Sunday  Saints of this Day April 24  Octávo Kaléndas Maii.  
   Fifth Week in Easter  Passover, April 22 -30
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.


CAUSES OF SAINTS April  2014  



April 23 – Our Lady of Penha (Brazil) – A tone of blue not found on this earth
 
When I don’t know what to do, I tell myself to act like Mary!
 
When we meet the Virgin Mary, something changes within us… The Immaculate is "unique." But our way to reach the level of her purity must be through humility, with a simple, child-like attitude, far different from the complicated ways of self-love.

If we truly encounter Mary, we experience a tenderness and a mercy for others that transform us. Mary’s tenderness and mercy are for everyone. When we don’t know how to act, we should ask ourselves how the Blessed Virgin would act. Then we will carry on, even if it’s not exactly to our own liking. Mary is always the bright star for us to follow.

What is my secret? Well, when I don’t know what to do anymore, I tell myself to act like Mary! And right away a small light starts to shine deep inside my soul. It’s a light of truth, simplicity and peace...

If we want to cast more light on Mary, we must first expose ourselves to her light,
take the time to pray and gaze at her. We always get back to basics by looking at Mary and praying…
 
 Sister Marie de Saint-François (d.2005), Order of the Annonciades founded by Saint Joan of France
Source: www.annonciade.info


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.

Mary's Divine Motherhood
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 Two Servants (II) April 24 - Our Lady of Bonaria (Sardinia, 1370)

Grace will not act without us, in order that we may will to do right. But when we will, it works along with us.
Grace prevents him who is not willing, that he may will. It accompanies him who wills, lest he will in vain
-- St. Augustine



The Molcha Icon of the Mother of God appeared on September 18, 1405 in the Molcha swampland not far from Putivl.
At first it was in the Molcha Sophroniev wilderness monastery, but it was transferred to the Putivl monastery on April 24, 1605






















Then the Mother of God presented Dominic to Our Blessed Lord.
"I accept him," said the Son of God, "he will do very well and diligently all what you said."
She then presented Blessed Francis and the Savior approved of him also.

Blessed Dominic looked his companion over carefully during this vision, because they had never met before. The next day he saw a man in a church and recognized him as being the same man that he had seen during the night.
He threw himself into his arms, and holding him on his heart, he kissed the saint with affection, saying:
"You are my brother in arms; you will walk in step with me and the enemy will not prevail against us."

He then told him about his vision and from that moment on, they shared one heart and one mind in God,
and they recommended their spiritual sons that they do the same among themselves, always, in all love and reverence.
That simple gesture left an indelible wake on the ocean of the ages, and the two militias of beggars found in it the symbol of their eternal alliance.
For this reason, the Patriarch of the Order of Preachers has his place among us and we also give him the title of Father.

Les Fleurs Franciscaines  2nd Series p. 187

 178 St. Alexander crucified Martyr  with 34 others companion of St. Epipodius
 272 St Sabas Roman martyr supposedly Gothic officer
 272 70 soldiers After witnessing torments of St Sava Stratelates they believe in Christ:  beheaded by the sword
 288 Martyrs Pasikrates and Valention from Durostorum, Silistria {Bulgaria) soldiers under governor Absolanus
 305 Martyrs Eusebius, Neon, Leontius, Longinus, and 40 Others present at sufferings of Great Martyr George
       In Anglia deposítio sancti Mellíti Epíscopi, qui, a sancto Gregório Papa in Angliam missus, orientáles Saxónes et ipsórum Regem ad Rhemis, in Gállia, sanctárum Vírginum Bovæ et Dodæ.    At Rheims in France, the holy virgins Bova and Doda.
       Andégavi, in Gállia, sanctæ Maríæ a sancta Euphrásia Pelletier, Vírginis, Institúti Sorórum a Bono Pastóre Fundatrícis
             
  Conversion_of_St_Augustine_Hippo
 430 Medioláni Convérsio sancti Augustíni Epíscopi, Confessóris et Ecclésiæ Doctóris
5th v St Dyfnan Founder at Anglesey, Wales
 525 St Deodatus Abbot near Blois Illíberi, in Hispánia, sancti Gregórii, Epíscopi et Confessóris.
6th v Saint Thomas the Fool-for-Christ was a monk in one of the monasteries in Caesarea of Cappadocia (Asia Minor) many healings
 586 St. Honorius of Brescia Bishop of Brescia, Italy, from circa 577, after living as a hermit nearby.
 624 St Mellitus of Canterbury missionary Archbishop of Canterbury from 619
Saint Elizabeth the Wonderworker from Constantinople chosen for the service of God at birth gift of healing physical and spiritual infirmities
 851 St Diarmaid Irish bishop of Armagh known for his learning
8th v St Egbert English monk of Lindisfarne persuading monks adopt roman usage over celebration of Easter
ST IVO, Bishop After the bones had been removed from the spot where they had lain hidden, a spring appeared at which many miracles were reported. William of Malmesbury tells us that he had been an eye-witness of the remarkable cure of a man suffering from dropsy.
1103 St William Firmatus Hermit pilgrim physician canon at  Saint-Venance close relationship with nature honored by wild animals
13th v Saint Sava of the Caves lived in the Near Caves of the Kiev Caves monastery a wonderworker
13th v Saint Alexius, Hermit of Caves, lived a life of asceticism in the Near Caves of the Kiev Caves monastery a wonderworker
1622  St Fidelis of Sigmaringen Franciscan Capuchin martyr defending poor Congregation head for Spreading of the Faith
1657 Saint Iorest the Confessor was born into a peasant family of Transylvania, and received name Elias in Baptism
1683 Saint Sava {Simeon in Baptism}was born into an old Serbian family from Hertzegovina defender of the faith against calvinists used Saints in Sermons for his flock
1711 Saint Joseph the confessor was born in the seventeenth century, and was consecrated as a bishop in Moldavia (northern Romania in 1690 by Metropolitan Dositheus.
1868 St Mary Euphrasia Pelletier, Virgin, Foundress Of The Institute Of Our Lady Of Charity Of The Good Shepherd
"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)

178 St. Alexander crucified Martyr  with 34 others companion of St. Epipodius
Lugdúni, in Gállia, natális sancti Alexándri Mártyris, qui, in persecutióne Antoníni Veri, post cárceris custódiam, primo ita laniátus est crudelitáte verberántium, ut, crate solúta costárum, patefáctis viscéribus, interióra córporis panderéntur; deínde, crucis affixus patíbulo, beátum spíritum exanimátus emísit.  Passi sunt cum ipso et álii, número trigínta quátuor, quorum memória áliis diébus ágitur.
    At Lyons in France, during the persecution of Antoninus Verus, the birthday of St. Alexander, martyr.  After being imprisoned, he was so lacerated by the cruelty of those who scourged him, that his ribs and the interior of his body were exposed to view.  Then he was fastened to the gibbet of the cross, on which he yielded up his blessed soul.  Thirty-four others who suffered with him are commemorated on other days.

A resident of Gaul, Alexander was one of the Christian martyrs of the persecutions conducted in the reign of Emperor Marcus Aurelius. When Roman officials began making arrests in the area, Alexander and Epipodius fled the city but were hunted down by the Romans. After being tortured, Alexander died on a cross. Epipodius was beheaded.

Alexander and Comp. MM (RM) Born in Greece; died 177. Saint Alexander was a friend and companion of Saint Epipodius. He was arrested and put to death in Lyons, France, together with 34 others (Benedictines).
272 St. Sabas "stratelates"= {military commander}  healing the sick and casting out demons in the name of Christ Roman martyr supposedly Gothic officer
Romæ sancti Sabæ, ductóris mílitum, qui, accusátus quod Christiános in cárcere deténtos visitáret, coram Júdice Christum líbere conféssus est.  Hinc ab eódem Júdice fácibus adústus et in lebétem picis fervéntis est immíssus, et, cum inde evasísset illæsus, eo miráculo septuagínta viros ad Christum convértit; qui omnes, constánter in confessióne fídei permanéntes, gládio cæsi sunt.  Postrémo et ipse, demérsus in flumen, martyrium consummávit.
    At Rome, St. Sabas, a military officer, who bravely confessed Christ before the judge when he was accused of visiting the Christians kept in prison.  For this he was burned with torches and thrown into a cauldron of boiling pitch, out of which he came uninjured.  Seventy men were converted to Christ at the sight of this miracle, and as they all remained unshaken in the confession of the faith, they were put to the sword.  Sabas, however, completed his martyrdom by being cast into the river.

Saint Sabbas Stratelates came from a Gothic tribe. For his bravery he attained the high rank of military commander or "stratelates," and he served under the Roman emperor Aurelian (270-275).  From his youth, Sabbas was a Christian and he fervently followed the commands of Christ. He helped the needy, and visited Christians in prison. Because of his pure and virtuous life the saint received from the Lord the gift of wonderworking, healing the sick and casting out demons in the name of Christ.
When the emperor learned that St Sabbas was a Christian, he demanded that he apostasize. The martyr threw down his military belt and declared that he would not forsake his faith. They beat him, burned him with torches, and threw him into a cauldron with tar, but the martyr remained unharmed.

272 seventy soldiers After witnessing the torments of St Sava Stratelates they, came to believe in Christ:  beheaded by the sword.
They were beheaded by the sword. St Sabbas was thrown in prison. At midnight, while he was praying, Christ appeared to the martyr and shone on him the light of His Glory. The Savior bade him not to fear, but to stand firm. Encouraged, the Martyr Sabbas underwent new torture in the morning, and was drowned in a river in 272.

288 Martyrs Pasikrates and Valention came from the city of Durostorum, Silistria (now Bulgaria) and were soldiers under the governor Absolanus.
Pasikrates was twenty-two years old, and Valention was thirty.

When a persecution against Christians began, Sts Pasikrates and Valention openly confessed their faith in Christ. At the trial Pasikrates spit at the idol of Apollo, and refused to offer sacrifice.

The brother of St Pasikrates wept and urged him merely to appear to offer sacrifice to the idols. The martyr placed his hand on the sacrifice in the fire and said, "The body is mortal and burns in the fire, the soul, however, is immortal and is not harmed by these torments." St Valention also showed his readiness to suffer for Christ.

When they led the martyrs to execution, the mother of St Pasikrates followed them and exhorted her son not to fear death for Christ.
Both martyrs were tortured and then beheaded in 288.


Rhemis, in Gállia, sanctárum Vírginum Bovæ et Dodæ.
    At Rheims in France, the holy virgins Bova and Doda.
305 Martyrs Eusebius, Neon, Leontius, Longinus, and 40 Others were present at the sufferings of the Great Martyr George (April 23)
Through which they came to believe in Christ.
They were then locked up in prison. After the execution of St George, the emperor Diocletian (284-305) issued an edict stating that all the prisoners were to offer sacrifice to the idols.
The martyrs refused. They were beaten with iron rods, almost exposing their inner organs, and then their heads were cut off with a sword.



Andégavi, in Gállia, sanctæ Maríæ a sancta Euphrásia Pelletier, Vírginis, Institúti Sorórum a Bono Pastóre Fundatrícis, quam Pius Duodécimus, Póntifex Máximus, in Sanctárum númerum rétulit.
    At Angers in France, St. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier, virgin and foundress of the Institute of the Good Shepherd Sisters, whom Pius XII, Sovereign Pontiff, enrolled among the number of the saints.
430 Medioláni Convérsio sancti Augustíni Epíscopi, Confessóris et Ecclésiæ Doctóris; quem beátum Ambrósius Epíscopus veritátem fídei cathólicæ dócuit, et hac die baptizávit.
    At Milan, the Conversion of St. Augustine, bishop, confessor, and doctor of the Church, whom the bishop St. Ambrose had instructed in the truth of the Catholic faith, and baptized on this day.

5th v St. Dyfnan Founder at Anglesey, Wales.
He was the son of the Welsh chieftain Brychan of Brecknock.
525 St. Deodatus Abbot near Blois.
France, where the town Saint-Die formed around his original hermitage.
6th v Saint Thomas the Fool-for-Christ was a monk in one of the monasteries in Caesarea of Cappadocia (Asia Minor) many healings
His obedience was to collect alms for the monastery. When the Blessed Thomas arrived in the city of Antioch, Syria he began his exploit of foolishness for the sake of Christ.

The steward of one of the churches, a certain Anastasius, became annoyed with the entreaties of St Thomas, and struck him on the cheek. Those present reproached Anastasius for his inappropriate manner of dealing with the fool, but St Thomas quieted them saying, "From this moment I shall accept nothing further from Anastasius, nor will Anastasius be able to give me anything further." These words proved prophetic. Anastasius died the very next day, and the saint also died along the road to his monastery, at the church of St Euthymius in the suburb of Daphne. They buried him at a place set aside for the burial of strangers.

After a certain while they buried another stranger in the saint's grave. After four hours the ground on the grave of the stranger was thrown aside. They again covered the grave, but in the morning the ground on the grave again lay open. They reburied the stranger in another place.

The same thing happened when they buried two women nearby. Everyone realized that St Thomas did not wish to have a woman buried over him. The occurrence was reported to Patriarch Domnus of Antioch (546-560). At his command the relics of St Thomas were transferred to Antioch and placed in a cemetery where the relics of many holy martyrs rested. A small church was built over these relics, from which many healings occurred
Through the prayers of St Thomas a deadly plague ceased at Antioch. From that time the inhabitants began to honor the memory of St Thomas every year.
Illíberi, in Hispánia, sancti Gregórii, Epíscopi et Confessóris.  
    At Elvira, in Spain, St. Gregory, bishop and confessor.

586 St. Honorius of Brescia Bishop of Brescia, Italy, from circa 577, after living as a hermit nearby.
Bríxiæ sancti Honórii Epíscopi.      At Brescia, St. Honorius, bishop.

624 St. Mellitus of Canterbury missionary Archbishop of Canterbury from 619
In Anglia deposítio sancti Mellíti Epíscopi, qui, a sancto Gregório Papa in Angliam missus, orientáles Saxónes et ipsórum Regem ad fidem convértit.
    In England, the death of St. Mellitus, bishop.  He was sent there by St. Gregory, and he converted to the faith the East Saxons and their king.
624 ST MELLITUS, Archbishop OF CANTERBURY
ST MELLITUS was a Roman abbot—presumably from the monastery of St Andrew— whom Pope St Gregory the Great despatched to England in 601 at the head of a second band of missionaries to assist St Augustine. When he had laboured for three years in Kent, he was appointed first bishop of London or of the East Saxons, and baptized King Sabert as well as many of his subjects. At the death of Sabert his three sons, who had never been baptized, openly reverted to idolatry. Never­theless they demanded that Mellitus should give them the Blessed Sacrament— “the fine white bread” they called it—as he had been accustomed to give It to their father. Upon his refusal they banished him from the kingdom. Mellitus retired to France, but was soon recalled to Kent, the scene of his earlier labours, and succeeded St Laurence as archbishop of Canterbury in 619. While prostrate with gout, he stopped by his prayers a great conflagration which was threatening to destroy the city. The feast of this saint is kept in the dioceses of Westminster, Brentwood and Southwark.
See the Ecclesiastical History of Bede with Plummer’s notes.
In 601, he was sent from St. Andrew’s Monastery, Rome, to England by Pope St. Gregory I the Great. Mellitus spent three years as a missionary in Kent, England, aiding St. Augustine. He also became the first bishop of London and was responsible for converting the King of the East Saxons. The Saxons, however, exiled him in 616 over some conflict, but Mellitus returned to England and was named archbishop of Canterbury, in succession to St. Lawrence.
Tradition states that he
saved Canterbury from a disastrous fire with his prayers.
Saint Elizabeth the Wonderworker from Constantinople chosen for the service of God at birth gift of healing physical and spiritual infirmities
It was revealed to her mother that the girl would become a chosen vessel of the Lord (Acts 9:15).  The parents sent their daughter to a monastery as a child. She grew up in an atmosphere of fasting and constant prayer, and received the gift of healing physical and spiritual infirmities.

The sisters chose her to be abbess of the Sts Cosmas and Damian Monastery. She wore a coarse hairshirt all year round. Her body was chilled in winter, but her spirit blazed with ardent love for God.  The saint's asceticism was very strict. For many years she ate only grass and vegetables, but would not partake of bread, wine, or oil. Many times St Elizabeth ate nothing at all during the forty days of the Great Fast. Imitating the Publican in humility, for three years she did not lift up her eyes to the heavens, but she looked constantly to God with her spiritual eyes.

At midnight prayers, the saint shone with a heavenly light.  St Elizabeth performed many miracles: a vicious serpent was killed by her prayer, she healed a woman with issue of blood who had been ill for many years, and she cast out unclean spirits from people. At her tomb many were healed of various illnesses, and the blind received their sight. Many cured with just some earth from her grave.  We do not know exactly when St Elizabeth lived, but it was probably between the sixth and ninth centuries.
8th v. St. Egbert English monk of Lindisfarne persuading monks adopt roman usage over celebration of Easter
In Ióna, Scótiæ ínsula, sancti Egbérti, Presbyteri et Mónachi, admirándæ humilitátis et continéntiæ viri.
    In Iona, an island of Scotland, St. Egbert, priest and monk, a man of admirable humility and continency.

729 ST EGBERT, Bishop

ONE of the many Englishmen who in Anglo-Saxon days crossed the sea to acquire sanctity and learning in Ireland was a young monk from Lindisfarne called Egbert. Whilst living at the monastery of Rathmelsigi, during a terrible epidemic of plague, he vowed that if God would grant him time for repentance he would never return to his native land. After his ordination to the priesthood he conceived an ardent desire to evangelize Friesland and the north of Germany. But it was revealed to him that Providence had another design for him, and he abandoned the enterprise to St Wigbert, St Willibrord and others. His own task was to be less glorious, but no less difficult. The great paschal controversy had ended in the general accept­ance of the Roman use throughout the British Isles. The celebrated monastery of Iona alone held out, even the efforts of their own abbot Adamnan having been unable to shake the adherence of the monks to the Columban tradition. Thither went St Egbert, who spent the last thirteen years of his life upon the island. By his patient reasoning, enhanced by his reputation for holiness and learning, he suc­ceeded where all others had failed. The very day on which he died, an old man of ninety, the brethren of Iona were keeping Easter day for the first time with the rest of the Western church. It was April 24, 729. His feast is observed in the dioceses of Hexham and Argyll, as a confessor though Bede says he was a bishop.
We know little more than can be learnt from Bede, Hist. Eccl!., bks. iii—v, with Plummer’s notes. See also Forbes, KSS., p. 331.

Egbert is 8th. Century An English monk of Lindisfarne, he was anxious to go on the mission to Germany. His destiny, however, was less heroic but quite important. Settling on Iona, he succeeded in persuading the monks to adopt the roman usage over the celebration of Easter - a task which took thirteen years of gentle persuasion.
851 St. Diarmaid Irish bishop of Armagh known for his learning
He was named bishop in 834 but was driven from his see by a usurper, Forau. Diarmaid went to Connacht, where he ruled as primate. During his reign, Norsemen destroyed churches in Armagh in 841.

ST IVO, Bishop After the bones had been removed from the spot where they had lain hidden, a spring appeared at which many miracles were reported. William of Malmesbury tells us that he had been an eye-witness of the remarkable cure of a man suffering from dropsy.

THE town of Saint Ives in Huntingdonshire recalls the memory of a saint who was—supposing indeed that he ever existed—quite a different person from the St Ia who accounts for the Saint Ives in west Cornwall. All that we can be reasonably sure of is that in accord with some supposed dream or vision (though the vision may well have been invented afterwards) certain bones and episcopal insignia were dug up at Slepe, close to the abbey of Ramsey, about the year 1001 and were enshrined in the abbey church.

In the vision St Ivo had disclosed his name and history. He was a Persian and a bishop, who had, with three companions, run away from the comfort and honour he enjoyed in his own country and eventually found his way to England. There he had settled in the wild fen country, and after being mocked at first for his barbarous speech, had been left alone to live or die unnoticed. After the bones had been removed from the spot where they had lain hidden, a spring appeared at which many miracles were reported. William of Malmesbury tells us that he had been an eye-witness of the remarkable cure of a man suffering from dropsy.

This story became well known after the Norman conquest, but no satisfactory evidence is producible and the whole thing is very suspicious. Since before 1281 this Ivo has been regarded as the patron of Saint lye, near Liskeard in east Cornwall, probably taking the place of some local patron. Saint Ives in Hampshire is not a saint’s name, says Ekwall, but probably a derivative of Old English ifig, ivy.

An abbot of Ramsey, Withman, having gone as a pilgrim to Jerusalem in 1021 heard so much of the fame of St Ivo in the East that on his return he wrote a life of him. This was reproduced in more polished style by Goscelin when at Canterbury, and from an imperfect copy his account has been printed in the Acta Sanctorum, June, vol. ii. See DCB,, vol. iii, p. 324; G. H. Doble, St Yvo (1935); and remarks in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. liv (1936), p. 202.

1103 St. William Firmatus; Hermit pilgrim physician canon at Saint-Venance; close relationship with nature honored by wild animals
1090 ST WILLIAM FIRMATUS
CANONRIES in the eleventh century were not always reserved for the clergy, and William Firmatus, a gifted young citizen of Tours, was appointed a canon of St Venantius at a very early age, before he had decided upon his future career. He took up soldiering and then medicine, tilt a dream or vision in which he beheld the Devil, in the form of an ape, sitting upon his money chest, revealed to him an unconscious tendency to avarice. Immediately he threw up his profession and withdrew into retirement with his widowed mother. At her death he embraced a still more austere mode of life, residing as a hermit in a wood at Laval in Mayenne, where he suffered much from his neighbours, especially from the wiles and accusa­tions of a wicked woman.
 
After a first pilgrimage to Jerusalem, he occupied solitary cells in various parts of Brittany and France—notably at Vitré, Savigny and Mantilly—earning a great reputation for sanctity.
A second visit to the Holy Land was followed by a return to Mantilly. St William’s power over animals led the peasants to appeal to him for the protection of their gardens and fields from the depredations of wild creatures. We read that with a gentle tap he would admonish the hares and goats that frisked about him and the birds as they nestled for warmth in the folds of his habit. In the case of a particularly destructive wild boar he adopted sterner measures. Leading it by the ear he shut it up in a cell, bidding it fast all night, and, when he set it free in the morning, the beast was cured for ever of its marauding proclivities!
St William died at a date which appears to have been 1090 or a little earlier.
A life is printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. iii, which is attributed to Stephen de Fougeres. See also H. A. Pigeon, Vies des Saints du diocese tie Coutances, vol. ii, p. 398.
A physician and canon at Saint-Venance, France, he beheld a vision which prompted him to give all his possessions and wealth to the poor. He lived as a recluse with his mother until he entered a hermitage near Laval, Mayenne. He spent the rest of his life on pilgrimages and residing as a hermit near Savigny and Mantilly. William had a close relationship with nature and was honored by wild animals.
13th v Saint Sava of the Caves lived in the Near Caves of the Kiev Caves monastery a wonderworker
 In the manuscripts, in the "Book of the Saints," and in the Canon of the Services to the Fathers of the Kiev Caves, he is called a wonderworker.

His memory is celebrated on April 24 because of his namesake, the Holy Martyr Sava Stratelates. The memory of St Sava is also celebrated on the Synaxis of the Monastic Fathers of the Near Caves (September 28), and on the Synaxis of all the Wonderworkers of the Kiev Caves (Second Sunday of Great Lent).

13th v Saint Alexius, Hermit of Caves, lived a life of asceticism in the Near Caves of the Kiev Caves monastery
His relics were uncovered after 1675. The memory of St Alexius is celebrated on April 24, because his relics rest beside the relics of St Sava of Caves.
His memory is also celebrated on the Synaxis of the Monastic Fathers of the Near Caves (September 28) and on the Synaxis of all the Wonderworkers of the Kiev Caves (Second Sunday of Great Lent).

1622 St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen Franciscan Capuchin martyr defending the poor Congregation head for Spreading of the Faith
Sevísii, in Rhǽtia, sancti Fidélis a Sigmarínga, Sacerdótis ex Ordine Minórum Capuccinórum et Mártyris; qui, illuc ad prædicándam cathólicam fidem missus, ibídem, ab hæréticis interémptus, martyrium consummávit; et a Benedícto Décimo quarto, Pontifice Máximo, inter sanctos Mártyres relátus est.
    At Gruch in Switzerland, St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen, priest and martyr, of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin.  He was sent there to preach the Catholic faith, but was put to death by the heretics.  He was numbered among the holy martyrs by the Sovereign Pontiff, Benedict XIV.
  St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen (1577-1622)
1622 ST FIDELIS OF SIGMARINGEN, MARTYR
THE Congregation de Propaganda Fide honours as its protomartyr the Capuchin priest St Fidelis, otherwise known as Mark Rey. A native of Sigmaringen in Hohenzollern and a youth of great promise, he was sent to the university of Freiburg in Breisgau, where he taught philosophy whilst he was working for a legal degree. Already he had begun to lead a penitential life, wearing a hair shirt and abstaining from wine. In 1604 he was appointed tutor to a small party of aristocratic Swabian youths who wished to complete their education by supplementary studies in the chief cities of western Europe.
During this tour, which seems to have lasted for six years, he won the affection and esteem of his companions, to whom he set the example of religious devotion and of liberality towards the poor, to whom he sometimes gave the clothes off his back. Upon his return to Germany, he took his degree as doctor of laws, and began to practise as an advocate at Ensisheim in Upper Alsace. He soon became known for his integ­rity and for his studied avoidance of the invective and personalities then too often employed to damage an opponent’s case.
His espousal of the cause of the oppressed earned him the nickname of The Poor Man’s Lawyer; but the unscrupulous and crooked expedients adopted by his colleagues gave him a disgust for the law, and he decided to enter the Capuchin branch of the Franciscan Order, of which his brother George was already a member. After having received holy orders Mark took the habit, together with the name of Fidelis, chosen in allusion to the promise of a crown of life to those who persevere (Apoc. ii, 10).

Father Fidelis’s constant prayer was that he might be preserved from sloth or lukewarmness: “Woe betide me if I should prove myself but a half-hearted soldier in the service of my thorn-crowned Captain!” he was heard to exclaim. His patrimony was divided into two portions, one of which was distributed to the poor, whilst the other was given to the bishop in aid of needy seminarists.
    As soon as his theological course was completed, the young Capuchin was employed in preach­ing and in hearing confessions. He was appointed guardian successively at Rheinfelden, Freiburg and Feldkirch, and whilst he held this last office he not only brought about a reform in the town and in several outlying districts, but also converted numerous Protestants.
His great devotion to the sick, many of whom he cured during a severe epidemic, still further enhanced his reputation, and at the request of the bishop of Chur his superiors sent him to preach among the Zwinglians of the Grisons, with eight other Capuchins. This first attempt since the Reforma­tion to reclaim that land from heresy was received by the leading Protestants with threats of violence which Fidelis affected to disregard, although fully aware of the fate that probably awaited him.

From the outset the mission was abundantly blessed, and the newly established Congregation for the Spreading of the Faith formally appointed Father Fidelis leader of the Grisons enterprise. Day after day he gathered fresh recruits into the Church, his success being attributable even more to the prayers in which he spent his nights than to his daily sermons and instructions.

The wonderful effects of his zeal inflamed the rage of his adversaries. They roused the peasants against him by representing him as the opponent of their national aspirations for independence and the agent of the Austrian emperor, to whose rule he was said to have counselled submission. St Fidelis, who had been warned, spent several nights in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament or before his crucifix. On April 24, 1622, he preached at Grüsch. At the close of his sermon, which he had delivered with more than his customary fire, he stood silent for some time in an ecstasy with his eyes looking upwards. He had spoken in a sermon at Feldkirch of his approaching death and had signed his last letter, “Brother Fidelis who will soon be food for worms”. He then proceeded to Sewis, and was in the midst of a sermon on “One Lord, one faith, one baptism”, when a gun was fired at him; but the bullet missed, lodging in the wall.

There was a great tumult, the Austrian soldiers who were about the place were set upon, and a Protestant offered to shelter Fidelis, who thanked him but declined, saying his life was in God’s hands. He tried to retake the road back to Grüsch, but was attacked by a score of armed men, clamouring that he should repudiate his faith. “I came here to enlighten you, not to accept your errors”, was the reply, and he was struck down, calling on God to forgive his murderers as they mangled his body with their weapons. He was forty-five years old.  The conversion of a Zwinglian minister who was present was one of the first fruits of the martyrdom of St Fidelis of Sigmaringen, who was canonized by Pope Benedict XIV.

The most reliable account of St Fidelis of Sigmaringen seems to be that of F. della Scala, Der hl. Fidelis von Sigmaringen (1896). Much use has been made of this work in the more popular account written by Fr F. de la Motte-Servolex, St Fidéle de Sigmaringen (1901). See also Nel terzo centenario di San Fedele da Sigmaringa (1922). There are several other lives, especially in German, e.g. that by B. Gossens (1933), and cf. Léon, Auréole Séraphique (Eng. trans.), vol. ii, pp. 101—104, as also J. G. Mayer, Geschicte des Bistums Chur (1914), pp. 399—405.

If a poor man needed some clothing, Fidelis would often give the man the clothes right off his back. Complete generosity to others characterized this saint's life.

Born in 1577, Mark Rey (Fidelis was his religious name) became a lawyer who constantly upheld the causes of the poor and oppressed people. Nicknamed "the poor man's lawyer," Fidelis soon grew disgusted with the corruption and injustice he saw among his colleagues. He left his law career to become a priest, joining his brother George as a Franciscan friar of the Capuchin Order. His wealth was divided between needy seminarians and the poor.
As a follower of Francis, Fidelis continued his devotion to the weak and needy. Once, during a severe epidemic in a city where he was guardian of a friary, Fidelis cared for and cured many sick soldiers.
He was appointed head of a group of Capuchins sent to preach against the Calvinists and Zwinglians in Switzerland. Almost certain violence threatened. Those who observed the mission felt that success was more attributable to the prayer of Fidelis during the night than to his sermons and instructions.
He was accused of opposing the peasants' national aspirations for independence from Austria. While he was preaching at Seewis, to which he had gone against the advice of his friends, a gun was fired at him, but he escaped unharmed. A Protestant offered to shelter Fidelis, but he declined, saying his life was in God's hands. On the road back, he was set upon by a group of armed men and killed.

Comment: Fidelis's constant prayer was that he be kept completely faithful to God and not give in to any lukewarmness or apathy. He was often heard to exclaim, "Woe to me if I should prove myself but a halfhearted soldier in the service of my thorn-crowned Captain." His prayer against apathy, and his concern for the poor and weak make him a saint whose example is valuable today. The modern Church is calling us to follow the example of "the poor man's lawyer" by sharing ourselves and our talents with those less fortunate and by working for justice in the world.

Quote: "Action on behalf of justice and participation in the transformation of the world fully appear to us as a constitutive dimension of the preaching of the Gospel, or, in other words, of the Church's mission for the redemption of the human race and its liberation from every oppressive situation" ("Justice in the World," Synod of Bishops, 1971).

He was born Mark Rey is Sigmaringen, Germany, in 1577. A practicing lawyer, he traveled across Europe as a tutor to aristocrats but then started defending the poor.
In 1612, he became a Franciscan Capuchin monk, taking the name of Fidelis. A missionary to Grisons, Switzerland, Fidelis was so successful that local Protestants claimed that he was a spy for the Austrian Emperor. Fidelis was stabbed to death in a church id Seewis. He was canonized by Pope Benedict XIV. Fidelis served also as the head of the Congregation for the Spreading of the Faith.
1657 Saint Iorest the Confessor was born into a peasant family of Transylvania, and received the name Elias in Baptism.
At an early age he entered the Puta Monastery and was tonsured with the name Iorest. He made great progress in the spiritual life, and was also a calligrapher and an iconographer. Because of his virtuous life, the igumen of the monastery recommended him to be ordained to the holy priesthood. St Iorest served in the altar with great compunction and fear of God, edifying others by his sermons.
In 1640, Prince Basil Lupu of Moldavia proposed St Iorest to succeed Metropolitan Gennadius of Ardeal, who had reposed. By God's will, St Iorest was chosen to lead the church in Transylvania, and was installed as Metropolitan in 1641.  For three years the holy archpastor defended his flock from the snares of the devil, and from the false teachings of the Calvinists.He traveled throughout his diocese appointing priests, consecrating churches, and teaching the people.

St Iorest was thrown into prison in 1643 because of his zealous opposition to the activities of foreign missionaries who wished to convert the Orthodox faithful. For nine months he endured beatings and abuse, then he was released and ordered to pay a fine. 
St Iorest returned to Moldavia in 1656-1657, and was appointed as Bishop of Hushi. Here too, he served the Church well, laboring for the salvation of the flock which God had entrusted to him. The Lord called St Iorest to himself on April 24, 1657.

1683 Saint Sava {Simeon in Baptism} was born into an old Serbian family from Hertzegovina defender of the faith against calvinists used Saints in Sermons for his flock
They took refuge near Arad in Transylvania at the end of the sixteenth century. The future saint was born at Inau around 1620, and received the name Simeon in Baptism. His parents were named John and Maria.  At first he was tutored at home, then he traveled in Hungary, Serbia and Bulgaria. After visiting his uncle, Metropolitan Longinus, at the Comana Monastery south of Bucharest, he decided to stay there to complete his education. The Metropolitan tutored him in religious and secular subjects. After completing his studies, Simeon returned home and got married at the age of thirty. He was ordained to the holy priesthood, but his wife died soon after this. Not long afterward, his mother became a nun.
Fr Simeon continued to serve in the Lord's vineyard for ten years, converting many Moslems, and reconverting Christians who had embraced Islam..

In 1656, a council of clergy and laymen at Alba Iulia elected the widowed Fr Simeon as Metropolitan of Ardeal in Transylvania (western Romania). He traveled to the cathedral in Tirgovishte in Wallachia, and there he received monastic tonsure with the name Sava. On September 16, 1656 he was consecrated as a bishop by Metropolitan Stephen of Wallachia.

St Sava's episcopal service was plagued by the missionary activities of Calvinists who tried to convert the Orthodox, and who were supported by the princes of Transylvania. In addition, frequent wars threatened the stability of the area during his first years as Metropolitan. The saint, however, proved to be a faithful defender of the Church.  In the face of these difficulties, St Sava set up a print shop and published service books, manuals of instruction for clergy and laity, and a catechism.
He also preached sermons based on the writings of Fathers, and using the Lives of the Saints as models for his flock.

St Sava was driven from his See between 1660-1662 because of his labors to strengthen his flock in Orthodoxy. Although he returned to his duties and served without interruption until 1680, Metropolitan Sava was often harassed because of his refusal to cooperate with the prince and the Calvinists.

In 1668 Metropolitan Sava journeyed to Russia seeking help.
This led to his persecution by Prince Michael Apaffi and Protestant leaders, who did not appreciate his fierce opposition to their attempts to convert the Orthodox of Transylvania to Calvinism. In February of 1669 the prince issued a decree imposing many duties and restrictions on him.

St Sava convened a council at Alba Iulia in 1675. Among other things, the council decided to celebrate the Liturgy in the Romanian language rather than Slavonic, and to improve the spiritual and moral life of the clergy and laity.
In 1680 the Calvinist Superintendent of Transylvania made false accusations against St Sava and had him put on trial and thrown into prison. This effectively ended his career. Old and sickly, the Metropolitan endured three years of cruel torture in the Blaj Castle prison.
He was finally released through the efforts of Prince Sherban of Wallachia, but died of his injuries on April 24, 1683.

St Sava served as Metropolitan for almost twenty-five years under very trying circumstances. In spite of this, he defended his clergy and his flock against the activities of the proselytizers. Since he endured all things with Christian patience, even the bitter sufferings to which he was subjected at the end of his life, St Sava is regarded as a martyr and a Confessor of the Orthodox Faith.
St Sava was glorified by the Church of Romania on October 21, 1955.
1711 Saint Joseph  the Confessor was born in the seventeenth century, and was consecrated as a bishop in Moldavia (northern Romania in 1690 by Metropolitan Dositheus.
This was a period of great trials and sufferings for the people of Maramures (in northern Romania) because the Roman Catholic authorities wanted to wipe out Orthodoxy in the region.

St Joseph was a zealous defender of the Orthodox Faith, and therefore he was jailed by the civil authorities.
He died in 1711 after suffering for the truth and defending his flock.
St Joseph the Confessor was glorified by the Orthodox Church of Romania in 1992.


1868 St Mary Euphrasia Pelletier, Virgin, Foundress Of The Institute Of Our Lady Of Charity Of The Good Shepherd

Andégavi, in Gállia, sanctæ Maríæ a sancta Euphrásia Pelletier, Vírginis, Institúti Sorórum a Bono Pastóre Fundatrícis, quam Pius Duodécimus, Póntifex Máximus, in Sanctárum númerum rétulit.

At Angers in France, St. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier, virgin and foundress of the Institute of the Good Shepherd Sisters, whom Pius XII, Sovereign Pontiff, enrolled among the number of the saints.

ROSE Virginia Pelletier was born in 1796 in the island of Noirmoutier off the coast of Brittany; her parents had been forced to seek shelter there in the war of La Vendée. Having been sent to school at Tours, Rose came to learn something of the Convent of the Refuge. This belonged to a religious congregation founded in 1641 by St John Eudes for the rescue of “fallen” women and the protection of those in danger. It was known as the Institute of Our Lady of Charity of the Refuge, and it had a house in Tours. Rose joined the noviceship there in 1814, and some eleven years later, when she was still only twenty-nine, was elected superior. In this office she was prevailed upon to make a new foundation at Angers and she herself went temporarily to take over a house of refuge which had existed there years before under the invocation of the Good Shepherd. Her success was marvellous, but there was a sad reaction when she was compelled to leave Angers and return to her own proper community at Tours. In the end, after much negotiation and rather painful controversy, Mother Pelletier was made prioress of the new founda­tion. Coming before long to realize the difficulties which would hamper their work if each house, as was the ease with the Institute of Our Lady of Charity, stood alone, remaining under control of the bishop of the diocese and training its own novices, Mother St Euphrasia (as she was now called) became convinced that a centralized organization was necessary, having one common noviceship, and a superior general who could transfer subjects from one house to another as need required. In spite of strong opposition and the anguish of mind entailed by taking so independent a line, Mother Euphrasia stood firm in what she clearly saw to be a wiser policy to promote the great cause they had at heart.

While deeply humble and respectful of authority, the young prioress, who, as one of her admirers said, “était de taille a gouverner un Royaume”, succeeded, God’s providence helping, in creating at Angers what was virtually a new institute, “of the Good Shepherd”. Papal approbation was obtained in 1835, and the developments were rapid, immense good being visibly effected wherever new foundations were made. When Mother Euphrasia died in 1868, the Good Shep­herd nuns numbered 2760 and were known all over the world. In all her manifold trials and difficulties, including charges of rash innovation, personal ambition and impatience of authority, St Mary Euphrasia displayed heroic fortitude, cheerfulness and trust in God; “Having brought to birth all our young sisters in the Cross”, she said once, “I love them more than life itself. And the root of that love is in God and in the knowledge of my own unworthiness, for I realize that at the age at which they are professed I could not have supported such deprivations and hard work.” She was canonized in 1940.
There are full biographies in French, both in two volumes, by Mgr Pasquier (1894) and by Canon Portais (1895), and a more recent one (1946) by G. Bernoville in which use has been made of unpublished beatification documents; shorter ones by F. Georges (1942) and H. Joly (1933) in the “Les Saints” series. A religious of the congregation published a life in English in 1933, and Redemption (1940), by G. F. Powers, is a good popular account of the saint; the biography by A. M. Clarke is founded on the books of Pasquier and Portals.

 Sunday  Saints of this Day April 24  Octávo Kaléndas Maii.  
   Fifth Week in Easter  Passover, April 22 -30

God Bless Mother Angelica 1923-2016
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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!)
Listen to the podcast

 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 www.40daysforlife.com
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.  arras.catholique.fr


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.

Join Mary of Nazareth Project help us build the International Marian Center of Nazareth
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THE EUCHARIST, A MYSTERY TO BE BELIEVED POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION
SACRAMENTUM CARITATIS OF THE HOLY FATHER BENEDICT XVI
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:
'HAVE COMPASSION ON THE HEART OF YOUR MOST HOLY MOTHER WHICH IS COVERED WITH THORNS WITH WHICH UNGRATEFUL MEN PIERCE IT AT EVERY MOMENT, WHILE THERE IS NO ONE TO REMOVE THEM WITH AN ACT OF REPARATION.'

THE GREAT PROMISE
Our Lady then said: 'MY DAUGHTER LOOK AT MY HEART SURROUNDED WITH THORNS WITH WHICH UNGRATEFUL MEN PIERCE IT AT EVERY MOMENT BY THEIR BLASPHEMIES AND INGRATITUDE. YOU, AT LEAST, TRY TO CONSOLE ME, AND SAY THAT I PROMISE TO ASSIST AT THE HOUR OF DEATH WITH ALL THE GRACES NECESSARY FOR SALVATION, ALL THOSE WHO, ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS GO TO CONFESSION AND RECEIVE HOLY COMMUNION, RECITE FIVE DECADES OF THE ROSARY AND KEEP ME COMPANY FOR A QUARTER OF AN HOUR WHILE MEDITATING ON MYSTERIES OF THE ROSARY, WITH THE INTENTION OF MAKING REPARATION TO ME.'

The Five Reasons
Lucia once asked this question of Our Lord and received as an answer: 'MY DAUGHTER, THE MOTIVE IS SIMPLE, THERE ARE FIVE KINDS OF OFFENCES AND BLASPHEMIES UTTERED AGAINST THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY: (1) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION: (2) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST HER VIRGINITY: (3) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST HER DIVINE MATERNITY: (4) BLASPHEMIES OF THOSE WHO OPENLY SEEK TO FOSTER IN THE HEARTS OF CHILDREN INDIFFERENCE OR EVEN HATRED FOR THIS IMMACULATE MOTHER: (5) THE OFFENCES OF THOSE WHO DIRECTLY OUTRAGE HER IN HOLY IMAGES.'
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, (2) COMMUNION, (3) FIVE DECADES OF THE ROSARY, (4) MEDITATION ON ONE OR MORE OF THE ROSARY MYSTERIES FOR FIFTEEN MINUTES, (5) TO DO ALL THESE THINGS IN THE SPIRIT OF REPARATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY, and (6) TO OBSERVE ALL THESE PRACTICES ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS.
(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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Pius IX 1846--1878 • Leo XIII 1878-1903 • Pius X 1903-1914• Benedict XV 1914-1922 • Pius XI 1922-1939 • Pius XII 1939-1958 • John XXIII 1958-1963 • Paul VI 1963 to 1978 • John Paul • John Paul II 10/16/1975-4/2/2005
 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.


The Church without Mary is an orphanage
 
Pope Francis:
Cross Not Optional, Says Benedict XVI
Reflects on Peter's "Immature" Faith CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, AUG. 31, 2008 (Zenit.org).-
Taking up one's cross isn't an option, it's a mission all Christians are called to, says Benedict XVI.
The Pope said this today before reciting the midday Angelus with several thousand people gathered in the courtyard of the papal summer residence at Castel Gandolfo, south of Rome.
Referring to the Gospel reading for today's Mass, the Holy Father reflected on the faith of Peter, which is shown to be "still immature and too much influenced by the 'mentality of this world.'”  He explained that when Christ spoke openly about how he was to "suffer much, be killed and rise again, Peter protests, saying: 'God forbid, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen to you.'"
"It is evident that the Master and the disciple follow two opposed ways of thinking," continued the Pontiff. "Peter, according to a human logic, is convinced that God would never allow his Son to end his mission dying on the cross.  "Jesus, on the contrary, knows that the Father, in his great love for men, sent him to give his life for them, and if this means the passion and the cross, it is right that such should happen."
Christ also knew that "the resurrection would be the last word," Benedict XVI added.
Serious illness
The Pope continued, "If to save us the Son of God had to suffer and die crucified, it certainly was not because of a cruel design of the heavenly Father.  "The cause of it is the gravity of the sickness of which he must cure us: an evil so serious and deadly that it will require all of his blood. 
"In fact, it is with his death and resurrection that Jesus defeated sin and death, reestablishing the lordship of God."
Popes Html link here: 
 “Where there is no honor for the elderly, there is no future for young people.” Pope Francis:
It Is a Mortal Sin When Children Don't Visit Their Elderly Parents.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 24
Pope St Gregory the Great despatched  to England in 601:  624 St Mellitus of Canterbury missionary Archbishop of Canterbury from 619
Pius XII, Sovereign Pontiff, enrolled among the number of the saints at Angers in France, St. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier, virgin and foundress of the Institute of the Good Shepherd Sisters.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 22
 174 Soter, Pope charity personal kindness care for persecuted condemned Montanists (RM)
 282 The Departure of the Holy Father Anba Maximus The Fifteenth Pope of Alexandria.
 296 Saint Caius, Pope Dalmatian M (RM)
167 to 175 Pope Soter and Caius, Saints and Popes
They have their feast together on 22 April, on which day they appear in most of the martyrologies, though Notker and a few others give Soter on the 21st and Caius on the 19th or 21st.

 536 Pope Agapitus I archdeacon opposed Monophysites Pope (RM) in the opinion of Pope St Gregory I he was “a trumpet of the gospel and a herald of righteousness”.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 21
Pope Clement XI in 1720, 1109 Anselm of Canterbury Doctor of the Church OSB B Cur Deus Homo, the most famous treatise on the Incarnation ever written; canonized and included among the Doctors of the Church by Pope Clement XI in 1720.  An attempt to persuade Pope Urban II to depose the saint was equally futile.  After due consideration Paschal II confirmed his predecessor’s decisions, and Henry thereupon sent word to St Anselm forbidding his return if he continued recalcitrant, and pronouncing the confiscation of his revenues.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 21
Pope St. Gregory the Great. -- 599 St. Anastasius XI Antioch Patriarch learning holiness comforting afflicted observed perpetual silence except for charityIn 593 Anastasius was restored to his see by Pope St. Gregory the Great.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 21
Pope Pius XI -- 1163 Blessed Fastred of Cambron abbot-founder of Cambron obligation to poverty OSB Cist. Abbot (AC) Being renowned for miracles, Pope Pius XI enrolled him among the number of the saints.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 20
On April 20, 1940, Pope Pius XII fittingly addressed these eloquent words in the city of Genoa for the anniversary of this event: "Genoese, bow down to Columbus, not only to the bold navigator who overcame opposition from scientists and the fury of the ocean, but also to a great servant of Our Lady.   He placed his expedition under Mary's protection and gave his caravel the name of Santa Maria. When he climbed aboard his ship, he said farewell to a surprised and skeptical Europe;  he ventured on the fierce waves and reaching the end of his journey
he kneeled before Jesus, who calmed the storms, and before Mary, the star of the sea."
Encyclopedia Maria Vol. IV - Beauchesne 1956.



Popes mentioned in articles of Saints today; April 19
1054    Leo IX "the pilgrim pope" - reformer deacon a stern bishop holy man & army officer  Pope (RM)