (Œuvres complètes DDB)
"All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord;
and all the families of the nations shall worship before him"
(Psalm 21:28)

Tambov Icon of the Mother of God
The Ilyin-Chernigov Icon of the Mother of God was written in the year 1658 by the iconographer Gregory Dubensky, (Gennadius in monasticism).

Tears flowed from the icon for eight days in 1662, from April 16-24.

In this same year Tatars descended upon Chernigov and devastated it. At midnight they burst into the Trinity monastery, went into the church, overturned all the icons and grabbed all the utensils, but the wonderworking icon and its ornaments remained untouched.

An invisible power held back the impious from the holy icon.

Previously, the Queen of Heaven had not permitted the enemy to enter the cave of St Anthony of the Caves, where the brethren of the monastery had hidden.
The Tatars fled, as though terrified by a vision.

The miracle of the Mother of God and Her Chernigov Icon was described by St Demetrius of Rostov (October 28 and September 21) in his book, THE MOISTENED FLEECE [Runo Oroshennoe].
Later on, St John of Tobolsk (June 10) also wrote about the Chernigov Icon.
A wonderworking copy of the Chernigov Icon of the Mother of God, in the Gethsemane skete of the Trinity-Sergiev Lavra, was glorified in the year 1869 (September 1).

The Tambov Icon of the Mother of God was manifest in the year 1692. Before its glorification it was situated in the Tambov cemetery church in the name of the holy ArchDeacon Stephen. The icon was taken from the cemetery at the request of a certain seriously ill person. It had been revealed to him in a dream, that he would be healed, if a molieben were served before this icon. After fervent prayer of a molieben for the sick, he was healed. The celebration of the icon was established by decree of the MostHoly Synod on 29 March 1888.
3rd v St. Callistus & Charisius Martyrs with 7 companions Corinth Greece for their faith
Corínthi natális sanctórum Mártyrum Callísti et Charísii, cum áliis septem, qui omnes, post ália toleráta supplícia, in mare demérsi sunt.

The Holy Martyr Leonidas and the Holy Martyrs Charissa, Nike, Galina, Kalisa (Kalida), Nunekhia, Basilissa, and Theodora suffered at Corinth in the year 258.

They threw them into the sea, but they did not drown. Instead, they walked upon the water as if on dry land, singing spiritual hymns.

The torturers overtook them in a ship, tied stones around their necks and drowned them.
    At Corinth, the birthday of the holy martyrs Callistus and Charistius, with seven others, who were all cast into the sea.
Martyrs with seven companions at Corinth, Greece. Because of their faith, the martyrs were drowned.
Callistus, Charisius & Companions MM (RM) Date unknown. Nine Christians martyred in Corinth by being thrown into the sea (Benedictines).
304 The Holy Martyrs Agape, Irene, and Chione sisters
Agape. Chionia und Irene von Thessaloniki  Orthodoxe Kirche: 16. April  Katholische Kirche: 1. April (auch 3. April)

They lived at the end third century to beginning of the fourth century, near the Italian city of Aquilea. They were left orphaned at an early age.

The young women led a pious Christian life and they turned down many offers of marriage. Their spiritual guide was the priest Xeno. It was revealed to him in a vision that he would die very soon, and that the holy virgins would suffer martyrdom. Also at Aquilea and having a similar vision was the Great Martyr Anastasia (December 22), who is called "Deliverer from Potions," because she fearlessly visited Christians in prison, encouraging them and healing them from potions, poisons, and other harmful things. The Great Martyr Anastasia visited to the sisters and urged them to endure all things for Christ. Soon what was predicted in the vision came to pass. The priest Zeno died, and the three virgins were arrested and brought to trial before the emperor Diocletian (284-305).

St Chione ("snow" in Greek) preserved the purity of her baptism according to the words of the Prophet-King David, "You will wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow" (Ps. 50/51:7).

St Irene ("peace" in Greek) preserved the peace of Christ within herself and manifested it to others, according to the Savior's word, "My peace I give you" (John 14:27).

St Agape ("love" in Greek) loved God with all her heart, and her neighbor as herself (Mt.22:37-39).
Seeing the youthful beauty of the sisters, the emperor urged them to deny Christ and he promised to find them illustrious bridegrooms from his entourage. The holy sisters replied that their only Bridegroom was Christ, for Whom they were ready to suffer. The emperor demanded they renounce Christ, but neither the elder sisters, nor the youngest, would consent. They called the pagan gods mere idols made by human hands, and they preached faith in the true God.
By order of Diocletian, who was leaving for Macedonia, the holy sisters were also to be brought there. And they brought them to the court of the governor Dulcititus.
When he saw the beauty of the holy martyrs, he was aroused with impure passion. He put the sisters under guard, and he told them that they would receive their freedom if they agreed to fulfill his desires. But the holy martyrs replied that they were prepared to die for their Heavenly Bridegroom, Christ.
Then Dulcititus decided to have his way by force. When the holy sisters arose at night to glorify the Lord in prayer, Dulcititus came to the door and tried to enter, but an invisible force prevented him. He staggered about, unable to find his way out. The he fell down in the kitchen among the cooking utensils, the pots and pans, and he was covered all over with soot. The servants and the soldiers recognized him only with difficulty. When he saw himself in a mirror, he then realized that the holy martyrs had made a fool of him, and he decided to take his revenge on them.
At his court, Dulcititus gave orders to strip the holy martyrs. But the soldiers were not able to do this, no matter how much they tried. Their clothing seemed to be stuck to the bodies of the holy virgins. During the trial Dulcititus suddenly fell asleep, and no one could rouse him. Just as they carried him into his house, he immediately awoke.
When they reported everything that had happened to the emperor Diocletian, he became angry with Dulcititus and he gave the holy virgins over to Sisinius for trial. He began with the youngest sister, Irene. Seeing that she remained unyielding, he sent her to prison and then attempted to sway Sts Chione and Agape. He also failed to make them renounce Christ, and Sisinius ordered that Sts Agape and Chione be burned. On hearing the sentence, the sisters gave thanks to the Lord for their crowns of martyrdom. In the fire, Agape and Chione surrendered their pure souls to the Lord.

When the fire went out, everyone saw that the bodies of the holy martyrs and their clothing had not been scorched by the fire, and their faces were beautiful and peaceful, as if they were asleep. On the day following, Sisinius gave orders to bring St Irene to court. He threatened her with the fate of her older sisters and he urged her to renounce Christ. Then he threatened to hand her over for defilement in a brothel. But the holy martyr answered,
"Even if my body is defiled by force, my soul will never be defiled by renouncing Christ."

When the soldiers of Sisinius led St Irene to the brothel, two luminous soldiers overtook them and said,
"Your master Sisinius commands you to take this virgin to a high mountain and leave her there, and then return to him and report to him that you have fulfilled his command." And the soldiers did so.

When they reported back to Sisinius, he flew into a rage, since he had given no such orders. The luminous soldiers were angels of God, saving the holy martyr from defilement. Sisinius went to the mountain with a detachment of soldiers and saw St Irene on the summit. For a long while they searched for the way to the top, but they could not find it. Then one of the soldiers wounded St Irene with an arrow. The martyr cried out to Sisinius, "I mock your impotent malice, and I go my Lord Jesus Christ pure and undefiled." Having given thanks to the Lord, she lay down upon the ground and surrendered her soul to God on the very day of Holy Pascha (+ 304).
The Great Martyr Anastasia heard about the end of the holy sisters, and she buried their bodies with reverence.

Agape. Chionia und Irene von Thessaloniki  Orthodoxe Kirche: 16. April  Katholische Kirche: 1. April (auch 3. April) Agape, Chionia und Irene waren drei Schwestern aus Norditalien, die - aus einer heidnischen Familie stammend - zum christlichen Glauben kamen. Unter Diokletian wurden sie verhaftet. Sie weigerten sich, dem christlichen Glauben abzuschwören und zu heiraten. Sie wurden nach der Legende von verschiedenen Gouverneuren verhört und schließlich in Thessaloniki am 3. April 304 oder um 305 auf dem Scheiterhaufen hingerichtet. Von dem letzten Prozeß unter Dulcetius sind Prozeßakten überliefert.
Die Legenden berichten vor allem von der großen Schönheit der Schwestern und Versuchen der Verhörenden, sie zu mißbrauchen. Roswitha von Gandersheim, die erste (bekannte) deutsche Dichterin hat ein Drama über die Leiden dieser (und anderer) heiligen Jungfrauen geschrieben.
The Holy Martyress Irene suffered in Greece in the year 258 on the day of Holy Pascha. She lived with other Christians in a cave and spent her time in constant prayer. Reported on by the pagans, Saint Irene was arrested by soldiers of the governor and locked up in prison. For her fearless confession of Christ as the True God, Saint Irene was cruelly tortured. They cut out her tongue, knocked out her teeth, and finally they beheaded her with the sword.
304 18 Martyrs of Saragossa relics were found at Saragossa in 1389 (RM)
Cæsaraugústæ, in Hispánia, item natális sanctórum decem et octo Mártyrum, scílicet Optáti, Lupérci, Succéssi, Martiális, Urbáni, Júliæ, Quinctiliáni, Públii, Frontónis, Felícis, Cæciliáni, Evéntii, Primitívi, Apodémii, et aliórum quátuor qui Saturníni vocáti esse referúntur.  Hi omnes sub Daciáno, Hispaniárum Præside, simul pœnis affécti atque interémpti sunt; quorum illústre martyrium Prudéntius vérsibus exornávit.
    At Saragossa, in Spain, the birthday of eighteen holy martyrs, Optatus, Lupercus, Successus, Martial, Urban, Julia, Quinctilian, Publius, Fronto, Felix, Cecilian, Eventius, Primitivus, Apodemius, and four others who are said to have been Saturninus.  They were all tortured and slain together under Dacian, governor of Spain.  The glory of their martyrdom has been celebrated in verse by Prudentius.
These eighteen martyrs--Optatus, Lupercus, Successus, Martial, Urban, Julia, Quintilian, Publius, Fronto, Felix, Caecilian, Eventius, Primitivus, Apodemius, and four named Saturninus--suffered under Diocletian and the prefect Dacian. Prudentius, who lived at Saragossa a little later, described their martyrdom.
Their relics were found at Saragossa in 1389. Some of these martyrs have separate entries (Benedictines, Husenbeth).
304 Caius and Crementius Martyrs at Saragossa  died in a second outbreak of persecution that same year MM (RM)
In eádem civitáte sanctórum Caji et Creméntii, qui secúndo conféssi et in Christi fide perseverántes, martyrii cálicem gustavérunt.
    In the same city, the Saints Caius and Crementius, who twice confessed the faith of Christ, and persevering in it, drank of the chalice of martyrdom.
Spain, in the persecution under Diocletian but are not counted among the 18 Martyrs of Saragossa because they died in a second outbreak of persecution that same year (Benedictines).
Ibídem sancti Lambérti Mártyris.      In the same place, the martyr St. Lambert. 
304 St. Encratia Spanish virgin martyr "her ardor in suffering for Christ."
Item Cæsaraugústæ sanctæ Encrátidis, Vírginis et Mártyris, quæ, laniáto córpore, mamílla abscíssa et jécore avúlso, adhuc supérstes in cárcere inclúsa et reténta est, donec ulcerátum ipsíus corpus putrésceret.
    Also at Saragossa, St. Encratis, virgin and martyr, whose body was lacerated , her breasts cut away, and her bowels torn out.  Still alive after these torments, she was confined in prison until her body, covered with wounds, began to decompose.
 IT was the proud boast of the poet Prudentius that no town in all Spain could rival his own city of Saragossa for the number of its citizens who had won the martyr’s crown. During the persecution of Diocletian St Optatus and seventeen others thus witnessed to Christ on the same day in the year 304, under the governor Dacian. Prudentius celebrated their memory in verse and records their names—four of them were called Saturninus. We are not told how they died, but two others, Caius and Crementius, succumbed to injuries received under torture.
In the same long poem Prudentius mentions a certain Encratis, about whom he supplies more information. She was clearly a woman of extraordinary spirit who, in some way, bore energetic witness to her faith but Prudentius does not tell us what she said and did to merit his admiring epithet of Virgo violenta, a “vehement maiden”, and to provoke the savage fury of her persecutors. She was subjected to the most appalling tortures. After the usual gashing and scraping, her sides were torn with the iron claws, her left breast cut off, her entrails exposed, and part of her liver dragged out. (The poet informs us that he had himself seen the relic, which was preserved in one of the churches of Saragossa.) She was taken back to her prison, but the governor would not allow her to be put out of her suffering. So great was her vitality that she lived on after her wounds had begun to mortify. Indeed it would seem as though she had survived the persecution, for Prudentius speaks of her house as having been the shrine of a living martyr.
It is doubtful whether Encratis suffered in the persecution of Diocletian. The vivid description given by Prudentius supports the theory that she lived at a period much nearer to his own.

See the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol ii, where the poem of Prudentius is quoted at length and cf. also Delehaye, Les Origines du Culte des Martyrs, pp. 363—364, together with Férotin, Le liber mozarabicus Sacramentorum, especially col. 276. The name of St Encratis takes a variety of forms and she was clearly held in great honour throughout Spain and the Basses Pyrénées. The acts of the Saragossan group of martyrs to which she belongs are printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii (text and appendix), and another recension in November, vol. i, pp. 642-649. See also Florez, España Sagrada, vol. xxx, pp. 260—267, and V. Dubarat, Etudes hist. relig. Bayonne, vol. i, pp. 188 seq.
Honored by poet Prudentius and sometimes called Encratis, Encratide, or Engracia. She was a native of Saragossa, Spain, and was caught up in the persecution of that era. She was tortured but survived her ordeal.
Encratia of Saragossa VM (RM) (also known as Encratis, Engracia)  Born in Portugal; died at Saragossa, Spain, c. 304. Saint Encratia was a maiden who fled her homeland to evade marriage because she had pledged her virginity to Christ. She was martyred at Saragossa, where the church now stands dedicated to her name, after undergoing tortures, such as flaying, having her breasts cut off, and being disemboweled. Encratia did not die immediately; with these mortal wounds she was sent back to prison, where she died. She is famous for "her ardor in suffering for Christ."
She probably died under Diocletian but is not listed as one of the 18 Martyrs of Saragossa (Benedictines, Husenbeth).
The Martyrdom of the One Hundred and Fifty believers by the hand of king of Persia. {Coptic church}
   On this day also is the commemoration of the incident of the martyrdom of one hundred and fifty believers by the king of Persia. This king besieged Christian cities which were near the borders of his country, and captured many of them. When they refused to worship the sun and the stars, he commanded to cut off their heads, and they received the crowns of martyrdom.
460 St. Turibius of Astorga Bishop stern disciplinarian opponent of the heretical Priscillianist
Paléntiæ sancti Turíbii, Epíscopi Asturicénsis, qui, ope sancti Leónis Papæ, Priscilliáni hæresim ex Hispánia pénitus profligávit, clarúsque miráculis quiévit in pace.
    At Paléntia, St. Turibius, bishop of Astorga.  With the aid of Pope St. Leo, he drove out of Spain completely the Priscillian heresy.  He went to rest in the Lord with a great renown for miracles.
St Turibius became bishop of Astorga when the errors of the Priscillianists were gaining many adherents in various parts of Spain. Based on forged apostolic writings, this heresy was a subtle form of Manichaeism which seems to have attracted both laymen and clergy: even Dictinus, the previous bishop of Astorga, is said at one time to have defended its teachings. St Turibius, on the other hand, came forward as an uncompromising champion of the Catholic faith. Not only did he boldly expose and denounce the new doctrines, but he took strong action against the leaders of the movement. He then appealed for support to Pope St Leo the Great, to whom he sent a report of the measures he was adopting. Leo in reply wrote a long epistle in which he categorically condemned the tenets of the Priscillianists. Mainly as a result of the efforts of St Turibius, thus backed by the authority of Rome, the spread of this heresy was checked, and the bishop was able to devote his energies to the enforcement of discipline amongst his clergy and the reform of morals amongst his people. His death occurred about the year 450.

An account of St Turibius is given in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii; but see more especially the short essay of Fr V. De Buck in the Acta Sanctorum, October, vol. xiii, pp. 226—230.  There are three Spanish saints called Turibius, and much confusion between them cf. Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lix (1941), pp. 34—37.
Bishop of Astorga, Spain, best known for having been an opponent of the heretical Priscillianist practically wiping out the heresy in Spain. He supported Pope St. Leo I the Great and was a stern disciplinarian.
Turibius of Astorga B (RM) Bishop Turibius of Astorga, Spain, championed Catholic doctrine against the Priscillianists and promoted ecclesiastical discipline.
 He endeavors against Priscillianism were heralded in a letter addressed to him from Pope Saint Leo the Great (Benedictines, Husenbeth).
5th v Paternus of Wales bold opponent of the pagan kings never tiring preaching hoped they convert hand into boiling water (AC)
(also known as Padarn) Paternus was born in Brittany to devout parents named Patran and Gwen. His father sought Gwen's permission to go to live as a hermit in Ireland, and she brought up their son to be pious and godly.  The boy cherished the memory of his father. When he grew up he sailed with other monks to Wales to live as a hermit himself. He met the great Welsh saints, and humbly learned from them. One day Saint Samson summoned Paternus when he had just put on one boot. Without delaying to put on the other boot the saint hastened to answer Samson's summons.

Instead of leading a solitary life, Paternus was called to found a great monastery. He chose a spot in Cardiganshire near Aberystwyth, Wales, that was later known as Llanabarn (Llanbadarn) Fawr, which means, "the church of the great Paternus." Over 120 monks joined Paternus at Llanbarn Fawr.

He was a bold opponent of the pagan kings of the region, never tiring of preaching in the hope of their conversion. Once the evil King Maelgun accused the saint of stealing much royal treasure.  
Paternus is said to have proved his innocence by plunging his hand into boiling water and taking it out completely unharmed (Benedictines, Bentley).
500 Vaise martyred by his family for distributing his property among the poor M (AC)
  (also known as Vasius, Vaize) Saint Vaise was a rich citizen of Saintes, France, who was put in chains and beheaded by his family for distributing his property among the poor (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).
528 Turibius of Palencia abbot-founder of the great abbey of Liébana in Asturias Abbot (AC)
Saint Turibius was probably a bishop. He was definitely the abbot-founder of the great abbey of Liébana in Asturias, which eventually became a Benedictine center (Benedictines).
564 St. Paternus bishop of Avranches organized community of hermits; Paternus was elected abbot and busied himself founding other religious houses that had an excellent influence upon the paganism around him. At age seventy, Paternus was appointed bishop of Avranches and lived for thirteen years afterwards. We know that he attended a council in Paris, and he was probably brought into personal relation with King Childebert. He is said to have died at Eastertide on the same day as his friend St Scubilio, and they were both buried together in the church at Scissy.
Sescíaci, in Constantiénsi Gálliæ território, tránsitus sancti Patérni, Epíscopi Abrincénsis et Confessóris.
    At Scicy, in the district of Coutances in France, the death of St. Paternus, bishop of Avranches and confessor.
564 St Paternus, or Pair, Bishop of Avranches
The leading facts in the life of St Paternus, bishop of Avranches, are much more surely established than anything we read in the account of St Padarn (April 15) though the two have been confused and are mentioned in many martyrologies on the same day. This Paternus came from Poitiers, where his father occupied some official position. The boy entered the monastery of Ansion in Poitou. After some time, however, he and another monk, St Scubilio, withdrew to lead an eremitical life in the wild country round Coutances in Normandy. There they settled in Scissy, near Granville, attracting other recruits until an abbey was constituted, which later became known as Saint-Pair.
   Paternus was elected abbot and busied himself founding other religious houses that had an excellent influence upon the paganism around him. At age seventy, Paternus was appointed bishop of Avranches and lived for thirteen years afterwards. We know that he attended a council in Paris, and he was probably brought into personal relation with King Childebert. He is said to have died at Eastertide on the same day as his friend St Scubilio, and they were both buried together in the church at Scissy.
A life of St Paternus was written by Venantius Fortunatus. The uninterpolated text has been edited by Bruno Krusch in MCH., Auctores Antiquissimi, vol. iv, part a, pp. 33—37. See also Duchesne, Fastes Épiscopaux, vol. ii, p. 223. His anniversary is assigned to April 15 in certain manuscripts of the “Hieronymianum” which derive from Fontenelle, but the Roman Martyrology commemorates this St Paternus on April 16. See Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lxvii, pp. 384-400.
Paternus of Avranches B (RM) (also known as Pair of Coutances)  Born at Poitiers, France, c. 482; died c. 574 (or 563). Saint Pair joined the monks of Ansion and later became a hermit near Coutances. Eventually he was consecrated bishop of Avranches, Normandy. He is often confused with Saint Padarn (Benedictines). In art, Saint Paternus is a hermit bishop with serpents around him (Roeder).
665 Fructuosus of Braga Visigoth priest monk hermit B Abbot (RM)
Brácari, in Lusitánia, sancti Fructuósi Epíscopi.
    At Braga in Portugal, the bishop St. Fructuosus.
Born in Spain; died April 16, . Fructuosus was the son of a military officer belonging to the royal house of the Visigoths. His station in life would have called him to another vocation, but at the death of his parents he was at liberty to consecrate his life to divine service.
THE son of a Spanish general of the Visigothic kings, Fructuosus from boyhood desired to consecrate himself to God, and the early death of his parents left him free to follow his vocation. He accordingly prepared himself in the school which Conantius, bishop of Palencia, had established. The young man had a large inheritance, part of which was distributed to the poor and to his liberated slaves, whilst the remainder was devoted to the foundation of monasteries. Of these the first was on his own estate in the mountains near Vierzo. He himself undertook the direction of this house, which was called Complutum, until he saw it thoroughly well settled. He then resigned and retired into the wilderness, where he led a most austere life after the manner of the hermits of old. In spite of his efforts to live lost to the world, he could never remain long hidden. Once he was discovered by a hunter, who was about to discharge an arrow at what he took to be a wild animal until he noticed the hands uplifted in prayer. On another occasion, we are told, the saint had penetrated far into the forest when his hiding-place was betrayed by the joyful cries of some jays, who had recognized in fresh surroundings one who had made friends with them in the monastery garden.
These stories may or may not be true, but they serve to emphasize the fact that wherever he went disciples came to him. For these he built a number of monasteries, as well as a convent for women, called Nona, because it was nine miles from the sea. Amongst those who applied to St Fructuosus were entire families— parents with their children—all expressing themselves desirous to embrace the religious life. They must have been rather a source of embarrassment, for not all had vocations in the ordinary sense of the word, some indeed being mainly concerned with escaping military service or tyrannical exactions. Actually these family monasteries proved so attractive that the provincial governor persuaded the king to issue an enactment making permission to enter the religious life dependent upon the royal consent. St Fructuosus drew up two sets of regulations, a very strict code for Complutum, much influenced by the Benedictine rule, but exacting practically blind obedience, and another for his other foundations. In it he lays down certain conditions for the family monasteries. The men with their little sons must inhabit a part of the buildings entirely separate from that occupied by the women and their infant daughters, whilst all children who have reached the age of reason must be instructed in the rule, and then transferred to another house of the order as oblates—oblati a parentibus.  Realizing that solitude was out of the question for him as long as he remained in his own country, St Fructuosus determined to settle as a hermit in Egypt, and was on the point of starting when he received a royal order prohibiting his departure. The monarch, who held him in high esteem, summoned him to the court, directing that he should be closely watched lest he should slip away unnoticed; and very soon afterwards he was chosen bishop of Dumium. In 656 he became archbishop of Braga, and in that same year he took part in the Council of Toledo. At first in his diocesan work he found himself faced by much opposition, which almost amounted to persecution; but his patience and meekness eventually won over his opponents. As his last hours drew near, he caused himself to be carried into a church, where he died lying on a cross of ashes.

There is a short life of St Fructuosus, attributed to Abbot Valerius of Alcala, who was a contemporary of the saint. It is printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii, and also by Mabillon and others, and, with a translation by Sister F. C. Nock, it was published at Washington, D.C., in 1946. See further Cams, Kirchengeschichte Spaniens, vol. ii, part 2, pp. 152—158, and A. C. Amaral, Vida e regras religiosas de S. Fructuoso (1805).
After studying theology in the seminary established by the bishop of Palencia, Fructuosus sold his estates and distributed most of the proceeds among the poor, but saved a portion to establish monasteries.
Freed of all ties, he became a monk, then a hermit in the Vierzo Mountains, where he was joined by crowds of disciples, whom he organized into the abbey called Complutum. Once the monastery was working well, he turned the abbacy over to other hands and retired again into the wilderness. We have two extant rules composed by Fructuosus: one called Complutum, the other the common rule. Whole families embraced his rule in community refuges, which he established based on the Rule of Saint Benedict. Eventually, Fructuosus was forced to accept the bishopric of Dumium, and later was consecrated archbishop of Braga, while wholly remaining a monk in spirit. His deathbed was a pile of ashes before the altar. The relics of Fructuosus are now venerated at Santiago de Compostella (Attwater, Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth).
900 St. Lambert of Saragossa servant Martyred by his Saracen master in Spain
He was a servant in the city of Saragossa, Spain, and was slain by his Moorish master. Pope Adrian VI promoted Lambert’s cause.
Lambert of Saragossa M (RM); cultus promoted by Pope Hadrian VI. Saint Lambert was a servant who was killed near Saragossa, Spain, by his Saracen master during the Moorish occupation (Benedictines).
1021 St. Herve Hermit monk at St. Martin of tours Abbey
Ibídem sancti Lambérti Mártyris.      In the same place, the martyr St. Lambert.
He was a native of Touraine, France. Herve Died 1021. After Herve's father opposed his entering a monastery--as did also the monks--he contented himself by acting as treasurer of the basilica of Saint Martin of Tours (Encyclopedia).
1042 Blessed Elias of Cologne monk abbot archbishop OSB Abbot (AC)
Montague marks his feast as April 12. Elias was an Irishman from County Monaghan who became a monk and, in 1020, abbot of the Gaelic abbey of Saint Martin the Great at Cologne, Germany.
The archbishop also placed the abbey of Saint Pantaleon under his care (Benedictines, Montague).
1058 St. Paternus predicted death by fire in monastery would not break his vow of enclosure
St. Paternus was thought to be from Ireland. He became one of the first monks at Abdinghof monestary. He was a hermit with a cell adjoining the monastery.
He was killed by a fire in that monastery, which he predicted, because he would not break his vow of enclosure.
1116 Magnus of Orkney Magnus stood against wanton violence and racism against foreigners M (AC)
Died on Igilsay Island, Norway, Earl Magnus Erlendsson of Norway, son of Erling, ruled over half the Orkney Islands. He was killed by his cousin Haakon, who ruled over the other half.   Magnus is venerated as the protector of Scotland and a martyr, even though as a young man he participated in the Viking raids on Scotland.

IN the second half of the eleventh century the Orkney Islands were governed by two brothers, Paul and Erling, who, like their subjects, were Christians, at any rate nominally. Erling had two sons, Magnus, our saint, and Erlend, whilst Paul had one son, Haakon, a young man of such an ambitious and quarrelsome disposition that his father sent him to the Norwegian court to put an end to his intrigues against his kinsmen. Time and distance only increased Haakon’s animosity, and he found King Magnus Barefoot eager to adopt his suggestion of equipping a force to subdue, or at least harry, the isles and coasts of Scotland. King Magnus, with his young guest on board, set sail for the Orkneys, which he subdued; and he made Magnus Erlingsson and his brother Erlend accompany the fleet on a piratical cruise to the Hebrides and then along the western coast of Scotland and the north of England.
Opposite Anglesey the earls of Chester and Shrewsbury with a large body of Welshmen came out to give battle. In the fight which ensued St Magnus refused to take part, saying that he would not injure those who had never injured him. Thereupon the king, scornfully dubbing him a coward, dismissed him to the hold, where he sat reading his psalter during the engagement. Soon afterwards he managed to escape from his captors by jumping into the sea and swimming to land. He found his way to the court of King Malcolm III of Scotland, by whom he was kindly received. Either there or in the house of a bishop where he lived for some time, Magnus was led to repent of the excesses of his youth, and to enter upon a course of penitence and prayer which he pursued until his death.
After King Magnus Barefoot bad been killed in battle against the Irish, his son Sigurd allowed Haakon to return to the Orkneys, of which he wished to be the sole ruler. But Magnus, whose brother Erlend had also been slain, gathered a body of men and proceeded to his native country, where he vindicated his right to share in the government of the islands. Although the two cousins could unite against a common foe, disputes often arose between them. At last Haakon, whose overbearing spirit could no longer brook a rival, invited Magnus to meet him with a few followers on the island of Egilsay, under pretext of cementing a lasting peace. Magnus unsuspectingly complied, but was overpowered by a large band of men brought by Haakon and was treacherously slain, refusing to resist. The cathedral of Kirkwall, where he was buried (and where what seem to have been his bones were found in 1919, and many other churches have been dedicated in honour of St Magnus, who was regarded as a martyr, in spite of the fact that he was murdered on political rather than on religious grounds. He is said to have appeared to Robert Bruce with a promise of victory, on the eve of Bannockburn, and his feast is still observed in the diocese of Aberdeen.
The sources for the story of St Magnus are much more satisfactory than would be expected. The Latin legenda from the Aberdeen Breviary, together with the hymns, etc., have been reprinted, in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii; and the legends has also been edited from another manuscript by Sir C. W. Dasent in vol. ii of the Orkneyinga Saga (Rolls Series). But the narrative itself is based upon an old Icelandic text, of which Prof. Vigfusson says: “Its more learned and less classic style must not blind us to its early date. It must have been composed when the holy earl’s death was still within the memory of living men and while interest about him was still very great.” A certain Rodbert expanded this narrative and added to it. He was himself an Orkney man and seems to have written in 1136, twenty years after St Magnus’s death. Portions of the Rodbert life are translated and incorporated in the longer Magnus Saga. Both these sagas are printed and translated in the volumes of the Rolls Series mentioned above. See also G. Walker, St Magnus, Kirkwall (1926). A full and excellent study by 3. Mooney, St Magma, Earl of Orkney, was published in 1935; and see the same writer’s The Cathedral and Royal Burgh of Kirkwall (2nd edn. 1947).
As a young man, Magnus visited Wales at least twice and had friends there, including a bishop, because he was related to the Scottish royal family. Haakon and Magnus travelled with King Magnus Barelegs in 1098 to raid the western islands of Scotland: Lewis, Uist, Skye, Tiree, and Mull.
As the raiding party continued on to Wales, Magnus Erlendsson refused to participate saying, "I have no quarrel with any man here."

Needless to say, this did not endear him with his Viking brethren. The king ordered him below decks. But Magnus insisted that God would shield him. He stood on the prow singing Psalms and prayers in a loud voice. Companions saw this as cowardice, as did the king. While at anchor, Magnus left the ship one night and hid on shore.
He made his way to the court of King Malcolm and Queen Margaret of Scotland, where the Gospel message was taken seriously. Here he became fast friends with Prince Edgar.

Magnus was made earl of Caithness. In 1105, he married a Scottish woman. After Magnus Barelegs was killed in 1102 at Ulster, Ireland, Magnus returned to Norway to find Haakon had taken over his earldom, too, with aggression and violence to his subjects.
Magnus sought and gained the support of the Norwegian Thing (council) and went to the newly crowned King Eystein to gain a royal judgement in his favor.

Peace reigned for many years. Magnus was no pacifist--he fought off Viking chief Dufnjal when attacked. At that time Magnus and Haakon worked together to defend their people. Tensions again rose between the cousins when Magnus forbade his people from joining raiding parties. When Magnus went to the court of King Henry I of England for a year, Haakon seized control of Magnus's earldom and much of Caithness. Once again the dispute was settled by the King.
During Easter week, Haakon and Magnus met on the island of Egilsay, which belonged to the Church. The stated intention was reconciliation, but Haakon arrived with eight warships. Magnus prayed throughout the night and he refused the protection of his few men. He received Communion and waited for his cousin.
Magnus was taken prisoner by Haakon's men, judged during a mock trial, and was killed by Haakon's chef, Lifolf. Magnus was eventually buried in Kirkwall cathedral, which is dedicated in his honor. After his death, devotion grew for Magnus. He was honored for his virtue and piety, but there appears to be no reason why he should have been called a martyr.
His name was invoked in time of danger, and for the sick who were cured. Later, Haakon made a pilgrimage to Rome and the Holy Land. Thereafter he ruled well, though he never tolerated open devotion to the cousin he murdered. Magnus stood against wanton violence and racism against foreigners. He is another model for our times.
An account concerning Magnus is included in the final portion of the Orkney Saga, which is published in English by Penguin (Attwater, Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Markus, Mooney).
1186 St. Drogo Flemish humble noble hermit 40 yrs penitential pilgrim, visiting shrines
Apud Valencénas, in Gállia, sancti Drogónis Confessóris.
    In Belgium, near Valenciennes, St. Drogo, confessor.
Orphaned at birth who became a hermit, also called Droun. He became a penitential pilgrim, visiting shrines, and then became a shepherd at Sebourg, France. Stricken with an illness that made him physically repulsive, Drogo built a hut at Sebourg and stayed there as a hermit for forty years. He is a patron of shepherds.
THE patron of shepherds, St Drogo was a Fleming of noble parentage, but his father died before he was born, whilst his mother did not survive his birth. When he was ten years old, he learned that his mother’s life had been sacrificed to save his, and the poor child immediately imagined himself to have been her murderer. Indeed so great was his distress that, in the words of his biographer, “he used to weep most bitterly, accusing himself of every crime”. Happily as he grew older these morbid fancies did not prevent him from casting himself in simple trust on the mercy of God, even while he sought to expiate his transgressions and subdue his body by fasting, by prayer and by distributing to the poor whatever money he received.
He was about eighteen when he embarked on the penitential life of a pilgrim. In this manner he visited the chief holy places in several lands. The change of scene, the open-air exercise and the interest aroused in him by the people he met, as well as by the lives of the saints whose shrines he visited, must have been beneficial to a growing lad overmuch given to introspection, quite apart from the direct spiritual blessings which he derived from his devotion. After a time, however, Drogo settled down at Sebourg, near Valenciennes, where he hired himself out as a shepherd to a benevolent lady called Elizabeth de la Haire. In spite of his humble position he soon came to be regarded with great esteem by his mistress and the inhabitants of the district. The people regarded him as a saint, and declared that whilst he was tending his flocks in the fields he had yet been seen assisting at the holy Sacrifice in distant churches. This afterwards gave rise to a local saying, “Not being St Drogo, I cannot be in two places at the same time”.
At the end of six years, the holy man resumed his pilgrimages, returning from time to time to revisit his patroness. He had made the journey to Rome nine times before his travels were ended by a terrible affliction, a peculiarly repulsive hernia which could not be hidden. He was then at Sebourg, and he immediately retired from the sight of his fellow-creatures into a cell built against the church, provided with a “squint” by means of which he could assist at Mass without entering the building or becoming an object of embarrassment to the other worshippers. From his seclusion Drogo never emerged, even when the church caught fire, but on barley bread and water he lived for forty years, suffering greatly but perfectly resigned. From the moment of his death he was popularly honoured as a saint, and his tomb has been a favourite place of pilgrimage ever since.

All our information is, practically speaking, derived from a brief Latin life compiled in 1320, which has been printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii. There are short popular accounts of this saint published both in French and in Flemish.
Drogo of Sebourg, Hermit (RM) (also known as Dreux, Drugo, Druon) Born at Epinoy, Flanders, c. 1105; died in Sebourg, Hainault, April 16, c. 1186-89. Though born of noble Flemish parents, Saint Drogo was left motherless at birth (it is not clear whether his father was already dead or died while he was still a child). When he reached age 18, he disposed of all his property and became a penitential pilgrim, visiting several shrine. Thereafter, Drogo hired himself out as a shepherd to the flocks of Elizabeth de la Haire for six years at Sebourg, near Valenciennes, France.

The humble saint was found this work entirely agreeable for it afforded him plenty of time for prayer as well as opportunities for exercises of humility and penance. His growing modesty, meekness, and charity gained him the reverence and esteem of his mistress and neighbors. They gave him gifts, which he passed along to those who needed them. Afraid that public notice of his holiness might jeopardize the progress he had made, Drogo resumed his pilgrimages, making nine trips to Rome. Finally, stricken with a most unsightly bodily affliction, he built himself a narrow cell against the wall of the church at Sebourg in Hainault, where he lived for 40 years until his death. During these years he ate barley-bread mixed with ashes and drank only warm water. To hide his penitential practice, he called this diet a medicine for his distemper.
  His relics rest in Saint Martin's at Sebourg (Benedictines, Delaney, Gill, Husenbeth).
1294 St. Contardo “the Pilgrim.” miracles were reported at his grave
  A member of the Este family of Ferrara, Italy, called “the Pilgrim.” While on pilgrimage to Compostela, Spain, with two companions, Contardo was taken ill in Broni, near Tertona.
He died there, and miracles were reported at his grave.
AMONGST the many holy men who in the first half of the thirteenth century gave up the riches of this world to embrace holy poverty must be reckoned St Contardo the Pilgrim, a member of the Este family of Ferrara. With two companions he set out to make a pilgrimage to Compostela, but as he climbed the hill which afterwards bore his name and looked down upon the town of Broni, then in the diocese of Piacenza, he prayed in prophetic words that he might die in that beautiful place if God willed that he should end his days away from his own land. Almost immediately afterwards he was seized with pains which became so acute that the party were obliged to stay in the hostelry of Broni. When it became evident that St Contardo’s illness was likely to be a prolonged one, his two friends sorrowfully bade him farewell and continued on their way. The landlord, not knowing who he was and fearing lest his groans should frighten away strangers, caused him to be removed to a wretched hut in the neighbourhood, where he lay on a little straw, destitute and abandoned but resigned, until God was pleased to release him from his sufferings. His identity was disclosed after his death and his tomb was honoured by miracles.

A short Latin account purporting to have been written by a certain Peter de Crosnis in the fourteenth century is printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii. From this source other popular lives have been derived.
1249 Contardo of Este (AC) (also known as Contardo the Pilgrim). Saint Contardo is often surnamed "the Pilgrim." He belonged to the prestigious Este family of Ferrara. During his pilgrimage to Compostella, Spain, Contardo climbed a hill (later named after him) overlooking Broni, diocese of Tortona, Spain. There he prayed that if he had to die away from home, it should be on that beautiful spot.
Almost immediately he fell ill and died in a wretched hut in extreme poverty. His tomb was honored by many miracles (Attwater2, Benedictines, Coulson).
1305 Blessed Joachim Piccolomini singular devotion to the Blessed Virgin charity for poor perfect model of conspicuous virtue OSM (RM)
Senis, in Túscia, beáti Jóachim, ex Ordine Servórum beátæ Maríæ Vírginis.
    At Siena in Tuscany, blessed Joachim of the Order of Servites of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
(also known as Joachim of Siena) Born in Siena, Italy; beatified by Paul V. Joachim, a member of the illustrious Piccolomini family, was blessed by piety from his youth.
He had a singular devotion to the Blessed Virgin. His greatest childhood pleasure was to pray the sweet Ave Maria before her image.
BD JOACHIM was a native of Siena and a member of the great Piccolomini family. Even as a child he showed a singular devotion to the Blessed Virgin, before whose image and altar he loved to pray, and in his charity to the poor he showed himself no less precocious. So constantly did he ask the aid of his parents for those in distress that at last his father, half in jest, bade him restrain his demands or he would reduce his family to poverty. The good man was touched but somewhat taken aback when his little son replied, “But, father, you have told me yourself that what we give to the poor we give to Jesus Christ. Can we refuse Him anything?”

At the age of fourteen Joachim received the Servite habit at the hands of St Philip Benizi, and from the first day of his entrance into the monastery he was a pattern of all the virtues, but especially of prayerfulness and humility. So unworthy did he consider himself of the priesthood that no efforts could overcome his refusal to seek ordination, although it was his delight to serve at Mass. Sometimes he would fall into an ecstasy while the holy sacrifice was being offered. The most disagreeable offices were his delight, for his constant endeavour was to remain hidden from the world. Unable to avoid the respect the people of Siena insisted upon showing him, he entreated his superior to send him to some distant house of the order, where he hoped to pass unnoticed. He was accordingly sent to Arezzo, but his stay there was a brief one. No sooner had the people of Siena realized Joachim’s disappearance than they raised such an outcry that it became necessary to recall him. From that time until his death he remained in his native city, to edify and support it by his prayers as well as by his example. He died in 1305 in his forty-seventh year.

The earliest life is one that is believed to have been written by Christopher de Parma, a contemporary. It has been edited by Fr Soulier in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xiii (1894), pp. 383—397. In the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii, will be found an account dating from the fifteenth century compiled by Paul Attavanti, and there is yet another fifteenth-century narrative by Nicholas Borghesi.
His charity for the poor was no less extraordinary than his devotion. He stripped himself to clothe and relieve them: whatever pocket money he was given, he bestowed in alms. Moreover, he urged his parents to increase their aid to the distressed. His father one day remonstrated with Joachim that prudence ought to set bounds to his liberality, or he would reduce his whole family to poverty. The compassionate youth modestly replied: "You have taught me that an alms is given to Jesus Christ, in the persons of the poor: can we refuse him any thing? And what is the advantage of riches, but that they be employed in purchasing treasures in heaven?"
The father wept for joy to hear such generous sentiments of virtue from one of so tender an age, and so dear to him.
When he was 14, Joachim joined the Servites as a lay-brother under Saint Philip Benizi. In that community, he became a perfect model of conspicuous virtue.
Early in life, Joachim would often be found at midnight praying while the rest of the household slept. Now his fervor grew and instilled in him a still greater degree extraordinary humility.
His religious brothers urged him to the priesthood, but he resisted because he believed himself absolutely unworthy; to serve at Mass was the height of his ambition. His whole life appears to be an attempt to hide himself from the eyes of others, to live in obscurity. Because of this, he requested to be moved to another house when he became too respected at Siena. Thus he assigned to Arezzo but when his impending departure became known, the people of Siena demurred and caused him to remain there until his death (Benedictines, Husenbeth).
Joachim is pictured as a Servite in a black habit holding a book and flower (Roeder). He is venerated at Arezzo and Siena, Italy (Roeder).
1317 Blessed William Gnoffi extremely penitential life Hermit (AC)  
Born in Polizzi (near Palermo), Italy; William atoned for a sin of the flesh by leading an extremely penitential life (Benedictines).
WILI.IAM GNOFFI was born at Polizzi, near Palermo, and, after being a hermit for a short time near Castelbuono, became a mendicant religious. A temptation to sin presented to him by a woman on one of his begging journeys produced such imaginative disorder that he left his friary, intending to return to secular life. But in consequence of an alarming dream he instead withdrew to a solitary life at various lonely places in the Sicilian mountains. Having thus lived most austerely for eleven years, Bd William died in 1317 (or 1318). He is venerated as the patron of Castelbuono.
No early biography has survived, but the Bollandists, in Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii, print two lives abbreviated from compilations of the seventeenth century. See also Cajetanus, Vitae Sanctorum Siculae, vol. ii, pp. 230—233, and notes 79—80.
1378 The Nun Theodora of Nizhegorod, in the world Anastasia (Vassa) entered the Nizhegorod Zachat'ev monastery attained the gift of humility and love
The daughter of the Tver' boyar-noble Ioann and his spouse Anna. She was born in the year 1331. At 12 years of age they gave her in marriage to the Nizhegorod prince Andrei Konstantinovich. after 12 years of childless married life, the prince died, having accepted monasticism (+ 2 June 1365). The holy princess continued to live in the world for another four years, and then she set free her servants, distributed off her substance and entered the Nizhegorod Zachat'ev monastery. She was tonsured by Sainted Dionysii, afterwards the archbishop of Suzdal' (+ 1385, Comm. 15 October and 26 June).
In monastic life the saint often went without food for a day or two, and sometimes even five; her nights she spent in tearful prayers, and on her body she wore an hairshirt. She attained the gift of humility and love and she bore every abuse without malice. The example of the strict life of the Nun Theodora attracted others also: in her common-life monastery were tonsured princesses and boyaresses, and in all there about 100 sisters. The Nun Theodora died in the year 1378.
1513 Blessed Archangelo Canetuli archbishop-elect natural gift of fraternal love and supernatural gift of prophecy OSA (AC)
(also known as Archangelus of Bologna) Born at Bologna, Italy; Archangelus became an Augustinian canon regular at Gubbio and was conspicuous for his natural gift of fraternal love and supernatural gift of prophecy. He died as archbishop-elect of Florence (Attwater2, Benedictines).
1513 BD ARCHANGELO OF BOLOGNA conspicuous for his holy life, his prophetical gifts and his spirit of Christian brotherly love.
THE martyrology for the canons regular of St Augustine records under the date of April 16 the name of Bd Archangelo, whose relics lie in the church of St Ambrose in Gubbio and who was conspicuous for his holy life, his prophetical gifts and his spirit of Christian brotherly love. He is generally identified with a certain Arch-angelo Canetuli of Bologna, of whom we read that he entered the religious state after his life had been providentially preserved when, in the course of a civil riot, his father and brothers were killed. In the Venetian house of the order he held the post of guestmaster, and was once called upon to entertain his father’s murderer, whom he recognized at first sight. Banishing all feelings of resentment he treated this visitor with the utmost kindness and with the courtesy which he would have accorded to an honoured friend. Bd Archangelo is said to have been nominated for the archbishopric of Florence, but he never held that dignity. He lived for some years in the monastery of St Ambrose at Gubbio, and died at Castiglione, near Arezzo, in 1513.

A tolerably full account of this beato has been compiled by the Bollandists in the Acta Sanctorum, October, vol. xiii, pp. 186—193.
1772 The Holy Martyr Michael Burliotes
Born in about the year 1754 into a farm family. the boy was raised piously, but his character was flawed.

The handsome and ruddy youth caught the attention of the owner of a coffee-house in the city of Smyrna. The Turk flattered him and urged him to accept Mahometanism, so as to work at the coffee-house. The youth consented and with delight he began his employment. But then came Holy Pascha, and he heard the triumphant song of Christians: "Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tomb bestowing life!" With all his soul he sensed, that he also -- was of Christ, that the Lord was summoning him into His joy, and the youth went down to the singers, but he heard reproaches for his apostasy. "Tomorrow ye will see, what I am", -- he said sadly to the Christians.

He immediately set off to the Mussulman judge and asked, whether it was lawful to barter in exchange swine for gold? If the barter exchange were made by deceit, then could the defrauded take back the gold? "Both possible and lawful", -- answered the Mahometan judge. "If that is so, -- said Saint Michael, -- take back thine swine which thou didst give me for gold, -- take back thine faith and return me my gold -- the faith of my fathers". After these words the martyr openly confessed Jesus Christ as the True God, the Judge of both the living and the dead.

The Turks locked up the confessor in prison, and after two days they cut off his head (+ 1772).
His body lay for three days without burial and remained without decay. The Turks threw it into the sea, but sailors took up the body and buried it at the church of Saint Photinia.
1783 St. Benedict Joseph Labré "the Beggar of Rome," a pilgrim recluse devoted to the Blessed Sacrament miracles soaring over the ground, as well as bilocation, is frequently attested in Benedict's case
Romæ natális sancti Benedícti-Joséphi Labre Confessóris, qui contémptu sui et extrémæ voluntáriæ paupertátis laude exstitit insígnis.
    At Rome, the birthday of St. Benedict Joseph Labre, confessor, who was famed for his contempt of self and his great voluntary poverty. miraculous multiplication of bread for some poor people and by the healing of a confirmed invalid.

AMETTES, in the eighteenth century a village in the diocese of Boulogne-sur-Mer, was the birthplace in 1748 of Benedict Joseph Labre, the eldest of the fifteen children of a local shopkeeper of good standing. His parents sent him at the age of twelve to pursue his studies with his uncle, the parish priest of Erin. Here he became so completely absorbed in the Holy Scriptures and the lives of the saints that his uncle had to insist upon the importance of Latin and of secular subjects generally in the education of a candidate for holy orders. The boy, however, had already begun to realize a call to serve God in complete abandonment of the world. The good curé died of cholera, after he and his nephew had spent themselves in assisting other victims of the epidemic in the parish, and Benedict Joseph returned home. His one ambition was now to retire into the most austere religious order he could find. At the age of eighteen, having wrung a reluctant consent from his parents, he started off in mid-winter to walk sixty miles to La Trappe. Here disappointment awaited him: he was too young, he was told, to be admitted. Subsequent attempts to join the Carthusians and the Cistercians were not much more successful. Thrice indeed he was permitted to make trial of his vocation, but he was obviously unsuited to community life: devout indeed he was, but somewhat eccentric the confinement of the cell told on his health as well as on his spirits; he became reduced to a shadow, and his superiors had no option but to dismiss him. “God’s will be done”, he said, as he took a final farewell of the Cistercians of Septfons in 1770.
Benedict now determined to go on pilgrimage to Rome, walking all the way and living on alms. He set out accordingly, staying among other places at Ars, where he met Mr Vianney, father of the future curé. Having crossed the Alps into Italy, he wrote from Piedmont a touching letter to his parents—the last they ever received from him. In it he apologized for the uneasiness he may have caused them and announced his intention of trying to enter an Italian monastery. This he does not appear to have done, for his true vocation began to dawn upon him. Not by shutting himself up in any cloister was he to abandon the world, but by obeying the counsels of perfection without turning his back on the world. Literally and in spirit he must follow the example of our Lord and so many of His saints. With this object in view he embarked upon a life of pilgrimages which led him to the principal shrines in western Europe. Oblivious of wind and weather, he travelled everywhere on foot, carrying neither purse nor scrip nor yet provisions for the way. Often he slept in the open air upon the bare ground; at best he took his rest in a shed or a garret, for he could rarely be induced to accept a bed. He wished to be homeless like his Master. He saluted no man by the way unless specially moved to do so, he seldom opened his lips except to acknowledge or distribute to others the alms which he had received.
As he made his way along the roads absorbed in meditation, or spent whole days of prayer in churches, he was so entirely lost to his surroundings that once, in his later years when he was kneeling before a crucifix, an artist was able to paint the portrait which has preserved his likeness for later generations. His clothing consisted of a ragged old cloak and of broken shoes, whilst his two or three books were carried with his few other possessions in an old sack slung over his back. Was it not written, “Be not solicitous for your body—what you shall put on?” As for that body, Benedict Joseph carried his neglect of it to a degree which provided him with a form of mortification of the flesh more galling than any hairshirt, besides earning the contempt and avoidance which he actually desired.

No one could possibly have a lower opinion of him than he held of himself. He seldom begged if charitable people failed to offer him food, he would pick up orange peel, cabbage stalks, or mouldy fruit from refuse heaps, or would do without. If they gave him money he usually passed it on. A donor of a trifling coin afterwards confessed to having belaboured him with a stick for having, as he thought, shown his contempt at the smallness of the gift by handing it over to another. Benedict bore the beating without a word.
For three years and more the young man wandered about western Europe, not aimlessly, but going from shrine to shrine in Italy, Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain, to Loreto, Assisi, Ban, Einsiedeln, Aix, Compostela. Nor was an undeserved beating an isolated example of ill-treatment. At Moulins he was suspected of theft, and turned out of the church; in Gascony he was arrested for assaulting an injured man whom he had in fact been helping.

But he attracted the attention he wished to avoid by an apparently miraculous multiplication of bread for some poor people and by the healing of a confirmed invalid.

In the year 1774, after a fifth visit to Einsiedeln, his pilgrimages ceased and he remained in Rome, except for an annual journey to Loreto. His nights were now spent in the ruins of the Colosseum, his days in the various churches of the city. So constantly was he to be seen wherever the Quarant’ Ore was in progress that the Romans nicknamed him “the saint of the Forty Hours”. Many people who knew nothing about him testified after his death to the inspiration they had received from seeing him absorbed in contemplation before the Blessed Sacrament or a crucifix. Increasing infirmities obliged Benedict Joseph to accept the night shelter of a hospice for poor men, and his obedience as well as his true piety greatly impressed those in charge. It was noticed that he always came last to receive his portion of soup, and that often he would give it away to someone he thought more hungry than himself.
At the beginning of Lent 1783, Benedict contracted a chill with a violent cough but he would abandon none of his religious observances. On the Wednesday in Holy Week he managed to attend Mass in his favourite church, Santa Maria dei Monti, but was overcome with faintness. Sympathizers gathered round him as he sat on the steps outside the church, and a butcher who lived near by removed him to his own house. It was quite clear that Benedict was dying. He received the last sacraments and passed away peacefully about eight o’clock in the evening. He was thirty-five years old. Scarcely had he breathed his last when children in the street were heard to raise the cry, “The saint is dead”, and the chorus was taken up all over the city. Within an incredibly short period the name of St Benedict Joseph Labre became known throughout Christendom, and his fame was enhanced by the account of “the beggar of Rome”, which was written by one who had been his confessor during the closing years of his life. He was canonized in 1883, exactly a century later.

Called "the Beggar of Rome," a pilgrim recluse. He was born in Amettes, France, on March 25, 1748, the eldest of eighteen children. Studying under his uncle, a parish priest, at Erin, France, Benedict tried to join the Trappists, Carthusians, and Cistercians but was refused by these orders.

In 1770, he made a pilgrimage to the major shrines of Europe, settling in Rome in 1774. There he lived near the Colosseum and earned fame for his sanctity. Benedict was devoted to the Blessed Sacrament and attended the Forty Hours devotion in the city. He died in Rome on April 16, and was beatified in 1860. He was canonized in 1883.

Benedict Joseph Labre (RM) Born at Amettes (near Boulogne), Arras, France, March 26 (25?), 1748; died in Rome, April 17 (16?), 1783; beatified in 1860; canonized in 1881.
Since God leads each of us in our own way, our spiritual life will assume an pattern totally different from that of anyone else. Each of us is one of a kind. Our spirituality then should also be one of a kind. This is shown dramatically in various people's lives.

The story of Saint Benedict caught my eye and my heart. He was born in 18th century France in Amettes, then in the diocese of Boulogne-sur-Mer, to a family of prosperous shopkeepers. His mother claimed to feel his sanctity while she carried him in her womb. Because of his piety he was sent to an uncle who was a parish priest at Erin for his education in Latin, grammar, and mathematics to prepare him for the religious life.  A domestic servant in his uncle's house, probably jealous, used to knock Benedict about when they were alone and forced the youngster to perform chores beyond the strength of his years.
Since Benedict seemed to find this odious treatment amusing, the bully was disarmed.

In freedom from the prying eyes of his preoccupied elders, little Benedict tried his hand at austerities, the recipes for which he found in the dusty library of the presbytery. In addition to almsgiving that gives so much pleasure to the giver, he adopted a minor practice in austerity that was more sane than them all: every night he would replace his pillow with a plank of oakwood. Once upon being surprised while sleeping in this way, he explained, without ostentation: "I do it in order not to sleep too deeply."

He made steady progress in his studies until he was 16. Then, suddenly, he was unable to learn any more. His uncle died of cholera after he and Benedict had ministered to other victims in the parish. Is this the reason he could learn no more? Or was it because Benedict was overcome by the dark night of the soul, as Saint John of the Cross calls this state, in which God forms the soul and prepares it for union with himself?
After his uncle's death, he walked 60 miles to La Trappe to become a monk. He was irresistibly drawn to the very austere order. But he was denied entry. He vainly applied numerous times between 1766 and 1770 for entry into the Trappists, Carthusians, and Cistercians, but each time was sent home. For some of the communities he was too young; others, after admitting him, found him to be suffering such spiritual tortures that they couldn't let him stay; to still others, the failure of his physical health was proof that he could not observe the rule and, therefore, must be rejected.

Finally, Benedict realized that God must have something else in store for him. He went home and told his parents that he felt God was calling him to Rome. Perhaps because he was the eldest of 15 children, they were reluctant but finally gave him their blessing. Off he went on foot to Rome, begging his way.

Those who have never begged say that it's painful only the first time, but this isn't true. One does not knock on all doors in the same way. It is not true that the same words invariably come to mind in front of different faces. Each time is the first time. How tempting then to deprive yourself of a stale piece of bread which even the dogs would forego and to not ask. Begging is not easy. Try stretching out your own hand and you will see how difficult it is to swallow pride and ask for help.

Saint Vincent de Paul understood that the beggar needs us and deprives himself of us because we deprive ourselves of him.
A beggar is a man who is completely at our mercy, and whom we never thank for the opportunity to act in God's Name.

The saint wandered to Italy to seek admission there into a strict monastery or community of hermits. In Italy he experienced inner enlightenment and clearly recognized that it was God's will that, like Saint Alexis, he was to leave his home, his father and mother, and everything that was agreeable in the world, in order to lead a new life, a life of rigorous penance, in the midst of the world, as an eternal pilgrim. From the moment of this recognition, his soul was filled with perfect peace, and all attempts made by confessors to bring him back to an ordered life, with work, failed.

Benedict Joseph wandered. For the next three or four years he wandered about western Europe, going from shrine to shrine. He went to Santiago de Compostella in Spain, to Aix-en-Provence and Paray-le-Monial in France, to Assisi, Loreto, and Bari in Italy. He paid repeated visits to Einsiedeln and to German sanctuaries, made a pilgrimage every year to Loretto, and continued to make Rome his city of perpetual pilgrimage. He always travelled on foot, slept in the open or in some corner, his clothing rags, his body filthy, picking up food where he could, and sharing any money given to him.
As he travelled in his sack-cloth cinched with a rope, he carried with him only his perpetual nourishment: the Imitation of Christ, the New Testament, and a breviary.
His rosary was made from the berries of wild rose bushes, which he would eat when they began to wear out.

He finally settled in Rome in 1774, where he found his vocation as a tramp, wandering the streets with other vagrants. How could this be a vocation? He dressed in rags and wandered from shrine to shrine. Eventually he became widely known as one of the homeless who roamed the streets accepting crumbs of food and clothes that the charitable would give him.

During the day he spent most of his time in churches with perpetual adoration; at night he wandered to the seven major basilicas. He quenched his thirst at the fountains; he lived from remnants of food found in the streets. He slept for a few hours under an arch of the Colosseum at the station of the Cross named "Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus to carry the Cross."
As time went on people began to realize that there was something different about this tramp. He became known as the 'beggar of the Colosseum' or the 'beggar of the perpetual adoration.'

It was rumored that he was of high birth but had committed a murder or other heinous crime and now sought atonement. Alms given to him burned in his hand; he passed them on to other who he deemed more needy. He was once beaten by a man who thought Benedict had spurned his offer of money because he gave it away.

His soul hovered constantly over the greatest mysteries of the faith. And, just as all water streams to the sea, so everything carried him on to the mysteries of the Most Holy Trinity.
"When I contemplate the crowning of thorns," he said to the priest who examined him, "I feel myself elevated to the Trinity of God."
"What do you, a man without education, understand about this mystery?" the priest asked.
"I understand nothing about it," Benedict answered, "but I feel myself transported to it." And this transport was sometimes so strong that his soul was carried away and his body lay as though dead.
One day as he was praying at Saint Ignatius' and had fallen into ecstasy, an anxious visitor to the church asked the sacristan in alarm: "What has happened to this beggar?"
Benedict seemed to be swaying in the air. He was in a position that mocked the laws of equilibrium and gravity.
"The saint is in ecstasy," said the sacristan, as though this were the most natural thing in the world, and went on sweeping with his broom.
Such soaring over the ground, as well as bilocation, is frequently attested in Benedict's case. As he worked in painting the interior of the church, Antonio Cavallucci was so impressed by the sight of the saint that he once took him to his studio and painted him. This painting can still be seen at the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica in Rome, Italy.
Image of Saint Benedict Labre courtesy of Saint Charles Borromeo Church 
This painting and his death mask reveal that Benedict was a handsome man with deep-set eyes, strong cheek bones, a perfectly straight and noble nose, high forehead, and gently protruding upper lip. Not only was his soul beautiful, so was his physical body. Perhaps the one transformed the other?
He is reputed to have multiplied bread for the hungry,
and on another occasion to have cured an invalid.
One day some friends found him in a quiet glen on his knees absorbed in prayer. He stayed that way for the longest time. His companions were deeply impressed. They also found out that he had the rare gift of counseling people with the most complex problems and bringing them peace.

His reputation spread throughout Rome and soon strangers from all walks of life came to talk to him: lawyers, doctors, judges, women in society, bishops, cardinals, as well as just ordinary folks. His wisdom and understanding enabled him to bring peace to the most troubled souls. 
He neglected his body and his fragile health finally obliged him to seek refuge in a hospice for poor men. There he was known to give away his portion of the soup.

The man who had spent long hours before the Blessed Sacrament collapsed from exhaustion on the steps of his favorite Roman church, Santa Maria dei Monti, during Holy Week and died, consumed by the inner flame of ceaseless prayer, in the back room of a butcher's shop to which he had been carried.
Since the burial of Saint Philip Neri, there had been no such crowd pressing to see the mortal remains of a servant of God as at the Requiem Mass for Benedict Joseph. The military summoned to the scene had difficulty preserving order.

After his burial, people came from all over Europe to visit his grave and ask his intercession with God. In less than three months after his death, 136 miracles had already been protocoled. The healings and graces people received were so overwhelming that the Vatican was forced to start the process for his canonization as a saint. In record time, in 1883, he was proclaimed a person of rare heroic holiness.

The people of Rome had no doubt about the holiness of this 'new Saint Francis.' He is a late Western example of an ascetical vocation better known in the East, that of the pilgrim or wandering holy man. He also has points of resemblance with the Greek saloi and Russian yurodivy, 'fools for Christ's sake' (Attwater, Attwater2, Benedictines, Delaney, Encyclopedia, Farmer, Girzone, de la Gorce, Schamoni, White).

On the day of his canonization Mass, in the crowded Saint Peter's Basilica way above the heads of the congregation was the glorious painting of this sainted tramp dressed in his rags, held up for the veneration and admiration of all the faithful.
"What a strange vocation! And you cannot help but ask why. But it was a time when the whole Christian world had become so materialistic that spiritual things meant little to people. So God called this young man to give up everything and wander the streets of Rome with other homeless people, dressed in the stinking rags of a tramp. "All the while God molded in the depths of his soul a holiness that transcended anything people had ever witnessed, and held up the remarkable spirituality of this lowly beggar for the admiration and example of all. It was no doubt a difficult vocation for one to follow, but Saint Benedict was always a happy man, so he must have found a strange satisfaction in the realization that he was following where God was leading him" (Girzone).
Where is God leading you? Have you heard His voice yet? It's a small voice that cannot be heard except in the stillness of your heart. You, too, are called to be a saint--but how?
And how many of those nameless, faceless souls that we pass on the street are really God's Presence among us? How often do we recognize Him in them? Which one(s) is the saint we have failed to recognize?
In art, Saint Joseph Labre is depicted as a beggar with his bowl and the tricorn hat of a pilgrim sharing his alms with other poor (Roeder, White). He is the patron saint of tramps and the homeless (White).
1879 St. Bernadette; Mary appeared to Bernadette 18 times and spoke with her above a rose bush in a grotto called Massabielle dressed in blue and white with a rosary of ivory and gold
Nivérnis, in Gállia, sanctæ Maríæ-Bernárdæ Soubirous, Vírginis, e Congregatióne Sorórum a Caritáte et Institutióne Christiána, Lapúrdi, adhuc juvénculæ, iterátis apparitiónibus Immaculátæ Dei Genitrícis Maríæ recreátæ; quam Pius Papa Undécimus, inter sanctas Vírgines adscrípsit.
    In the city of Nevers in France, St. Mary Bernard Soubirous of the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity, also called the Christian Institute.  She was favoured with frequent apparitions and conversations at Lourdes with Mary Immaculate, the Mother of God.  In 1933 her name was added to the roll of holy virgins by Pope Pius XI.
St. Bernadette patron saint of shepherds
THE story of the appearings of our Blessed Lady at Lourdes has already been told here in connection with the feast now kept throughout the Western church on February II. But on the anniversary of the death of the humble intermediary through whom the message of Heaven was communicated to the world, a few words must be said regarding this chosen soul, whose merits were known to God, but hidden for the most part from the eyes of her fellow men.
She was born on January 7, 1844, the oldest of a family of six, and though christened Marie Bernarde, was known to the family and neighbours by the pet name of Bernadette. The father was by trade a miller, and in 1844 he rented a mill of his own, but thrift and efficiency were not the distinguishing virtues of either Francis Soubirous or his wife, Louise Casterot, then still in her teens and eighteen years younger than husband. Bernadette was always a most delicate girl, afflicted with asthma and her other ailments, and the fact that she was one of the sufferers in the cholera epidemic of 1854 cannot have helped to make her more robust.
Meanwhile the family was gradually sinking into dire poverty, which probably had for one result that Bernadette’s education, even in a measure her religious education, was sadly neglected. At the date of the first apparition (February 11, 1858) the family were living in the dark airless basement of a dilapidated building in the rue des Petits Fosses. The child herself, though fourteen years of age, had not yet made her first communion and was regarded as a very dull pupil, but she was notably good, obedient and kind to her younger brothers and sisters, in spite of the fact that she was continually ailing.
The apparitions and the popular excitement which accompanied them did eventually have some effect in relieving the destitution of the Soubirous family, for people interested themselves to find work for the father but for Bernadette, apart from the spiritual consolation of these visions, which had come to an end in less than a couple of months, they left a heavy load of embarrassment from the ceaseless and indiscreet questionings which allowed her no peace. People wanted to cross-examine her about the three secrets our Lady had imparted, they wanted to press money upon her, they wanted to interview her at all sorts of hours, they wanted her to bless them or their sick folk, they even tried to cut pieces from her dress.
It was a strange form of ordeal, but for a sensitive child, and Bernadette even at eighteen was no more than a child, it was in truth a martyrdom. As a measure of protection, she was after a while taken to reside with the nuns at the hospice (1861— 1866), but even there there were often visitors who could not be denied. Sister Victorine, to whose charge she was specially confided, has recorded how “she nearly always shrank from the task of replying to the questions of those who came to see her, if only on account of the fatigue which these conversations entailed. Every effort of this sort told upon her chest and was liable to bring on a bad attack of asthma. When I took her down to the parlour, I used to see her come to a standstill near the door, and the tears, big heavy drops, welled up into her eyes— ‘Come’, I would say to her, ‘be brave’. Then she wiped away the tears, came into the room, bade a pleasant welcome to her visitors and answered everything she was asked, without a hint of impatience at their importunate questions or showing irritation when her word was doubted.”
Earlier than this, in 1859, the year after the apparitions, we have a singularly interesting account left by an English non-Catholic visitor of the impression Bernadette made upon people who had come prepared to find nothing but hysteria or imposture. The account is taken from a contemporary entry in a diary. The writer says

I ought before this to have spoken more particularly of the little girl herself. She was a pretty-looking child, 14 years of age [she was in reality 15-1/2], with large, dreamy eyes, and a quiet, sedate demeanour, which added some years to her appearance and seemed altogether unnatural in so small a figure. She welcomed us with the air of one long accustomed to receive strangers, and bid us follow her into an upper room of the humble cottage attached to her father’s mill. Two bright, happy little urchins—her brothers—were playing about and seemed no way abashed at our entrance. . . . The child offered us seats, while she herself stood by the window and answered briefly the questions I put to her, but volunteered very few remarks of her own. . . . We offered her a small donation, which she politely refused, nor would she allow us to give anything to her little brothers—and we were assured that neither the parents, nor their child, although very poor, will ever receive anything from strangers. . . . We certainly left her in the conviction that we had been talking with a most amiable little girl, and one superior to her age and station, both in manner and education and whatever may be the true account of the apparition, as far as the girl herself is concerned, we feel quite convinced of the sincerity of her faith in it.

Protestant visitors seem to have shown delicacy and consideration by comparison with some of the Catholic ecclesiastics who came to converse with Bernadette. Here is an example left on record by a certain curé who spent a day at Lourdes in January 1860, and who seemed to think that by his interest in the apparitions he was rendering a service to the poor girl herself and to the Church at large. He summoned the child, though he had been told she was poorly and suffering from a nasty cough, to come to him at his hotel through howling wind and pelting rain, and after cross-questioning her for the best part of two hours about the apparitions, the fountain, and the Blessed Virgin’s three secrets, the interview according to his own volunteered statement ended as follows

“My child, I must have quite worn you out with my questions. Please accept these three louis d’or to remunerate you for your trouble.”—” No, monsieur, I cannot take anything.”
Here Bernadette expressed herself with an energy which showed that I had deeply wounded her self-respect. I tried to press the money upon her, but her silence, eloquent both of the pain she felt and of suppressed indignation, made it clear to me that I could insist no further. So I replaced the coins in my purse, and I went on:
“My child, will you show me the medals you wear in our Lady’s honour?”
—“ They are at home. They took them from me to lay upon some sick people, and they cut the string from which they all hung.”
“Well, will you let me see your rosary?”
Bernadette took out her simple rosary with a medal at the end of it.
“Now will you not let me have this rosary? I will give you the price of it directly.”—“No, monsieur, I have no wish either to give you my rosary, or to sell it to you.”
“Oh, but I should so much like to have some souvenir of you. I have come such a long way to see you. You really ought to let me have your rosary.”
In the end she surrendered it. I clutched this heavenly booty upon which the child’s tears had fallen more than once and which had been the instrument of so many grateful and heartfelt prayers in the presence of Mary herself, for Bernadette had fingered this rosary again and again when the apparition had kept count upon a rosary of her own in the grotto of Massabielle. It seemed to me then, it seems to me now, and it always will seem to me, that in this I possess a treasure of great price.
“Will you permit me, my child, to refund you the cost of the rosary Please accept this small coin.”—“No, monsieur, I will buy myself.”  But even this was not the climax. The curé’s account of the interview continues another with my own money.”

“My child, will you let me show you my scapular? I wonder if yours is made the same way.”—“No, monsieur, mine is a double one.”
“Show it me.” Bernadette modestly fishes up one end of her scapular, which is, as she said, made with double strings.
“God be praised, my daughter. Now I know a very pious soul who would esteem it such a happiness to possess half your scapular. As you see, it can easily be divided.”—“Oh, but please   —“ As a great favour will you not give me half of it ? There will be plenty left, for you will still have a whole scapular.” “Monsieur, would you be willing to cut in two the rosary I have just given you?”—“No.” “Well, I cannot divide my scapular either.”
I understood that I had to give way and must press the matter no further. I told the child that I would give her my blessing, and she received it, kneeling on both knees, with all the reverence of an angel.

If Bernadette, then sixteen years old, was not tingling with indignation all over, she must already have reached a very high stage of virtue, or of resignation to the peculiar form of trial by which her soul was to be purified. Everything we know of her points to the fact that she was an exceptionally sensitive child. In 1864 she offered herself, under advice, to the sisters of Notre-Dame de Nevers. Attacks of illness postponed her departure from Lourdes, but in 1866 she was allowed to join the novitiate in the mother-house of the order. Separation from her family and from the grotto cost her much, but with her fellow-novices at Nevers she was gay, while remaining still the humble and patient child she had always been. Her ill-health continued, so that within four months of her arrival she received the last sacraments and by dispensation was permitted to take her first vows. She recovered, however, and had strength enough to act as infirmarian and afterwards as sacristan, but the asthma from which she suffered never lost its hold, and before the end came she! suffered grievously from further complications.
Characteristic of Bernadette were her simplicity of a truly child-like kind, her peasant “sanity”, and her self-effacement. She likened herself to a broom “Our Lady used me. They have put me back in my corner. I am happy there, and stop there.”   But even at Nevers she had sometimes to resort to little stratagems to avoid “publicity”. Though her heart was always centred in Lourdes, she had no part in the celebrations connected with the consecration of the basilica in 1876. The abstention seems to have been in large measure her own voluntary choice she preferred to efface herself. But who shall say how much the deprivation cost her? There are few words more pathetic than the cry of Bernadette from her cell at Nevers: “Oh! sije pouvais voir sans être vue.” “Ohl if only I could see without being seen.” The conjecture suggests itself strongly that one of Bernadette’s “secrets” must have been this, that she was never of her own free will to do anything which would attract to herself the notice of other people.
Bernadette Soubirous died on April 16, 1879; she was thirty-five years old. In 1933 she was canonized, and she now appears in the Church’s official records as St Mary Bernarda: but in the hearts and on the lips of the faithful she is always St Bernadette.
Apart from the sworn testimonies of witnesses printed in the process of beatification, the most reliable evidence we possess concerning St Bernadette is probably that collected by Fr L. J. M. Cros in his Histoire de Notre-Dame de Lourdes (3 vols., 1925-1927). Numerous biographies exist in many languages. One of the earliest was that of Henri Lasserre (very unreliable), one of the latest that of Fr H. Petitot, The True Story of St Bernadette (1949). Other widely-read accounts are Mgr Ricard’s La vraie Bernadette (1896), a reply to Emile Zola; Bernadette Soubirous, by Jean Barbet, who wrote largely from local knowledge La confidente de L’Immaculée (1921), by a nun of Nevers (Eng. trans.); and Abbé J. Blazy’s life (Eng. trans., 1926). A very popular novel by Franz Wend, Song of Bernadette (1942), was criticized by Dora Bede Lebbe in The Soul of Bernadette (1947). Other popular biographies are those by F. Parkinson Keyes, Sublime Shepherdess (1940), and Mrs M. C. Blanton, Bernadette of Lourdes (1939). But for a sensitive and reliable summary Fr C. C. Martindale’s C.T.S. booklet cannot be bettered. For further particulars of the interviews with St Bernadette quoted above, see The Month, June 1924, pp. 526—535, and July 1924, pp. 26—36.
On April 16, 1879, Bernadette -- or Sister Marie - Bernard, as she was known within her order -- died in the Sainte Croix (Holy Cross) Infirmary of the Convent of Saint-Gildard. She was thirty-five.
Born into a humble family which little by little fell into extreme poverty, Bernadette had always been a frail child. Quite young, she had already suffered from digestive trouble, then after having just escaped being a victim of the cholera epidemic of 1855, she experienced painful attacks of asthma, and her ill health almost caused her to be cut off for ever from the religious life. When asked by Monsignor Forcade to take Bernadette, Louise Ferrand, the Mother Superior of the Sisters of Nevers, replied: "Monsignor, she will be a pillar of the infirmary".

At least three times during her short life-time, she received the last Sacraments. She was gradually struck by other illnesses as well as asthma: among them, tuberculosis of the lung and a tubercular tumor on her right knee. On Wednesday, April 16, 1879, her pain got much worse. Shortly after eleven she seemed to be almost suffocating and was carried to an armchair, where she sat with her feet on a footstool in front of a blazing fire. She died at about 3.15 in the afternoon.

The civil authorities permitted her body to remain on view to be venerated by the public until Saturday, April 19. Then it was "placed in a double coffin of lead and oak which was sealed in the presence of witnesses who signed a record of the events". Among the witnesses were "inspector of the peace, Devraine, and constables Saget and Moyen".

The nuns of Saint-Gildard, with the support of the bishop of Nevers, applied to the civil authorities for permission to bury Bernadette's body in a small chapel dedicated to Saint Joseph which was within the confines of the convent. The permission was granted on April 25, 1879, and on April 30, the local Prefect pronounced his approval of the choice of the site for burial. Immediately they set to work on preparing the vault. On May 30, 1879, Bernadette's coffin was finally transferred to the crypt of the chapel of Saint Joseph. A very simple ceremony was held to commemorate the event.

Additional Info:
St. Bernadette was born at Lourdes, France. Her parents were very poor and she herself was in poor health. One Thursday, February 11, 1858, when she was sent with her younger sister and a friend to gather firewood, a very beautiful Lady appeared to her above a rose bush in a grotto called Massabielle.
The lovely Lady was dressed in blue and white. She smiled at Bernadette and then made the sign of the cross with a rosary of ivory and gold. Bernadette fell on her knees, took out her own rosary and began to pray the rosary. The beautiful Lady was God's Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. She appeared to Bernadette seventeen other times and spoke with her.
    She told Bernadette that she should pray sinners, do penance and have a chapel built there in her honor. Many people did not believe Bernadette when she spoke of her vision. She had to suffer much. But one day Our Lady told Bernadette to dig in the mud. As she did, a spring of water began to flow. The next day it continued to grow larger and larger. Many miracles happened when people began to use this water. When Bernadette was older, she became a nun. She was always very humble. More than anything else, she desired not to be praised. Once a nun asked her if she had temptations of pride because she was favored by the Blessed Mother. "How can I?" she answered quickly. "The Blessed Virgin chose me only because I was the most ignorant." What humility!

St. Bernadette Soubirous 1879 Famed visionary of Lourdes, baptized Mary Bernard. She was born in Lourdes, France, on January 7, 1844, the daughter of Francis and Louise Soubirous. Bernadette, a severe asthma sufferer, lived in abject poverty. On February 11, 1858, she was granted a vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary in a cave on the banks of the Gave River near Lourdes. She was placed in consider able jeopardy when she reported the vision, and crowds gathered when she had futher visits from the Virgin, from February 18 of that year through March 4.The civil authorities tried to frighten Bernadette into recanting her accounts, but she remained faithful to the vision.

On February 25, a spring emerged from the cave and the waters were discovered to be of a miraculous nature, capable of healing the sick and lame. On March 25, Bernadette announced that the vision stated that she was the Immaculate Conception, and that a church should be erected on the site. Many authorities tried to shut down the spring and delay the construction of the chapel, but the influence and fame of the visions reached Empress Eugenie of France, wife of Napoleon Ill, and construction went forward.
Crowds gathered, free of harassment from the anticlerical and antireligious officials. In 1866, Bernadette was sent to the Sisters of Notre Dame in Nevers. There she became a member of the community, and faced some rather harsh treatment from the mistress of novices. This oppression ended when it was discovered that she suffered from a painful, incurable illness. She died in Nevers on April 16,1879, still giving the same account of her visions. Lourdes became one of the major pilgrimage destinations in the world, and the spring has produced 27,000 gallons of water each week since emerging during Bernadette's visions. She was not involved in the building of the shrine, as she remained hidden at Nevers. Bernadette was beatified in 1925 and canonized in 1933 by Pope Pius XI.

 Bernadette Soubirous V (RM) (also known as Mary Bernarda Soubirous)
Born in Lourdes, France, January 7, 1844; died in Nevers, France, on April 16, 1879; canonized by Pope Pius XI in 1933; also honored on February 18 in France.
Marie Bernarde (called Bernadette by family and friends) Soubirous, was the oldest of six children born to the impoverished miller François Soubirous, and his much-younger wife, Louise Casterot. The family lived in the basement of a damp building in the rue des Petits Fossés after her father rented a mill of his own. Bernadette was not a strong child; the dampness of their home and the vestiges of the cholera she contracted in 1854 aggravated the asthma and other ailments from which the young girl suffered.
"I am the Immaculate Conception"
  At age 14, she was considered to be ailing, undersized, of pleasant disposition, sensitive, and a slow student -- even stupid -- but was a kind, helpful and obedient child.
On February 11, 1858, the teenaged Bernadette was collecting scraps of wood on the bank of the River Gave when she was initially granted a vision of the Blessed Virgin, who did not identify herself at first.
For the next six months Bernadette saw a light-enhaloed female form of indescribable beauty, near a cave in the Massabielle cliff. In total, Bernadette had 18 visions of the Virgin Mary at the grotto, which principally concerned prayer and penance.
Bernadette showed people the grotto in which the BVM appeared. Most of them mocked her but from February 18 until March 4, Bernadette continued to see and talk with Our Lady every day. The clerical and civic officials who subjected Bernadette to numerous interrogations found her to be veracious and completely disinterested in self-advancement.
People followed Bernadette. The saw the girl fall into ecstasy; they heard her speak, but they saw nothing. The unknown 'lady' said to Bernadette: "I wish to see people here"; "Pray for sinners"; "Tell the priests I wish to have a chapel here"; "Processions are to come here"; "Go, drink from the spring and wash in its water."

In obedience to this last injunction, the saint dug with her hands into the earth of the grotto, and there gushed forth a spring, unknown until that day--February 25, that for years has yielded 27,000 gallons weekly. Cures effected by drinking of the water mobilized pilgrimages of thousands which streamed to the grotto.

By March 4, about 200,000 people were accompanying Bernadette to the site. When Bernadette begged the lady for a name on March 25, she replied three times using the local dialect: "I am the Immaculate Conception--" a name that the girl did not understand because word of the definition had not yet reached the people of Lourdes.
The last vision occurred on July 16, the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
The Church met these beginnings of the Lourdes pilgrimages with great reserve, almost with hostility. In part this was because after the appearances ceased, there was an epidemic of copycat visionaries and morbid religiosity in the district, which increased the reserved attitude of the church authorities towards Bernadette's experiences.

But Lourdes became a symbol. In an age in which the existence of or at all events the possibility of knowing a supra-mundane God was denied, a permanent medical bureau had to be opened in Lourdes, which has collected, with the help of thousands of physicians of all creeds, an immense documentation of professionally attested, inexplicable cures.
Bernadette's simplicity and integrity were never questioned. Although the publicity that accompanied her visions had helped her father to find work, Bernadette gained little more than the spiritual consolation of a few months. For some years she suffered greatly from the suspicious disbelief of some and the tactless enthusiasm and insensitive attentions of others; these trials she bore with impressive patience and dignity. She resided with the nuns at the hospice for five years (1861-1866) in order to escape the publicity, but people sought her out even there. 
In 1866 Bernadette joined the Sister of Notre-Dame at Saint Gildard in Nevers, France; she had wished for entrance two years earlier but had been prevented by bad health. She was happy with the nuns. Her health remained fragile, and she was given the last sacraments within four months of her arrival; she was allowed to take her first vows through a special dispensation. She recovered, however, and worked first as an infirmarian and later as a sacristan.
Here she was more sheltered from trying publicity, but not from the 'stuffiness' of the convent superiors nor from the tightening grip of asthma. "I am getting on with my joy," she would say. "What is that?" someone asked. "Being ill," was the reply.

The nuns, disappointed by the simplicity of this child of nature, in whom they had expected to find a second Teresa of Ávila or another Catherine of Siena, made the peasant girl feel bitterly the scant esteem in which they held her; and even her superiors, with the aim of protecting the visionary of Lourdes from the sin of pride, were not sparing in humiliations.

With the excuse that she was a "stupid, good-for-nothing little thing," her profession was continually delayed. God gave to the despised creature, who was punished for 13 years because of her visions, the strength to say: "You see, my story is quite simple. The Virgin made use of me, then I was put into a corner. That is now my place. There I am happy and there I remain."

Thus, she lived out her self-effacing life, dying at the age of 35 as did Saint Benedict Labre. The events of 1858 resulted in Lourdes becoming one of the most important pilgrim shrines in the history of Christendom, ending with the consecration of the basilica in 1876. But Saint Bernadette took no part in these developments; nor was it for her visions that she was canonized, but for the humble simplicity and religious trust that characterized her whole life (Attwater, Benedictines, Bentley, Delaney, Encyclopedia, Farmer, Sandhurst, Schamoni, Trochu, Walsh, White).
Saint Bernadette is the patron saint of shepherds (White).

1923 Isabella Gilmore wurde 1887 war die erste Diakonisse in der anglikanischen Kirche und bildete in Clapham in einem später Gilmore House genannten Gebäude Diakonissen
Anglikanische Kirche: 16. April
Isabella Gilmore war die erste Diakonisse in der anglikanischen Kirche und damit Vorreiterin für das Priesteramt der Frau, das in der anglikanischen Kirche noch nicht lange anerkannt ist. Bischof Thorold von Rochester beauftragte sie, eine weibliche Diakonie in seiner Diözese aufzubauen. Isabella Gilmor wurde 1887 Diakonisse und bildete in Clapham in einem später Gilmore House genannten Gebäude Diakonissen für insgesamt sieben Diözesen der anglikanischen Kirche aus. Sie starb 1923.

On Death and Life
"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!
   (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)
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 40 Days for Life  We are the defenders of true freedom.
  May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.
40 days for Life Campaign saves lives Shawn Carney Campaign Director
Please help save the unborn they are the future for the world

It is a great poverty that a child must die so that you may live as you wish -- Mother Teresa
 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'
May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.

Jesus brings us many Blessings
The more we pray, the more we wish to pray. Like a fish which at first swims on the surface of the water, and afterwards plunges down, and is always going deeper; the soul plunges, dives, and loses itself in the sweetness of conversing with God. -- St. John Vianney

  Month by Month of Saintly Dedications

The Rosary html Mary Mother of GOD -- Her Rosary Here
Mary Mother of GOD Mary's Divine Motherhood: FEASTS OF OUR LADY
     of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary

May 9 – Our Lady of the Wood (Italy, 1607) 
Months of Dedication
January is the month of the Holy Name of Jesus since 1902;
March is the month of Saint Joseph since 1855;
May, the month of Mary, is the oldest and most well-known Marian month, officially since 1724;
June is the month of the Sacred Heart since 1873;
July is the month of the Precious Blood since 1850;
August is the month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary;
September is the month of Our Lady of Sorrows since 1857;
October is the month of the Rosary since 1868;
November is the month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory since 1888;
December is the month of the Immaculate Conception.

In all, five months of the year are dedicated to Mary.
The idea of dedicating months came from Rome and promotion of the month of Mary owes much to the Jesuits.

Pray that the witness of 40 Days for Life bears abundant fruit, and that we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until God welcomes us into the gates of heaven.

If you seek patience, you will find no better example than the cross. Great patience occurs in two ways:
either when one patiently suffers much, or when one suffers things which one is able to avoid and yet does not avoid.
Christ endured much on the cross, and did so patiently, because when he suffered he did not threaten;
he was led like a sheep to the slaughter and he did not open his mouth.-- St. Thomas Aquinas

We begin our day by seeing Christ in the consecrated bread, and throughout the day we continue to see Him in the torn bodies of our poor. We pray, that is, through our work, performing it with Jesus, for Jesus and upon Jesus.
The poor are our prayer. They carry God in them. Prayer means praying everything, praying the work.
We meet the Lord who hungers and thirsts, in the poor.....and the poor could be you or I or any person kind enough to show us his or her love and to come to our place.
Because we cannot see Christ, we cannot express our love to Him in person.
But our neighbor we can see, and we can do for him or her what we would love to do for Jesus if He were visible.
-- Mother Teresa
My God, I believe, I adore, I trust and I love Thee.  I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not love Thee.  O most Holy trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly.
 I offer Thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the Tabernacles of the world,  in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which He is offended,
and by the infite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

I beg the conversion of poor sinners,  Amen Fatima Prayer, Angel of Peace
Mary's Divine Motherhood
Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI { 2013 } Catholic Church In China { article here}
1648 to1930 St. Augustine Zhao Rong and 120 Companions Christianity arrived in China by way of Syria -- 600s.
        Depending on China's relations with outside world,
Christianity for centuries was free to grow or forced to operate secretly.

How do I start the Five First Saturdays? 
Called in the Gospel “the Mother of Jesus,” Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as “the Mother of my Lord” (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity. Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos). 
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
“The Blessed Virgin was eternally predestined, in conjunction with the incarnation of the divine Word, to be the Mother of God. By decree of divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving mother of the divine Redeemer, an associate of unique nobility, and the Lord's humble handmaid. She conceived, brought forth, and nourished Christ.”
The voice of the Father is heard, the Son enters the water, and the Holy Spirit appears in the form of a dove.
   THE spirit and example of the world imperceptibly instil the error into the minds of many that there is a kind of middle way of going to Heaven; and so, because the world does not live up to the gospel, they bring the gospel down to the level of the world. It is not by this example that we are to measure the Christian rule, but words and life of Christ. All His followers are commanded to labour to become perfect even as our heavenly Father is perfect, and to bear His image in our hearts that we may be His children. We are obliged by the gospel to die to ourselves by fighting self-love in our hearts, by the mastery of our passions, by taking on the spirit of our Lord.
   These are the conditions under which Christ makes His promises and numbers us among His children, as is manifest from His words which the apostles have left us in their inspired writings. Here is no distinction made or foreseen between the apostles or clergy or religious and secular persons. The former, indeed, take upon themselves certain stricter obligations, as a means of accomplishing these ends more perfectly; but the law of holiness and of disengagement of the heart from the world is geeral and binds all the followers of Christ.

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There are over 10,000 named saints beati  from history
 and Roman Martyology Orthodox sources

Miracles by Century 100   200   300   400   500   600   700    800   900   1000    1100   1200   1300   1400  1500  1600  1700  1800   1900  Miracles_BLay Saints
Morning Prayer and Hymn    Meditation of the Day    Prayer for Priests    Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here
We are called upon with the whole Church militant on earth to join in praising and thanking God for the grace and glory he has bestowed on his saints. At the same time we earnestly implore Him to exert His almighty power and mercy in raising us from our miseries and sins, healing the disorders of our souls and leading us by the path of repentance to the company of His saints, to which He has called us.
   They were once what we are now, travellers on earth they had the same weaknesses, which we have. We have difficulties to encounter so had the saints, and many of them far greater than we can meet with; obstacles from kings and whole nations, sometimes from the prisons, racks and swords of persecutors. Yet they surmounted these difficulties, which they made the very means of their virtue and victories. It was by the strength they received from above, not by their own, that they triumphed. But the blood of Christ was shed for us as it was for them and the grace of our Redeemer is not wanting to us; if we fail, the failure is in ourselves.
   THE saints and just, from the beginning of time and throughout the world, who have been made perfect, everlasting monuments of God’s infinite power and clemency, praise His goodness without ceasing; casting their crowns before His throne they give to Him all the glory of their triumphs: “His gifts alone in us He crowns.”
“The saints must be honored as friends of Christ and children and heirs of God, as John the theologian and evangelist says: ‘But as many as received him, he gave them the power to be made the sons of God....’ Let us carefully observe the manner of life of all the apostles, martyrs, ascetics and just men who announced the coming of the Lord. And let us emulate their faith, charity, hope, zeal, life, patience under suffering, and perseverance unto death, so that we may also share their crowns of glory” Exposition of the Orthodox Faith

Called in the Gospel the Mother of Jesus, Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as the Mother of my Lord (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son,  the second person of the Holy Trinity.
Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos).
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart ... From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
On Friday during Holy Communion, He said these words to me, His unworthy slave, if I mistake not:
I promise you in the excessive mercy of my Heart that its all-powerful love will grant to all those who receive Holy Communion on nine first Fridays of consecutive months the grace of final repentance; they will not die under my displeasure or without receiving their sacraments, my divine Heart making itself their assured refuge at the last moment.
Margaret Mary was inspired by Christ to establish the Holy Hour and to pray lying prostrate with her face to the ground from eleven till midnight on the eve of the first Friday of each month, to share in the mortal sadness.
He endured when abandoned by His Apostles in His Agony, and to receive holy Communion on the first Friday of every month. In the first great revelation, He made known to her His ardent desire to be loved by men and His design of manifesting His Heart with all Its treasures of love and mercy, of sanctification and salvation.
He appointed the Friday after the octave of the feast of Corpus Christi as the feast of the Sacred Heart; He called her the Beloved Disciple of the Sacred Heart, and the heiress of all Its treasures. The love of the Sacred Heart was the fire which consumed her, and devotion to the Sacred Heart is the refrain of all her writings. In her last illness she refused all alleviation, repeating frequently: What have I in heaven and what do I desire on earth, but Thee alone, O my God, and died pronouncing the Holy Name of Jesus.
With regard to this promise it may be remarked: (1) that our Lord required Communion to be received on a particular day chosen by Him; (2) that the nine Fridays must be consecutive; (3) that they must be made in honor of His Sacred Heart, which means that those who make the nine Fridays must practice the devotion and must have a great love for our Lord; (4) that our Lord does not say that those who make the nine Fridays will be dispensed from any of their obligations or from exercising the vigilance necessary to lead a good life and overcome temptation; rather He implicitly promises abundant graces to those who make the nine Fridays to help them to carry out these obligations and persevere to the end; (5) that perseverance in receiving Holy Communion for nine consecutive First Firdays helps the faithful to acquire the habit of frequent Communion, which our Lord eagerly desires; and (6) that the practice of the nine Fridays is very pleasing to our Lord He promises such great reward, and all Catholics should endeavor to make nine Fridays.
How do I start the Five First Saturdays? by Fr. Tom O'Mahony.
On July 13,1917, Our Lady appeared for the third time to the three children of Fatima an showed them the vision of hell and made the now - famous thirteen prophecies. In this vision Our Lady said that 'GOD WISHES TO ESTABLISH IN THE WORLD DEVOTION to Her Immaculate Heart and that She would come TO ASK FOR THE COMMUNION OF REPARATION ON THE FIRST SATURDAYS...'  Eight years later, on December 10, 1925, Our Lady did indeed come back. She appeared (with the Child Jesus) to Lucia in the convent of the Dorothean Sisters in Pontevedra.
The Child Jesus spoke first:


The Five Reasons
From the above, it is easy to see that each of the Five Saturdays can correspond to a specific offence. By offering the graces received during each First Saturday as reparation for the offence being prayed for, the participant can hope to help remove the thorns from Our Lady's Heart.
What Do I Have To Do?
The devotion of First Saturdays, as requested by Our Lady of Fatima, carries with it the assurance of salvation. However, to derive profit from such a great promise of Our Lady, the devotion must be properly understood and duly performed.
The requirements as stipulated by Our Lady are as follows:
(1) CONFESSION: A reparative confession means that the confession should not only be good (valid and licit), but also be offered in the spirit of reparation, in this case, to Mary's Immaculate Heart. This confession may be made on the First Saturday itself or some days before or after the First Saturday within the preceding octave would suffice.
(2) COMMUNION: The communion of reparation must be sacramental duly received with the intention of making reparation. This offering, like the confession, is an interior act and so no external action to express the intention is needed.
(3) THE ROSARY: The Rosary mentioned here was indicated by the Portuguese word 'terco' which is commonly employed to denote a Rosary of five decades, since it forms a fourth of the full Rosary of 20 decades. This too must recited in a spirit of reparation.
(4) MEDITATION FOR FIFTEEN MINUTES: Here the meditation on one mystery or more is to be made without simultaneous recitation of the Rosary decade. As indicated, the meditation may be either on one mystery alone for 15 minutes, or on all 20 mysteries, spending about one minute on each mystery, or again, on two or more mysteries during the period. This can also be made before each decade spending three minutes or more in considering the mystery of the particular decade. This meditation has likewise to be made in the spirit of reparation to the Immaculate Heart.
(5) THE SPIRIT OF REPARATION: All these acts, as said above, have to be done with the intention of offering reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the offences committed against Her. Everyone who offends Her commits, so to speak, a two-fold offence, for these sins also offend her Divine Son, Christ, and so endanger our salvation. They give bad example to others and weaken the strength of society to withstand immoral onslaughts. Such devotions therefore make us consider not only the enormity of the offence against God, but also the effect of sins on human society as well as the need for undoing these social effects even when the offender repents and is converted. Further, this reparation emphasises our responsibility towards sinners who, themselves, will not pray and make reparation for their sins.
(6) FIVE CONSECUTIVE FIRST SATURDAYS: The idea of the Five First Saturdays is obviously to make us persevere in the devotional acts for these Saturdays and overcome initial difficulties. Once this is done, Our Lady knows that the person would become devoted to Her immaculate Heart and persist in practising such devotion on all First Saturdays, working thereby for personal self-reform and for the salvation of others.

Unless Russia is converted, the movement against God and for sin will continue to spread, promoting wars and persecutions, and making the attainment for peace and justice impossible for this world. One means of obtaining Russia's conversion is to practise the Fatima Message. The stakes are so great that to encourage Catholics to practise the devotion of the First Saturdays, Our Lady has assured us that She will obtain salvation for all those who observe the first Saturdays for five consecutive months in accordance with Her conditions.
At the supreme moment the departing person will be either in the state of grace or not. In either case Our Lady will be by his side. If in the state of grace, She will console and help him to resist whatever temptations the devil might put before him in his last attempt to take the person with him to hell. If not in the state of grace, Our Lady will help the person to repent in a manner agreeable to God and so benefit by the fruits of redemption and be saved.

God loves variety. He doesn't mass-produce his saints. Every saint is unique, for each is the result of a new idea.  As the liturgy says: Non est inventus similis illis--there are no two exactly alike. It is we with our lack of imagination, who paint the same haloes on all the saints. Dear Lord, grant us a spirit that is not bound by our own ideas and preferences.  Grant that we may be able to appreciate in others what we lack in ourselves. O Lord, grant that we may understand that every saint must be a unique praise of Your glory. Catholic saints are holy people and human people who lived extraordinary lives.  Each saint the Church honors responded to God's invitation to use his or her unique gifts.   God calls each one of us to be a saint in order to get into heavenonly saints are allowed into heaven. The more "extravagant" graces are bestowed NOT for the benefit of the recipients so much as FOR the benefit of others.
There are over 10,000 named saints beati  from history
 and Roman Martyology Orthodox sources

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 Benedict XVI (2005 - 2013) Francis (2013

Where there is no honor for the elderly, there is no future for young people.
During his weekly General Audience in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis made this strong statement while continuing his catechesis on the family, with this and next week focusing on the elderly.  Confining this week’s address to their problematic current condition, the Holy Father said the elderly are ignored and that a society that does this is perverse.
While noting that life has been lengthened thanks to advances in medicine, he lamented that while the number of older people has multiplied, "our societies are not organized enough to make room for them, with proper respect and concrete consideration for their fragility and their dignity.”

“As long as we are young, we are led to ignore old age, as if it were a disease to be taken away. Then when we become older, especially if we are poor, sick and alone, we experience the shortcomings of a society planned on efficiency, which consequently ignores the elderly.”

He went on to quote his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI, who, when visiting a nursing home in November 2012, “used clear and prophetic words: ‘The quality of a society, I would say of a civilization, is judged also on how the elderly are treated and the place reserved for them in the common life.’"  Without a space for them, Francis highlighted, society dies.

Cultures, he decried, see the elderly as a burden who do not produce and should be discarded.
“You do not say it openly, but you do it!” he exclaimed. "Out of our fear of weakness and vulnerability, we do not tolerate and abandon the elderly," he said. “It’s sickening to see the elderly discarded. It is ugly. It’s a sin. Abandoning the elderly is a mortal sin.”
“Children who do not visit their elderly and ill parents have mortally sinned. Understand?”

The Pope expressed his dismay at children who go months without seeing a parent, or how elderly are confined to little tables in their kitchens alone, without anyone caring for them.  He noted that he observed this reality during his ministry in Buenos Aires.  Unwilling to accept limits, society, he noted, doesn’t allow elderly to participate and gives into the mentality that only the young can be useful and enjoy life.
The whole society must realize, the Pope said, the elderly contain the wisdom of the people.
The tradition of the Church, Pope Francis reaffirmed, has always supported a culture of closeness to the elderly, involving affectionately and supportively accompanying them in this final part of life.  The Church cannot, and does not want to, Francis underscored, comply with a mentality of impatience, and even less of indifference and contempt towards old age.
Sooner or later, we will all be old, he said. If we do not treat the elderly well, he stressed we will not be treated well either.
“We must awaken the collective sense of gratitude, of appreciation, of hospitality, which make them feel the elderly living part of his community.”

Concluding his address, Pope Francis noted how old age will come to all one day and reminded the faithful how much they have received from their elders. He also challenged them to not take a step back and abandon them to their fate.

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