Mary Mother of GOD
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!
RDeo grátias. R.  Thanks be to God.

Six to Be Canonized on Feast of Christ the King Nov 23 2014


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Three days later, the tomb was opened, but the body was gone
Dormition of the Mother of God  the Assumption
The Orthodox Church celebrates the Dormition of the Mother of God on August 15th. This feast day celebrates Our Lady’s death and ascension into heaven, in her body and soul. Actually, it is similar to the Assumption of the Catholic Church, although the term "dormition" puts more emphasis on the death of the Mother of God.

Around 600, the Byzantine Emperor Maurice extended this feast to the entire Empire and it was set permanently on August 15th, called the Dormition in the East and the Assumption in the West. The feast called the Dormition is celebrated on August 13th in the Catholic Church.

According to the Synaxarion of August 15th as well as Pseudo-John the Theologian, and Pseudo-Melito (5th-7th century), the death of Mary took place in Jerusalem where the Blessed Virgin received the visit of the twelve apostles and Paul, who were notified by Heaven of her imminent death and miraculously transported from the ends of the earth in the clouds—representing the Church of heaven and earth—to be at her side. She died peacefully, then they saw the Lord Jesus appear, accompanied by a multitude of angels, who received his Mother’s soul into his hands.
The Apostles carried Mary’s body to Gethsemane and buried her in a grave. Three days later, the tomb was opened,
but the body was gone, leaving a sweet fragrance.


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

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

"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"

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 .

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

Mary's Divine Motherhood
Called in the Gospel "the Mother of Jesus," Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as "the Mother of my Lord" (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh,
was none other than the Father's eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity.
Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly "Mother of God" (Theotokos).
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.

The Missed Appointment of Fatima Aug 13 - 4th Apparition in Fatima: the Children in Prison (Portugal, 1917)
On the 10th of August 1917, the parents of the Fatima seers were ordered by the county administrator to appear at noon the next day, with their children, in Vila Nova, seven miles away. The administrator interrogated Lucia in order to make her tell the secret she had been revealed and promise never to return to Cova da Iria, but the little girl remained silent. The official then threatened Lucia, saying that he would make her confess the secret,
even if he had to kill her to make her talk.
The morning of August 13th, some men arrived at the Marto family's house with an ironmonger who pretended to have come to see the miracle too. He managed to convince the children to climb into his carriage, and took the direction of the Cova da Iria, but, once on the road, abruptly changed direction toward Vila Nova de Ourem, where the children had been thrown in jail. However, confronted by the children's silence and the beginning of revolt in the crowd, who didn't understand why those children were locked up, the authorities decided to free them on August 15th.

Meanwhile the Blessed Virgin Mary had come anyway to the Cova da Iria on August 13th. 18,000 people were there. They first heard a strike of thunder, then saw the reflection of a light, and immediately after the crowd saw a small cloud that hovered for a few minutes above the oak tree, then rose up to the sky and disappeared.
At that moment there appeared a man-sized rainbow.
Our Lady had indeed, apparently, kept her appointment of the 13th of August 1917.

August 13 – The Children of Fatima Arrested and Thrown into Jail (Fatima, Portugal, 1917)
  The heart of the Mother of God cares about people, but also about nations
The Church accepted the message of Fatima in the first place because it contains a truth and a call that fundamentally echo the truth and the call of the Gospel: ‘Repent and believe in the Gospel’ (Mk 1:15). (…) The message of Fatima, at its heart, is a call to conversion and penance, just like the Gospel (…).
The events that took place on the European continent, especially in Central and Eastern Europe, give a contemporary resonance to the Gospel invitation … (…).
The heart of the Mother of God is the heart of a Mother who cares not only about people, but also about nations and entire populations. Her heart is completely devoted to the saving mission of her Son, who is the Christ, the Redeemer of the world, and the Redeemer of mankind (…). In its message and blessing, Fatima means conversion to God. (…)
Pope John Paul II, Homilies of May 1982 and May 1991 (excerpts)

August 13 – 4th Apparition at Fatima: The children are thrown into jail 

Why many souls go to hell 
  ‘Pray, pray very much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell
because they have no one who sacrifices and prays for them.’

On August 13, 1917, the civil authorities of Fatima (Portugal), worried about the curiosity and fervor exhibited at the previous apparition, ordered the three young seers to be put in jail for disrupting public order. Hoping to find out the secrets that the Virgin Mary had revealed to the children, they threatened them with death, but in vain: the children kept their secret. Reluctantly, the officials released them on August 15th.

On Sunday, August 19th, while the children were grazing their herds at Cova da Iria, the Virgin appeared to them. Lucia, the eldest of the three, said (excerpts):

"Francisco and I saw the reflection of light that we called lightning. After Jacintha (the third young seer) arrived a moment later, we all saw Our Lady on top of a holly oak. I asked: ‘What do you want from me?’

‘I want you to continue coming to Cova da Iria on the 13th of each month, and that you continue to pray the Rosary every day. On the 13th of the last month, I will perform a miracle so that all may believe...’ And with a sadder countenance she said: ‘Pray, pray very much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell because they have no one who sacrifices and prays for them.’ Then she rose up and vanished towards the east."

235 St  Hippolytus, Martyr, Concordia, his nurse, and nineteen others of his household, who were beheaded beyond the Tiburtine Gate, and buried with him in the Agro Verano.
250 St. Cassian of Imola teacher Martyr near modern Ravenna, Italy. He was a teacher arrested for being a Christian. His students were invited to hack him to death when he refused to deny Christ
4th v St. Cassian bishop of Todi a convert of St. Pontian
304 St. Centolla & Helen Martyred Spanish women who were slain near Burgos during the Roman persecutions.
400 St Simplician, Bishop of Milan upon reccomendation by St Ambrose: instrumental in the conversion of Victorinus; friendship of St Augustine, in whose life he played an important part.
  565 St. Radegunde built monastery Poitiers; at her funeral, relates that during it a blind man recovered his sight, and other miracles were attributed to her both before and after death.
587 St. Junian Abbot Abbot and founder of Maire, or Mariacum Abbey in Poitou, France. He retired and became an eremite {A hermit, especially a religious recluse} Chaulnay.
662 St. Maximus the Confessor Abbot  mystic Doctor of the Church called “the Theologian,”  noted for contributions to the theology of the Incarnation; who suffered persecution from Emperor Constans II and the Monothelitist heretics.
662 Saint Maximus Greek theologian secretary to Emperor Heraclius abbot of Chrysopolis.
738 St. Wigbert Abbot and missionary Originally an English monk, he traveled to Germany, where he accepted the invitation of St. Boniface, who wanted his help in missionary field named him abbot of Fritzlar, near Cassel, France.
  785 St. Herulph bishop Langres France
983 St. Ludoiph Benedictine abbot responsible for instituting a renaissance in the local communities
1173 St. Nerses Glaietsi Armenian bishop His time as Catholicos was occupied with improving relations between the Armenian Church and Rome, and between the Armenian Church and the Greek Orthodox
1280 Bd Novellone lay tertiary Franciscan reduced himself to want by his benefactions to lead the life of a hermit
1297 St. Louis of Toulouse he died at 23 already a Franciscan, a bishop and a saint!
1297 Bd Gertrude of Altenberg, Virgin  expended the inheritance for her monastery and an alms house for the poor
1300 St. Radegund German virgin
1322 Bd John of Alvernia;  frequent ecstasies and visions of our Lord and saints; on All Souls' day while offering Mass he saw numberless souls released from Purgatory; for 3 months conscious of his guardian angel, conversed with him
1350 St. Francis of Pesaro miracle worker known for his holiness. He founded the Confraternity of Mercy, a hospice
1595 St. William Freeman Priest English martyr convert in 1586 by martyrdom of Blessed Edward Stransahm at Tyburn; ordained in 1587 Reims, France
1621 St. John Berchmans fervent, filial piety from early youth; bright intellect; a retentive memory Jesuit
1775 St. Tikbon of Zadonsk Russian monk/bishop
1862 St. Benilde 
Romançon, founded Saugues school   

235 St  Hippolytus, Martyr  The name Hippolytus means "loosed horse ".
Romæ beáti Hippólyti Mártyris, qui pro confessióne glória, sub Valeriáno Imperatóre, post ália torménta, ligátis pédibus ad colla indomitórum equórum, per carduétum et tríbulos crudéliter tractus est, ac, toto córpore laceráto, emísit spíritum.  Passi sunt étiam eódem die beáta Concórdia, ejus nutrix, quæ ante ipsum, plumbátis cæsa, migrávit ad Dóminum; et álii decem et novem de domo sua, qui extra portam Tiburtínam decolláti sunt, et, una cum ipso, in agro Veráno sepúlti.
    At Rome, the blessed Hippolytus, martyr, who gloriously confessed the faith, under Emperor Valerian.  After enduring other torments, he was tied by the feet to the necks of wild horses, and being cruelly dragged through briars and brambles, and having all his body lacerated, he yielded up his spirit.  On the same day suffered also blessed Concordia, his nurse, who being scourged in his presence with leaded whips, went to our Lord, and nineteen others of his household, who were beheaded beyond the Tiburtine Gate, and buried with him in the Agro Verano.

Sts. Pontian and Hippolytus died for the faith after harsh treatment and exhaustion in the mines of Sardinia. One had been pope for five years, the other an antipope for 18. They died reconciled.

Pontian. Pontian was a Roman who served as pope from 230 to 235. During his reign he held a synod which confirmed the excommunication of the great theologian Origen in Alexandria. Pontian was banished to exile by the Roman emperor in 235, and resigned so that a successor could be elected in Rome. He was sent to the “unhealthy” island of Sardinia, where he died of harsh treatment in 235. With him was Hippolytus (see below) with whom he was reconciled.
The bodies of both martyrs were brought back to Rome and buried with solemn rites as martyrs.
Hippolytus. As a presbyter in Rome, Hippolytus (the name means “a horse turned loose”) was at first “holier than the Church.” He censured the pope for not coming down hard enough on a certain heresy—calling him a tool in the hands of one Callistus, a deacon—and coming close to advocating the opposite heresy himself. When Callistus was elected pope, Hippolytus accused him of being too lenient with penitents, and had himself elected antipope by a group of followers. He felt that the Church must be composed of pure souls uncompromisingly separated from the world, and evidently thought that his group fitted the description. He remained in schism through the reigns of three popes. In 235 he was also banished to the island of Sardinia. Shortly before or after this event, he was reconciled to the Church, and died with Pope Pontian in exile.

Hippolytus was a rigorist, a vehement and intransigent man for whom even orthodox doctrine and practice were not purified enough. He is, nevertheless, the most important theologian and prolific religious writer before the age of Constantine. His writings are the fullest source of our knowledge of the Roman liturgy and the structure of the Church in the second and third centuries. His works include many Scripture commentaries, polemics against heresies and a history of the world. A marble statue, dating from the third century, representing the saint sitting in a chair, was found in 1551. On one side is inscribed his table for computing the date of Easter, on the other a list of how the system works out until the year 224. Pope John XXIII installed the statue in the Vatican library.

Comment:  Hippolytus was a strong defender of orthodoxy, and admitted his excesses by his humble reconciliation. He was not a formal heretic, but an overzealous disciplinarian. What he could not learn in his prime as a reformer and purist, he learned in the pain and desolation of imprisonment. It was a fitting symbolic event that Pope Pontian shared his martyrdom.
Quote: “Christ, like a skillful physician, understands the weakness of men. He loves to teach the ignorant and the erring he turns again to his own true way. He is easily found by those who live by faith; and to those of pure eye and holy heart, who desire to knock at the door, he opens immediately. He does not disdain the barbarian, nor does he set the eunuch aside as no man. He does not hate the female on account of the woman’s act of disobedience in the beginning, nor does he reject the male on account of the man’s transgression. But he seeks all, and desires to save all, wishing to make all the children of God, and calling all the saints unto one perfect man” (Hippolytus, Treatise on Christ and Antichrist).

   Roman Martyrology today mentions that Hippolytus the martyr mentioned in acta of St Laurence. According to that very unreliable document Hippolytus was an officer in charge of Laurence when he as in prison, and was by him converted and baptized.  He assisted at the burial of the martyr, and for so doing was summoned before the emperor, who rebuked him for disgracnig the imperial uniform and commission by "conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman", and ordered to be scourged.
  At the same time St Concordia, nurse of Hippolytus, and 19 others were beaten to death with leaded whips. St Hippolytus was sentenced to be torn apart by horses-a suspicious circumstance in the narrative when we remember the fate of Hippolytus, the son of Theseus who, flying from the anger of his father, met a monster the sight of which aifrighted his horses, so that he fell from his chariot and, being entangled in the harness, was dragged along and torn to pieces.  They took a pair of the most furious and unruly horses they could meet with, and tied a long rope between them to which they fastened the martyr's feet.   The horses dragged him away furiously over ditches, briers and rocks; the ground, trees and stones were sprinkled with his blood, which the faithful that followed at a distance weeping dipped up with kerchiefs, and they gathered together all the mangled parts of his flesh and lints which lay scattered about.
  This story would appear to be a romance, and the martyr Hippolytus whose feast is kept by the Church on this day is probably a Roman priest who lived during the early part of the third century.  He was a man of great learning - the most important theological writer (he wrote in Greek) in the early days of the Roman church.
  He may have been a disciple of St Irenaeus, and St Jerome called him "a most holy and eloquent man".  Hippolytus censured Pope St Zephyrinus for being, in his opinion, not quick enough to detect and denounce heresy, and on the election of his successor, St Callistus I, he severed communion with the Roman church and permitted himself to be set up in opposition to the pope.  With Pope St Pontian he was banished to Sardinia during the persecution of Maximinus in 235, was reconciled to the Church.  He died a martyr by his sufferings on that unhealthy island.  His body was afterwards translated to the cemetery on the Via Tiburtina.
  Prudentius who, led astray by the inscription of Pope St Damasus over his grave, confuses this Hippolytus with another of that name, puts his martyrdom, by wild horses, at the mouth of the Tiber.  In a hymn he testifies that as often as he had prayed at the tomb of St Hippolytus for the remedy of his infirmities, whether of body or mind, he had always found relief; but he was indebted to Christ for this because He gave to his martyr Hippolytus the power to obtain for him the divine succour.   He says that not only the inhabitants of Rome but many from remote countries resorted to this place to worship God; and that especially on the martyr’s festival, on the Ides (13th) of August, people came thither to implore the divine mercy. “In the morning they rush to greet him; all the youth worship; they come, they go, till the setting of the sun. They press kisses on the shining metal of the inscription; they pour out spices; they bedew his tomb with tears. And when…his feast-day returns, what throngs are forced thither by their earnest zeal…the wide fields can scarce contain the joy of the people:’ It is further evidence of the great veneration which St Hippolytus enjoyed that he is named in the canon of the Ambrosian Mass of Milan.
In the year 1551 was dug up in the cemetery of St Hippolytus on the road to Tivoli a third-century statue of marble, representing the saint sitting in a chair, on the sides of which are inscribed his tables for computing Easter and a catalogue of his works. This statue is now in the Lateran museum.

   In the county of Hertford, two miles south-east from Hitchin, is the village of Hypolyiits, which takes its name from the parish-church of Hippolytus.  Formerly it had a shrine of the saint to which sick horses were brought, "out of the North Street, through the North Gate, and the north door of the church, which was boarded on purpose to bring up the horses to the altar". Having regard to the atory of the martyrdom and the significance of the name it is natural that the saint should be looked on as a patron of horses and their riders.
Martyr of Rome, with Concordia and other companions, he is a controversial figure who censured Pope St. Callistus I. Hippolytus was slain in Sardinia where he had been exiled for being elected as an antipope, the first in the history of the Church. He was reconciled to the Church before his martyrdom. His writings were important, including A Refutation of All Heresies, Song of Songs, and The Apostolic Tradition.

It is only in recent times that the true importance of St Hippolytus in the early history of the Roman church has come to be recognized. Butler wrote a hundred years before the discovery of the Philosophumena, and even the excellent account of Hippolytus in Mgr Duchesne’s Histoire ancienne de l’Église (vol. i, pp. 292—323) has to be supplemented by R. H. Connolly’s important discovery that the so-called “Egyptian Church Order” dates from Hippolytus and forms the foundation document of the far-famed Apostolic Constitutions (see the Cambridge Texts and Studies, vol. viii, no. 4, 1916). For the personality and writings of the historical presbyter Hippolytus the reader may he referred to Lightfoot, Apostolic Fathers, vol. ii, pp. 316—477, and to Amann’s excellent article in DTC., vol. vi, cc. 2487—2511. A. d’Alès, La théologie de S. Hippolyte (1906) is also a book of great value. See also G. Dix, The Treatise of the Apostolic Tradition (1937); G. Bovini, Sant’ Ippolito (Studi di antichita cristiana, 1943) and B. Botte in the series “Sources chrétiennes” (the Apostolic Tradition and Commentary on Daniel, 1947). Hippolytus’s authorship of the Philosophumena is still contested by some. Prudentius’s hymn is no. xi in the Pen­stephanon, Migne, PL., vol. lx, cc. 530 ss. Whether Hippolytus the writer was identical with the Hippolytus venerated at Porto cannot be certainly determined. The fantastic story of the martyrdom by wild horses seems to be a pure invention; but as Prudentius testifies, there was already a fresco of the incident painted over the tomb. Hippolytus was buried in a cemetery on the Via Tiburtina, opposite to that of St Laurence, and a story had to be fabricated for him in order to complete the Laurentian cycle. See especially Delehaye in CMH., pp. 439-440; and H. Leclercq in DAC., vol. vi, cc. 2409-2483.
250 St. Cassian of Imola teacher Martyr near modern Ravenna, Italy. He was a teacher arrested for being a Christian. His students were invited to hack him to death when he refused to deny Christ
Apud Forum Sillæ natális sancti Cassiáni Mártyris, qui cum adoráre idóla noluísset, ídeo, vocátis a persecutóre púeris, quibus exósus docéndo factus fúerat, data est eis facúltas eum periméndi; quorum quanto infírmior erat manus, tanto graviórem martyrii pœnam, diláta morte, faciébat.
    At Imola, the birthday of St. Cassian, martyr.  As he refused to worship idols, the persecutor called the boys whom the saint had taught and who hated him, giving them leave to kill him.  The torment suffered by the martyr was the more grievous, as the hands which inflicted it, by reason of weakness, rendered death long drawn-out.
rudentius recorded Cassian's grisly martyrdom, noting that the students could not wield mortal blows, thus prolonging the martyr's agony. His cult is confined to local calendars.

IN a single feast with St Hippolytus the Church joins St Cassian, though there was no connection between the two martyrs. He was a Christian schoolmaster, and taught children to read and write at Imola, a city twenty-seven miles from Ravenna in Italy. A violent persecution being raised against the Church, he was taken up and interrogated by the governor of the province. As he refused to sacrifice to the gods, the barbarous judge, learning of what profession he was, commanded that his own scholars should stab him to death with their iron pens.  *At that time it was the custom in schools to write upon wax laid on a board of boxwood, in which the letters were formed with an iron stylus or pen, sharp at one end but blunt and smooth at the other, to erase what was to he effaced or corrected. *
  He was exposed naked in the midst of two hundred boys, “by whom”, says the Roman Martyrology, “he had made himself disliked by teaching them”. Some threw their tablets, pens and knives at his face and head others cut his flesh, or stabbed him with their knives; and others pierced him with their pens, some only tearing the skin and some penetrating more deeply, or making it their barbarous sport to cut letters out of his skin. Covered with blood and wounded in every part of his body, he cheerfully bade the little fiends not to be afraid and to strike him with greater force not meaning to encourage them in their sin, but to express the willingness he had to die for Christ. He was buried by the Christians at Imola. Prudentius tells us that in his journey to Rome he visited this martyr’s tomb, and before it implored the divine mercy for the pardon of his sins. He describes a picture of the saint’s martyrdom over the altar; representing his cruel death in the manner he has recorded it in verse.

The passio of the martyr, printed in Mombritius, Sanctuarium, vol. ii, seems merely to be a prose resetting of Prudentius’s poem in Peristephanon, ix. The stylus-prodding by schoo1boys is probably a reminiscence of an incident in Apuleius (see P. Franchi de’ Cavalieri, Hagiographica, p. 131) and bears a more than suspicious resemblance to the torture of St Mark of Arethusa (March 29). But of the historical existence of the martyr of Imola there can be no reasonable doubt. See Lanzoni, Le leggende di S. Cassiano d’Imola (1913); Didashaleion, vol. iii (1925), pp. 1—44; and Delehaye in CMH., pp. 440—441.

4th v St. Cassian bishop of Todi a convert of St. Pontian
Tudérti, in Umbria, sancti Cassiáni, Epíscopi et Mártyris, sub Diocletiáno Imperatóre.
    At Todi in Umbria, St. Cassian, bishop and martyr, under Emperor Diocletian.

Martyred bishop of Todi, Italy, a convert of St. Pontian. He succeeded St. Pontian in Todi, and was martyred in the persecution conducted by co-Emperor Maximian (286–305)
304 St. Centolla & Helen Martyred Spanish women who were slain near Burgos during the Roman persecutions.  
Burgis, in Hispánia, sanctárum Centóllæ et Hélenæ Mártyrum.
    At Burgos in Spain, Saints Centolla and Helena, martyrs.

400 St Simplician, Bishop of Milan upon reccomendation by St Ambrose: instrumental in the conversion of Victorinus; friendship of St Augustine, in whose life he played an important part.

When a priest of the Roman church of some age and corresponding experience, this Simplician was distinguished by the friendship of St Augustine, in whose life he played an important part. To him Augustine gave an account of the round of his wanderings and errors, and mentioned his reading certain books of the Platonists, which had been translated into Latin by Victorinus, who had been professor of rhetoric in Rome and died a Christian.

   Simplician commended his choice of these books, and related to him how he himself had been instrumental in the conversion of Victorinus, that very learned old man, who taught most of the senators of Rome and had the honour of a statue set up in the Forum. A fear of offend­ing his friends made him defer his baptism for some time; but being encour­aged by Simplician he was instructed and baptized by him. When Julian the Apostate forbade Christians to teach the sciences, Victorinus quit his school. Augustine was strongly touched by so generous an example, and the influence of St Simplician and the example of Victorinus led him perceptibly nearer to his own conversion.

   In several places in his writings St Ambrose praises the learning, prudent judgement and glowing faith of Simplician, and when he was dying, overhearing someone suggest the priest as his successor, he cried out emphatically, “Simplician is old, but he is a good man”. Simplician in fact succeeded to the see of Milan, but survived to govern it for only three years. Being troubled by certain difficulties found in St Paul’s epistle to the Hebrews he referred them to St Augustine his work Quaestiones diversae ad Simplicianum was written in reply. One of the practices of St Simplician (and of St Augustine) was the wearing of a black leather belt on account of a vision said to have been experienced by St Monica in which our Lady told her to wear such an one in her honour. This belt was adopted as part of the habit of the Augustinian friars. St Simplician is named on August 16 in the Roman Martyrology, but the friars just mentioned keep his feast on the 13th; neither date is that of his death, which took place in May.

There is no early life of Simplician, but some later accounts with references to SS. Ambrose and Augustine and a quotation from Ennodius will be found in the Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. iii see also DCB., vol. iv, pp. 688-689.

565 St. Radegunde built monastery Poitiers; at her funeral, relates that during it a blind man recovered his sight, and other miracles were attributed to her both before and after death.
Radegunde, daughter of Berthaire, pagan king of a portion of Thuringia, she was probably born at Erfurt, Thuringia, Germany. Her father was murdered by his brother, Hermenefrid, who in 531 was defeated by king Theodoric of Austrasia and king Clotaire I of Neustria, and Clotaire took twelve year old Radegunde captive. Six years later he married her. She devoted herself to the poor, the sick, and captives, founded a leper hospital, and bore Clotaire's cruelties uncomplainingly until he murdered her brother, Unstrut. She then left the court, received the deaconess habit from Bishop Medard at Noyon, and became a nun at Saix. About 557, she built the double monastery of the Holy Cross at Poitiers, to which she retired and which she developed into a great center of learning. She was active in peacemaking roles, lived in great austerity, and secured a relic of the True Cross for the Church of her monastery. She lived the last years of her life in seclusion and died at the monastery on August 13. Venantius Fortunatus, a priest at Poitiers, wrote her biography

587 St Radegund, Matron
“The figure of St Radegund”, writes Godefroid Kurth in his life of St Clotilde, “is undeniably the most authentic and the best known of her century. All the light which history throws on that period converges on her personality, since her life has been related by two biographers who lived on intimate terms with her, without counting Gregory of Tours, who was in the ranks of her respectful admirers.” She was born in 518, probably at Erfurt, the daughter of Berthaire, a pagan king of part of Thuringia, who was assassinated by his brother, Hermenefrid. In 531 Theodoric, King of Austrasia, and his half-brother, Clotaire I, King of Neustria, fell upon Hermenefrid, vanquished him, and carried home a great booty. Among the prisoners, Radegund, then about twelve years old, fell to the lot of King Clotaire, who is said to have had her instructed in the Christian religion and baptized, but it is more probable that she was already a Christian when she was seized from her father. Until her eighteenth year she lived at Athies, near Péronne, distinguished for her personal beauty, her goodness and her devotion to religion; and then she was called to Vitry to become the wife of the king.
   Clotaire I was the youngest son of Clovis, the first Christian king of the Franks, but he was a man of shocking character, “sensual and a brute”, the Abbé Aigrain justly calls him. His matrimonial alliances have never been properly disentangled he was married at least five times and it is even possible that his union with Radegund was polygamous. She bore her lot with fortitude and, though now become a queen, she continued no less an enemy to dissipation and vanity than she was before, and divided her time chiefly between the church and care of the poor, the sick and captives. She also founded a hospital for lepers, whom she waited on herself, and was one day seen kissing their diseased bodies. A friend remonstrated, saying that after that no one would dare kiss her. “If you don’t want to kiss me, I really do not mind at all”, retorted Radegund. Clotaire allowed her full liberty in her devotions but after his affection began to be alienated from her he reproached her, saying he had married a nun rather than a queen, who converted his court into a monastery. His complaints were unjust for she made it the first point of her devotion never to be wanting in any duty of her state and to show the king all possible complaisance. She accepted his infidelities and taunts on her childlessness with patience and courtesy, but after six years of marriage Clotaire committed a crime, which Radegund could not overlook, he murdered her brother, who had been captured with herself at the battle of the Unstrut and of whom she was very fond.
   Radegund asked her husband’s leave to retire from the court, which was granted, or he may have sent her away. She went to Noyon and asked the bishop, St Médard, to give her the religious veil. He hesitated, for she was in a somewhat equivocal position and the king was notoriously violent and unscrupulous. But when she appeared before him in church, dressed in a nun’s habit, and charged him, “If you will not consecrate me, you fear man more than God, and He will ask you an account of my soul”, Médard gave in and consecrated her a deaconess. St Radegund first withdrew to Saix, an estate of Clotaire’s in Poitou, living a penitential life there for six months she employed almost her whole revenue in alms, and served the poor with her own hands. She went after to Poitiers, and there built a monastery of nuns, of which she arranged for a friend, named Agnes,
to be made the first abbess, and paid her an implicit obedience. King Clotaire about this time went as far as Tours upon a religious pretence but intending to go to Poitiers and carry her again to court. Radegund was alarmed, and wrote to St Germanus of Paris, beseeching his help. The bishop went to the king and implored him to leave his innocent wife alone. Germanus’s interference was so effectual that Clotaire sent him to Poitiers to beg Radegund’s forgiveness for him and her prayers that he might find God’s pardon also. His better frame of mind was only passing; among other subsequent enormities he burned alive in a cottage his own son and grandchildren. He is said to have died penitent, but it is not surprising to read that during his last illness he showed great alarm and disturbance of mind at the remembrance of his crimes; but he left St Radegund in peace and was even a benefactor of her monastery.
    This abbey, at first called St Mary’s but afterwards Holy Cross, was one of the first double monasteries, for men and women, and on this account was also one of the first to insist on a strict and permanent enclosure. The rule chosen was that of St Caesarius of Aries, in accordance with which the nuns had to spend two hours every day in study, and Radegund herself knew some Latin; under her influence Holy Cross became a meeting-place for scholars and, traditional accompaniment of learning, a centre for the maintenance of peace. Whenever rumours of war were heard, St Radegund sent letters to the combatants, urging them in the name of Christ to desist ; but she used violence unsparingly to her own body. St Caesaria the Younger, abbess of St John’s at Aries, sent to Poitiers with a copy of the rule a letter of advice for the nuns. In it she says that every nun shall learn the psalter by heart, and be able to read.
   Radegund enriched the church she had built with the relics of a number of saints, but was very desirous to procure a particle of the true cross of our Redeemer, and sent clerks to Constantinople, to the Emperor Justin, for that purpose. The emperor sent her a piece of that sacred wood, adorned with gold and precious stones, a book of the gospels beautified in the same manner, and the relics of several saints. They were carried to Poitiers, and deposited in the church of the monastery with a great procession, wax tapers, incense, and singing of psalms; this was carried out by St Euphronius, Archbishop of Tours, the bishop of Poitiers having for some reason refused to have anything to do with it. It was for that occasion that St Venantius Fortunatus composed the hymn “Vexilla regis prodeunt”, which was solemnly sung for the first time on this November 19, 569. Venantius was at that time a priest at Poitiers, and a close friend of St Radegund, whose life he wrote; he corresponded freely with her and the Abbess Agnes, writing letters to them in Latin verse about their austerities and their health, acknowledging gifts of food and sending in return flowers.
   Much of Radegund’s last years was spent in complete seclusion, and she died peacefully on August 13, 587. “When we heard of her death”, writes St Gregory of Tours, “we went to the monastery which she had founded at Poitiers. We found her lying in her coffin, her face shining with a brightness surpassing the beauty of lilies and roses. Around her stood nuns to the number of about two hundred, who, inspired by the words of the saint, led a perfect life within their cloister. In the world many of them had belonged to senatorial families, and some of them were even of royal blood.” The nun Baudonivia, who had been brought up by St Radegund and was present at her funeral, relates that during it a blind man recovered his sight, and other miracles were attributed to her both before and after death. On one occasion she cured a sick nun, miraculously or not, by giving her a hot bath—for two hours. Following St Caesarius, she always insisted on the excellent practice of bathing, and when at Saix used to bath sick people twice a week. This Baudonivia wrote a biography of their holy foundress, not, as she says, “to repeat those things which the apostolic bishop Fortunatus wrote in his life of the blessed one, but to record those which he in his prolixity passed over.  “Human eloquence”, he had written, “has in its astonishment but little power to show in what piety, self-denial, charity, sweetness, humility, uprightness, faith and fervour Radegund lived”, but his own eloquence had done its best. St Radegund is named in the Roman Martyrology and her feast is observed in many places; she is one of the three contitulars of the Cambridge college commonly known as Jesus College.
As stated above, we owe our knowledge of St Radegund to the lives by Venantius Fortunatus and the nun Baudonivia, together with certain passing references in Gregory of Tours. The two former sources have been edited, after Mabillon and the Bollandists, by B. Krusch in MGH., Scriptores Merov., vol. ii, pp. 364—395. There are modern lives by Leroux (1877) and Briand (1899) that by R. Aigrain in the series “Les Saints” is mentioned with high commendation in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xxxix (1921), pp. 192—194. For English readers attention may be called to F. Brittain, St Radegund (1925), and to a re-edition (1926) of an English poem (probably by Henry Bradshaw), The Lyfe of Seynt Radegunde, published originally by R. Pynson about 1510.
587 St. Junian Abbot Abbot and founder of Maire, or Mariacum Abbey in Poitou, France. He retired and became an eremite {A hermit, especially a religious recluse} Chaulnay.
662 St. Maximus the Confessor Abbot  mystic Doctor of the Church called “the Theologian,” especially noted for his contributions to the theology of the Incarnation; who suffered persecution from Emperor Constans II and the Monothelitist heretics.
Constantinópoli sancti Máximi Abbátis, doctrína et cathólicæ veritátis zelo insígnis; qui, cum advérsus Monothelítas strénue decertáret, ab hærético Imperatóre Constánte, præcísis mánibus ac lingua, in Chersonésum relegátus est, ibíque, glória confessiónis clarus, spíritum Deo réddidit.  Tunc étiam duo Anastásii, qui ejus erant discípuli, aliíque plures divérsa torménta et dura exsília sunt expérti.
    At Constantinople, St. Maximus, a monk distinguished for learning and for zeal for Catholic truth.  Valiantly disputing the Monothelites, he had his hands and tongue torn from him by the heretical emperor Constans, and banished to Chersonesus, where he breathed his last.  At this time, two of his disciples, both named Anastasius, and many others endured divers torments and the hardships of exile.

   He was born to a noble family in Constantinople, modern Istanbul, about 580 and served for a time as secretary to Emperor Heraclius before becoming a monk and abbot at Chrysopolis, modern Skutori, Turkey.
   When Emperor Constans II favored Monothelitism, Maximus defended Pope Honorius and debated and converted Pyrrhus in 645. He then attended the Lateran Council in 649, convened by Pope St. Martin I, and he was taken prisoner and brought to Constantinople, where he was charged with treason. Exiled from the Empire, he spent six years at Perberis and was brought back to Constantinople with two companions - both named Anastasius - to be tortured and mutilated. Their tongues and right hands were cut off and they were sent to Skhemaris on the Black Sea, where Maximus died.
   He is venerated for his mysticism and is ranked as one of the foremost theologians of his era, being especially noted for his contributions to the theology of the Incarnation. The author of some ninety works on theology, mysticism, and dogma, he is especially known for his Opuscula Theologica et Poleinica; the Ambigua on Gregory of Nazianzus, and the Mvstagogia, an examination of symbolism.
662 Saint Maximus Greek theologian secretary to Emperor Heraclius abbot of Chrysopolis.
c.580–662, Greek theologian. He was secretary to Emperor Heraclius and subsequently abbot at the monastery of Chrysopolis. To curb Monotheletism he went to Rome and persuaded Pope St. Martin I to convene the synod of 649, which denounced as heretical the Typus of Emperor Constans. Back at Constantinople, Maximus demanded that the decrees of the synod be accepted. He was imprisoned (653–62) by imperial order, mutilated, then exiled. He is important in the history of Byzantine mysticism. St. Maximus leaned much upon the Pseudo-Dionysius (see Dionysius the Areopagite, Saint). St. Maximus’ works influenced Erigena, who translated them into Latin

St Maximus The Confessor, Abbot .
   Maximus is called “the Confessor” because of his labours and sufferings for the true faith he was one of the foremost divines of the seventh century, a pillar of orthodoxy against the monothelite heresy, and a zealous supporter of the teaching authority of the Holy See. He was born about the year 580 and belonged to Constantinople; when he grew up he was placed at the imperial court and became the principal secretary of the Emperor Heraclius. But after a time he resigned this post (it is likely that he was made uncomfortable by the emperor’s support of what he recognized as heretical opinions) and became a monk at Chrysopolis (now known as Skutari) there he was elected abbot and wrote some of his mystical treatises.
   On the death in 638 of St Sophronius, Patriarch of Jerusalem, who had been a hermit and whom Maximus calls his master, father and teacher, Maximus took his place as the champion of orthodoxy against the Monothelism (the attribution of only one, a divine, will to our Lord) of the Emperor Heraclius and his successor Constans II.
   He defended the memory of Pope Honorius from the charge of having held that heresy, and in a letter about Pyrrhus, who had been exiled from the see of Constantinople, he says, “If the Roman see recognizes Pyrrhus to be a heretic as well as a reprobate, it is quite clear that everyone who anathematizes those who have condemned Pyrrhus, anathematizes the see of Rome, that is, the Catholic Church…Let him hasten before all else to satisfy the Roman see, for if it is satisfied all will agree in calling him pious and orthodox…[that] Apostolic See which has received universal and supreme dominion, authority and power of binding and loosing over all the holy churches of God throughout the world, from the incarnate Son of God Himself and also by all holy councils…”
   In 645 Gregory, the governor of the African province and a friend of Maximus arranged a public disputation between the saint and Pyrrhus, as the result of which Pyrrhus went to Rome to abjure his monothelite heresy. Three years later the
Emperor Constans II issued a decree in favour of Monothelism, called the Typos, and St Maximus was in Rome at the time of the council summoned by Pope St Martin I at which this document was condemned. In 653 the pope was dragged from Rome by the imperial exarch, banished to the Chersonese, and there bullied and starved to death, the last martyred pope.
   St Maximus remained in Rome until, having argued against the Typos before an imperial legate, he too was seized, being now an old man of seventy-five, and carried off to Constantinople. He was put on trial on a charge of conspiring against the empire; he said that he supported Rome in the matter of the Typos, and when it was objected that he thereby condemned the church of Constantinople he replied, “I condemn no one; but I would rather lose my life than depart from the least point of the faith”. He was sentenced to banishment at Bizya, in Thrace, where he suffered greatly from cold, hunger and neglect. After some months a commission was sent to interview him, headed by Theodosius, Bishop of Caesarea in Bithynia. Maximus so eloquently demonstrated to them the two natures in Christ and the depravity of keeping silence on the true faith that Theodosius was convinced, gave the confessor money and some clothes (which were taken away by the bishop of Bizya), and promised that he would submit to the Holy See.
   St Maximus was then removed to a monastery at Rhegium, and there arrived Theodosius of Caesarea and another deputation, offering him honours from the emperor if he would accept the Typos. Maximus reminded Theodosius of his promise, which he had ratified “on the holy gospels, on the cross, and on the image of the Mother of God”, to which the bishop could only reply, “What could I do? The emperor took another view”. Maximus remained firm; he was struck and spat upon, his few possessions were taken away from him, and the next day he was taken to Perberis, where his two friends and supporters, Anastasius the Abbot and Anastasius the Apocrisiarius, were already in captivity.
   Here they remained in great hardship and distress for six years, and then were brought back to Constantinople to appear before a tribunal. All three were condemned, and with them the memory of St Martin I and St Sophronius, and they were sentenced to be scourged, to be deprived of their tongues and their right hands, thus mutilated to be pilloried in each of the twelve quarters of the city, and to be imprisoned for life. Tongueless, they could no longer preach the orthodox faith, handless, they could no longer write it; but they could still confess it by suffering with patience and dying with fortitude. St Maximus survived only a few weeks, after a terrible journey to Skhemaris, near Batum on the Black Sea; one Anastasius died even sooner, but the other lived on until 666.
   This great confessor of the faith and mystical religious writer suffered thus in his eighty-second year; he left many writings, including allegorical commentaries on the Scriptures and the works of Denis the Areopagite, a dialogue on the spiritual life between two monks, and a Mystagogia, an explanation of liturgical symbolism. St Maximus was not, as is sometimes said, the father of Byzantine mysticism, which originated with the desert monks of earlier ages; he was, rather, its foremost exponent.
The history of St Maximus is mainly derived from a Greek biography originally edited by Combefis, and now accessible in Migne, PG., vol. xc, cc. 68—109, followed by letters or tractates of his, and other documents concerning him. But of late year better texts have become available which correct prevailing misconceptions in many details, and there has been an increasing interest in the writings of St Maximus. See L. Duchesne, L’ Église au vie siècle (1925), pp. 431 seq.; R. Devreesse in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xlvi (1928), pp. 5—49, and vol. liii (1935), pp.49 seq. V. Grumel in DTC., vol. x, cc. 448—459; H. Urs von Balthasar, Liturgie cosmique (1947); the saint’s Centuries sur la charité (tr. J. Pégon, 1945) ; and a French translation of his Mystagogy in Irénikon, t. xiii (1936), no. 4 to t. xv (1938), no. 5. There is a long notice in the Bollandist commentary on the Mart. Rom., pp. 336—337. Dom P. Sherwood’s Date-List of the Works of Maximus the Confessor (1952) gives more than the title promises.
738 St. Wigbert Abbot and missionary Originally an English monk, he traveled to Germany, where he accepted the invitation of St. Boniface, who wanted his help in the missionary field and who named him abbot of Fritzlar, near Cassel, France.
Fritesláriæ, in Germánia, sancti Wigbérti, Presbyteri et Confessóris.
    At Fritzlar in Germany, St. Wigbert, priest and confessor.
 After a number of years, he was transferred to Ohrdruf, in Thuringia, Germany, but Boniface gave him permission to return to Fritzlar, where he died. 

738 St Wigbert, Abbot; St Boniface invited him to join conversion of Germans; setting an impeccable example of monastic observance
This Wigbert was an Englishman who, despising the world in his youth, embraced a monastic state. In due course St Boniface invited him to join in the labours of the conversion of the Germans, and made him abbot of Fritzlar, a monastery three miles from Cassel, where one of his disciples was St Sturmi. Later he was transferred to Ohrdruf, in Thuringia, and he successfully formed and organized both these foundations, himself setting an impeccable example of monastic observance when called out by duty he spoke to no one on the road, and made haste back to his monastery. His biographer speaks much of St Wigbert’s virtues, miracles and accomplishments, but tells us little of the events of his life. Towards its end St Boniface gave him permission to return to Fritzlar, where he could live more quietly to prepare himself for death. His last sickness could not make him mitigate the severity of his penances and fasts, and he died about the year 738. St Lull in 780 translated his body to the monastery of Hersfeld. This saint must not be confused with the St Wigbert (Wictbert), a disciple of St Egbert, who tried to evangelize the Frisians at the end of the seventh century.

The life written about j on years after Wigbert’s death by Servatus Lupus, in which the miraculous element is very prominent, after being printed by Mabillon and the Bollandists, was re-edited in MGH, Scriptores, vol. xv, pp. 37—43. See also H. Timerding, Die Christliche Frühzeit Deutschlands, Zweite Gruppe (1929).
785 St. Herulph bishop Langres France
Benedictine bishop of Langres, France, also listed as Hariolfus. He was the son of a count of Ellwangen, Germany. He founded an abbey at Ellwangen in 764, in the diocese of Augsburg. He was then appointed bishop
983 St. Ludoiph Benedictine abbot responsible for instituting a renaissance in the local communities
 of New Corvey in Westphalia, Germany. He was responsible for instituting a renaissance in the local communities
St. Nerses Glaietsi Armenian bishop His time as Catholicos was occupied with improving relations between the Armenian Church and Rome, and between the Armenian Church and the Greek Orthodox
and the uncle of St. Nerses Lambronazi, he studied under his uncle, the Catholicos Gregory II, and received ordination by his brother, Catholicos Gregory III. Succeeding to the post of Catholicos of the Armenians in 1166, he won the title Chnorhali, "the Gracious" owing to his goodness, and he possessed many literary skills, including poetical abilities. His time as Catholicos was occupied with improving relations between Armenian Church and Rome, and between Armenian Church and Greek Orthodox

1173 St Nerses Klaietsi, Katholikos of The Armenians
   Nerses, called “Shnorhali”, the Gracious, because of the beauty of his character and his writings, was born at Hromkla in Cilicia, his mother being of the family of Gregory the Enlightener. He was educated by his uncle, the Katholikos Gregory II, who favoured the reunion of his church with Rome, and by a great Armenian doctor, Stephen Manuk. Nerses was ordained by his elder brother, the Katholikos Gregory III. This Gregory, whom both Catholic and dissident Armenians venerate as a saint, seems to have been in communion with the prelates of the Western crusaders; and when in 1166 Nerses succeeded his brother as katholikos (the fourth of his name), he maintained this union, which, however, was not formally confirmed until the coronation of King Leo II at Tarsus in 1198.
    Nerses, moreover, worked for the reconciliation of the Orthodox Greeks; and writing to the Emperor Manuel Comnenos he refers to the pope as “the first of all the archbishops and successor of the apostle Peter”.
   He is the most famous writer of the twelfth-century Armenian renaissance, both in prose and verse; he wrote a book of short prayers for every hour of the day, poems on religious and historical subjects, and liturgical hymns, in one of which the Roman church is apostrophized as “immovably built on the rock of Kephas, invincible by the gates of Hell, and seal of the guardian of the gates of Heaven”. St Nerses died on August 13, 1173, but his feast is kept on the 3rd, and he is named in the great intercession of the Armenian Mass both by Catholics and dissidents.

A full account of St Nerses and of his attitude to monophysite teaching wilt be found in Tournebize, Histoire politique et religieuse de l’Arménie (1901), especially pp. 239—253 references to Armenian authorities are there supplied. See also Balzy, Historia doctrinae christianae inter Armenos, pp. 33 seq., and Nilles, Kalendarium  vol. ii, p. 598. The daily prayers of St Nerses were published by the Armenian monks at Venice in 1862, trans­lated into 32 languages, including English, Irish and “Greenlandish”. Pope Pius XII quoted from Nerses against Monophysism in the encyclical letter “Sempiternus Christus rex” (1951).
1280 Bd Novellone lay tertiary Franciscan reduced himself to want by his benefactions to lead the life of a hermit
   This is one of those who, from among the numerous lay-people who in all ages and places live a life of heroic sanctity in the world, have been chosen by Almighty God to be withdrawn from their obscurity and raised to the altars of the Church.
   Novellone was a native of Faenza and by trade a shoemaker. He did not grow up in the fear of the Lord, and his godless life was in no way altered when he received the sacrament of matrimony. But at the age of twenty-four he had a serious illness; fear of death opened his heart to grace; he resolved to amend his life, and as an aid thereto became a tertiary of St Francis. He imposed mortifications on himself and gave all he could to the poor, went on pilgrimage to Rome and then, bare-footed, to Compostela, scourging himself as he went.
   But now he had much to suffer from his wife, who complained of his long absences from home and of his charity to the poor.  She was changed one day when, a beggar coming to the door, the larder that a few minutes before had been empty was found well stocked with food.
   After death of his wife Novellone reduced himself to want by his benefactions and sought to lead the life of a hermit. In order to do this, he is said by some writers to have entered the Camaldolese order, but he seems simply to have taken up his residence beside the cell of a Camaldolese hermit, one Laurence, at Faenza.
   After edifying his fellow citizens for fifty-six years Novellone died and was buried in the cathedral of Faenza. His cultus was approved in 1817.
Mgr F. Lanzoni published, first in 1903 a brochure showing that what purported to be a summary of a contemporary biography was really no more than a panegyric delivered 150 years after his death. In 1913 a valuable article in the Archivum Franciscanum Historicum (vol. vi, pp. 623—653) that discusses the whole history. It appears that the details of Bd Novellone’s story are untrustworthy. Our sole reliable authority is the brief notice in Cantinelli’s Chronicle of Faenza. Cf. however, A. Marchetti, Cronotassi dei parroci di Faenza (1927).
1297 St. Louis of Toulouse he died at 23 already a Franciscan, a bishop and a saint!
Louis’s parents were Charles II of Naples and Sicily and Mary, daughter of the King of Hungary. Louis was related to St. Louis IX on his father’s side and to Elizabeth of Hungary on his mother’s side.

Louis showed early signs of attachment to prayer and to the corporal works of mercy. As a child he used to take food from the castle to feed the poor. When he was 14, Louis and two of his brothers were taken as hostages to the king of Aragon’s court as part of a political deal involving Louis’s father. At the court Louis was tutored by Franciscan friars under whom he made great progress both in his studies and in the spiritual life. Like St. Francis he developed a special love for those afflicted with leprosy.

While he was still a hostage, Louis decided to renounce his royal title and become a priest. When he was 20, he was allowed to leave the king of Aragon’s court. He renounced his title in favor of his brother Robert and was ordained the next year. Very shortly after, he was appointed bishop of Toulouse, but the pope agreed to Louis’s request to become a Franciscan first.

The Franciscan spirit pervaded Louis. "Jesus Christ is all my riches; he alone is sufficient for me," Louis kept repeating. Even as a bishop he wore the Franciscan habit and sometimes begged. He assigned a friar to offer him correction — in public if necessary — and the friar did his job.

Louis’s service to the Diocese of Toulouse was richly blessed. In no time he was considered a saint. Louis set aside 75 percent of his income as bishop to feed the poor and maintain churches. Each day he fed 25 poor people at his table.

Louis was canonized in 1317 by Pope John XXII, one of his former teachers.

Comment: When Cardinal Hugolino, the future Pope Gregory IX, suggested to Francis that some of the friars would make fine bishops, Francis protested that they might lose some of their humility and simplicity if appointed to those positions. Those two virtues are needed everywhere in the Church, and Louis shows us how they can be lived out by bishops. Quote: "All the faithful were edified by the fervor of his devout celebration of Mass, the efficacy of his deep humility, his tender compassion, his upright life, the harmonious congruity in all his actions, words and bearing. Who without wonderment could look upon a most charming young man, the son of so mighty a king, outstanding for his generosity, raised to such dignity, renowned for his influence, preeminent for humility, living a life of such mortification, endowed with such wisdom, clothed in so poor a habit yet renowned for the charm of his discourse and a shining example of upright life?" (contemporary biography).

1297 Bd Gertrude of Altenberg, Virgin  expended the inheritance for her monastery and an almshouse for the poor
Two weeks after the death in September 1227 of her husband Louis at Otranto, on his way to the crusade in the Holy Land, St Elizabeth of Hungary gave birth to their third daughter, who was christened Gertrude. Before his departure Bd Louis had agreed with his wife that their coming child should be dedicated to the service of God as a thank-offering for their years of happiness together: if a girl, with the Premonstratensian canonesses at Altenberg, near Wetzlar. Friar Conrad of Marburg, under whose direction the landgravine had put herself and who ruled her rigorously, insisted that this should be done when the child was still short of two years old, and to Altenberg the baby Gertrude was taken. When she grew up she elected to ratify the wish of her parents, by then both dead she was received into the community; by age twenty-two was abbess.
   Following in the footsteps of her mother, she expended the inheritance she received from her uncle on building a new church for her monastery and an almshouse for the poor; the conduct of the last she made her own personal business and, at a time when abbesses, especially royal abbesses, tended to he very great ladies indeed. She was in her works and mortifications indistinguishable from the other nuns.

During the seventh crusade Bd Gertrude, in memory of her father’s chivalry, “took the cross”, on behalf of herself and her community not indeed with the obligation of going to the Holy Land, but binding themselves to support it un­wearyingly by their prayers and penances. She also obtained permission for the celebration of the feast of Corpus Christi in her monastery; this was in 1270 and she was in consequence one of the first to introduce it into Germany. When Dietrich the Dominican was writing his vita of St Elizabeth of Hungary in 1289 he noted that her daughter the Abbess Gertrude was still living, and she lived on for another eight years, dying in the fiftieth year of her abbacy.

See the Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. iii, and cf. the Stimmen aus Maria Laach (1893), vol. ii, pp. 415 seq. Most lives of St Elizabeth of Hungary contain some notice of Bd Gertrude.

1300 St. Radegund German virgin
Pictávis, in Gállia, sanctæ Radegúndis Regínæ, cujus vita miráculis et virtútibus cláruit.
    At Poitiers in France, St. Radegund, queen, whose life was renowned for miracles and virtues.
Much revered during Middle Ages. A humble serving girl in Wellenburg Castle, near Augsburg, Germany. Well known in the region for her charity and goodness. While on a trip to perform some kindness, she was attacked and slain by a pack of wolves.
1322 Bd John Of Alvernia; frequent ecstasies and visions of our Lord and saints; on All Souls' day while offering Mass he saw numberless souls released from Purgatory; for 3 months he was conscious of his guardian angel, who conversed with him
This John is sometimes called “of Fermo” in the Marches, where he was born in 1259, but usually “of Alvernia” because he lived for many years and died on the mountain of La Verna. In 1272 desire for a life of greater perfection caused him to join the Friars Minor, and after his profession he was sent to La Verna, where St Francis had received the stigmata. Here he lived in a cell formed in a cave in the mountain-side, sleeping only a few hours, and then on the bare ground with a stone for pillow. In this solitude of penance and contemplation he spent some years, and frequent ecstasies and visions of our Lord and of the saints are recorded of him; one All Souls’ day while offering Mass he saw numberless souls released from Purgatory, and for a space of three months he was conscious of the habitual presence of his guardian angel, who conversed with him.
   After a time his austerities became excessive and St Francis himself in vision ordered him to moderate them lest he unfit himself for the active service of his neighbour to which he was soon to be called.  This took the form of preaching and pastoral work, first in the towns and villages around La Verna and then throughout central and northern Italy. He had the gifts of infused knowledge and of reading souls, and his exhortations brought back many who were sinners to Christ and excited the admiration of good and learned men. He never wrote out his sermons, and when it was pointed out to him that this had its disadvantages he replied,
“When I go into the pulpit I just remind myself that it is not I, a poor sinner, who is to preach, but God Himself who will teach divine truth through my mouth. Do you suppose, dear brethren, that God can ever fail in His words?”
    Bd John was a close friend of the poet Bd Giacopone da Todi and gave him the last sacraments as he lay dying on Christmas day 1306; and John himself is alleged to be the author of the proper preface sung by the Friars Minor in the Mass of St Francis. He was at the friary of Cortona when he felt death approaching he therefore hurried to La Verna, and there died on August 10 1322.
 To the brothers who were present he said, as his last message, If you would have a good conscience, wish to know Jesus Christ only, for He is the way. If you would have wisdom, wish to know Jesus Christ only, for He is the truth. If you wish to have glory, wish to know Jesus Christ only, for He is the life.”
The cultus of Bd John of Alvernia was approved in 1880. The Friars Minor keep his feast with Bd Novellone (above), and join with it that of BD VINCENT OF AQUILA, a lay-brother who died at San Giuliano in 1504: “a man of great humility, of prayer, temperance and patience, adorned with the spirit of prophecy.” His cultus was confirmed in 1785.
There is more than one sketch of the life of Bd John printed in the Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. ii, and there is another early account which has been edited in the Analecta Franciscana, vol. iii (1879), pp. 439—447. See also Léon, L’Auréole Séraphique (Eng. trans.), vol. ii, pp. 553 seq., and more especially L. Oliger, Il b. Giovanni della Verna (1913). For Bd Vincent, see the Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. ii; and G. Rivera, Il b. Vincenzo dall’ Aquila (1904).
1350 St. Francis of Pesaro miracle worker known for his holiness; founded the Confraternity of Mercy, a hospice
Franciscan tertiary of Pesaro, Italy He lived in a community and was known for his holiness. He founded the Confraternity of Mercy, a hospice, and was a miracle worker. Pope Pius IX confirmed his cult.

1595 St. William Freeman Priest English martyr convert in 1586 by martyrdom of Blessed Edward Stransahm at Tyburn; ordained in 1587 Reims, France
Born in East Riding, Yorkshire, he studied at Oxford and was converted to Catholicism in 1586 by the martyrdom of Blessed Edward Stransahm at Tyburn. He went to Reims, France, where he was ordained in 1587. He went back to England the following year, and labored for the English mission in Worcestershire and Warwickshire until arrested in early 1595. Seven months later he was hanged, drawn, and quartered at Warwick on August 13. William was beatified in 1929.

WILLIAM FREEMAN (alias Mason) was born in the East Riding of Yorkshire about 1558 and was educated at Magdalen College, Oxford. He had been brought up a Catholic, but took to outward conformity with the new church until 1586. In that year he was present at the martyrdom of Bd Edward Stransham at Tyburn, and he was so deeply impressed that he at once went over to Rheims and was ordained in the following year.

   He was sent to England in 1589 and worked for six years on the borders of Worcestershire and Warwickshire, where he was in touch with several of the friends of Shakespeare.

   He was then engaged by a Mrs Heath of Stratford-on-Avon to be tutor to her son, but in January 1595 a special commission was sent to search her house, and Mr Freeman was arrested. He managed to conceal the fact that he was a priest, but he was betrayed by a fellow prisoner, and at the end of seven months’ imprisonment was convicted and sentenced as a seminary priest. He was accordingly hanged, drawn and quartered at Warwick on August 13, 1595.

   Certain criminals were put to death before him and in his presence, in the hope that the terrifying sight would make him apostatize but he protested that if he had many lives he would most willingly lay them down for the sake of Him who had been pleased to die upon a cross for his redemption, and devoutly recited Psalm xli, “As the hart panteth after the fountains of water”.

See MMP., pp. 227—228, and Publications of the Catholic Record Society, vol. v, pp. 345-360.

1621 St. John Berchmans fervent, filial piety from early youth; bright intellect; a retentive memory Jesuit
Romæ natális sancti Joánnis Berchmans, scholástici e Societáte Jesu et Confessóris, vitæ innocéntia et religiósæ disciplínæ custódia præclári; cui Leo Décimus tértius, Póntifex Máximus, cælitum Sanctórum honóres decrévit.
    At Rome, the birthday of St. John Berchmans, a scholastic of the Society of Jesus, illustrious for his innocence and for his fidelity to the rules of the religious life.  He was canonized by Pope Leo XIII.
Born at Diest in Brabant, 13 March, 1599; died at Rome, 13 August, 1621. His parents watched with the greatest solicitude over the formation of his character. He was naturally kind, gentle, and affectionate towards them, a favourite with his playmates, brave and open, attractive in manner, and with a bright, joyful disposition. Yet he was also, by natural disposition, impetuous and fickle. Still, when John was but seven years of age, M. Emmerick, his parish priest, already remarked with pleasure that the Lord would work wonders in the soul of the child.
   Many details reveal him to us as he was in the Society of Jesus. He was but nine years of old when his mother was stricken with a long and serious illness. John would pass several hours each day by her bedside, and console her with his affectionate though serious, words. Later, when he lived with some other boys at M. Emmerick's house, he would undertake more than his share of the domestic work, selecting by preference the more difficult occupations. If he was loved by his comrades, he repaid their affection by his kindness, without, however, deviating from the dictates of his conscience. It was noticed even that he availed himself discreetly of his influence over them to correct their negligences and to restrain their frivolous conversation. Eager to learn, and naturally endowed with a bright intellect and a retentive memory, he enhanced the effect of these gifts by devoting to study whatever time he could legitimately take from his ordinary recreation.
   What, however, distinguished him most from his companions was his piety.
When he was hardly seven years old, he was accustomed to rise early and serve two or three Masses with the greatest fervour. He attended religious instructions and listened to Sunday sermons with the deepest recollection, and made pilgrimages to the sanctuary of Montaigu, a few miles from Diest, reciting the rosary as he went, or absorbed in meditation. As soon as he entered the Jesuit college at Mechlin, he was enrolled in the Society of the Blessed Virgin, and made a resolution to recite her Office daily. He would, moreover, ask the director of the sodality every month to prescribe for him some special acts of devotion to Mary. On Fridays, at nightfall, he would go out barefooted and make the Stations of the Cross in the town. Such fervent, filial piety won for him the grace of a religious vocation.
  Towards the end of his rhetoric course, he felt a distinct call to the Society of Jesus. His family was decidedly opposed to this, and on 24 September, 1616, he was received into the novitiate at Mechlin. After two years passed in Mechlin he made his simple vows, and was sent to Antwerp to begin the study of philosophy. Remaining there only a few weeks, he set out for Rome, where he was to continue the same study. After the journeying three hundred leagues on foot, carrying a wallet on his back, he arrived at the Roman College, he studied for two years and passed on to the third year class in philosophy in the year 1621. One day early in August of that same year he was selected by the prefect of studies to take part in a philosophical disputation at the Greek College, at that time under the charge of the Dominicans. He opened the discussion with great perspicuity and erudition, but, on returning to his own college, he was seized with a violent fever of which he died, on 13 August, at the age of twenty-two years and five months.

During the second part of his life, John offered the type of the saint who performs ordinary actions with extraordinary perfection. In his purity, obedience, and admirable charity he resembled many religious, but he surpassed them all by his intense love for the rules of his order. The Constitutions of the Society of Jesus lead those who observe them exactly to the highest degree of sanctity, as has been declared by Pope Julius III and his successors. The attainment of that ideal was what John proposed to himself. "If I do not become a saint when I am young", he used to say "I shall never become one". That is why he displayed such wisdom in conforming his will to that of his superiors and to the rules. He would have preferred death to the violation of the least of the rules of his order. "My penance", he would say, "is to live the common life... I will pay the greatest attention to the least inspiration of God." He observed this fidelity in the performance of all his duties till the last day of his life, as is attested by Fathers Bauters, Cepari, Ceccoti, Massucci, and Piccolomini, his spiritual directors. When he died, a large multitude crowded for several days to see him and to invoke his intercession. The same year, Phillip, Duke of Aerschot, had a petition presented to Pope Gregory XV for the taking of information with a view to his beatification. John Berchmans was declared Blessed in 1865, and was canonized in 1888.
His statues represent him with hands clasped, holding his crucifix, his book of rules, and his rosary.
1775 St. Tikbon of Zadonsk Russian monk/bishop
Born to a peasant family, he nevertheless received an excellent education and became a professor at Novgorod seminary. After spending a number of years as a monk (he entered the monastery in 1758), he served as bishop of Voronezh from 1763-1767, returning to the monastic life at the Zadonsk monastery from 1769. A deeply ascetical and mystical personality in the Eastern traditions, he was nevertheless much influenced by Western authors, including the Anglican bishop of Norwich Joseph Hall and the Lutheran theologian Johann Arndt. Tikhon was a prolific writer and was renowned both in active service and retirement for his abiding pastoral concerns and efforts on behalf of the poor and suffering
1862 St. Benilde Romançon, founded Saugues school
Born at Thuret, France June 13, 1805 and christened Peter. He studied at the Christian Brothers school at Riom and joined them in 1820, taking the name Benilde, after he had been refused two years earlier. He headed the Brothers' school in Billom, and in 1841 he founded a school at Saugues, where he was to spend the rest of his life. Saugues became a model school, and Benilde was known for his dedication, his teaching ability and his sanctity. He died at Saugues on August 13, 1862 and was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1967

IN the fertile plain called the Limagne in the French civil department of Puy-de-Dôme stands the small town, or large village, called Thuret. It has a big and handsome romanesque church of the twelfth century, and in it was christened, on June 13, 1805, the day of his birth, a boy called Peter Romançon, the second son of his parents, who were people much respected in the district. In the same church, twelve years later, he made his first communion and was confirmed by the bishop of Clermont. But long before this, when he was six, the child had begun to attend the local school and to show a notable spiritual and intellectual intelligence.
   One day when he was in Clermont with his father, Peter’s attention was caught by a black-habited religious who passed them with flowing cloak. The boy asked who he was and what he did, and was told that he was one of the congregation called the Brothers of the Christian Schools, who had been founded at Rheims in 1684 by St John Baptist de La Salle for the free education of boys, especially the sons of poor parents. The idea struck young Peter and stuck in his head, and he told his parents that he wanted to be one of these brothers; he was shy about it at first, but later got quite insistent. His parents neither encouraged nor discouraged him, but when the brothers opened a school at Riom they sent him there to finish his schooling.
   The atmosphere at Riom suited Peter down to the ground, and when he was fourteen he asked to be admitted as an aspirant to the congregation. In spite of his excellent reputation he was refused, on the ground that he was too small. So he waited patiently and prayerfully for two years, until he had grown bigger, and then tried again this time successfully. Mr Romançon, to try his son, threatened to cut him off with a shilling if he left home.  “I shan’t complain if you want to do so”, replied Peter gently, “I should only be exchanging earthly goods for heavenly goods.” And so, in the autumn of 1820, he asked and received his parents’ blessing and departed for the novitiate at Clermont-Ferrand. During the following twelve months his vocation was clearly confirmed, and his director did not hesitate to declare, “This young brother will be one of the glories of our congregation one day”. Upon being clothed with the religious habit, Peter Romançon had been given the name of Benildus.* {*The writer was unable to trace any saint of this unusual name. But there was a woman martyr under the Moors at Cordova, mentioned in the Roman Martyrology on June 15, called Benildis.}
   At the end of his novitiate Brother Benildus was sent back to the school at Riom to begin his course of instruction in the art of teaching, and during the following years he was in turn with other Christian Brother communities, sometimes varying his teaching with other tasks, such as that of cook. He had been professed only two years when he was put in charge of the community and school at Billom in the Puy-de-Dôme. One of his pupils here said of him afterwards: “Brother Benildus was as good as an angel and looked like a saint. He was a fine teacher; a bit strict, but always fair. He would encourage the backward ones, and made us work hard. His pupils were good, and knew their religion properly.”
  Brother Benildus was so successful in this charge that in 1841, when he was thirty-six years old, he was sent to direct a community and open a school at Saugues, in Haute-Loire; and it was here he spent the rest of his life. The brothers were welcomed with enthusiasm in the town, and they were soon asked to run evening classes for grown-ups in addition to their main work. The government inspectors became so pleased with the school that they awarded Brother Benildus a silver medal; but more gratifying to him would have been the golden opinions of his pupils, some of which are still on record. One of them finds it worth mentioning that “the holy head master” used to have the windows opened when he came into class.
   It was as a religious teacher that Brother Benildus excelled. “I live for the apostolate”, he wrote. “If through my fault these children don’t grow in goodness, what is the use of my life? If I die teaching the catechism, then I die at my proper work.”
   He had prepared himself for this work by his own personal life and by acquiring a thorough background of theological and other knowledge. More than one witness testifies that in his divinity classes the pupils listened with absorbed attention and found the time go too quickly; and they were never dismissed without a few words of exhortation straight from the teacher’s loving heart. “Dear Brother Benildus used to speak of the eternal truths with such warmth that I have never forgotten his words. They touched the hearts of us all, and made us sorry for our misdoings.” And it was not only his former pupils that appreciated him: their parents and the Presentation sisters who ran the girls’ school and the clergy of the town all spoke to the same effect. Said one of the curates of the parish church, “Brother Benildus did not worship God like an angel only when he was in church and saying his prayers, but always and everywhere—even among his cabbages in the garden”.
   Enthusiasm for the congregation of which he was a member was very characteristic of Benildus. “Even were I reduced to eating potato-skins”, he said at one moment of difficulty, “I would not give up the congregation—I am too conscious of God’s goodness in calling me to His service in it.” He never missed an opportunity of encouraging a suitable volunteer for it, but not by putting forward human considerations. “What was he looking for? An easy life? The school at Saugues did not promise anything of the kind. The approval of public opinion The brothers’ life was retired and hidden. But if he wanted personal sanctification, and work for our Lord that was humble but useful, hard but worth doing, then…”
   A priest, who visited the mother house of the Brothers of the Christian Schools in Paris five years after the death of Brother Benildus, found there thirty-two novices from the Saugues neighbourhood, nearly all of them former pupils of Benildus.
   In 1855 Brother Benildus wrote to one of his colleagues that, “I have got a complaint that at present hardly allows me to leave my bed. I am very tired, worn out, and almost unable to speak; I expect the end daily”. But it was not till six years later that he was finally struck down by a painful and serious rheumatic disease. His superiors sent him several times to take the water at Bagnols-les-Bains (where the parish priest said his visits were as good as a mission to his flock). But in January 1862 it was apparent that the end was not far off.
   On the eve of Trinity Sunday he insisted on getting up to prepare the chapel for the annual renewal of vows on the following day, and he took a last farewell of his pupils. “Boys”, he said, “I know that you are praying for me, and I thank you; but your prayers are not going to make me get well. God is calling me; and if He is merciful to me, be sure that I will pray for you in Heaven.” About July 30 he struggled into the chapel again. “This is the last time,” he said to his companion. “Soon you will be carrying me in.” A fortnight later, on August 13, 1862, Brother Benildus died, surrounded by his brethren.
   The funeral was on the feast of the Assumption. The parish church of Saugues is large, but on that day it was filled to overflowing. From the moment of burial the humble brother’s grave was a place of pilgrimage; and when in 1884 a new memorial stone was set over it the inscription was “décédé en odeur de sainteté”.
   There were some who demurred at this, but the former parish priest, Canon Raveyre, was not one of them; “It won’t be surprising if one day the Church raises him to her altars”, he said. And he was right, for in 1896 the process was begun at Le Puy, which in 1968 culminated in Rome in the canonization of Bd Benildus Romançon.
See Le Venerable Frére Benilde (1928) and G. Rigault, Un instituteur sur les autels (1947).

Mary's Divine Motherhood

Artists. That artists of our time, through their ingenuity,
may help everyone discover the beauty of creation.

Marian spirituality: all are invited.
God Bless Mother Angelica 1923-2016

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

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

"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.

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

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

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

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

How do I start the Five First Saturdays? 
Called in the Gospel “the Mother of Jesus,” Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as “the Mother of my Lord” (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity. Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos). 
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
“The Blessed Virgin was eternally predestined, in conjunction with the incarnation of the divine Word, to be the Mother of God. By decree of divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving mother of the divine Redeemer, an associate of unique nobility, and the Lord's humble handmaid. She conceived, brought forth, and nourished Christ.”
The voice of the Father is heard, the Son enters the water, and the Holy Spirit appears in the form of a dove.
   THE spirit and example of the world imperceptibly instil the error into the minds of many that there is a kind of middle way of going to Heaven; and so, because the world does not live up to the gospel, they bring the gospel down to the level of the world. It is not by this example that we are to measure the Christian rule, but words and life of Christ. All His followers are commanded to labour to become perfect even as our heavenly Father is perfect, and to bear His image in our hearts that we may be His children. We are obliged by the gospel to die to ourselves by fighting self-love in our hearts, by the mastery of our passions, by taking on the spirit of our Lord.
   These are the conditions under which Christ makes His promises and numbers us among His children, as is manifest from His words which the apostles have left us in their inspired writings. Here is no distinction made or foreseen between the apostles or clergy or religious and secular persons. The former, indeed, take upon themselves certain stricter obligations, as a means of accomplishing these ends more perfectly; but the law of holiness and of disengagement of the heart from the world is geeral and binds all the followers of Christ.
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There are over 10,000 named saints beati  from history
 and Roman Martyology Orthodox sources

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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.