"Whom the Lord loves, He chastises" (Hebrews 12:6).
Fr Anthony retorted, "Many are the scourges of the sinner" (Psalm 31/32:10).
"In this oratory we try to serve God by worship;
in our hospital we may say that we actually find him
."

  None of the horrors he saw in hospitals of incurables depressed him
as much as wickedness he saw everywhere he looked.--
1547 St. Cajetan

Mary Mother
of GOD
On the first day of the Afterfeast of the Transfiguration

 Sunday   Saints of this Day August  07 Séptimo Idus Augústi   
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!)


                                                                   
       
40 Days for Life  11,000+ saved lives in 2015
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'

* Well then, would you teach me how to pray? (1)
August 7 – Our Lady of Kientzheim (Colmar, France, 1466) – Our Lady de los Reye (Sevilla, Spain)
Une Minute avec Marie 

 
Making Mary Known and Loved    
Well then, would you teach me how to pray? (1)
On January 13, 1864 the venerable Father Louis Cestac (d.1868, founder of the Congregation of the "Servantes de Marie"), was shown in a vision the vast desolation caused by the devil throughout the world. At the same time, he heard the Virgin Mary telling him that indeed it was true, Hell had been let loose upon the world, and that the time had come to pray to her as Queen of Angels and ask her to send the holy legions to fight against the deadly foes of God and of mankind.

"But, my good Mother," the priest replied, "you who are so kind, could you not send them without our asking?"
"No," replied the Blessed Virgin Mary, "because prayer is one of the conditions required by God Himself for obtaining favors."
"Well then, my Mother," said the priest, "would you teach me how to pray?"
And he received the prayer “August Queen of Heaven" (that you can read tomorrow in A Moment with Mary) directly from the Virgin Mary.


CAUSES OF SAINTS

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

Pope Benedict XVI to The Catholic Church In China {whole article here }

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

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

August 7 – Feast of Our Lady of Los Reyes - Our Lady of the Kings (Seville, Spain)  
 
Our Lady of the Kings, the cathedral with the 27 Marian chapels
 The Cathedral of Seville (Spain), also called Our Lady of the Kings, is the largest Gothic cathedral in the world, and the third largest church by its dimensions, after Saint Peter's Basilica in Rome and Saint Paul’s in London.

In 1987, this cathedral was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO. It contains 25 statues of the Virgin Mary and 27 Marian chapels. Its most important treasure is "The Virgen de los Reyes" (The Virgin of the Kings) that sits in a side chapel, the so-called royal chapel housing the tomb of King Saint Ferdinand of Castile, founder of Andalusia, who died in Seville.

This huge cathedral is the principal church of the diocese of Seville and therefore the central place of the liturgy and the sacraments for this city. Every year, from August 6th to 15th, Seville prepares to celebrate the Assumption of Our Lady and the "Virgen de los Reyes" is dressed up for the occasion with magnificent royal garments,
and then taken in procession through the entire city, on August 15th.
 The Mary of Nazareth Team


August 7 – Feast of Our Lady of Los Reyes (Seville, Spain)

  Kneel down by Mary's side. Do not try to walk alone.
Imagine Mary kneeling in the Upper Room. Look at her, adoring her Son hidden in the Eucharist! (…) You too should kneel down, next to Mary. Do not try to walk alone (…), but stay by Mary, unite your adoration to hers, and present to God one and the same homage.
"O Jesus, I do not know how to adore (…) but I will repeat for you her adoration on behalf of sinners, for the conversion of the world, and for all the needs of the Church."
This will rejoice the heart of Mary. She will show you to Jesus, and say: "My Son, see my own reflection in that soul, and how I continue to adore you in her and through her!"
Oh, indeed, the one who honors, loves, and serves Mary, is the one who vows to live for the Eucharist; he needs Mary to help him adore; he must be united to her in his adoration.
Let the Blessed Virgin Mary govern your life. Let her lead you to Jesus!
Saint Julian Eymard, Day 19, excerpt from Adoring Jesus with Mary's Heart

 
The Relic of Our Lady (Chartres, France)      They will Never See Their Likes Again August 7
It was at Chartres that men could be seen bodily dragging carts laden with stone, wood, provisions and all the supplies necessary for building the church whose towers were under construction. Those who were not present to witness these wonders will never see their likes again, neither here, or in any other country.  Humility and pain were seen everywhere, people repented from their sins and forgot insults, in every direction there was groaning and tears. Men and women too, could be seen dragging themselves on their knees through the boggy marshes, fiercely beating their breasts and begging heaven for mercy, and all of this while numerous miracles were drawing forth songs and shouts of joy.
Robert du Mont   Tales on the Construction of Chartres Cathedral

Aug. 7 - Our Lady of Schiedam (Holland) Mary's Body Knows No Corruption
The body of Mary was never a slave of the devil and sin, even for an instant.
It is therefore natural that it would not know corruption.
Saint Padre Pio of Pietrelcina

1878 Wonder-working icon of the Mother of God of Valaam. Painted on lime wood, the 132 x 79.5 cm icon depicts the Virgin Mary as a full-length figure standing on a cloud with lowered gaze, clothed in a bright red cloak and a dark turquoise undergarment. She is holding the Christ child, who is dressed in a thin, pale yellow smock, on her left arm.  With her right hand, she points to Christ, in the style of the "hodigitria" icons of the Mother of God. Christ blesses with His right hand and holds an orb, surmounted by a cross, in His left hand, signifying that He is the Creator of the world and King of all. According to the inscription, the icon was painted in 1878, “the work of the monks of Valaam.” It is customarily attributed, however, to Father Alipy, one of the leading iconographers at the original Valaam Monastery in Lake Ladoga in Russian Karelia.
Valaam_Theotokos.jpg
On the first day of the Afterfeast of the Transfiguration
1st v. St. Claudia mother of Linus, the second Pope. Tradition has her the daughter of British King Caractacus, who was sent to Rome with his family in chains when he was  defeated by Aulus Plautius. Released by Emperor Claudius, one of his daughters took the name Claudia, remained in Rome, was baptized, and is the Claudia  mentioned in St. Paul's second letter to Timothy.  St. Donat Patron saint of St. Donat’s or Llandunwyd, Glamorgan, Wales. In some lists he is called Dunwyd. 
  Potamia the Wonderworker The Holy Martyr died under the sword.
Sometimes the saint is incorrectly listed as St Potamius the Wonderworker.
  190 St. Faustus Martyr Martyred soldier who suffered in Milan, Italy
258 Sixtus (Xystus) II, Pope M, and Companions a Greek philosopher who embraced the Christian faith, served as a deacon in Rome, reached this pinnacle of the church's offices on August 30, 257, and lasted in it no more than a year, suffering a brave martyr's death. His name is in the canon of the Roman Mass
  260 St. Peter, Julian, and Companions martyrs A group  put to death during the persecutions of Emperors Valerian and Gallienus.
 260 SS Marinus, soldier & Asterius senator Holy Martyrs; Marinus when about to be promoted to centurion, Marinus refused to swear the customary oath invoking the pagan gods, or to offer sacrifice to idols; When the execution was over, he took off his senatorial garb, spread it upon the ground and wrapped the head and body of St Marinus in it. On his own shoulders he carried the martyr's relics to the grave and reverently consigned them to earth
  295 St. Carpophorus Soldiers Martyr with Exanthus, Cassius, Severinus, Secundus, and Licinius; slain at Como, Italy, during the persecution of co-­Emperor Maximian
305 Afra Fest steht, daß Afra um 304 enthauptet wurde, die später entstandenen Legenden sind vielleicht aus einer Christianisierung des griechischen Aphrodite-Kultes entstanden. Aphrodite (in Italien Venus) war die Göttin der Liebe und Fruchtbarkeit.
  4th v. St. Donatian Second bishop of Chalons-sur-Marne, in France

4th v. Martyrdom of St.  Apoli, Son of Justus; This Saint was the crown prince of the Roman empire. He was away in war, and when he returned to Antioch, he found Diocletian had already established the pagan worship of idols. Although Apoli was capable of killing him and taking the empire over from him, he preferred the heavenly everlasting kingdom. {Coptic}
361 St. Donatus bishop of Arizzo & Hilarinus a martyr of Ostia; Italy;
cultus confined to local calendars.

363 St Dometius martyred by Julian Apostate; lived in Persia during the fourth century. In his youth he was converted to the Faith by a Christian named Uaros. Forsaking Persia, he withdrew to the frontier city of Nisibis (in Mesopotamia), where he was baptized in one of the monasteries, received the monastic tonsure,  ordained a deacon; local inhabitants began to come for healing and help. Many pagans were brought to faith in Christ

390 St Horus in his youth withdrew into the Thebaid desert and struggled in complete solitude for many years, leading the life of a strict hermit. Having advanced in years, St Horus was granted to see an angel, who announced that the Lord had destined him for the salvation of the many people who would seek his guidance After this, the monk began to accept everyone who came to him for advice and help. The Lord granted him a gift of reading the Holy Scriptures, despite the fact that the saint since childhood had not been taught reading and writing.
  407 St. Victricius missionary and Bishop; The son of a Roman legionnaire, he set out on a military career. After becoming a Christian, he refused to remain in the legions. Flogged and sentenced to death for remaining adamant in his refusal to return to the army, he somehow avoided execution and received a discharge. Victricius became a missionary among the tribes of Flanders, Hainault, and Brabant, Belgium, and later the bishop of Rouen, France (about 386).
        St. Hyperechios a “Desert Father.” Egyptian hermit, called a “Desert Father.” A collection of his sayings is extant.

660 St. Donatus of Besancon Fr Bishop Bishop of Besancon, France, from 624; monk at Luxeuil before becoming a bishop; founded St. Paul Abbey
1110 Saint Pimen the Much-ailing attained the Kingdom of Heaven by enduring grievous illness. This Russian ascetic was both born and grew up sickly, but his illness preserved him from illness of the soul; conscious of the high value of suffering, he the Lord both for the continuation of his sickness, and tonsuring into monasticism; radiant angels appeared in the guise of monks, and tonsured him -- They told him that he would receive his health only on the day of his death; On the day of St Pimen's repose, three fiery columns appeared over the trapeza, and moved atop the church. A similar event was described in the chronicles under February 11, 1110 (See the August 5 commemoration of St Theoctistus of Chernigov)
1141 St Pimen, Faster of the Caves, labored in the Far Caves. His abstinence was such that he ate food only once a day,  and only in the most necessary quantity. His outward fasting corresponded to an inward abstemiousness from any actions, thoughts or feelings, displeasing to God. St Pimen was igumen of the Kiev Caves monastery from 1132 to 1141.  A second commemoration of the saint occurs on August 28
1248 Blessed Jordan Forzatei a monk at Padua until he was made abbot of the Benedictine abbey of Saint Justina. When Frederick II entrusted government of the city to him, Count Ezzelino imprisoned him for three years, OSB
1307 St. Albert of Trapani miracle worker; Carmelite hermit and missionary; entered a monastic hermitage near Messina where he successfully devoted himself to the conversion of the Jews
14th v. Saint Mercurius of Kiev Caves pursued asceticism in the Farther Caves, and was strict in fasting. During his
        lifetime St Mercurius had a deep spiritual friendship with St Paisius, when they died, buried in the same grave
1419 Nikanor Orthodoxe Kirche: 7. August Nikanor lebte als Einsiedler auf dem Berg Calistratus. Er wird als
        Wundertäter verehrt. Nikanor starb 1419.

1504 Blessed Vincent of Aquila Vincent a Franciscan lay-brother who was famous for his mystical gifts , OFM (AC)
1547 St. Cajetan; at his birth his mother, a fervent Dominican tertiary, dedicated Cajetan to the Blessed Virgin; father died fighting for Venetians against King Ferdinand of Naples when Cajetan was only two, example of mother helped Cajetan to grow into a man of sweet temper, constant recollection, unwavering compassion, especially toward poor and afflicted; mystical experience; doctorate in both civil and canon law at Padua, Italy, he became a senator in Vicenza; Pope Julius II compelled him to accept the office of protonotary in his court. Although Julius II was one of the least inspiring examples of a pope, Cajetan saw through the lustful, simonious, indulgent, war-loving court to the essential holiness of the Church. He knew that despite the vices and follies of Her servants, Holy Mother Church still held the keys to the salvation of the world; resigned as protonotary upon Julius's death in 1513 and was ordained in 1516; founder of the blue-habited Theatines, beatified by Urban VIII in 1629; canonized by Clement X in 1671
1568 Saint Dometius was an Athonite Elder. He pursued silence at the Philotheou monastery together with the Hieromartyr Damian of Philotheou (February 23), suffered under cruel tortures by the Turks in the year 1568.
1638 St. Agathangelo Noury Arabic scholar Martyr and reformer, a Franciscan missionary, also called Agathangelus;  sent to Aleppo, Syria, became known as an Arabic scholar, publishing Catholic works in Arabic; sent to Cairo -- worked to bring the Coptic Christians into communion with Rome
1710 Saint Theodora, the greatest of Romania's holy ascetics;  St Theodora was able to keep vigil all night long with her arms lifted up toward heaven; she would eat some herbs and other vegetation to break her fast; drank rainwater from a channel cut into the cliff, which is still known as St Theodora's Spring; As St Theodora grew old, she was forgotten no one to care for her; Placing all her hope in God, she continued her spiritual struggles; When she prayed her mind was raised up to Heaven, and her body was lifted up off the ground; her face shone with a radiant light, a flame came forth from her mouth when she prayed; when her food ran out, she was fed by birds like the Prophet Elias (July 20). They brought her crusts of bread from the Sihastria Skete, the igumen sent two monks to follow them Suddenly, they saw a bright light stretching up into the sky, and went to investigate. As they approached, they saw a woman shining with light and levitating above the ground as she prayed.
1832 Saint Metrophanes, Bishop of Voronezh The Uncovering of the Relics of : The memory of the deep piety and pastoral virtues of St Metrophanes (Macarius, in the schema) was revered at Voronezh from the time of his death (November 23, 1703). His successors, the Voronezh hierarchs, considered it their sacred duty to make annual remembrance of the first hierarch of their flock, together with his parents, the priest Basil and Maria
1865 Saint Anthony (Putilov) captivity during Napoleon's invasion; tonsured by Fr Athanasius on February 2, 1820 and was given the name Anthony. He was also placed under the spiritual guidance of Fr Moses; ordained as a deacon 1823; bore all these trials with patience and humility, believing that illness is sometimes given to us by God in order to heal the infirmities of the soul;  "Whom the Lord loves, He chastises" (Hebrews 12:6). Fr Anthony retorted, "Many are the scourges of the sinner" (Psalm 31/32:10).
1927  Departure of St. Kyrillos V (Cyril), 112th Pope of Alexandria  {Coptic}
“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.


On the first day of the Afterfeast of the Transfiguration
The hymns of Vespers speak of the amazement of the Apostles when they saw Christ transfigured before them.
The Savior's equality with the Father is also stressed, for He who covers Himself with light as with a garment is now transfigured before His disciples, "shining more brightly than the sun."

1st v St. Claudia mother of Linus, the second Pope. Tradition has her the daughter of British King Caractacus, who was sent to Rome with his family in chains when he was defeated by Aulus Plautius. Released by Emperor Claudius, one of his daughters took the name Claudia, remained in Rome, was baptized, and is the Claudia mentioned in St. Paul's second letter to Timothy.
Another tradition has her the daughter of Cogidubnus, a British ally of Claudius, who took the Emperor's name. Martial mentions a British lady, Claudia Rufina, and says she was married to his friend Aulus Pudens, a Roman senator.  Another tradition has this senator the Pudens also mentioned in St. Paul's second letter to Timothy.

Claudia, Matron (AC) 1st century. Saint Claudia, mother of Pope Saint Linus, is said to have been the daughter of the British king Caractacus, who was sent to Rome with his family in chains when he was defeated by Aulus Plautius. Released by Emperor Claudius, one of his daughters took the name Claudia, remained in Rome, was baptized, and is the Claudia mentioned in Saint Paul's second letter to Timothy (4:21). Another tradition makes her the daughter of Cogidubnus, a British ally of Claudius, who took the emperor's name. In a third postulation, Martial mentions a British lady, Claudia Rufina, and says she was married to his friend Aulus Pudens, a Roman senator, which would mean she was the mother of Saints Praxedes and Pudentiana. Another tradition has this senator the Pudens also mentioned in the same letter of Saint Paul (2 Timothy 4:21) (Benedictines, Delaney, Encyclopedia).

ST CLAUDIA, MARTYR (FIRST CENTURY)
IN his second letter to St Timothy (2 Tim. iv 21), St Paul says, "Eubulus and Pudens and Linus and Claudia and all the brethren salute thee". She was evidently a lady of importance the Apostolic Constitutions (4th century) state Claudia was mother of Linus, and St Irenaeus says the Linus mentioned by St Paul was he who succeeded St Peter in the supreme pontificate.
    The poet Martial mentions in his Epigrams a British lady, Claudia Rufina, who was the wife of his friend Aulus Pudens, and by some this man has been identified with the Pudens of St Paul. That St Claudia was a Briton is maintained independently by a tradition that she was a daughter of the British King Caractacus, who was defeated by the Roman general Aulus Plautius and sent with his family in chains to Rome in  the year 51. They were released by Emperor Claudius. One daughter remained in Rome, was baptized, and took the name of Claudia, and is the lady whom St Paul mentions.
     Others think she was the daughter, not of Caractacus, but of Cogidubnus, British ally of Claudius who adopted the emperor's  name. None  of these  theories have more than the weight of not-impossible suppositions; it is not even certain that St Claudia was the wife of St Pudens.
Bishop Lightfoot (Apostolic Fathers, vol. i, pt 1, pp. 76-79) discusses these identifications in connection with St Clement and Pudens. He finds nothing which can lend them any probability.
190 St. Faustus Martyr Martyred soldier who suffered in Milan, Italy
Mediolani sancti Fausti militis, qui, sub Aurelio Commodo, post multa certamina, martyrii palmam adeptus est.
    At Milan, St. Faustus, a soldier, who obtained the palm of martyrdom after many trials in the time of Aurélius Commodus.
Faustus of Milan M (RM)  Tradition holds that Saint Faustus was a soldier martyred under Commodius at Milan, Italy; no extant records of his death (Benedictines).

St. Donat Patron saint of St. Donat’s or Llandunwyd, Glamorgan, Wales. In some lists he is called Dunwyd.
258 Sixtus (Xystus) II, Pope, and Companions a Greek philosopher who embraced the Christian faith, served as a deacon in Rome, reached this pinnacle of the church's offices on August 30, 257, and lasted in it no more than a year, suffering a brave martyr's death. His name is in the canon of the Roman Mass MM (RM)
Orthodoxe Kirche: Laurentius, Sixtus, Felicissimus, Agapitus und Romanus - 10. August Katholische Kirche: Xystus II. und Gefährten - 7. August

Died August 6, 258; feast day formerly on August 6. Pope Sixtus II was a Greek philosopher who embraced the Christian faith, served as a deacon in Rome, reached this pinnacle of the church's offices on August 30, 257, and lasted in it no more than a year, suffering a brave martyr's death. His name is in the canon of the Roman Mass.

Although Sixtus II was convinced that anyone baptized by a heretic was truly baptized, he nevertheless refused to excommunicate or otherwise punish those theologians who disagreed with him. In his correspondence with Saint Dionysius of Alexandria and Firmilian of Antioch, he upheld the Roman position of their validity. Nevertheless, he resumed relations with Saint Cyprian and the churches Africa and Asia Minor which had been ruptured by Pope Saint Stephen I, his predecessor. In later centuries, the Church decreed that provided a heretic had properly used the formulas of baptism, any person so baptized could not be held to be outside the Christian faith. Why should a man who had embraced the faith be considered a pagan simply because the one who performed the rite of baptism was in error in his own beliefs?
In 253, Valerian, who had the chief of the senate, was elected emperor. At first he was more favorably disposed toward the Christians than any of the emperors before him had been, except Philip; and his palace was full of Christians. Thus, the church enjoyed three years and one-half years of peace. Valerian fell under the influence of the Persian archmagician named Macrianus, who persuaded the emperor that the Christians, as avowed enemies of magic and the gods, obstructed the effects of the sacrifices, and the prosperity of his empire.

According to Saint Cyprian who considered Sixtus an excellent prelate, Valerian had set forth his first decree condemning Christianity in April 257. Shortly, Saint Stephen I was martyred. This persecution lasted three and one-half years until he was taken prisoner by the Persians. Valerian ordered that the farms and estates, the honors and the goods, the freedom and even the lives of those who refused to renounce their faith should be sacrificed. When the persecution intensified the following year, Cyprian wrote to his fellow African bishops:
"Valerian has sent an order to the senate to the effect that bishops, priests, and deacons should forthwith die [even if they are willing to conform], but that senators, persons of quality, and Roman knights should forfeit their honors, should have their estates forfeited, and if they still refused to sacrifice, should lose their heads; that matrons should have their goods seized, and be banished; that any of Caesar's officers or domestics who already confessed the Christian faith, or had should now confess it, should forfeit their estates to the exchequer, and should be sent in chains to work in Caesar's farms. To this order the emperor subjoined a copy of the letters which he hath dispatched to the presidents of the several provinces concerning us; which letter I expect, and hope will soon be brought hither."
"Sixtus suffered in a cemetery on the sixth day of August, and with him four deacons. The Roman officers are very keen on this persecution: the people brought before them are certain to suffer and forfeit their estates. Please notify my colleagues of these details so that our brothers may be ready everywhere for their great conflict, that we all may think of immortality rather than death and derive joy rather than fear from this confession, in which the soldiers of Christ, as we know, are not so much killed as crowned."
The pope took refuge in the catacombs of Praetextatus on the Appian Way. There he was discovered preaching to his flock, seated in his chair. According to some accounts he was still seated, when he was beheaded. Others say that he was taken away for examination and returned to the scene for execution. It is certain that he was beheaded in the cemetery. The Roman Martyrology that he was martyred with his deacons (Felicissimus and Agapitus), subdeacons (Januarius, Magnus, Stephen, and Vincent), and Quartus. (Quartus owes his existence to a bad transcript in which "diaconus Quartus" (the deacon, Quartus) was written in place of the original "diacones quattuor" (four deacons).) It is likely that Sixtus suffered with all seven of the deacons of Rome, the six mentioned today, and Saint Lawrence; the four may not have been subdeacons.
Their bodies were carried across the Appian Way by their mourners, and placed in the cemetery of Saint Callixtus. He was one of the most highly esteemed martyrs of the early Roman church; however, the sayings of a pagan moralist, named Sextus, were wrongly attributed to Sixtus in the middle ages (Attwater, Benedictines, Bentley, Delaney, Encyclopedia, Farmer, Husenbeth, White).
In art, Saint Sixtus is shown holding a money-bag, with his deacon Saint Lawrence and Saint John the Baptist. At times he may be depicted (1) ordaining Saint Lawrence [Fra Angelico]; (2) giving Lawrence a bag of money to give to the poor; or (3) as he is greeted by Lawrence on his way to martyrdom (Roeder).

Xystus II. (Sixtus II.), Felicissimus, Agapitus, Januarius, Magnus, Vincentius, Stephanus, Quartus und Romanus
Orthodoxe Kirche: Laurentius, Sixtus, Felicissimus, Agapitus und Romanus - 10. August Katholische Kirche: Xystus II. und Gefährten - 7. August
Xystus II. war von 257 bis 258 Bischof von Rom. Er stellte den Frieden im Ketzertaufstreit wieder her (siehe Cyprian). Unter Kaiser Valerius setzte eine neue Verfolgung ein, zu deren Beginn Xystus während der Eucharistiefeier in der Callixtuskatakombe am 6.8.258 überfallen und enthauptet wurde. Am gleichen Tage wurden seine Diakone Felicissimus und Agapitus ermordet. Das Fest dieser drei Märtyrer steht seit 354 im römischen Missale. Das Martyrologium Romanum nennt außerdem die Subdiakone Januarius, Magnus, Vincentius, Stephanus und Quartus, die ebenfalls am 6.8.258 das Martyrium erlitten. Der Erzdiakon Laurentius wurde am 10.8.258 zu Tode gemartert. Das griechische xystus (der geglättete) wurde als sixtus latinisiert und dann mit sextus (der sechste) gleichgesetzt. In einigen Gegenden zählt Sixtus zu den 14 Nothelfern.
260 St. Peter, Julian, and Companions martyrs A group  put to death during the persecutions of Emperors Valerian and Gallienus
Romæ sanctórum Mártyrum Petri et Juliáni, cum áliis decem et octo.    At Rome, the holy martyrs Peter and Julian, with eighteen others.
Peter, Julian (Juliana) and Companions MM (RM) Died c. 260. A mixed gender group of at least 20 Romans martyred under Valerian and Gallienus (Benedictines).
295 St. Carpophorus Soldiers Martyr with Exanthus, Cassius, Severinus, Secundus, and Licinius; slain at Como, Italy, during the persecution of co-­Emperor Maximian
Novocomi pássio sanctórum Mártyrum Carpophori, Exanthi, Cassii, Severini, Secúndi et Licinii; qui, in confessióne Christi, cápite truncáti sunt.
    At Como, the passion of the holy martyrs Carpophorus, Exanthus, Cassius, Severinus, Secundus, and Licinius, who were beheaded for the confession of Christ.
Carpophorus, Exanthus, Cassius,  Severinus, Secundus, Licinius MM (RM) Died c. 295. Christian soldiers who were martyred at Como, Lombardy, Italy, during the reign of Maximian Herculius (Benedictines).

260 Marinus, soldier & Asterius senator Holy Martyrs; Marinus when about to be promoted to centurion, Marinus refused to swear the customary oath invoking the pagan gods, or to offer sacrifice to idols; When the execution was over, he took off his senatorial garb, spread it upon the ground and wrapped the head and body of St Marinus in it. On his own shoulders he carried the martyr's relics to the grave and reverently consigned them to earth
A soldier during the reign of the pagan emperors Valerian (253-259) and his son Gallienus (260-268).

When he was about to be promoted to centurion, Marinus refused to swear the customary oath invoking the pagan gods, or to offer sacrifice to idols. St Marinus was beheaded in Caesarea Philippi after cruel tortures.

St Asterius also happened to be present at the sufferings of the Martyr Marinus. When the execution was over, he took off his senatorial garb, spread it upon the ground and wrapped the head and body of St Marinus in it. On his own shoulders he carried the martyr's relics to the grave and reverently consigned them to earth.
For doing this, he was himself sentenced to death and beheaded in the year 260.
4th v. St. Donatian Second bishop of Chalons-sur-Marne, in France
Catalauni, in Gállia, sancti Donatiáni Epíscopi.    At Chalons in France, St. Donatian, bishop.
Donatian of Châlons-sur-Marne B (RM) 4th century (?). Second bishop of Châlons-sur-Marne, France (Benedictines).
305 Afra Fest steht, daß Afra um 304 enthauptet wurde, die später entstandenen Legenden sind vielleicht aus einer Christianisierung des griechischen Aphrodite-Kultes entstanden. Aphrodite (in Italien Venus) war die Göttin der Liebe und Fruchtbarkeit.
Katholische und Evangelische Kirche: 7. August
Die Lebensgeschichte Afras dürfte weitgehend Legende sein. Sie soll mit ihrer Mutter mit cyprischen Legionären nach Augsburg gekommen sein. Hier unterhielt ihre Mutter Hilaria (Gedenktag 2.8.) ein Bordell, in dem auch Afra arbeitete. Bischof Narcissus von Gerona (Gedenktag 29. Oktober) fand in dem Haus Zuflucht, als er vor der Verfolgung unter Diokletian geflohen war. Afra erfuhr durch ihn vom christlichen Glauben und ließ sich mit ihrer Mutter taufen. Um Narcissus und Afra entstand eine kleine Gemeinde und das Bordell soll zur ersten Kirche Augsburgs geworden sein. Narcissus setzte einen Onkel Afras, Dionysius, zum Bischof der Gemeinde ein und kehrte nach Spanien zurück.
Die Bekehrung Afras wurde bald angezeigt. Da sie sich unter Folterungen weigerte, zu widerrufen, wurde sie um 305 auf einer Insel im Lech verbrannt (nach anderen Legenden enthauptet). Ihre Mutter und andere Frauen, die sich zu Christus bekannten, wurden kurz darauf ebenfalls verbrannt. Vorher soll ihre Mutter noch eine Kapelle über Afras Grab erbaut haben. Später befand sich ihr Grab in der Afra-Kirche. Afra wurde 1064 heiliggesprochen. In diesem Jahr wurde auch ein römischer Sarkophag mit angekohlten Gebeinen gefunden, der sich jetzt in der Unterkirche der Basilika St. Ulrich und Afra befindet. Afra ist mit Ulrich Patronin von Augsburg.

Fest steht, daß Afra um 304 enthauptet wurde, die später entstandenen Legenden sind vielleicht aus einer Christianisierung des griechischen Aphrodite-Kultes entstanden. Aphrodite (in Italien Venus) war die Göttin der Liebe und Fruchtbarkeit.

4th v. Martyrdom of St. Apoli, Son of Justus; This Saint was the crown prince of the Roman empire. He was away in war, and when he returned to Antioch, he found Diocletian had already established the pagan worship of idols. Although Apoli was capable of killing him and taking the empire over from him, he preferred the heavenly everlasting kingdom.
On this day, St. Apoli (Aboli), son of Justus, son of Emperor Nomarius, was martyred. This Saint was the crown prince of the Roman empire. He was away in war, and when he returned to Antioch, he found Diocletian had already established the pagan worship of idols. Although Apoli was capable of killing him and taking the empire over from him, he preferred the heavenly everlasting kingdom. St. Apoli came forward, and confessed Christ before Diocletian. In the beginning, Diocletian handled him gently, but when he failed to attract him to the worship of the idols, he banished him along with his father, Justus, and his mother, Theoclia to the city of Alexandria. He wrote to Armanius, its governor, to persuade them to offer sacrifice to the gods, and if they refuse, to separate them from each other.

Armanius, knowing their royal positions, sent Justus (the father) to Ansena (Antinoe), his wife to the city of Sa, and Apoli, their son, to Basta. He also left to each of them one of their servants to minister unto them. When Apoli arrived in the city of Basta, he confessed Christ before its governor who tortured him severely. He beat him, burned him, and dismembered him. When the governor saw that many became Christians because of what they saw from the steadfastness of the Saint to the tortures, and that the Lord was healing him from his wounds, he ordered to cut off his holy head, and thus received the crown of martyrdom.
May his prayers be with us. Amen.
St. Hyperechios a “Desert Father.” Egyptian hermit, called a “Desert Father.” A collection of his sayings is extant.
361 St. Donatus bishop of Arizzo & Hilarinus a martyr of Ostia; Martyrs of Italy; Their cultus now confined to local calendars
Aretii, in Túscia, natális sancti Donati, Epíscopi et Mártyris; qui, inter cetera virtútis ópera (ut scribit beátus Gregórius Papa), cálicem sanctum, a Paganis fractum, orándo instaurávit.  Is, in persecutióne Juliáni Apóstatæ, a Quadratiáno Augustali comprehénsus, et, cum sacrificáre idolis renuísset, gládio percússus, martyrium consummávit.  Passus est étiam cum eo beátus Hilarinus Monachus; cujus memória décimo séptimo Kaléndas Augusti recolitur, quo die sacrum ipsíus corpus ad Ostia Tiberina translátum fuit.
    At Arezzo in Tuscany, the birthday of St. Donatus, bishop and martyr, who among other miraculous deeds by his prayers (as is related by blessed Pope Gregory) made whole again a sacred chalice which had been broken by pagans.  Being apprehended by the imperial officer Quadratian, during the persecution of Julian the Apostate, and refusing to sacrifice to idols, he was struck with the sword, and thus fulfilled his martyrdom.  With him suffered also the blessed monk Hilarinus, whose feast is celebrated on the 16th of July, at which time his body was taken to Ostia.

Donatus of Besançon, OSB B (AC) Died before 660. Donatus, a monk of Luxeuil Abbey, became bishop of Besançon, France, in 624. Because of his zeal for monasticism, he founded Saint Paul's Abbey in his see. His Regula ad virgines combines elements of the Benedictine Rule with that of Saint Columbanus, the founder of Luxeuil (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

361 Donatus B and Hilarinus (Hilary) M (RM). Hilarinus was a monk martyred at Ostia, Italy, under Julian the Apostate; Donatus the second bishop of Arezzo, Italy. Through confusion with another Saint Donatus, he is often thought to have been a martyr, but he appears to have died a peaceful death (Benedictines, Encyclopedia). In art, Saint Donatus is portrayed as a young or middle-aged bishop with a sword and dragon. He might also be shown (1) freeing a poisoned well from the dragon; (2) on horseback, raising his crozier at the dragon; (3) kneeling at an altar with an angel whispering to him, a chalice and dragon at his feet; or (4) beheaded with sword or stabbed with a dagger (Roeder). He is the patron saint of Arezzo. In addition to the confusion with the other Donatus, he is mixed up with Donatia of Rheims, who is the patron saint of Bruges (Roeder).

ST  DONATUS, BISHOP OF Aanzzo 362
DONATUS was the second bishop of Arezzo in Tuscany. Though the Roman Martyrology refers to him as a martyr at Arezzo under Julian the Apostate, and he is commemorated as such in today's Mass, he seems certainly not to have died for the faith.  In the same place Donatus is associated with the martyred monk St Hilarinus, but he seems to have suffered at Ostia;  there too mention is made of the attribution to him by St Gregory the Great of a miracle of restoring a chalice broken up by the heathen.   There has also been confusion between St Donatus of Arezzo and another St Donatus, bishop of Euroea in Epirus.
The early cultus of this Donatus as a confessor is indubitable, but his so-called passio (Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. ii) is simply derived from the fictitious story of St Gallicanus, who has a long entry in the Roman Martyrology on June 25.
363 St Dometius martyred by Julian Apostate; lived in Persia during the fourth century. In his youth he was converted to the Faith by a Christian named Uaros. Forsaking Persia, he withdrew to the frontier city of Nisibis (in Mesopotamia), where he was baptized in one of the monasteries, received the monastic tonsure, ordained a deacon; local inhabitants began to come for healing and help. Many pagans were brought to faith in Christ
Nisibi, in Mesopotamia, sancti Dometii, Monachi Persæ, qui cum duobus discípulis, sub Juliáno Apóstata, lapidátus est.
    At Nisibis in Mesopotamia, St. Dometius, a Persian monk, who was stoned to death with two of his disciples at the time of Julian the Apostate.
    Fleeing the ill-will of some of the monks, St Dometius moved to the monastery of Saints Sergius and Bacchus in the city of Theodosiopolis. The monastery was under the guidance of an archimandrite named Urbelos, a strict ascetic, of whom it was said that for sixty years he did not taste cooked food, nor did he lay down for sleep, but rather took his rest standing up, supporting himself upon his staff.

In this monastery St Dometius was ordained a deacon, but when the archimandrite decided to have him made a presbyter, considering himself unworthy, hid himself on desolate mountain in Syria, region of Cyrrhus.

   Stories about him constantly spread among the local inhabitants. They began to come to him for healing and for help. Many pagans were brought to faith in Christ by Dometius. And one time, in the locality where St Dometius struggled with his disciples, the emperor Julian the Apostate (361-363) arrived, traveling on his campaign against the Persians. By order of the emperor, soldiers found St Dometius praying with his disciples in a cave, and walled them up alive inside.
   Two disciples of St Dometius lived during the fourth century, and were walled up inside a cave with him by order of the emperor Julian the Apostate in the year 363.

Dometius (Domitius) the Persian & Companions M (RM)  Died 4th century. Although the Roman Martyrology appears to have three entries for this Domitius (f.d. March 23 and July 5), it is uncertain that they were indeed the same person. The laus reads: "At Nisibis in Mesopotamia Saint Dometius, a Persian monk who with two of this disciples was stoned to death under Julian the Apostate" (Benedictines).

ST DOMETIUS THE PERSIAN, MARTYR  (c. A.D. 362?)
Melkites and other Christians of the East today celebrate the memory of St Dometius who, according to the legend, was a Persian convert who became monk at Nisibis in Mesopotamia, was ordained deacon, and went to live in a cave, from whence he converted many heathen of the neighbourhood. People flocked to his retreat to ask his blessing and in hope he would cure their ills and the Emperor Julian the Apostate, whom Dometius had reproached for his impiety, accused the holy man of courting popularity. "If these poor harmless folk come to see me, I cannot send them away", he replied. Julian was so incensed by the answer that he had him stoned to death.
   There has been great confusion between this Dometius and another, mentioned in the Roman Martyrology on July 5 as a martyr in Syria, "who by his power affords many benefits to the inhabitants of these parts". St Dometius has a great reputation in the East as an ascete and wonder-worker there is evidence that he was honoured in Cyprus and in southern Italy, and we find him referred to in the Syriac martyrology of Rabban Sliba as a "healer of sciatica".
The Greek acts have been printed in Analecta Bollanadiana, vol. xix (1900), pp. 285-320; in the Syriac recension, edited by P. Bedjan, the narrative has been transformed in a number of details.  In Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lvii (1939), pp. 72-104, Fr P. Peeters discusses at length the confusion between the two Dometii.
390 St Horus in his youth withdrew into the Thebaid desert and struggled in complete solitude for many years, leading the life of a strict hermit. Having advanced in years, St Horus was granted to see an angel, who announced that the Lord had destined him for the salvation of the many people who would seek his guidance.  After this, the monk began to accept everyone who came to him for advice and help. The Lord granted him a gift of reading the Holy Scriptures, despite the fact that the saint since childhood had not been taught reading and writing.

   Gradually, a large monastery formed around St Horus, which the holy Elder was the spiritual guide. The monk never entered the trapeza for food, nor did he eat on the day of partaking of the Holy Mysteries. He often taught the brethren by means of stories about the temptations which might beset a monk living in solitude. But he always told them in such a way that everyone would know that he was speaking of desert-dwellers personally known to him. The saint concealed his own ascetic exploits.

Once, when the saint still lived with only one disciple, he brought to the Elder's attention the approach of Holy Pascha. St Horus immediately stood up at prayer, and raising his hands, he stood thus for three days under the open sky, in unceasing prayer. He then explained to his disciple that for a monk every feastday, and especially Pascha, is celebrated by removing oneself from everything mundane, and lifting up one's mind to unity with God.
All the thoughts and deeds of his disciples was revealed to St Horus, and no one dared to lie to him. Having survived well into old age, St Horus founded several monasteries, comprising altogether as many as 1,000 monastics. He died at age 90 in about the year 390
.
407 St. Victricius missionary and Bishop; The son of a Roman legionnaire, he set out on a military career. After becoming a Christian, he refused to remain in the legions. Flogged and sentenced to death for remaining adamant in his refusal to return to the army, he somehow avoided execution and received a discharge. Victricius became a missionary among the tribes of Flanders, Hainault, and Brabant, Belgium, and later the bishop of Rouen, France (about 386)
Rotomagi sancti Victricii Epíscopi, qui adhuc miles, sub eodem Juliáno, abjíciens pro Christo cingulum, a Tribuno multis torméntis affícitur, et cápitis damnátur; sed, carnifice, qui ad eum cædéndum missus fuerat, cæcitate percusso, ipse, vínculis solutis, liber evasit.  Postea, Epíscopus factus, indomitas Morinórum et Nerviórum gentes divini prædicatióne verbi ad Christi fidem perdúxit, et demum Confessor in pace quiévit.
    At Rouen, the holy bishop St. Victricius.  While he was yet a soldier under Julian, he threw away his military belt for Christ, and after being subjected by the tribune to many torments, was condemned to death.  But the executioner sent to slay him being struck blind, and the confessor's chains being loosened, he made his escape.  Afterwards being made bishop, by preaching the word of God, he brought to the faith of Christ the barbarous people of Belgic Gaul, and finally died in peace, a confessor.Owing to his reputation for goodness and being a capable prelate, he journeyed to England in 396 to assist in the settlement of some dispute among the bishops there, although in his later years he was accused of heretical leanings. Not only was he exonerated by Pope St. Innocent I (401-417), but he received from the pope the important decretal of the Liber Regularum.   He was also the author of the work The Praise of Saints St. Victricius.
   Victricius of Rouen B (RM)  Died c. 409. It seems that God preserved Victricius from martyrdom because He had other plans. When the saint converted to Christianity, he resigned from the Roman army because, like his friend Saint Martin of Tours he believed military service was incompatible with his new faith. For this he was brutally flogged and sentenced to death. But the sentence was never executed. Victricius became a missionary among the northern tribes of France. After he came bishop of Rouen in 380, he was known as one of the leading prelates of Gaul. About 395, the bishops of Britain sent for him to resolve certain difficulties of an unknown nature. He was definitely a man of importance who "did all that he could, even if he could not do all that needed doing." Although there is no early life of him, he is discussed in several extant letters of his friend Saint Paulinus of Nola. A piece written by Victricius on the Praise of Saints still survives, as well as an important disciplinary document addressed to him by Pope Saint Innocent I (Attwater, Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

St Victricius, Bishop of Rouen
Among the great bishops of the Western church during the fourth century three stand out conspicuously in Gaul, namely, Hilary of Poitiers, Martin of Tours and Victricius of Rouen. Of these the last-named is the least well known to fame because we have less information about his career, whereas the other two are pretty well documented. It is likely his birthplace was somewhere not far from the Scheldt, that he was born about the year 330, and that his father or near ancestor was a soldier in one of the Roman legions called Victrix.  Nothing is known of his early years, but at the age of seventeen he became a soldier and not long afterwards a Christian.  At this time the lawfulness of the military profession for a Christian had not yet been decided in the Church, and there were not wanting learned and good men who denied that a Christian could bear arms without blame; and St Victricius, laying down his weapons one day on parade, asked for his discharge (cf. the action of St Martin of Tours in similar circumstances). His period of service was not yet expired, so his tribune treated the request as a breach of discipline and ordered him to be flogged. Unable to move him, the tribune referred the matter to the comes, who sentenced Victricius to death for desertion. St Paulinus of Nola says in one of his letters that miraculous intervention prevented the sentence from being carried out; and Victricius and some Christian comrades were released and discharged.
   Then follows a blank in the history of Victricius, and when next heard of he is bishop of Rouen, to which see he must have been elected about the year 386. Within his diocese there were still many heathen, to whose conversion the bishop applied himself with zeal, and he introduced monasticism into Rouen in the loose unorganized form that it had in Gaul at that time his  flock of ascetes, thin with fasting "and his choir of maidens", whose "life is even more splendid than it is, in the world's eyes, hard". He obtained from St Ambrose at Milan many relics of the saints, which were received by the people in solemn procession and duly enshrined. In connection with these translations he preached or wrote his work On the Praise of The Saints, which partakes of the nature both of a panegyric and of a thesis on the cultus of the saints; as a piece of literature it is particularly valuable for the study of the rhythmical cursus. Victricius established a number of rural parishes, which in those days were still rare, but progress against paganism was slow among the country people, and it continued for another couple of hundred years. He preached in Artois, western Flanders, Hainault and Brabant; but his work was largely undone and the religious centres he established destroyed by the barbarian invasions in the fifth century.
    His reputation for wisdom and holiness had meanwhile crossed the Channel, and about 396 he came over at the request of the British bishops to settle some differences. Their nature is not known. Whatever it was, Victricius, in his own words, "did all he could, even if he did not do all that wanted doing...I inspired the wise with love of peace, I taught it to the teachable, I explained it to the ignorant, I imposed it on the obstinate, insisting on it in season and out of season..."

   Towards the end of his life St Victricius came under suspicion of heresy, and he went to Rome to clear himself.  This he had no difficulty in doing; and he received from Pope St Innocent I in 404 a famous decretal on disciplinary matters, including the reference of causae maiores from the local bishops to the Holy See. The exact date of the death of this great bishop is not known.
Considering the important position claimed for St Victricius it is curious that we possess no early life of him. We have to be content for the most part with such information as may be gleaned from the letters of St Paulinus of Nola. There is an excellent study of all that is known of Victricius, by E. Vacandard, in the series "Les Saints" (1903). Cf. also C. Jullian, Histoire de la Gaule, and E. de Moreau, Histoire de l'Eglise en Belgique, t. i (1945). For the saint's influence on St Patrick, see Fr P. Grosjean in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lxiv (1946), pp. 94-99.
660 St. Donatus of Besancon Fr Bishop Bishop of Besançon, France, from 624. Donatus was a monk at Luxeuil before becoming a bishop; founded St. Paul Abbey.
1110 Saint Pimen the Much-ailing attained the Kingdom of Heaven by enduring grievous illness. This Russian ascetic was both born and grew up sickly, but his illness preserved him from illness of the soul; conscious of the high value of suffering, he the Lord both for the continuation of his sickness, and tonsuring into monasticism; radiant angels appeared in the guise of monks, and tonsured him -- They told him that he would receive his health only on the day of his death; On the day of St Pimen's repose, three fiery columns appeared over the trapeza, and moved atop the church. A similar event was described in the chronicles under February 11, 1110 (See the August 5 commemoration of St Theoctistus of Chernigov).

For a long time he besought his parents to send him to the Kiev Caves monastery. When they brought their son to the famed monastery, they then began to pray for him to be healthy. But the sufferer himself, conscious of the high value of suffering, instead asked the Lord both for the continuation of his sickness, and also his tonsuring into monasticism.

One night, radiant angels appeared in the guise of monks, and tonsured him. They told him that he would receive his health only on the day of his death. Several of the brethren heard the sound of singing, and coming to St Pimen, they found him attired in monastic garb. In his hand he held a lit candle, and his tonsured hair could be seen at the crypt of St Theodosius. St Pimen spent many years in sickness, so that those attending to him could not tolerate it. They often left him without food and water for two or three days at a time, but he endured everything with joy.

Compassionate towards the brethren, St Pimen healed a certain crippled brother, who promised to serve him until death if he were healed. But after a while the brother grew lax in his service, and his former ailment overtook him. St Pimen again healed him with the advice, that both the sick and those attending the sick receive equal reward.

St Pimen spent twenty years in grievous sufferings. One day, as the angels had predicted, he became healthy. In church, the monk took leave of all the brethren and partook of the Holy Mysteries. Then, having bowed down before the grave of Abba Anthony, St Pimen indicated the place for his burial, and he himself carried his bed there.  Pointing to those buried there, one after the other of the monks, and he predicted that the brethren would find one buried in the schema to be without it, since this monk had led a life unworthy of it. Another monk, who had been buried without the schema, would be found clothed in it after death, since he had greatly desired it during his life, and he was worthy.

Then St Pimen lay down upon his bed and fell asleep in the Lord. The brethren buried him with great honor, glorifying God.  After the death of St Pimen, the brethren were persuaded of the truth of his words. On the day of St Pimen's repose, three fiery columns appeared over the trapeza, and moved atop the church. A similar event was described in the chronicles under February 11, 1110 (See the August 5 commemoration of St Theoctistus of Chernigov), therefore the day of demise of St Pimen is surmised as also occurring on February 11, 1110.
The relics of St Pimen rest in the Antoniev Cave. A second commemoration of the saint is made on September 28, the Synaxis of the Monks of the Near Caves.
1141 St Pimen, Faster of the Caves, labored in the Far Caves. His abstinence was such that he ate food only once a day, and only in the most necessary quantity. His outward fasting corresponded to an inward abstemiousness from any actions, thoughts or feelings, displeasing to God. St Pimen igumen of Kiev Caves monastery from 1132 to 1141.
A second commemoration of the saint occurs on August 28.

1248 Blessed Jordan Forzatei a monk at Padua until he was made abbot of the Benedictine abbey of Saint Justina. When Frederick II entrusted the government of the city to him, Count Ezzelino imprisoned him for three years, OSB Abbot (AC)
Born in Padua, Italy, in 1158; died at Venice, 1248. Jordan was a monk at Padua until he was made abbot of the Benedictine abbey of Saint Justina. When Frederick II entrusted the government of the city to him, Count Ezzelino imprisoned him for three years. His feast is kept at Padua, Treviso, and Praglia (Benedictines).

1307 St. Albert of Trapani miracles; Carmelite hermit and missionary entered a monastic hermitage near Messina where he successfully devoted himself to the conversion of the Jews
Messanæ, in Sicília, sancti Alberti Confessóris, ex Ordine Carmelitárum, miráculis clari.
    At Messina in Sicily, St. Albert, confessor of the Carmelite Order, renowned for miracles.
He was born in Trapani, Sicily, joined the Carmelite Order. After ordination, he was sent to nearby Messina, where he gathered thousands with his preaching and miracles. After serving as a missionary, Albert entered a monastic hermitage near Messina where he successfully devoted himself to the conversion of the Jews (Benedictines).
He remained there until his death.
Albert of Trapani, OC (RM) Born in Trapani, Sicily; died 1306; cultus confirmed in 1454. At a very young age, Saint Albert enter the Carmelite monastery of his hometown. After his priestly ordination, he was transferred to the house at Messina, where he successfully devoted himself to the conversion of the Jews (Benedictines).

St  Albert of Trapani, also called "of Sicily", was born at Trapani in that island. It is said his parents were Benedict Adalberti and Joan of Palizze and that, having been long without issue, they vowed that if they had a male child he should be dedicated to our Lady of Mount Carmel in her order.  At any rate, the young Albert became a Carmelite, and after he had been ordained was sent to the priory of Messina, where he preached with much success, especially among the Jews. He added many voluntary austerities to those of his rule, among them the custom of repeating the whole psalter on his knees before a crucifix every night before he went to bed.  Unfortunately this and other particulars given by his biographer were written long after he was dead and are far from reliable.  He tells us that when the king of Naples was besieging Messina and had blockaded it so effectually that the city was in imminent danger of starvation, Frederick III of Sicily contemplated burning it down to keep it out of the enemy's hands certain of the citizens came to St Albert in great distress about this, and the sudden arrival of food ships that had successfully run the blockade was attributed to his prayers.
  His biographer records that St Albert made a pilgrimage to Palestine to the cradle of his order, where he became as famous for his miracles as he was at home but in fact this journey was never undertaken, and the miracles must be regarded as probably equally apocryphal.  During the last years of his life he lived as a hermit near Messina.  When, three hundred years later, St Mary Magdalen de' Pazzi was tempted to leave the Carmel at Florence and return to the world, she asked the prayers of St Albert in Heaven; the temptation left her, and she was confirmed in her good resolution by a vision of the saint. He was never formally canonized, but his cultus was approved in 1476.
The Latin life, upon which all the others of more recent date are directly or indirectly founded, has been printed in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xvii (1898), pp. 317 seq. It was only written at the beginning of the fifteenth century. See also B. Zimmerman, Monumenta historica Carmelitana, pp. 259, 422, etc.
14th v. Saint Mercurius of Kiev Caves pursued asceticism in the Farther Caves, and was strict in fasting. During his lifetime St Mercurius had a deep spiritual friendship with St Paisius, and when they died, they were buried in the same grave.
The November 24 commemoration of the saint is made because of his namesake, the holy Great Martyr Mercurius. He is also remembered on August 28, the Synaxis of the Saints of the Far Caves; and the second Sunday of Great Lent, the Synaxis of all the monastic Fathers of the Kiev Caves.

1419 Nikanor Orthodoxe Kirche: 7. August Nikanor lebte als Einsiedler auf dem Berg Calistratus. Er wird als Wundertäter verehrt. Nikanor starb 1419.
1504 Blessed Vincent of Aquila Vincent a Franciscan lay-brother who was famous for his mystical gifts , OFM (AC)
Born in Aquila, Italy; cultus approved in 1785. Vincent Franciscan lay-brother famous for his mystical gifts (Benedictines).

1547 St. Cajetan; at his birth his mother, a fervent Dominican tertiary, dedicated Cajetan to the Blessed Virgin; father died fighting for Venetians against King Ferdinand of Naples when Cajetan was only two, example of mother helped Cajetan to grow into a man of sweet temper, constant recollection, unwavering compassion, especially toward poor and afflicted; mystical experience; doctorate in both civil and canon law at Padua, Italy, he became a senator in Vicenza; Pope Julius II compelled him to accept the office of protonotary in his court. Although Julius II was one of the least inspiring examples of a pope, Cajetan saw through the lustful, simonious, indulgent, war-loving court to the essential holiness of the Church. He knew that despite the vices and follies of Her servants, Holy Mother Church still held the keys to the salvation of the world; resigned as protonotary upon Julius's death in 1513 and was ordained in 1516; founder of the blue-habited Theatines, beatified by Urban VIII in 1629; canonized by Clement X in 1671. Miracles
Neapoli, in Campania, sancti Cajetani Thienæi Confessóris, Clericórum Regulárium Fundatoris, qui, singulári in Deum fiducia, pristinam Apostolicam vivéndi formam suis coléndam trádidit, et, miráculis clarus, a Cleménte Papa Décimo inter Sanctos relátus est.
    At Naples in Campania, St. Cajetan the Theatine, confessor, founder of the Clerics Regular, who, through singular confidence in God, made his disciples practise the primitive mode of life of the apostles.  Being renowned for miracles, he was ranked among the saints by Clement X.

   Saint Cajetan, was the born 1480 son of Lord Gaspar of Thienna (Tiene) and his wife Mary di Porto. Both were known for their piety. At his birth his mother, a fervent Dominican tertiary, dedicated Cajetan to the Blessed Virgin. Although his father died while fighting for the Venetians against King Ferdinand of Naples when Cajetan was only two, the example of his mother helped Cajetan to grow into a man of sweet temper, constant recollection, and unwavering compassion, especially toward the poor and afflicted.
After attaining a doctorate in both civil and canon law at Padua, Italy, he became a senator in Vicenza. He built a parochial chapel at his own expense at Rampazzo, where those living far from the parish church might be catechized and worship. Thereafter he fled to Rome in 1506, where he had hoped to live in obscurity among the crowds; however, Pope Julius II compelled him to accept the office of protonotary in his court. Although Julius II was one of the least inspiring examples of a pope, Cajetan saw through the lustful, simonious, indulgent, war-loving court to the essential holiness of the Church. He knew that despite the vices and follies of Her servants, Holy Mother Church still held the keys to the salvation of the world.
    He resigned as protonotary upon Julius's death in 1513 and was ordained in 1516. The following year, while praying at the Christmas crib in the church of Saint Mary Maggiore, he had a mystical experience. He records, "Encouraged by the Blessed Saint Jerome, whose bones lie in the crypt beneath the crib, I took from the hands of the timid Virgin who had just become a mother her tender Child, in whom the eternal Word had been made flesh."
    In 1523, the Church was in sad shape. People could not get the spiritual nourishment they needed from the large numbers of uneducated and even immoral priests who took their money but returned nothing. When good priests and laypeople turned to the hierarchy for help, they found leaders at best apathetic and indifferent to their concerns.
How should a good Catholic respond to this situation? We all known how Luther and others responded -- by splitting away from the Catholic Church when their pleas went unheard.

Cajetan took a different route.
Just as concerned as Luther was about what he observed in the Church, he went to Rome in 1523 -- not to talk to the pope or the hierarchy but to consult with members of a confraternity called the Oratory of the Divine Love. When he had first come to Rome many years before, he had felt called to some unknown great work there. A few years later he returned to his hometown of Vicenza -- his great work seemingly unrealized. He had however studied for the priesthood and been ordained and helped re-establish a faded confraternity whose aims were promoting God's glory and the welfare of souls.
In the years he had been gone from Rome, he had founded another Oratory in his home town and Verona where he had promoted spiritual life and care for the poor and sick not only with words but with his heroic example. He told his brothers, "In this oratory we try to serve God by worship; in our hospital we may say that we actually find him." But none of the horrors he saw in the hospitals of the incurables depressed him as much as the wickedness he saw everywhere he looked.

In his former confraternity, he found other clergy who felt the way he did. They didn't want to split off from the Church, they wanted to restore it. So they decided to form an order based on the lives of the apostles in the hopes that these lives would inspire them and others to live holy lives devoted to Jesus . In order to accomplish this they would focus on moral lives, sacred studies, preaching and pastoral care, helping the sick, and other solid foundations of pastoral life. This new order was known as Theatines Clerks Regular because it was an order of the regular clergy and because a bishop known as Theatensis was their first superior general (although Cajetan is considered the founder).
Not surprisingly, they didn't find thousands of formerly greedy and licentious priests flocking to their door. But Cajetan and the others persevered even in the face of open opposition from laity and clergy who didn't want to reform. It was his holy example that converted many as well as his preaching.
Worn out by the troubles he saw in his Church and his home, Cajetan fell ill. When doctors tried to get him to rest on a softer bed then the boards he slept on, Cajetan answered, "My savior died on a cross. Let me die on wood at least." He died on August 7, 1547.
In His Footsteps
Do you have concerns about the Church or about certain people in power in the Church? Have you ever thought of leaving the Church because of these concerns? What positive steps could you take instead of splitting from the Church to help promote holiness and love of God and others?  Prayer: Saint Cajetan, when we see things that trouble us in our Church, help us to continue to love her. Guide us to the positive steps we need to take to work within the Church for renewal. Help us to be examples of holiness to all. Amen

Cajetan (Gaetano) of Thienna, Priest (RM) Born in Vicenza, Lombardy, Italy, in 1480; died in Naples, Italy, on August 7, 1547; beatified by Urban VIII in 1629; canonized by Clement X in 1671. Saint Cajetan, founder of the blue-habited Theatines, was the son of Lord Gaspar of Thienna (Tiene) and his wife Mary di Porto. Both were known for their piety. At his birth his mother, a fervent Dominican tertiary, dedicated Cajetan to the Blessed Virgin. Although his father died while fighting for the Venetians against King Ferdinand of Naples when Cajetan was only two, the example of his mother helped Cajetan to grow into a man of sweet temper, constant recollection, and unwavering compassion, especially toward the poor and afflicted.
After attaining a doctorate in both civil and canon law at Padua, Italy, he became a senator in Vicenza. He built a parochial chapel at his own expense at Rampazzo, where those living far from the parish church might be catechized and worship. Thereafter he fled to Rome in 1506, where he had hoped to live in obscurity among the crowds; however, Pope Julius II compelled him to accept the office of protonotary in his court. Although Julius II was one of the least inspiring examples of a pope, Cajetan saw through the lustful, simonious, indulgent, war-loving court to the essential holiness of the Church. He knew that despite the vices and follies of Her servants, Holy Mother Church still held the keys to the salvation of the world.
He thanked God for the flowering of the arts in the Renaissance, knowing that the genius of the artist was but a reflection of the creativity of God. Yet he knew that the Church was in need of reformation. Unlike his contemporaries Luther and Savonarola, however, Cajetan wanted to bring about the reform patiently and humbly. He put his trust in the Holy Spirit and the love Christ has for His Bride.
During the thirteen years Cajetan labored in Rome for reform, he did what he could to bring comfort to others: he visited the sick in hospitals and sought out the incurable and the dying in their homes. He had joined the Confraternity of Divine Love, a small, unofficial group devoted to works of charity. They cared for the sick, the poor, foundlings, and prisoners. Gradually their influence spread further afield in Italy.
He resigned as protonotary upon Julius's death in 1513 and was ordained in 1516. The following year, while praying at the Christmas crib in the church of Saint Mary Maggiore, he had a mystical experience. He records, "Encouraged by the Blessed Saint Jerome, whose bones lie in the crypt beneath the crib, I took from the hands of the timid Virgin who had just become a mother her tender Child, in whom the eternal Word had been made flesh."
In 1518, Cajetan returned to Vicenza and his dying mother. There he joined the Oratory of Saint Jerome. Upon Mary di Porto's death, he dedicated his considerable inheritance to relieving distress, first in Vicenza and then in Verona and Venice. He founded a similar oratory at Venice and continued his work, particularly with the incurable.
In 1523, he returned to Rome, Paul Consiglieri, Boniface da Colle, and Bishop Giovanni Pietro Caraffa of Chieti (or Theate), who later became Pope Paul IV. These men helped Cajetan implement his vision of an order of priests whose lives would be as simple as those of the Apostles and who would serve as models for the secular clergy. The members of the Congregation of Clerks Regular (more generally known as the Theatines) were to dress in black and concentrate on the essentials of the priestly life: embracing poverty, spreading charity, and bringing life in the sacraments. The institute was approved by Pope Clement VII with Bishop Caraffa as the order's first provost general.
In 1524, twelve priests installed themselves in a house on the Pinicio in Rome, where Cajetan occupied himself in the humblest tasks. When Rome was sacked three years later by Charles V, the Theatines moved to Venice, where the famine and plague gave them ample opportunity to devote themselves to the service of others. The Venetians called them "hermits" because of their extreme simplicity of life and Cajetan they named "the saint of Providence." Cajetan was elected superior in 1530, and Caraffa re- elected in 1533. That same year the Theatines founded a house in Naples with Cajetan as its superior. Thereafter, the order rapidly spread throughout Italy, then Europe.
In Naples Cajetan fought widespread opposition to the reforms of the bishops and the prevalent heresies. Later, with Blessed John Marinoni, he founded the montes pietatis to help extend loans to the poor and combat usury.
Cajetan, one of the great Catholic reformers, died in Naples, worn out by his frequent travels and many obligations as superior, on a bed of ashes. At his request, he was buried in a common grave in the church of Saint Paul. Many of the reforms of the Council of Trent were anticipated and implemented by Cajetan long before that council convened (Benedictines, Delaney, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth).
In art, Saint Cajetan is depicted as a Theatine monk with a winged heart. He may sometimes be shown (1) with a book, pen, lily, and flaming heart (not to be confused with Saint Augustine, who never has a lily); (2) seeing a vision of the Holy Family with a lily at his feet; or (3) holding the Christ-Child as an angel holds a lily nearby (Roeder). He is venerated in Chieti and Naples (Roeder).
August 7, 2010 St. Cajetan (1480-1557)
   
Like most of us, Cajetan seemed headed for an "ordinary" life—first as a lawyer, then as a priest engaged in the work of the Roman Curia.

His life took a characteristic turn when he joined the Oratory of Divine Love in Rome, a group devoted to piety and charity, shortly after his ordination at 36. When he was 42 he founded a hospital for incurables at Venice. At Vicenza, he entered a "disreputable" religious community that consisted only of men of the lowest stations of life—and was roundly censured by his friends, who thought his action was a reflection on his family. He sought out the sick and poor of the town and served them.

The greatest need of the time was the reformation of a Church that was "sick in head and members." Cajetan and three friends decided that the best road to reformation lay in reviving the spirit and zeal of the clergy. (One of them later became Paul IV.) Together they founded a congregation known as the Theatines (from Teate [Chieti] where their first superior-bishop had his see). They managed to escape to Venice after their house in Rome was wrecked when Charles V's troops sacked Rome in 1527. The Theatines were outstanding among the Catholic reform movements that took shape before the Protestant Reformation. He founded a monte de pieta ("mountain [or fund] of piety") in Naples—one of many charitable, nonprofit credit organizations that lent money on the security of pawned objects. The purpose was to help the poor and protect them against usurers. Cajetan's little organization ultimately became the Bank of Naples, with great changes in policy.

Comment:  If Vatican II had been summarily stopped after its first session in 1962, many Catholics would have felt that a great blow had been dealt to the growth of the Church. Cajetan had the same feeling about the Council of Trent. But, as he said, God is the same in Naples as in Venice, with or without Trent or Vatican II (or III). We open ourselves to God's power in whatever circumstances we find ourselves, and God's will is done. God's standards of success differ from ours.

Saint Cajetan of Thiene
The Saint of Providence and Founder of the Theatines
By Isabel Orellana Vilches

MADRID, August 07, 2013 (Zenit.org) - He signed his letters “Cajetan, miserable priest,” such was his self-appraisal. He belonged to the aristocracy, the last child of Count Gaspar of Thiene and of Maria di Porto, he came from a noble family of Vicenza where he was born in 1480. He was given the name Cajetan in honor of an uncle who was a canon and professor of Law at the University of Padua, who had died. The Saint followed his footsteps at the academic level. He was 2 years old when his father died at Velletri, most likely of malaria, while engaged in a war. His mother, an admirable woman who was a Dominican Tertiary, was an example of piety for him and his two brothers, who grew up in an environment suffused with the essential values for life. When he went to the University of Padua to study, he was already in the habit of prayer. He was very intelligent and, in 1504, obtained a double doctorate in Civil and Canon Law. His brief stays in the family’s properties at Rampazzo bore fruit. He instructed the peasants spiritually and built with one of his brothers a chapel dedicated to Saint Mary Magdalen.


His mother wanted him to have a certain standing among his own, because she already saw in him a man of great worth. However, Cajetan limited himself to helping them without taking another burden upon himself and left for Vicenza with the office of senator, although his sights were set on the priesthood. With the firm conviction that he was destined by God to carry out a great mission, in 1506 he went to Rome. At the time, the city was not commendable for youth, but it did not extinguish his vocation. Pope Julius II appointed him proto-notary. On the Pope’s death, which occurred in 1513, he saw the opportunity to focus on his formation to receive the sacrament of Holy Orders. Around 1516 he founded the Oratory of Divine Love and together with priests and laymen who were pursuing sanctity and evangelization, he worked for the sick. Spiritually, they had prayer and reception of the sacraments as their base. He was ordained priest the following year at 33, in the midst of personal unease as he felt unworthy  of that grace. During his first Mass, celebrated in the Basilica of Saint Mary Major on January 6, 1517, he had a vision. The Virgin Mary who was carrying the Child Jesus, placed Him in Cajetan’s arms. Then he was sent to the parish of Saint Mary of Malo, and looked after the shrines that marked Mount Soratte.

In 1518, he returned to Vicenza to help his mother who was very ill. The Oratory of Saint Jerome was in the city. Among its objectives was care of the poor with the added richness of the presence of laymen. Cajetan attached himself to it. His decision was not well received by those around him. They could not understand how someone of his high social position could enroll in such a venture. However, that flame of love, so often misunderstood, was what illumined his life, because he did not seek honors or glory, although he could easily have had them. He was guided by this religious conviction, shared with other companions:  “At the Oratory we render to God the homage of adoration, at the hospital we meet Him personally.” He opened another Oratory at Verona and, in 1520, his mother died. That year he went to Venice, at the suggestion of his confessor, the Dominican Juan Bautista of Crema, where he founded the hospital for incurables. In addition to serving the poor, he sought out expressly those suffering from very serious ailments, patients that many would have run away from because of the repulsive character of their illness, and helped them financially. In the course of the three years he was there, he introduced Benediction with the Most Blessed Sacrament. It was a time when it was not usual to receive the Eucharist frequently. He worked to have this immense gift valued so that people would benefit from it. He said: “I will not be satisfied until I see Christians approaching the heavenly banquet with the simplicity of hungry and joyful children, and not full of fear and false shame.”

When his dream was about to be forged of bringing to ecclesial reform the figure of the cleric regular , knowing the important role of the priest, he wrote to his family: “For some time Christ has been calling me and inviting me, because of his kindness, to take part in his kingdom. And he makes me see more clearly every day that we cannot serve two masters, the world and Christ. I see Christ poor, and myself rich, He is mocked and I am a guest of honor, He is suffering, and I am delighting. I am dying to take a step towards meeting Him.” An insistent prayer arose from the depth of his being: that God would grant him the grace of finding three or four persons prepared to live the Gospel’s radicalism to introduce the reform the Church needed at that time. And he received the answer in the persons of Caraffa (later Pope Paul IV), Boniface of Colle and Paul Consiglieri. They were the first members of his foundation born with the evangelical spirit: “seek first of all the Kingdom of God and His justice, and all the rest will be given to you in great measure.” Approved by Clement VII in 1524, it had in Caraffa its first <superior> general.

In 1527 the House was devastated by Charles V’s troops and they were detained and tortured in the Clock Tower. Then they were released by a Spanish soldier, who took pity on them. They were sent to Venice. In 1530 Cajetan was elected <superior> general, until three year later when Caraffa was again his superior and sent him to Verona, where he suffered the opposition of a great part of the clergy and the faithful. From there he went to Naples in 1533 and founded another House. His charity, fervor and apostolic ardor, sealed by his devotion to Mary worked countless conversions. He founded the Hills of Piety to help the poor, created hospices and opened hospitals. He was given the grace of working miracles. He died at Naples on August 7, 1547 and that same day the war ceased, which had been unleashed in the city. Urban VIII beatified him on October 8, 1629. Clement X canonized him on April 12, 1671
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St Cajetan, Co-founder of The Theatine Clerks Regular 

St Cajetan (Gaetano) was son of Caspar, Count of Thierie, and Mary di Porto, of the nobility of Vicenza, where he was born in 1480. Two years later his father was killed, fighting for Venetians against King Ferdinand of Naples. His widow was appointed guardian of Cajetan and his two brothers.  The admirable example and teaching she gave her sons bore quick and abundant fruit, and Cajetan in particular was soon known for his unusual goodness.   He went four years to the University of Padua where long exercises of devotion which he practised were no hindrance to his studies, but sanctified them and purified his understanding, enabling him the better to judge of truth.  He distinguished himself in theology, and took the degree of doctor in civil and Canon law in 1504.  He then returned to his native town, of which he was made a senator, and in pursuance of his resolve to serve God as a priest he received the tonsure.
   In 1506 he went to Rome, not in quest of preferment or live at court, but because of a strong inward conviction that he was needed for some great work there.   Soon after his arrival Pope Julius II conferred on him the office of protonotary, with a benefice attached.    On the death of Julius II in 1513 Cajetan refused his successor's request to continue in his office, and devoted three years to preparing himself for the priesthood.  He was ordained in 1516 being thirty-three years old, and returned to Vicenza in 1518.

   Cajetan had re-founded a confraternity in Rome, called  "of the Divine Love", which was an association of zealous and devout clerics who devoted themselves to labour with all their power to promote God's honour and the welfare of souls.
    At Vicenza he now entered himself in the Oratory of St Jerome, which was instituted upon the plan of that of the Divine Love but consisted only of men in the lowest stations of life.  This circumstance gave great offence to his friends, who thought it a reflection on the honour of his family.  He persisted, however, and exerted his zeal with wonderful fruit. He sought out the sick and the poor over the whole town and served them, and cared for those who suffered from the most loathsome diseases in the hospital of the incurables, the revenues of which he greatly increased. But his primary concern was for the spiritual life of the members of his oratory: "In this oratory", he said, "we try to serve God by worship; in our hospital we may say that we actually find Him."  He founded a similar oratory at Verona and then, in obedience to the advice of his confessor, John-Baptist of Crema, a Dominican friar of great prudence and piety, Cajetan went in 1520 to Venice and, taking up his lodgings in the new hospital of that city, pursued Iris former manner of life there.  He was so great a benefactor to that house as to be regarded as its principal founder.
    He remained in Venice three years, and introduced exposition of the Blessed Sacrament in that city, as well as continuing the promotion of frequent communion:  "I shall never be content till I see Christians flocking like little children to feed on the Bread of Life, and with eagerness and delight, not with fear and false shame", he wrote.

   The state of Christendom at this time was not less than shocking.
The general corruption weakened the Church before the assaults of Protestantisrn and provided an apparent excuse for that revolt, and the decay of religion with its accompaniment of moral wickedness was not checked by the clergy, many of whom, high and low, secular and regular were themselves sunk in iniquity and indifference. The Church was "sick in head and members". The spectacle shocked and distressed Cajetan, and in 1523 he went back to Rome to confer with his friends of the Oratory of Divine Love. They agreed that little could be done than by reviving in the clergy the spirit and zeal of those holy pastors who first planted the faith,
and to put them in mind what this spirit ought to be, and what it obliges them to, a plan was formed for instituting an order of regular clergy upon the model of lives of the Apostles.
    First associates of St Cajetan in this design were John Peter Caraffa, afterwards pope under the name of Paul IV Clement VII, and Carafh was chosen the first provost general.  From his episcopal name of Theatensis these clerks regular came to be distinguished from others as Theatines. On September 14, 1524 the four original members laid aside their prelatical robes and

made their profession in St Peter's in the presence of a papal delegate. The principal ends which they proposed to themselves were to preach sound doctrine to the people, assist the sick, restore the frequent use of the sacraments, and re-establish in  the clergy disinterestedness, regularity of life, sacred studies (especially of the Bible), preaching and pastoral care, and the fitting conduct of divine worhsip.  Life was to be in common, under the usual vows, and poverty was strongly emphasized.
The success of the new congregation was not immediate, and in 1527, when it still numbered only a dozen members, a calamity happened which might well have put an end to it. The army of the Emperor Charles V sacked Rome: the Theatines' house was nearly demolished, and the inmates had to escape to Venice.Caraffa's term as superior expired in 1530: St Cajetan was chosen in his place. He accepted the office with reluctance, but did not let its cares abate the energy with which he worked to inspire the clergy with his own fervour and devotion, and his charity was made most conspicuous during a plague which was brought to Venice from the Levant, followed by a dreadful famine. but at that time bishop of Theate (Chieti); Paul Consiglieri, of the family of Ghislieri;  and Boniface da Colle, a gentleman of Milan.  The institute was approved .
   At the end of the three years of office, CarauIa was made superior a second time, and Cajetan was sent to Verona, where both the clergy and laity were tumultuously opposing the reformation of discipline which their bishop was endeavouring to introduce among them. Shortly after, he was called to Naples to establish the clerks regular there. The Count of Oppido gave him a large house, and tried to prevail upon him to accept an estate in lands; but this he refused. In vain the count pointed out that the Neapolitans were neither so rich nor so generous as the Venetians. "That may be true", replied Cajetan, "but God is the same in both cities."
A general improvement at Naples was the fruit of his example, preaching
and labours, and he was foremost in the successful opposition to the activities of three apostates, a layman, an Augustinian and a Franciscan, who, respectively Socinian, Calvinist and Lutheran, were corrupting the religion of the people. During the last years of his life he established with Bd John Marinoni the benevolent pawnshops (montes pietatis) sanctioned some time before by the Fifth Lateran Council. Worn out with trying to appease civil strife in Naples, and disappointed by the suspension of the Council of Trent from which he hoped so much for the Church's good, St Cajetan had to take to his bed in the summer of 1547. When his physicians advised him not to lie on the hard boards but to use a mattress, his answer was, "My Saviour died on a cross, allow me at least to die on wood". He lingered for a week, the end coming on Sunday, August 7.  Many miracles wrought by his intercession were approved at Rome after a rigorous scrutiny, and he was canonized in 1671.
St Cajetan was one of the most outstanding figures among the pre-Tridentine Catholic reformers, and his institution of clerks regular, priests bound by vow and living in community but engaged in active pastoral work, played a very great part in the Catholic reformation. Today, with. the one tremendous exception of the Jesuits, all their congregations have been reduced to small bodies, but continuing their original life and  work. Thomas Goldwell, Bishop of Saint Asaph and  last  survivor of the old hierarchy of England and Wales, was a Theatine, who entered their house of St Paul at Naples in the year of St Cajetan's death.
No biography of this saint has been left us by anyone who actually knew him. The life which is printed in the Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. ii, compiled by A. Caracciolo, was not written until some sixty years after the holy priest's death.   Probably St Cajetan's close association with Caraffa, and the extreme unpopularity of the latter's pontificate-he became pope, as Paul IV, eight years after the former went to Heaven-rendered the early history of the Theatines a delicate subject to handle. It is only in recent times that L. von Pastor, G. M. Monti, 0. Premoli, and other conscientious investigators have thrown light upon many matters formerly buried in obscurity. Though only a slight sketch, the bookletof 0. Premoli, S. Gaetano Thiene (1910), perhaps offers the most reliable picture of the saint but for the earlier portion of his career, Pio Paschini, S. Gaetano...e 1a origini dei...Teatini (1926), has provided a study of great value, largely based upon unpublished letters.  The life by R. de Maulde Ia Claviere, which having been translated into English is the most easily accessible, cannot be recommended without reserves:  see the reviews of both the original and the revised edition in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xxii, p. 119, and vol. xxiv, p. 419. Two later biographies in Italian are by P. Chiminelli (1948), very full, and by L. Ruiz de Cardenas (1947), shorter and more popular.
1568 Saint Dometius was an Athonite Elder. He pursued silence at the Philotheou monastery together with the Hieromartyr Damian of Philotheou (February 23), who suffered under cruel tortures by the Turks in the year 1568.

1638 Bb. Agathangelo and Cassian, Capuchin Martyrs in their mission for Abyssinia—or Ethiopia 

THE foundation and first direction of the Capuchin missions in the Levant in the seventeenth century was the work of Father Joseph of Paris (Joseph Leclerc du Tremblay), known on account of his influence with Richelieu and Louis XIII as “the Grey Cardinal”. Early in 1629 five Capuchins landed at Alexandretta, among them Father Agathangelo of Vendôme.

He had been born in that town in 1598, and at the age of twenty-one entered the Capuchin friary of Le Mans. He was ordained priest in 1625 and was a preacher in his own country until he was asked to go to Syria. At Aleppo he ministered to the French and Italian traders and others while he was learning Arabic, and soon mastered that language sufficiently well to talk and preach; he cultivated the society of Moslems and dissident Christians, winning the goodwill of such notables as the imam of the principal mosque and the superior of the Dervishes, and even explained Christianity to the Turks, in spite of the forbiddance by the Congregation de Propaganda Fide of any public preaching among Moham­medans. The fruit of this work was to induce an atmosphere of tolerance and interest: Father Agathangelo was too good a missionary to look for any more tangible results before due time.

In 1630 a Capuchin mission was established at Cairo which did not prosper, and at the end of 1633 Father Agathangelo was sent there to take charge. He was joined by three new missionaries from Marseilles, one of them being Father Cassian of Nantes, a Frenchman by birth but Portuguese by parentage. He soon became the right-hand man of Father Agathangelo and entered whole-heartedly into his efforts to bring about a reunion with the Holy See of the Coptic or native Egyptian church. Agathangelo got into personal touch with the Coptic bishops; and their patriarch, Matthew, opened all the dissident churches to him; using powers granted by Rome, he celebrated Mass, preached, and catechized therein and recon­ciled a number of individual Copts. The friars determined to try and gain the influence of the monks also, from among whom the Coptic bishops were chosen, and in 1636 Father Agathangelo took with him Father Benedict of Dijon and made the long journey to the monastery of Dair Antonios in the Lower Thebaid.

They were well received by the monks and made a stay of four months, Father Agathangelo conducting doctrinal discussions and giving spiritual conferences; of the two books which he used for the last purpose one was the treatise On the Holy Will of God, written by the English Father Benedict of Canfield (William Fitch), the first Capuchin missionary in England in penal times.

Two of the community were reconciled to the Church, and Father Agathangelo left them at the monastery in the hope that they would draw their brethren after them. This was his deliberate policy in Egypt, especially as there were no Catholic churches of the Coptic rite for reconciled dissidents to attend: priests were allowed to celebrate the Liturgy in, and lay-people to frequent, the dissident churches whose schism they had repudiated; thus they were not left without ministration and they might in time leaven the whole. Then Propaganda declared the practice illicit. Father Agathangelo asked the opinion of the father custodian of the Holy Land. “I think”, replied the Recollect, “that if those eminent prelates had known the conditions in this country they would never have come to such a decision; and that is the opinion of all my friars as well.” All the missionaries of Palestine and Egypt agreed, and Father Agathangelo wrote a long letter to the cardinal prefect giving theological, canonical and practical reasons for a withdrawal of the decree. The matter was referred to the Holy Office; there is no record of its reply, but it was probably favourable, for the successors of Father Agathangelo at Cairo followed his policy without hindrance.

Unhappily, and not for the only time in history, the great obstacle to Coptic reunion in a body was the Latin Catholics themselves. Some years before en­couraging negotiations had taken place between the Coptic patriarch and the consuls of France and Venice, and the French friars did not hesitate to make the renown and power of his Most Christian Majesty a point d’appui" of their undertaking. Or rather, they wished to. But the parties to the previous conversations were all dead, and the then consul of France was a man of such shocking life that his house deserved the name given to it by Father Agathangelo, “a synagogue of Satan”. Moreover, the general life of Europeans in Cairo was such that he had to write to his superiors that the public scandals made the Church “so great an object of abomination among the Copts, Greeks and other Christians that it will be very difficult to overcome their aversion for the Latins”. Even the appointment of a new and better consul in 1637 did not mend matters. When the synod of the Coptic patriarch met in the same year to discuss the possibility of reunion, one of his councillors denounced the proposal because of the scandalous lives of Catholics in Cairo: “The Roman Church is in this country a brothel”, he exclaimed. Father Agathangelo was present, but could not deny the truth of what was said; after gently urging that the sins of individuals, however terrible, could not alter the fact of the truth and holiness of the Church, he left the assembly and wrote a letter to the cardinal prefect of Propaganda. After pointing out that for three years he had asked in vain for authority publicly to excommunicate the worst offenders, he said he had done his best and could do no more: “I have appealed, I have reproved, I have threatened...Now my enthusiasm, whether reasonable or indiscreet, can no longer tolerate that those who have authority should not use it. They are dumb dogs, who are afraid to bite. Your Eminence will do whatever your good zeal for God’s glory may suggest to you...For the love of our crucified Lord and His holy Mother may your Lordships find a cure for these enormous scandals. As for myself, I shall not be held responsible for them before the judgement-seat of Christ who will judge us all...”  A few days later he left Egypt for Abyssinia with Father Cassian.

A Capuchin mission for Abyssinia—or Ethiopia, as it is better called—had been planned in 1637, and Agathangelo and Cassian had been awaiting orders to go and establish it. For some years Father Cassian had been destined for Ethiopia, and with this in view had set himself while in Cairo to learn Amharic, the principal language in use in that country; he therefore now took the leading place, as Father Agathangelo knew little of the language. They were, of course, fully informed about the dangerous state for Catholics in Ethiopia which had been brought about by recent political and ecclesiastical events there, and they had made certain provisions in view of it; what they did not know was that a certain German Lutheran physician, Peter Heyling, notorious for his hostility to Catholics, had been at work to upset their plans. Accordingly, when they got to Dibarua, an unidentified place beyond Suakim, in the early summer of 1638, they were arrested and taken, manacled and on foot, to Gondar.

The day after their arrival they were brought, chained and in muddy and torn Franciscan habits, before King Basilides and his court. In reply to his questions Bd Cassian replied, “We are Catholics and religious, natives of France. We have come to invite you to reunion with the Roman Church. We are well known to Abuna Mark, who has had a letter from the Patriarch of Alexandria, and we should like to speak with him.” Mark was the newly elected primate of the dissident Church of Ethiopia, who had been friendly with Father Agathangelo in Cairo; but Heyling had been talking to him, and Mark now refused to see the friars, saying, “I indeed knew this Agathangelo in Egypt and he is an evil and dangerous man. He tried to draw the people there to his religion, and has come to do the same here. I do not wish to see him. I recommend you to hang them both.” A Moham­medan remonstrated with the archbishop, but he repeated his words, with abuse. Basilides was inclined to banish the friars, but Peter Heyling with Mark and the king’s mother worked on the mob to demand their death, and so they were sen­tenced after they had been given the opportunity to save themselves by abjuring the Catholic faith in favour of that of the monophysites.

When the two martyrs were brought beneath the trees from which they were to be hanged there was some delay. “Why are you so slow? What are we waiting for?” asked Bd Cassian. “We have had to send for ropes”, answered the execu­tioner. “But have we not ropes round our clothes?” And so they were hanged with the cords of their Franciscan habits. But before they were dead the traitor Mark appeared before the crowd, crying out, “Stone these enemies of the faith of Alexandria, or I will excommunicate you!” Volleys of stones were immediately flung at the swinging bodies, and thus Bd Agathangelo and Bd Cassian died, the one being forty years old, the other thirty. For four nights miraculous light was reported to be seen above the bodies, and Basilides in terror ordered them to be buried; but some Catholics took them away by stealth and their resting-place is to this day unknown. In 1905, Agathangelo of Vendôme, one of the most remark­able missionaries of the seventeenth century, and his faithful companion, Cassian of Nantes, were declared blessed by Pope Pius X.
A sufficient account of these martyrs is provided in Ladislas de Vannes, Deux martyrs capucins (1905); and Antonio da Pontedera, Vita c martirio dei BB. Agatangelo e Cassiano (1904).

1710 Saint Theodora, the greatest of Romania's holy ascetics;  St Theodora made such progress in asceticism that she was able to keep vigil all night long with her arms lifted up toward heaven. When the morning sun touched her face, she would eat some herbs and other vegetation to break her fast. She drank rainwater which she collected from a channel cut into the cliff, which is still known as St Theodora's Spring; As St Theodora grew old, she was forgotten and there was no one to care for her. Placing all her hope in God, she continued her spiritual struggles, and reached great heights of perfection. When she prayed her mind was raised up to Heaven, and her body was lifted up off the ground. Like the great saints of earlier times, her face shone with a radiant light, and a flame came forth from her mouth when she prayed.   In time her clothes became mere rags, and when her food ran out, she was fed by birds like the Prophet Elias (July 20). They brought her crusts of bread from the Sihastria Skete. Seeing the birds come to the skete and then fly away with pieces of bread in their beaks, the igumen sent two monks to follow them. Night fell as they walked toward Sihla, and they lost their way in the woods. They decided to wait for daylight, and began to pray. Suddenly, they saw a bright light stretching up into the sky, and went to investigate. As they approached, they saw a woman shining with light and levitating above the ground as she prayed.

Born in the village of Vanatori, Neamts in the first half of the seventeenth century, and was the daughter of Stephen Joldea and his wife.   She was married to a man of Ismail, but had no children. Therefore, she and her husband decided to enter the monastic life. Her husband went to the Skete of Poiana Marului, where he was tonsured with the name Eleutherius. He was also ordained to the holy priesthood.   Theodora also received the monastic tonsure in the Skete of Poiana Marului. In just a few years, she advanced in obedience, prayer, and asceticism, acquiring the grace of unceasing prayer of the heart.
     When her skete was destroyed by the Turks, she fled to the Buzau Mountains with her spiritual mother, Schemanun Paisia. They lived for several years in fasting, vigil and prayer, enduring cold, hunger, and demonic temptations. When her spiritual mother fell asleep in the Lord (1670-1675), St Theodora was led by God to the mountains of Neamts. After venerating the wonderworking Neamts Icon of the Mother of God (June 26) in the monastery, she was told to seek the advice of Hieromonk Barsanuphius of Sihastria Skete. Seeing her desire for the eremetical life, and recognizing her great virtues, he gave her Holy Communion and assigned Hieromonk Paul as her Father Confessor and spiritual guide.
   Fr Barsanuphius advised Theodora to go and live alone in the wilderness for a year. "If, by the grace of Christ, you are able to endure the difficulties and trials of the wilderness, then remain there until you die. If you cannot endure, however, then go to a women's monastery, and struggle there in humility for the salvation of your soul."

Fr Paul searched in vain for an abandoned hermitage where St Theodora might live. Then they met an old hermit living beneath the cliffs of Sihla. This clairvoyant Elder greeted them and said, "Mother Theodora, remain in my cell, for I am moving to another place."
Fr Paul left Theodora on Mount Sihla, blessing her before he returned to the skete. St Theodora lived in that cell thirty years. Strengthened with power from on high, she vanquished all the attacks of the Enemy through patience and humility. She never left the mountain, and never saw another person except for Fr Paul, who visited her from time to time to bring her the Spotless Mysteries of Christ and the supplies she needed to survive.
St Theodora made such progress in asceticism that she was able to keep vigil all night long with her arms lifted up toward heaven. When the morning sun touched her face, she would eat some herbs and other vegetation to break her fast. She drank rainwater which she collected from a channel cut into the cliff, which is still known as St Theodora's Spring.

When Turks attacked the villages and monasteries around Neamts, the woods became filled with villagers and monastics. Some nuns found St Theodora's cell, and she called out to them, "Remain here in my cell, for I have another place of refuge." Then she moved into a nearby cave, living there completely alone. An army of Turks discovered the cave, and were about to kill the saint. Lifting up her hands, she cried out, "O Lord, deliver me from the hands of these murderers." The wall of the cave opened, and she was able to escape into the woods.

As St Theodora grew old, she was forgotten and there was no one to care for her. Placing all her hope in God, she continued her spiritual struggles, and reached great heights of perfection. When she prayed her mind was raised up to Heaven, and her body was lifted up off the ground. Like the great saints of earlier times, her face shone with a radiant light, and a flame came forth from her mouth when she prayed.   In time her clothes became mere rags, and when her food ran out, she was fed by birds like the Prophet Elias (July 20). They brought her crusts of bread from the Sihastria Skete. Seeing the birds come to the skete and then fly away with pieces of bread in their beaks, the igumen sent two monks to follow them. Night fell as they walked toward Sihla, and they lost their way in the woods. They decided to wait for daylight, and began to pray. Suddenly, they saw a bright light stretching up into the sky, and went to investigate. As they approached, they saw a woman shining with light and levitating above the ground as she prayed.
St Theodora said, "Brethren, do not be afraid, for I am a humble handmaiden of Christ. Throw me something to wear, for I am naked."

Then she told them of her life and approaching death. She asked them to go to the skete and ask for Fr Anthony and the hierodeacon Laurence to come and bring her Communion. They asked her how they could find their way to the skete at night, for they did not know the way. She said that they would be guided to the skete by a light which would go before them.

The next day at dawn, Fr Anthony went to Sihla with the deacon and two other monks. When they found St Theodora, she was praying by a fir tree in front of her cave. She confessed to the priest, then received the Holy Mysteries of Christ and gave her soul to God. The monks buried her in her cave with great reverence sometime during the first decade of the eighteenth century.
News of her death spread quickly, and people came from all over to venerate her tomb. Her holy relics remained incorrupt, and many miracles took place before them. Some kissed the relics, others touched the reliquary, while others washed in her spring. All who entreated St Theodora's intercession received healing and consolation.
       St Theodore's former husband, Hieromonk Eleutherius, heard that she had been living at Sihla, and decided to go there. He found her cave shortly after her death and burial. Grieving for his beloved wife, Eleutherius did not return to his monastery, but made a small cell for himself below the cliffs of Sihla. He remained close to her cave, fasting, praying, and serving the Divine Liturgy. He lived there for about ten years before his blessed repose. He was buried in the hermits' cemetery, and the Skete of St John the Baptist was built over his grave.
St Theodora's relics were taken to the Kiev Caves Monastery between 1828 and 1834. There she is known as St Theodora of the Carpathians.
1832 Saint Metrophanes, Bishop of Voronezh The Uncovering of the Relics of : The memory of the deep piety and pastoral virtues of St Metrophanes (Macarius, in the schema) was revered at Voronezh from the time of his death (November 23, 1703). His successors, the Voronezh hierarchs, considered it their sacred duty to make annual remembrance of the first hierarch of their flock, together with his parents, the priest Basil and Maria.

The people of Voronezh and its environs came to the Annunciation cathedral, where memorial services were offered at his tomb. Contributing to the intense remembrance of St Metrophanes was also his dying request that prayers be said for him. For this purpose the saint, even during his lifetime, had built a chapel at the cathedral in honor of the holy Archangel Michael (his patron saint), and in it a special priest served the Liturgy. Although succeeding generations did not know the saint, they also revered his memory.

The veracity of the sainthood of the first hierarch of the Voronezh diocese was also confirmed by his incorrupt relics, attested during their repeated transfers from one temple to another. In the year 1718, Metropolitan Pachomius of Voronezh, about to begin the construction of a new cathedral, gave orders to demolish the old Annunciation cathedral. The body of St Metrophanes was temporarily transferred into the church of the Unburnt Bush. In 1735, the body of St Metrophanes was transferred into the new cathedral, during which time the incorrupt state of his relics was again observed. At the place of the burial of the saint, panikhidas were customarily served for him.

By 1820 it was noticed that the number of those venerating St Metrophanes and thronging to Voronezh, had extraordinarily increased. Grace-filled signs also increased. Archbishop Anthony II of Voronezh made repeated reports to the Holy Synod about the miracles, and he petitioned for a resolution for the glorification of the saint. The Holy Synod then prescribed that records be kept of miracles at the grave of St Metrophanes. In the year 1831, after seeing the incorrupt body of the saint, Archbishop Anthony together with commission members of the Holy Synod, Archbishop Eugenius of Yaroslavl and Archimandrite Hermogenes of the Moscow Savior-Androniev monastery, became convinced in the miraculous intercession of St Metrophanes before the Throne of God. The Holy Synod then issued its resolution adding St Metrophanes to the ranks of the Saints. Since then, the Russian Church celebrates the memory of the saint twice during the year: November 23, the day of his repose, and August 7, the day of his glorification.
Archbishop Anthony II (1827-1846) established in the Voronezh also the following feastdays in honor of St Metrophanes: June 4, the Feast of his namesake St Metrophanes, Patriarch of Constantinople; April 2, the saint's day of consecration as bishop in 1682; and December 11, the day of the transfer of the relics of St Metrophanes in 1831.
St Metrophanes left behind a Spiritual Testament. Its original is preserved in the State Historical Museum. Upon the testament is the unique authoritative signature of the saint: "This spiritual dictate is attested to by me... Bishop Metrophanes of Voronezh."
On the lower cover (inside) is an inscription from the eighteenth century: "This is the book of testament or last will of the Voronezh schemamonk Macarius, written in the God-saved city of Voronezh, in the house of His Grace the bishop and schemamonk Macarius, who reposed in the month of November on the 23rd day in the year 1703, and was buried on the 4th day of December."
On the day preceding the Uncovering of the Relics of St Metrophanes, Archbishop Anthony of Voronezh went to church, so as to lay out the new vestments prepared for the relics. Suddenly, he felt so weak that he was barely able to go about his cell. Troubled by this, he sat and pondered and then he heard a quiet voice: " Do not transgress my legacy."
This he did not understand right away, and instead thinking about his own plans, he gathered up his strength and opened the closet where the vestments were, and there he caught sight of the monastic schema, brought shortly before this by an unknown monk who had entrusted it to him and said that it soon would be needed.
Seeing this monastic schema, the hierarch then realized that the words, "Do not transgress my legacy," was actually the will of St Metrophanes, that they not place upon his relics bishop's vestments, but rather to clothe them in the schema. By this and by his extreme humility, he indicated the deep spiritual connection with his patronal saint (in schema), St Macarius of Unzhensk.
1865 Saint Anthony (Putilov) captivity during Napoleon's invasion; tonsured by Fr Athanasius on February 2, 1820 and was given the name Anthony. He was also placed under the spiritual guidance of Fr Moses; ordained as a deacon 1823; bore all these trials with patience and humility, believing that illness is sometimes given to us by God in order to heal the infirmities of the soul;  "Whom the Lord loves, He chastises" (Hebrews 12:6). Fr Anthony retorted, "Many are the scourges of the sinner" (Psalm 31/32:10).
Born March 9, 1795 in the town of Romanov in the Yaroslavl province, and was baptized with the name Alexander. His siblings were called Timothy, Jonah, Basil, Cyril, and Anysia. John Putilov named all his children after the saint commemorated on the eighth day after their birth, so the future St Anthony was named for the holy hieromartyr Alexander the Bishop of Rome (March 16). The children were educated at home, since their parents feared they would be corrupted in some way if they were sent away to school.

From an early age, Alexander was quiet and modest, disdaining the noisy games of other children. It is not surprising that he should be inclined toward monasticism even as a child, because his great-grandfather Joel had been a hierodeacon at the Serpukhov Monastery, and his cousin Maximilla was a nun in the Annunciation women's monastery in Moscow.   When Alexander was ten years old, his brothers Timothy and Jonah entered the Sarov Monastery. They wrote to him and sent him spiritual books, which he enjoyed reading. When he was only thirteen, he wrote to them expressing the wish to become a monk like them.

The young Alexander endured many trials and illnesses during his childhood, and on ten separate occasions he was in danger of losing his life. Once he nearly drowned, another time he fell and fractured his skull. He had several other close calls, yet God spared his life, forseeing something better for him (Hebrews 11:40).  After his father's death in 1809, Alexander went to work for the merchant Karpishev in Moscow, for whom his older brothers had also worked. He lived in Moscow only three years, but he remembered the location of all the city's holy places and wonderworking icons for the rest of his life.
On September 2, 1812, he tried to flee Moscow during Napoleon's invasion, but it was too late to escape. A Pole on horseback pointed a pistol at Alexander and stole his money. Later, French soldiers robbed him of his watch and most of his clothing, and held him prisoner for ten days. During his captivity he consoled himself with the words of St John Chrysostom, who said that the worst sufferings on earth are nothing compared to the least sufferings in hell.  After learning that there were Russian soldiers outside of Moscow, Alexander escaped on September 12 while it was raining. He found a group of Russians, including some of his relatives. They walked through forests and swamps by night, and hid from the French by day. Eventually, Alexander arrived at the home of some relatives in Rostov. Not knowing what had become of his brothers, he took a job similar to the one he had in Moscow.

Alexander loved to visit the St James Monastery in Rostov, where the relics of St Demetrius of Rostov (October 28) were enshrined. By the end of 1815, circumstances finally permitted him to withdraw from the world. First, however, he arranged for his older brother Basil to marry, choosing a suitable and pious bride for him.
At the end of 1815, Alexander went to Moscow to visit the various churches and monasteries. He prayed to the Most Holy Theotokos and to all the saints, asking that his intention to become a monk might be blessed. From Moscow, he traveled to Kaluga, and then to the Roslavl forests in Smolensk province where his brother Fr Moses had been living for about five years.

Alexander consulted with his brother about his desire to enter the monastery at Sarov, and decided to remain with Fr Moses until spring. He was made a novice on January 15, 1816. In the spring, Alexander decided he would remain a while longer. Several months later, he went with Fr Moses on pilgrimage to Kiev. On their return trip the brothers stopped at several monasteries, conversing with many Elders about the spiritual life. Alexander was not inclined to enter any of them, however.  Back in the Roslavl forests, Alexander realized that he did not want to leave his brother. He had come only for a brief visit, but ended up staying with Fr Moses for the next twenty-four years.

Despite the many illnesses of his childhood, Alexander was blessed with great physical strength, and devoted himself to seemingly impossible ascetic labors. The brothers would get up at midnight and read through the cycle of services without omissions, and so Alexander became familiar with the church Typikon. He copied out patristic texts by hand, and helped his brother compile extracts from various sources in order to provide a system of rules for the Christian life. Out of reverence for these spiritual books, the brothers remained standing when they read or copied them. Alexander spent so much time standing on his feet that he damaged his legs, which caused him pain for the rest of his life.
     As the youngest member of the community, Alexander had to get up before the others in order to wake them. He chopped wood, carried water, worked in the vegetable garden, and still fulfilled his daily rule of prayer.  After a trial period of four years, Alexander was tonsured by Fr Athanasius on February 2, 1820 and was given the name Anthony. He was also placed under the spiritual guidance of Fr Moses.
In 1821 Bishop Philaret of Kaluga (later Metropolitan of Kiev) decided to establish a skete at Optina Monastery for experienced ascetics who wished to live in silence. He had met Fr Moses at Optina in 1820 where they were introduced by Igumen Daniel. The bishop offered him opportunity to move to his diocese and establish a skete at Optina, and Fr Moses accepted. On June 3, 1821 Fr Moses left the Roslavl forests with Fr Anthony, and the monks Hilarion and Sabbatius. The Elders Athanasius and Dorotheus decided to remain behind until the skete was completely ready. For the rest of his life Fr Anthony would always remember his five years in the Roslavl forests with a special joy.

On June 6 St Anthony arrived at Optina with the other monks. The site they selected for the skete was 400 yards from the monastery's eastern side. They cleared the land of trees and built a cell and a church dedicated to St John the Baptist. St Moses was appointed igumen, and on August 24, 1823 Anthony was ordained as a deacon.  St Anthony was placed in charge of the skete when his brother was made Superior of Optina Monastery in 1825. For the next fourteen years the skete flourished under Anthony. Wise Elders and experienced ascetics were attracted to the hesychast skete by the fame of Fr Moses. St Leonid (October 11) came from the St Anthony of Svir monastery with five of his disciples in 1829. St Macarius (September 7) came from Ploschansk monastery in 1834 at the invitation of Fr Moses.
With the help of Fr Leonid and Fr Macarius, Fr Moses and Fr Anthony introduced the ancient monastic tradition of eldership at the skete and monastery. St Anthony was an example of obedience to others. Though he was Superior of the skete, he never made any decisions or gave any orders without the blessing of his own Elder, Fr Moses.
     At first, life in the skete was very difficult. There were not enough monks to do all the work, so Fr Anthony carried his own water and firewood. He also worked on the grounds, cleared paths, took his turn serving in church, and greeted visitors. The hard work made him appreciate the simple food served in the trapeza. Sometimes a benefactor would donate wheat loaves for the brethren, but most days they ate black bread.
Fr Anthony suffered from various afflictions throughout his life. His legs pained him because of his continual standing. He also had eye trouble, and even lost his sight for a brief time. In 1836, while hurrying to the monastery along a forest path for the midnight paschal service, Fr Anthony stubbed his right foot on a tree stump. His legs were already sore from years of standing, and now they developed open sores.  The inflammation in his legs prevented him from leaving his cell for six months.   He bore all these trials with patience and humility, believing that illness is sometimes given to us by God in order to heal the infirmities of the soul. When anything unpleasant happened to him, he remained meek and calm. He offered thanks to God because his sickness gave him more time for reading spiritual books for the benefit of his soul.

On November 30, 1839 Bishop Nicholas of Kaluga summoned Fr Anthony, and appointed him as igumen of the Maloyaroslavets Monastery. He had hoped to remain at the skete for the rest of his lfe, but in spite of his sorrow at leaving Optina, he went obediently to his new assignment.   By the mercy of God, three Putilov brothers were now serving as igumens of monasteries: Moses at Optina, Anthony at Maloyaroslavets, and Isaiah at Sarov. Fr Moses seemed to have the least difficulty in bearing the sorrows and labors of his office. The others sometimes found it difficult to fulfill their duties and provide for the needs of the monastery.
    After five years in the forest and eighteen years at the skete, Fr Anthony found life at Maloyaroslavets monastery like living in the midst of a noisy city. The monks did not share the same oneness of mind as the Optina monks. Besides this, Fr Anthony was so ill that he was not able to observe what was going on in the monastery, and he had to issue his orders through others. After only a few days he became depressed at his situation. One night St Metrophanes of Voronezh (November 23) appeared to him in a dream and blessed him. He said, "You have been in Paradise and you know it. Now work, pray, and don't be lazy." From that time, Fr Anthony felt himself to be under the saint's special care.
      Fr Anthony zealously devoted himself to improving the spiritual life of the monastery, but he was not happy there. More than once he wrote to the bishop and asked to be allowed to retire. The bishop, however, would not hear of it. Fr Anthony also wrote to Fr Moses to express his sorrow and his desire to be relieved of his duties. Fr Moses told him that he could not abandon his responsabilities, for that would insult the monastery, and would also grieve the bishop and Fr Moses himself. He chastized his brother, saying that in seeking deliverence from his sorrows, Anthony was placing his own will in opposition to the will of God.    Fr Anthony accepted the rebuke of Fr Moses and learned to bear his cross with meekness, and to place all his trust in God. Finally, in 1853, Bishop Gregory of Kaluga relieved Fr Anthony of his duties, and permitted him to retire to Optina.
    Fr Anthony arrived back at his beloved Optina on February 12, 1853, and was given a cell near Fr Moses. Although he continued to suffer from physical ailments, he bore them with exemplary patience. He went to church for all the services, and took his meals with the brethren. Since he continued his prolonged standing, his legs became covered with sores. The writer I.V. Kieryevsky told Fr Anthony that he fulfilled the words of Scripture: "Whom the Lord loves, He chastises" (Hebrews 12:6). Fr Anthony retorted, "Many are the scourges of the sinner" (Psalm 31/32:10).

He never complained about his sufferings, even though they prevented him from leaving his cell for weeks at a time. If he could not be at the church services, he would read his rule of prayer in his cell at the very time the services were taking place.
Only those experienced in the spiritual life themselves could understand what spiritual gifts God had granted Fr Anthony, which he tried to conceal from everyone. There is reason to believe that he saw visions, and attained great spiritual heights. When he was serving the Liturgy, his face seemed to radiate such grace that those who merely looked at him felt that their souls were transformed.
After services in the church and prayers in his cell, Fr Anthony devoted himself to his favorite occupation - reading. He loved the Holy Scriptures and the writings of the Fathers, and also enjoyed other books of a spiritual or historical nature. He gave over 2,000 of his books to the monastery library, and he had read every single one. He made notes on what he read, and also copied excerpts from books and magazines for the benefit of his spiritual children.  The Elder was blessed with a remarkable memory. Not only could he remember everything he had read for many years afterward, he also remembered who had visited him on a particular day, and what their conversation had been about.
    St Anthony knew how to balance strictness with a certain amount of compassion for human weakness. He would not bless anyone to depart from the Church's norms, however. He was very strict concerning spiritual matters in general, and especially the teachings and canons of the Church. He himself believed in the Church's teachings and kept its precepts, and he required the same faith and obedience from his spiritual children.

Fr Anthony's retirement at Optina lasted for twelve years. When Fr Moses reposed in 1862, Fr Anthony was stricken with grief. For the first forty days he secluded himself in his cell, constantly reading the Psalter for his newly-departed brother. For about a year, he avoided people as much as he could, and prayed for Fr Moses. He refused to speak to anyone about the hidden spiritual life of Fr Moses, but he did reveal to a few people that he remained in spiritual contact with his brother even after his death.
   In 1863, Fr Anthony went on a pilgrimage to venerate the relics of the newly-glorified St Tikhon of Zadonsk (August 13) and St Metrophanes of Voronezh. He also visited several other monasteries, and some families who loved him. Upon returning to Optina, Fr Anthony began to prepare for his departure from this world, and on March 9, 1865, at the age of seventy, he received the Great Schema.
On June 24, 1865, the Nativity of St John the Baptist and the Skete's Feast Day, Igumen Anthony attended Liturgy in the skete church for the last time. He was growing weaker day by day, and in July he began to suffer from typhoid fever. As a result, he was able to sleep only for brief periods.Still, he continued to receive visitors, giving advice and instructions, and revealing to some that he was about to die.   The Elder received Holy Unction on July 21 and received Holy Communion every day. In his last days he asked to be sprinkled with holy water from Theophany, and requested that his bed and his room also be sprinkled. This brought him great comfort. He said, "How necessary is this sprinkling. The grace of God is present."
St Anthony was not afraid of death, but awaited it in a spirit of joy and peace, surrendering himself to the will of God. He asked that his schema and the other garments in which he wanted to be buried be laid out and ready. He also started distributing his belongings to others as a remembrance.   After Liturgy on August 6, some of the brethren came to his cell to sing the troparion and kontakion for the Transfiguration. The next day he asked to be clothed in the full garb of a schemamonk. Due to his weakness, however, this could not be done. They placed the schema over him, and that satisfied him.
That evening St Anthony asked to see the Superior, and sought his blessing for his final journey. Fr Isaac blessed him and took leave of him. Then the Elder asked Fr Isaac to ring the bell three times. In monasteries this is normally done after someone has died, so his request seemed rather unusual. However, in 1863 St Anthony had compiled a collection of prayers for those who were incurably ill, with prayers for the departed. In this collection he stipulated that the bell be rung three or more times "to announce to the brethren that the sick brother is departing" so that they might pray for him.
The Canon for the Departure of a Soul was read for him, and when it was completed he lay silent for a while. Suddenly he looked to the right and to the left in a threatening manner, and even raised his left fist. Those present became fearful, for they believed that he saw something which their eyes could not see. Perhaps they recalled that many of the saints had seen demons just before they died. One of the spiritual Fathers of the monastery blessed him three times with a hand cross. The holy Elder sighed three times, then departed to the Lord.
The funeral took place on August 10, and was attended by many people. Although St Anthony wanted to be buried in the new cemetery, the Archishop ordered that he be buried next to his brother St Moses in the side altar of the monastery's Cathedral (katholikon).
The Moscow Patriarchate authorized local veneration of the Optina Elders on June 13,1996. The work of uncovering the relics of Sts Leonid, Macarius, Hilarion, Ambrose, Anatole I, Barsanuphius and Anatole II began on June 24/July 7, 1998 and was concluded the next day. However, because of the church Feasts (Nativity of St John the Baptist, etc.) associated with the actual dates of the uncovering of the relics, Patriarch Alexey II designated June 27/July 10 as the date for commemorating this event. The relics of the holy Elders now rest in the new church of the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God.
The Optina Elders were glorified by the Moscow Patriarchate for universal veneration on August 7, 2000.
1878 Wonder-working icon of the Mother of God of Valaam. Painted on lime wood, the 132 x 79.5 cm icon depicts the Virgin Mary as a full-length figure standing on a cloud with lowered gaze, clothed in a bright red cloak and a dark turquoise undergarment. She is holding the Christ child, who is dressed in a thin, pale yellow smock, on her left arm. With her right hand, she points to Christ, in the style of the "hodigitria" icons of the Mother of God. Christ blesses with His right hand and holds an orb, surmounted by a cross, in His left hand, signifying that He is the Creator of the world and King of all. According to the inscription, the icon was painted in 1878, “the work of the monks of Valaam.” It is customarily attributed, however, to Father Alipy, one of the leading iconographers at the original Valaam Monastery in Lake Ladoga in Russian Karelia.
One of the greatest treasures in the possession of the Monastery of New Valamo in Heinävesi, Finland

     Father Alipy painted the icon only a few years after he arrived at the monastery, before he had become a novice there. He was tonsured to monastic orders in 1884 and ordained as priestmonk in 1893. Following the conventions of the late 19th century, the icon was painted in a “naturalistic” style, employing a technique that combined the use of tempera and oils. Originally, the icon was to have been placed in the Valaam Monastery's Church of the Dormition. This never occurred, however, and subsequently the icon was misplaced.
   In 1897, the icon was rediscovered and gained its miracle-working reputation on the strength of a succession of visions of the Mother of God experienced by an elderly woman with serious rheumatoid arthritis, Natalia Andreyevna.  Andreyeva, who was cured of her illness.  
   Despite the Valaam Monastery's long history, it never had an icon of the Mother of God of its own design, although Father Alipy's icon came to occupy such a position in subsequent years. In the turmoil of World War II, the icon was transported to safety in Finland, along with many other treasures from Valaam and the majority of the monks. It now occupies a prominent position in the Church of the Transfiguration of Our Lord at the New Valaam Monastery. In 1987, the bishops of the autonomous Orthodox Church of Finland established an annual feast in the Valaam Icon's honor on August 7. The troparion and kontakion for the feast were written by the late Archbishop Paul of Finland. On July 29, 2005, the Valaam Icon of the Mother of God was brought for the first time to North America by His Eminence, Archbishop Leo of Karelia and All Finland.
“Mother dear, is it true that you live at Valaam?”
The story of the icon of the Mother of God of Valaam, as recorded in 1897
In a corner behind the choir enclosure on the south side of the lower main church at the monastery of Valaam, where the miracle-working remains of the monastery’s founders, the Saints Sergei and Herman of Valaam, lie at rest interred in the rock, stands an icon of the All-Holy Mother of God.

 This full length image of the Queen of Heaven holding the divine child in her arms is known as the icon of the Mother of God of Valaam. It is a work of considerable artistic merit that was painted by a local artist-monk and later hieromonk, Father Alipi, in 1878. Nowadays this icon is one of the most cherished objects of reverence at Valaam. As if by some divine providence, no suitable place could be found for the icon at first when it was finished, and it was placed in the entrance hall to the upper main church, where it remained until that church was demolished to make way for a new one. At that stage the majority of the icons, including this one, were taken to the Church of the Dormition of the Mother of God, where the monastery held its regular services until the lower main church was completed. The icon was hung in a relatively high position on a pillar to the left of the entrance to the church. When the lower main church was ready for consecration, all the icons that had been moved to the Church of the Dormition were returned to it, but again, for some inexplicable reason known only to God, no place could be found for this one.

     As scarcely any services were held in the Church of the Dormition any longer, this icon, along with some others, was placed in temporary storage in the Church of St Nicholas the Miracle-Worker. There it lay forgotten for many years, until it was moved to its present place in response to a vision experienced by a holy woman servant of God. The story of the indescribable act of grace bestowed upon this woman by the Queen of Heaven is recounted below in her own words.

    ‘I am a member of the peasant estate from the village of Zarino in the parish of Paskina, part of the district of Korchevski within the province of Tver. My name is Natalia Andreyevna Andreyeva. I am now sixty-four and live in St Petersburg, in the Brusnitsyn old peoples’ home, at Kosaya Line no. 15 on Vasili Island. I was placed in this home, through the grace of God, by the lady in whose service I was a serf in former days. In the year 1878 or 1879 I caught a bad cold on one occasion when washing clothes and developed rheumatism in my arms and legs. I began to seek treatment for this, but my health became worse year by year. I went to the Mariski Hospital for massage for a long time, but it didn’t help, and I went to the Grand Duchess Elena Pavlovna’s clinic opposite the Tauria gardens for as long as I could. I was more or less a cripple for most of the winter. All my money went on doctors’ fees and medicines, but the Lord God didn’t look kindly on my afflictions. In the end I was told that my illness had reached the stage of serious rheumatoid arthritis and that the only way of curing it was to go to a spa and take warm water baths. What could I do? By that time I could scarcely afford to eat, so how could I find the money for treatment at a spa?
      And so, sinner that I am, I began to pray ardently to the Mother of God that in her mercy she would help me in my sufferings. I could walk only with great difficulty, leaning on a stick, and I had such pains in my hands and arms from time to time that I could no longer hold on to the stick. Sometimes I could make my way into the Church of the Sign only by crawling up the steps on all fours. I lived as a beggar, on food that people gave me as alms. This went on until 1887.
    At that point my former mistress heard about my pitiful state and invited me to come and live with her at Käkisalmi in the province of Viipuri in Finland and look after her children as far as my health would permit. There was no other work that I could think of doing in the condition that I was in. The family was not a rich one, and so I was not to receive any wages for this – but, thank God, at least I was sure of food and a roof over my head. While I was at Käkisalmi I heard many accounts of the miraculous cures that had taken place at the tomb of the Saints Sergei and Herman of Valaam, and this aroused a powerful desire in me to visit Valaam and prostrate myself before the tomb of these saints who had been acceptable unto the Lord and entreat their help in my serious state of illness.

   I had heard a lot about Valaam earlier, while I was living in St Petersburg, and I had often thought of visiting the monastery to pay reverence to its founder saints, but in all the vanities of life I had never got round to it. The main reason had been the cost of the journey, of course, but now the monastery was closer. Also, there was an inner voice speaking to me all the time, “Go to Valaam and be cured!” I could no longer resist this desire, and I asked the lady of the house for leave to go there. As I had no money at all, I pawned my warm scarf for four roubles and started to make preparations for the journey. As the day of departure approached I began to feel uneasy and distressed. I was an old woman who was utterly sick and lacking in strength. How could I travel alone? I had very little money, only just enough for the journey. How could I set out at all on such a journey? And if something were to happen, what would a poor creature like me do then? Thoughts like this began to haunt me until I was quite distraught. The night before I set out I just lay on my bed and wept. What should I do? I wanted so much to make this journey, but still I was frightened for some reason. Then – I don’t know whether I was asleep or awake – I saw quite clearly a tall woman clad in pink velvet and with a child in her arms, surrounded by an amazing light. The thought immediately struck me, could this be the Mother of God? I didn’t dare to call out to her by that name, though. I wanted to go to her, but she stepped back and said, “Don’t weep. The Saviour is coming, and I am coming to you!” Then I said to her, “Mother dear, how beautiful and good you are! Is it true that you live at Valaam?” “Yes, I live there. You will see me at Valaam!” After that the vision disappeared, but now that the Mother of God had spoken to me it was as if a stone had been lifted from my heart. My mind was at ease and all my fears had been swept away.
  The next day the ship came and I set out joyfully on my journey. The old ladies sitting beside me began to offer me food and drink, one bread, another tea and yet another coffee, so that I was not short of anything all the way. It was a happy journey. The only problem was that my legs were very painful because of the rocking of the ship. At Valaam they were celebrating not only the annual feast of the Saints Sergei and Herman but also the laying of the foundation stone for a new church. There were a huge number of pilgrims there, and also the Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich and his wife the Duchess. There were throngs of people everywhere. Once I had arrived and rested after the strenuous journey, I made my way to the tomb of the Saints Sergei and Herman and prayed there ardently so that the tears streamed from my eyes. I asked the saints who had been acceptable unto God to help me, to grant me, sinful as I was, relief from my illness. I spent the last coins that I had on a short service of prayer to them, so that I had nothing left but twenty kopecks and my return fare. The evening service was held in the Church of the Dormition, and the crowd was so enormous that with my illness, I stood no chance of pushing my way into the church but had to stand, or rather sit, in the entrance. The following day I had to return home. I would have liked to stay there longer to pray, but I couldn’t, as even a few days would have cost so much that I would not have had any money for the fare home. Just before the ship was due to leave, some unseen force began to drive me back to the Church of the Dormition once more to pray. Although I was frightened of missing the ship, I didn’t dare to resist this inner voice which ordered me into the church, so I gathered up all my strength and practically ran back there. As soon as I stepped into the church I involuntarily looked to the left – and stood rooted to the spot. My legs went weak beneath me, and I would certainly have fallen down if it hadn’t been for the railings beside the stairs leading to the upper church. The reason for my surprise and bewilderment was something quite miraculous. Hanging on the pillar to the left of the door, in a golden frame, and looking at me was the Mother of God! And what was more, I recognised in Her the same figure who had appeared to me in a dream on the eve of my departure for Valaam and strengthened my failing spirit for the journey. I couldn’t take my eyes off the icon, and I became more and more convinced that this was the same dear mother who had been gracious enough to visit me in a dream. I recognised Her radiant face and Her merciful gaze. Even Her clothing was the same, and She held the Child in just the same way as I had seen in my dream. As soon as I had recalled all this I wanted to have a service of prayer for the Mother of God and to kiss Her holy icon, but this was evidently not a suitable moment for Her, as our defender, to receive my unworthy prayers. The ship’s siren sounded in the distance, announcing its departure, and the icon was hung so high up that it was impossible for me to kiss it. I just had time to buy a candle with my last twenty kopecks and place it in front of the icon. Then, with tears in my eyes, I had to leave for the ship. It was only during the voyage that I recovered my composure. I was delighted beyond words with this miracle that had been granted to me, a sinner, although I was also saddened by the fact that I had seen the icon of the All-Holy Mother of God only in the last few minutes before leaving Valaam. This had evidently been Her wish.

  A few days after I arrived back in Käkisalmi I began to feel much better. I could walk without a stick and do little jobs around the house. I resolved at once to go back to the monastery again at the first opportunity to thank God and the holy fathers and definitely to have a service of prayer said in front of the icon of the Mother of God. But the Lord determined otherwise. The lady in whose house I was living decided to move into the country, and I had to go back to St Petersburg again and rely on assistance from the good people there. The years went by. My life was a hard one, and I was often facing hunger. My illness became worse, and I again had to walk with a stick. I prayed ardently to the Mother of God for help. Then, in 1896, nine years after my visit to Valaam, I came home from Vespers one Saturday evening, said my prayers and went to bed. Again I had a dream. The Mother of God appeared to me in exactly the same form as on the first occasion, and said, “So your enthusiasm has waned and you’ve forgotten your promise to return to Valaam. You were shown the way, but you didn’t follow it.” “I am poor,” I answered, “I haven’t the money.” “You find money for everything else, but not for this. Alas, this is a bitter disappointment for me,” the Mother of God complained. I was horrified at this vision. I had evidently offended our dear mother. What was I to do now?

    Suddenly I heard that my former mistress had recently returned to St Petersburg, and so I went to her and told her the reason for my sorrow. She again came to my rescue – may God grant her all his goodness – and unexpectedly gave me five roubles. With these I was able to travel to Valaam at once. As soon as I reached the monastery I went to the new church to pray at the tomb of the founder saints, and then to the Church of the Dormition to pray to the Mother of God. To my great sorrow, however, I couldn’t find Her icon where it had been on the first occasion. I began to ask the monks where it was, and the former treasurer Father Evgeni advised me to ask the master of the church furnishings, Father Pafnuti, who was responsible for all the icons. Even he couldn’t tell me exactly where the icon of the Mother of God that had been in the Church of the Dormition now was, and thought it might have been sent to the monastery’s chapel on Vasili Island in St Petersburg. I was very, very upset that I had not found my Queen of Heaven, and shed many bitter tears as I prayed to the Mother of God and the Saints Sergei and Herman that they would not abandon me in my sin. I stayed at Valaam for two and a half weeks, looking everywhere for the icon, but I couldn’t find it. My health was poor, and my soul weighed heavy within me. Eventually I went back to St Petersburg and called at the Valaam chapel on Vasili Island, but the icon was not there, either. I was more grief-stricken than ever. Another year passed, and my illness began to grow worse again, so that I could scarcely walk even with a stick. I had scrimped and saved all year and gradually collected the kopecks together for another journey to Valaam.

    I set out to spend the feast of St Peter at the monastery and to look for the icon of the Mother of God once again. Although I was exhausted by the time I arrived, I prayed earnestly at the tomb of the founder saints and with tears in my eyes prayed to the Mother of God that she would show me where I could find Her blessed icon. And my prayer was answered. That night I had another dream. I was walking through the yard of the monastery and past the now abandoned Church of St Nicholas. I was crying and praying to the Mother of God, “Oh mother dear, if only I could see you once more!” I was greatly surprised, but I went on praying. Again I heard a voice, but this time it was someone else’s. “What are you so sad about? What are you looking for?” I turned round and there was a grey-bearded old monk in a blue biretta standing behind me. “I am looking for the Mother of God,” I replied. “Wait. We will find Her.” “How can you find Her so quickly,” I asked, “when Father Pafnuti searched for three weeks without finding her?” “He searched in the wrong places. He had forgotten where She is,” the old monk said. I followed him to a door. “This door is closed,” I said. He opened it. “She is in here.” I looked into the inside of the church, and in one corner, amidst a heap of furnishings and old icons, was the icon of the Mother of God, half wrapped in a linen cloth and sacking. I recognised it at once as the icon I was looking for. “Here She is!” I exclaimed in a loud voice. It was then that the other women in the same room woke me up.

      The next day, a Wednesday, I went to the Liturgy early in the morning, after which Father Pafnuti conducted a service of prayer at the tomb of the founder saints. I told him about my dream. “In the name of God, forgive me,” he said. “I looked for the icon at first and then forgot all about it. I will go and search for it at once. Now I remember. I’m sure it’s in the Church of St Nicholas the Miracle-Worker.” I intended to take Communion on the Saturday, and the night before I had another dream. It was as if I were standing alone in the lower church. There were just two monks beside the founders’ tomb, Father Seraphim and Father Nikolai. I was waiting impatiently for something and could not take my eyes off the outer door. Suddenly the door opened and the icon of the Mother of God was carried in by Father Pafnuti and a young monk in a short, grey cassock. “There She is, my dear mother!” I cried, and threw myself on the floor, thinking that the icon would be carried over me and I would be made well. But Father Pufnuti said, “There is nothing ready for you here. We have to hold a short service to bless the holy water before a sick person can be made well.” And at that I awoke. In the morning I took Communion. I told Father Pafnuti of my dream and, sobbing, entreated him to go and look for the icon. Before the later Liturgy I was in a chapel when I suddenly saw a crowd of people hurrying from the hotel to the church. “What is happening?” I asked. They told me that the missing icon of the Mother of God had been found and that it was being taken to the lower church. I went into the church and saw the icon on the steps in front of the iconostasis. “Is this the icon you meant?” Father Pafnuti asked me. “Yes, this is the one,” I replied. “Then be comforted and pray to the Holy Mother of God,” he said. I asked him to hold a service of prayer to the Mother of God, and he did so, with a blessing of water as well, and lit a lamp in front of the icon. Hieromonk Alipi was reading a service of prayer at the tomb of the founder saints just then, and I was told that it was he who had painted the icon.

  I went to him and bowed down to the ground before him. My breath stuck in my throat and tears streamed down my cheeks from the sheer joy of finding at last the icon of the Mother of God who had appeared to me, and I gave thanks to the Lord with all my heart for the unspeakable mercy he had shown to me. The holy water was poured into a bottle for me, and when I drank it I felt my strength return. I took some oil from the lamp and went to my room. There I spread it on my hands and feet. The pain abated, and for the first time for many years I was able to sleep peacefully. I week later I could walk without a stick. After giving thanks with all my soul and from the bottom of my heart to the Mother of God for the miracle that She had worked on me in my unworthiness, I returned to St Petersburg. I began to gain in strength all the time without any medicine, and by Easter I had completely recovered. It was then that I decided that I would buy a lamp for the icon. By the grace of God I managed to gather together eight roubles from the little that I had, but a lamp cost ten roubles.
     Then a friend of mine who had bought a charity lottery ticket promised that if she won she would give me the two roubles I needed, and she did win a gold watch, so that I was able to buy the lamp and send it to the monastery. Many people asked me to give them a photograph of the icon. Now I am in perfect health. I can do washing and scrub floors, and I have even been helping with the haymaking at the Konevits Monastery. I have no pain at all in my legs. Altogether the illness lasted twelve years. At one time I couldn’t even get my arms into the sleeves of my clothes, and sometimes I could only climb steps by crawling on my hands and knees. I shed countless tears at such times and prayed to the Mother of God that I might be cured. Now I am healthy again and have everything that I need. There are even good people around me who have put me in an old people’s home. Glory be to the Queen of Heaven!’

     Natalia Andreyevna’s story of the discovery of the icon in the abandoned Church of St Nicholas is thoroughly plausible. It would have been impossible for her to know anything about the contents of the church or about the objects stored there beforehand. The church is kept closed and no people other than the monastery staff are allowed into it. Everything really happened as she had seen in her dream. Following her instructions, Father Pafnuti went into the church, found the icon in a corner and brought it to the lower main church. There he placed it on the right-hand side of the church, on a pillar behind the right-hand choir enclosure, where it has been to this day. And by some miraculous means the person who helped Father Pufnuti carry the icon was indeed dressed in a short, grey cassock.
Natalia Andreyevna released this account of her visions on 7th August 1897, and it was written down in the present form on 26th July 1898.
1927  Departure of St. Kyrillos V (Cyril), 112th Pope of Alexandria  {Coptic}
On this day also, of the year 1643 A.M. (August 7, 1927 A.D.) the righteous and honorable father Pope Kyrillos V, 112th Pope of Alexandria, departed. This father was born in the city of Tezment, governorate of Beni-Swaif in 1831 A.D. His pious parents named him John, brought him up well, and raised him up in the Christian morals. He had a strong desire to study the Holy Bible and the biography of the saints.
When he was 12 years old, in 1843 A.D., he was ordained a deacon and carried the deaconate duties ardently. Because he was inclined at a young age to the life of asceticism, and solitary life, he left the world, and went to St. Mary's monastery (Known by El-Sourian) in Wadi El-Natrun. There he became a disciple to the spiritual elder, the hegumen, Fr. Girgis El-Far, the father of confession of the monks. When John's father discovered where he was, he came to the monastery and brought him back, but because of his love for the ascetic life, he did not stay long. He returned to the wilderness, and became a monk at El-Baramous monastery in the year 1850 A.D. He excelled in his monastic duties and became known for his asceticism, purity, and gentleness, and became a good paragon to the other monks. He was ordained a priest in 1851 A.D., then promoted to Hegumen (Archpriest) in 1852 A.D. The number of monks in the monastery then was small and its income was very little. This Father worked hard in transcribing and selling books to churches. The income was used to buy the necessities of the monks, such as food and clothing.

His virtues of knowledge, righteousness, and gentleness became well known. He was ordained a Patriarch, in the 23rd of Babah, 1591 A.M. (November 1st, 1874 A.D.) in a venerable celebration. He directed his attention to building churches, renovating monasteries, being merciful to the poor, and caring for the affairs of the monks. In 1892 A.D., he chose to be exiled, rather than to squander the properties of the monasteries. Anba Youanis, Metropolitan of El-Behara, Menoufia, and then the deputy of the See of St. Mark, was also exiled with him. Afterwards, both returned from their exile with much respect and honor.

During his papacy the church was adorned by knowledgeable and holy men: among them was the great father, the man of purity, meekness, and charity, Anba Abraam, Bishop of El-Fayoum. This bishop's virtues had spread vastly, and his almsgiving to the poor had reached a point where he did not save any money. All the donations he received from the benevolent, he gave to the poor and needy. He also performed many wonders such as healing the sick and casting out evil spirits.

Another was the well learned, great theologian and skillful orator, the Hegumen (Archpriest) Philotheos Ibrahim El-Tantawy, rector of the great St. Mark Church. Also, the well learned father the honorable and the ascetic monk the Hegumen Fr. Abdel Messih Saleeb El-Baramousy, who was well educated in Coptic, Ethiopian, Greek, and Syrian languages. He also knew some French and English. He was characterized with immeasurable patience in research and examining religious books. In return, he left valuable publications which speak of his prominence.

Pope Kyrillos appointed the late Habib Girgis, who was the dean of the theological seminary, to be his deacon. He dedicated his life to the seminary and its improvement. Mr. Girgis assisted the Pope in expanding its buildings in Mahmasha. Pope Kyrillos often visited the seminary and blessed its students. This deacon was a skillful speaker. He accompanied the Pope in his pastoral visits to Upper Egypt and Sudan. He translated many religious books from foreign languages to Arabic and published El-Karma periodical, to spread the facts of the faith in a positive way. He published many books, among them were: The Seven Sacraments of the Church, The Consoler of the Faithful, The Mystery of Piety, and many others. He taught and nurtured many generations of clerical men who flourished in the church and filled it with their sermons and religious publications.

The Pope gave the utmost of his efforts to lift his flock to the highest spiritual level, as he was prudent in printing the church books. He departed in peace, after spending fifty-two years, nine months and six days on the Patriarchal chair.  May his prayers be with us and Glory be to God forever. Amen.

Pope Francis  PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR  July 2016
Universal:  
Indigenous Peoples; That indigenous peoples, whose identity
and very existence are threatened, will be shown due respect.
”.
Evangelization:  Latin America and the Caribbean; That the Church in Latin America and the Caribbean,
by means of her mission to the continent, may announce the Gospel with renewed vigor and enthusiasm. 

God Bless Mother Angelica 1923-2016
ewtnmissionaries.com

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!)
 
                                           
 
40 Days for Life  11,000+ saved lives in 2015
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'  Mother Teresa
 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'
 'The Gospel of Life'


"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
It Makes No Sense Not To Believe In GOD 
Every Christian must be a living book
wherein one can read the teaching of the gospel

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.

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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