Monday  Saints of the Day January 09 Quinto Idus Januárii.  
Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum.
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!  (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)

The third day of the Afterfeast of Theophany

Pope Authorizes 12 14 2015 Promulgation of Decrees Concerning 17 Causes,
Including Servant of God William Gagnon
November 23 2014 Six to Be Canonized on Feast of Christ the King

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 .

The Blessed Virgin Mary in the Life and Ministry of the Priest
Mary Mother of GOD
15 Promises of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary
  Philomena.html HERE
December 31  Saint Maria Odigitria Church (Rome) Catherine Labouré d. 1876

Mary's Divine Motherhood
Pope Benedict XVI to The Catholic Church In China {whole article here }

Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart
From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
How do I start the Five First Saturdays?

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

January 9 – Virgin of the Annunciation (Italy, 1490) - Pauline Jaricot (d. 1862) 
 
The spectacular spread of the Living Rosary
 
Pauline Marie Jaricot (born in Lyons, France, on July 22, 1799; died on January 9, 1862), is the foundress of the Catholic Society for the Propagation of the Faith. Born into a family of wealthy industrialists, she decided to serve God only, ready to devote her life to the cause of the faith. She made a vow of perpetual virginity and adopted the poor lifestyle of the working class.

In the 1820s, the Church had to defend herself against the surge of anticlerical views linked to the popularization of the philosophical works of the 18th century. The only antidote to atheism for Pauline was a life of prayer. She then founded the Association of the Living Rosary in 1826 along the same organizational structure used for the Society for the Propagation of the Faith in the following way. The fifteen decades of the Rosary were divided among fifteen members, each of whom pledged to recite one particular decade daily. Each group agreed to hold a monthly prayer meeting.

At the time of Pauline’s death, there were 150,000 groups, totaling 2.5 million members! She had bought a house on Fouvière hill in Lyons, calling it Loreto, to use as her headquarters, surrounding herself with pious girls she called the "Daughters of Mary."  rosarium.op.org

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.

January 9 – Virgin of the Annunciation (Italy, 1490) - Pauline-Marie Jaricot (d. 1862), Foundress of the Society of the Propagation of the Faith and the Association of the Living Rosary
 
  For the Renewal of Social Life: The Living Rosary
The Living Rosary started in France in 1826, thanks to Pauline-Marie Jaricot. Her Association of The Living Rosary was founded for the defense and renewal of the faith. Its mission is to help Christian life grow in individuals, families and society. The Living Rosary is about uniting hearts by virtue of the merits of Jesus and Mary; obtaining the conversion of sinners; praying for the Church and the preservation of the faith in Christian countries, and to promote the faith everywhere.  Consequently, we can pray for those who do not pray, and love Jesus through Mary on behalf of those who do not know or love him. (…)  The Living Rosary spreads itself naturally, since it is easy to learn and accessible to everyone. For example, the French city of Lyons already has 14 Living Rosary teams, a total of 280 people who pray the Living Rosary daily!  http://www.mariereine.com/
 
Saint John, Son of Mary (IX) - Our Lady Beyond the Tiber (Rome, Italy)
   After the miracle of the boiling oil, Domitian, possibly shocked or frightened, banished John to the island of Patmos, where he received 96 visions and wrote the Book of Revelation and evangelized the island with his scribe Prochorus.
Some modern exegetes have raised doubts over the attribution of the Book of Revelation to John, but Tradition (Justin, Irenaeus, Jerome, Clement, etc.) is unanimous and the minimal discrepancies that existed in this regard in the 4th century were concluded by the Fourth Council of Toledo (633): "The authority of many councils and holy synod decrees by the Holy Roman College of Cardinals establish the Book of Revelation to John the Evangelist and decide that it should be kept among the final Holy Books.
However, many are those who do not receive its authority and refuse to proclaim the Revelation in the Church of God.
Anyone who now receives this decree and does not recognize it publicly in the Church during Mass between Easter and Pentecost will be subject to excommunication." (Ch 17, Dnz 486)

(Therefore, until the nineteenth century, Tradition was absolutely unanimous in all apostolic Churches as well as on the island of Patmos.) Returning again to Ephesus, John lived his most active period, in apostolic terms, according to the Apocrypha (Acts of John, Acts of Prochorus). He eventually published in Greek, with the help of his scribe Prochorus, the refined substance of his oral teaching. This Gospel is all-spiritual, centered on the mystery of the Incarnation of the Word and the divinity of Christ.
"The acuity of his spiritual intelligence makes us compare the Apostle Saint John to an eagle. (...)
the Apostle spoke of the divinity of the Lord as no one has ever talked about it since.
He truly depicted what he had seen himself, as his own Gospel relates that he rested his head on the Lord's chest during the Last Supper." (St Augustine, Treaty 36.1)

January 9 - Our Lady Beyond the Tiber (Rome, Italy)   I Place my Hand in Yours
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Who am I, Lord, to begin to talk about the sacrament of your love? I have already tried so many times. As many times, bedazzled by the magnificence of your wonders, I have remained silent without being able to express anything. Will I be any better today? Will I remain silent for having too much to say? I dare hope that you will be the fire of my expressions, the intelligence of my mind, the love of my heart, the support of my weakness, and that I will faithfully carry out your intentions.
O Mary! Throne of wisdom, safe in your arms and in the shadow of your protection, I will gaze at the Sun of Justice.
I place my hand in yours; please lead me according to the Spirit of truth.
Pauline Jaricot (d. January 9, 1862)
Excerpt from the introduction of the Infinite Love in the Divine Eucharist (Amour infini dans la Divine Eucharistie)

 
His Gospel is unique and very important and it reflects the singular personality of its author:
"We must admit that of all the Scriptures, the Gospel is the beginning and, among the Gospel stories, the Gospel according to Saint John is the beginning. No one can understand the meaning of John's Gospel without resting his head on Jesus' chest and receiving Mary from Jesus for mother." (Origen)

Every aspect of priestly formation can be referred to Mary as to the human being who better than anyone has corresponded to the vocation of God; who has become the servant and disciple of the Word up until conceiving in her heart and in her flesh the Word made man in order to give him to humanity; who has been called to educate the unique and eternal Priest, docile and submissive to her motherly authority. With her example and through her intercession, the Blessed Virgin continues watching over the development of vocations and of the priestly life of the Church.
To her, the Mother of the Eternal High Priest, we want to entrust our priestly vocation, received with the imposition of hands on the day of our ordination, with which we are given the unmerited gift of being Alter Christus.
To her, who keeps her priests in her heart and in the Church,
we want to entrust our pastoral work and the abundant harvest of the Lord.
To her, who welcomed us from the beginning, who protected us in our formation,
we raise our petition, that she may accompany us in our priestly lives and ministries.
Excerpt from the Conference of Mons. Norberto Rivera, Archbishop, Primate of Mexico (Yamoussoukro, July 9, 1997)

Be careful to give no credit to yourself for anything;
 if you do, you are stealing from God, to whom alone every good thing is due.  -- St Vincent de Paul



  The third day of the Afterfeast of Theophany.
 
    falls on January 9. The hymns invite us to purify our minds in order to see Christ.
 303 St. Marciana Virgin martyr in Caesarea amphitheater in Mauretania
       St. Paschasia virgin martyr in the area of modern Dijon, France 
 250 St.  Epicharis bishop Martyr of Africa with 7 companions
3rd v. Saint Polyeuctus first martyr in the Armenian city of Meletine; soldier
 302  St. Julian Basilissa & Companions Martyr with Anastasius 
        St. Vitalicus bishop martyrs at Smyrna Revocatus Fortunatus deacons
 391 ST PETER, Bishop OF SEBASTEA; In this family three brothers were at the same time eminently holy bishops, St Basil, St Gregory of Nyssa and St Peter of Sebastea; their eldest sister, St Macrina, was the spiritual mother of many saints and excellent doctors; and their father and mother, St Basil the Elder and St Emmelia, were banished for their faith in the reign of the Emperor Galerius Maximian, and fled into the deserts of Pontus.  Finally, the grandmother was the celebrated St Macrina the Elder, who was instructed in the science of salvation by St Gregory Thaumaturgus.
 683 St. Waningus Benedictine abbot entered a monastery founded Holy Trinity Church and Convent of Fecamp
 700 St. Maurontus Benedictine abbot founder of Saint-Florentle-Vieil in Anjou
 710 St. Adrian, African Abbot near Naples tomb famous for miracles 
 731 St. Brithwald Benedictine Archbishop of Canterbury from 692 until 37 years;  friendly relations with St Aldhelm, St Boniface and other prominent and holy ecclesiastics; letter written to Berhtwald by Waldhere, Bishop of London, is the first extant letter from one Englishman to another
8th v. St. Foellan Irishman with his mother to Scotland became monk; missionary
1569 Saint Philip, Metropolitan of Moscow
1622 Bl. Alix Le Clercq nun founded Augustinian Canonesses Congregation of Our Lady from Rome
1975 St. Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer God showed him his specific mission: he was to found Opus Dei.
1975 St. Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer God showed him his specific mission: he was to found Opus Dei, an institution within the Catholic Church dedicated to helping people in all walks of life to follow Christ, to seek holiness in their daily life and grow in love for God and their fellow men and women.
June 26, 1975
St. Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer
Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer was born in Barbastro, Spain, on January 9, 1902, the second of six children of Jose and Dolores Escriva. Growing up in a devout family and attending Catholic schools, he learned the basic truths of the faith and practices such as frequent confession and communion, the rosary, and almsgiving. The death of three younger sisters, and his father's bankruptcy after business reverses, taught him the meaning of suffering and brought maturity to his outgoing and cheerful temperament. In 1915, the family moved to Logrono, where his father had found new employment.

Beginning in 1918, Josemaria sensed that God was asking something of him, although he didn't know exactly what it was. He decided to become a priest, in order to be available for whatever God wanted of him. He began studying for the priesthood, first in Logrono and later in Saragossa. At his father's suggestion and with the permission of his superiors at the seminary he also began to study civil law. He was ordained a priest and began his pastoral ministry in 1925.

In 1927, Fr. Josemaria moved to Madrid to study for a graduate degree in law. He was accompanied by his mother, sister, and brother, as his father had died in 1924 and he was now head of the family. They were not well-off, and he had to tutor law students to support them. At the same time he carried out a demanding pastoral work, especially among the poor and sick in Madrid, and with young children. He also undertook an apostolate with manual workers, professional people and university students who, by coming into contact with the poor and sick to whom Fr. Josemaria was ministering, learned the practical meaning of charity and their Christian responsibility to help out in the betterment of society.

On October 2, 1928, while making a retreat in Madrid, God showed him his specific mission: he was to found Opus Dei, an i nstitution within the Catholic Church dedicated to helping people in all walks of life to follow Christ, to seek holiness in their daily life and grow in love for God and their fellow men and women. From that moment on, he dedicated all his strength to fulfilling this mission, certain that God had raised up Opus Dei to serve the Church. In 1930, responding to a new illumination from God, he started Opus Dei's apostolic work with women, making clear that they had the same responsibility as men to serve society and the Church.

The first edition of The Way, his most widely read work, was published in 1934 under the title Spiritual Considerations. Expanded and revised, it has gone through many editions since then; more than four million copies in many different languages are now in print. His other spiritual writings include Holy Rosary; The Way of the Cross; two collections of homilies, Christ Is Passing By and Friends of God; and Furrow and The Forge, which like The Way are made up of short points for prayer and reflection.

The development of Opus Dei began among the young people with whom Fr. Josemaria had already been in contact before 1928. Its growth, however, was seriously impeded by the religious persecution inflicted on the Catholic Church during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939). The founder himself suffered severe hardships under this persecution but, unlike many other priests, he came out of the war alive. After the war, he traveled throughout the country giving retreats to hundreds of priests at the request of their bishops. Meanwhile Opus Dei spread from Madrid to several other Spanish cities, and as soon as World War II ended in 1945, began starting in other countries. This growth was not without pain; though the Work always had the approval of the local bishops, its then-unfamiliar message of sanctity in the world met with some misunderstandings and suspicions-which the founder bore with great patience and charity.

While celebrating Mass in 1943, Fr. Josemaria received a new foundational grace to establish the Priestly Society of the Holy Cross, which made it possible for some of Opus Dei's lay faithful to be ordained as priests. The full incorporation of both lay faithful and priests in Opus Dei, which makes a seamless cooperation in the apostolic work possible, is an essential feature of the foundational charism of Opus Dei, affirmed by the Church in granting Opus Dei the canonical status of a personal Prelature. In addition, the Priestly Society conducts activities, in full harmony with the bishops of the local churches, for the spiritual development of diocesan priests and seminarians. Diocesan priests can also be part of the Priestly Society, while at the same time remaining clergy of their own dioceses.

Aware that God meant Opus Dei to be part of the mission of the universal Church, the founder moved to Rome in 1946 so as to be close to the Holy See. By 1950 the Work had received pontifical approvals affirming its main foundational features-spreading the message of holiness in daily life; service to the Pope, the universal church, and the particular churches; secularity and naturalness; fostering personal freedom and responsibility, and a pluralism consistent with Catholic moral, political, and social teachings.

Beginning in 1948, full membership in Opus Dei was open to married people. In 1950 the Holy See approved the idea of accepting non-Catholics and even non-Christians as cooperators-persons who assist Opus Dei in its projects and programs without being members. The next decade saw the launching of a wide range of undertakings: professional schools, agricultural training centers, universities, primary and secondary schools, hospitals and clinics, and other initiatives, open to people of all races, religions, and social backgrounds but of manifestly Christian inspiration.

  During Vatican Council II (1962-1965), Monsignor Escriva worked closely with many of the council fathers, discussing key Council themes such as the universal call to holiness and the importance of laypersons in the mission of the Church. Deeply grateful for the Council's teachings, he did everything possible to implement them in the formative activities offered by Opus Dei throughout the world.

Between 1970 and 1975 the founder undertook catechetical trips throughout Europe and Latin America, speaking with many people, at times in large gatherings, about love of God, the sacraments, Christian dedication, and the need to sanctify work and family life. By the time of the founder's death, Opus Dei had spread to thirty nations on six continents. It now (2002) has more than 84,000 members in sixty countries.

Monsignor Escriva's death in Rome came suddenly on June 26, 1975, when he was 73. Large numbers of bishops and ordinary faithful petitioned the Vatican to begin the process for his beatification and canonization. On May 17, 1992, Pope John Paul II declared him Blessed before a huge crowd in St. Peter's Square.
He was canonized-formally declared a saint-on October 6, 2002.


2nd v. St. Paschasia virgin martyr in the area of modern Dijon, France
A who was put to death during the last half of the second century. She was long an object of veneration at the time of St. Gregory of Tours, who mentioned her in his writings.

250 St.  Epicharis bishop Martyr of Africa with 7 companions.
In Africa sanctórum Mártyrum Epictéti, Jucúndi, Secúndi, Vitális, Felícis et aliórum septem.
       In Africa, the holy martyrs Epictetus, Jucundus, Secundus, Vitalis, Felix, and seven others.
Felix, Jucundus, Secundus, Vitalis, and seven other companions. Epictetus was recorded by St. Cyprian.
 St. Vitalicus bishop martyrs at Smyrna Revocatus Fortunatus deacons.
 Smyrnæ sanctórum Mártyrum Vitális, Revocáti et Fortunáti.
       At Smyrna, the holy martyrs Vitalis, Revocatus, and Fortunatus.
 (modern Izmir, Turkey). Vitalicus was a bishop and the other two his deacons.
3rd v. Saint Polyeuctus was the first martyr in the Armenian city of Meletine;  soldier
He was a soldier under the emperor Decius (249-251) and he later suffered for Christ under the emperor Valerian (253-259).
The saint was friend also of Nearchos, a fellow-soldier and firm Christian, but Polyeuctus, though he led a virtuous life, remained a pagan.

When the persecution against Christians began, Nearchos said to Polyeuctus, "Friend, we shall soon be separated, for they will take me to torture, and you alas, will renounce your friendship with me." Polyeuctus told him that he had seen Christ in a dream, Who took his soiled military cloak from him and dressed him in a radiant garment. "Now," he said, "I am prepared to serve the Lord Jesus Christ."

Enflamed with zeal, St Polyeuctus went to the city square, and tore up the edict of Decius which required everyone to worship idols. A few moments later, he met a procession carrying twelve idols through the streets of the city. He dashed the idols to the ground and trampled them underfoot.

His father-in-law, the magistrate Felix, who was responsible for enforcing the imperial edict, was horrified at what St Polyeuctus had done and declared that he had to die for this. "Go, bid farewell to your wife and children," said Felix. Paulina came and tearfully entreated her husband to renounce Christ. His father-in-law Felix also wept, but St Polyeuctus remained steadfast in his resolve to suffer for Christ.

With joy he bent his head beneath the sword of the executioner and was baptized in his own blood.

Soon, when the Church of Christ in the reign of St Constantine had triumphed throughout all the Roman Empire, a church was built at Meletine in honor of the holy Martyr Polyeuctus. Many miracles were worked through the intercession of St Polyeuctus. In this very church the parents of St Euthymius the Great (January 20) prayed fervently for a son. The birth of this great luminary of Orthodoxy in the year 376 occurred through the help of the holy Martyr Polyeuctus.

St Polyeuctus was also venerated by St Acacius, Bishop of Meletine (March 31), a participant in the Third Ecumenical Council, and a great proponent of Orthodoxy. In the East, and also in the West, the holy Martyr Polyeuctus is venerated as a patron saint of vows and treaty agreements.

The Polyeucte Overture of French composer Paul Dukas is only one of many pieces of classical music inspired by the saints. It premiered in January of 1892. French dramatist Pierre Corneille has also written a play, Polyeucte (1642), based on the martyr's life.

302  St. Julian, Basilissa {married} & Companions Martyr with Anastasius
What purport to be the acts of these saints are mere romances abounding in contradictions. See the Acta Sanctorum for January 9. The historical existence of any such couple is more than doubtful. One of the versions of the legend of St Alexis (July 17) seems to he simply a transcription of the first paragraphs of their long passio.

 Antiochíæ, sub Diocletiáno et Maximiáno, natális sanctórum Juliáni Mártyris, et Basilíssæ Vírginis, ipsíus Juliáni uxóris.  Hæc, virginitáte cum viro suo serváta, in pace vitam finívit; Juliánus vero (postquam multitúdo Sacerdótum et Ministrórum Ecclésiæ Christi, quæ, propter immanitátem persecutiónis, ad eos confúgerat, igne cremáta est), Marciáni Præsidis jussu, plúrimis torméntis cruciátus, capitálem senténtiam accépit.  Cum ipso étiam Antónius Présbyter, et Anastásius, quem idem Juliánus, a morte suscitátum, grátiæ Christi partícipem fécerat, et Celsus puer cum hujus matre Marcionílla, ac septem fratres, aliíque plúrimi passi sunt.
       At Antioch, in the reign of Diocletian and Maximian, the birthday of the Saints Julian, martyr, and Basilissa, his virgin wife.  She, having lived in a state of virginity with her husband, reached the end of her days in peace.  But Julian, after the death by fire of a multitude of priests and ministers of the Church of Christ, who had taken refuge in his house from the severity of the persecution, was ordered by the governor Marcian to be tormented in many ways and executed.  With him there suffered Anthony, a priest, and Anastasius, whom Julian raised from the dead, and made partaker of the grace of Christ; also Celsus, a boy, with his mother Marcionilla, seven brothers, and many others.
Anthony {priest}Marcionilla-mother  Celsus-son.
Julian and Basilissa were married and used their home as a Christian hospital for the poor. Anthony was a priest, and Anastasius was a new convert. Marcionilla was the mother of young Celsus.They were martyred at Antioch.
304 SS. JULIAN AND BASILISSA, AND COMPANIONS, MARTYRS
ACCORDING to their “acts” and the ancient martyrologies, Julian and Basilissa, though engaged in the married state, lived by mutual consent in perpetual chastity, sanctified themselves by the exercises of an ascetic life, and employed their revenues in relieving the poor and the sick. For this purpose they converted their house into a kind of hospital, in which, if we may credit their acts, they sometimes entertained a thousand indigent persons Basilissa attended those of her sex; Julian, on his part, ministered to the men with such charity that he was later on confused with St Julian the Hospitaller. Egypt, where they lived, had then begun to abound with examples of persons who, either in the cities or in the deserts, devoted themselves to charity, penance and contemplation. Basilissa, after having endured severe persecution, died in peace; Julian survived her many years, and
received the crown of a glorious martyrdom, together with Celsus a youth, Antony a priest, Anastasius and Marcianilla, the mother of Celsus.
What purport to be the acts of these saints are mere romances abounding in contradictions. See the Acta Sanctorum for January 9. The historical existence of any such couple is more than doubtful. One of the versions of the legend of St Alexis (July 17) seems to he simply a transcription of the first paragraphs of their long passio.

303 ST MARCIANA, VIRGIN AND MARTYR; courageously despising all worldly advantages to secure the possession of heavenly grace, she bid defiance to the pagan idolaters
 In Mauritánia Cæsariénsi sanctæ Marciánæ Vírginis, quæ, béstiis trádita, martyrium consummávit.
       In Algeria, St. Marciana, virgin, who received her martyrdom after being condemned to the beasts.
SHE was a native of Rusuccur, a place in Mauritania, and, courageously despising all worldly advantages to secure the possession of heavenly grace, she bid defiance to the pagan idolaters in the persecution of Diocletian. Marciana was beaten with clubs, and her chastity exposed to the rude attempts of gladiators, in which danger God miraculously preserved her, and she became the happy instrument of the conversion of one of them to the faith. At length she was torn in pieces by a wild bull and a leopard in the amphitheatre at Caesarea in Mauritania, about 100 miles west of the modern city of Algiers.
She is probably also commemorated on July 12 in the ancient breviary of Toledo, and in the Roman and some other martyrologies both on July 12 and January 9. See a beautiful ancient hymn in her praise in the Mozarabic breviary, and her acts in the Acta Sanctorum, though their authority is more than questionable. She was especially honoured in Spain, where she is patron of Tortosa, unless, indeed, there is really another martyr, likewise called Marciana, who, according to the Roman Martyrology, suffered at Toledo on July 12 (BHL., n. 780).
St. Marciana Virgin martyr in Caesarea amphitheater in Mauretania
She was ac­cused of vandalizing a statue of the goddess Diana. After torments, Marciana was gored by a bull and mauled by a leopard in the amphitheater of Caesarea, also in Mauretania.

Mauretania was a Berber kingdom on the Mediterranean coast of north Africa (named after the Mauri tribe, after whom the Moors were named), corresponding to western Algeria and northern Morocco. The kingdom of Mauretania was not sited where modern Mauritania lies, on the Atlantic coast south of Morocco.

With the rise of the Roman Empire, it became a Roman client kingdom. The Romans placed Juba II of Numidia there as client-king. When Juba died in AD 23, his Roman-educated son Ptolemy of Mauretania succeeded him on the throne, but Caligula killed him in AD 40 and annexed Mauretania directly as a Roman province. The province was divided into Mauretania Tingitana, named after its capital Tingis (now Tangier) corresponding to Morocco, and Mauretania Caesariensis, comprising western and central Algeria as far as Kabylie.

391 ST PETER, Bishop OF SEBASTEA; In this family three brothers were at the same time eminently holy bishops, St Basil, St Gregory of Nyssa and St Peter of Sebastea; their eldest sister, St Macrina, was the spiritual mother of many saints and excellent doctors; and their father and mother, St Basil the Elder and St Emmelia, were banished for their faith in the reign of the Emperor Galerius Maximian, and fled into the deserts of Pontus.  Finally, the grandmother was the celebrated St Macrina the Elder, who was instructed in the science of salvation by St Gregory Thaumaturgus.
 Sebáste, in Arménia, sancti Petri Epíscopi, fílii sanctórum Basilíi et Emméliæ, atque fratris item sanctórum Basilíi Magni et Gregórii Nysséni Episcopórum, ac Macrínæ Vírginis.
      At Sebaste in Armenia, St. Peter, bishop, the son of Saints Basil and Emmelia, and also the brother of Saints Basil the Great, Gregory of Nyssa, bishops, and Macrina, virgin.
THE family to which St Peter belonged was ancient and illustrious, but the names of his ancestors are long since buried in oblivion, whilst those of the saints whom his parents gave to the Church are immortal in the records of our Christian faith.

In this family three brothers were at the same time eminently holy bishops, St Basil, St Gregory of Nyssa and St Peter of Sebastea; their eldest sister, St Macrina, was the spiritual mother of many saints and excellent doctors; and their father and mother, St Basil the Elder and St Emmelia, were banished for their faith in the reign of the Emperor Galerius Maximian, and fled into the deserts of Pontus.
   Finally, the grandmother was the celebrated St Macrina the Elder, who was instructed in the science of salvation by St Gregory Thaumaturgus.

Peter of Sebastea was the youngest of ten children and lost his father in his cradle, so that his eldest sister, Macrina, took charge of his education. In this duty her only aim was to instruct him in religion: profane studies she thought of little use to one whose thoughts were set upon the world to come. Neither did he resent these restrictions, confining his aspirations to the monastic state.
  His mother had founded two monasteries, one for men, the other for women; the former she put under the direction of her son Basil, the latter under that of Macrina. Peter joined the house governed by his brother, situated on the bank of the River Iris. When St Basil was obliged to surrender that charge in 362 he appointed St Peter his successor, who discharged this office for many years with great prudence and virtue.
When the provinces of Pontus and Cappadocia were visited by severe famine, he gave proof of his charity. Human prudence would have advised him to be frugal in the relief of others till his own community were secured against that calamity; but Peter had studied the principles of Christian charity in another school, and liberally disposed of all that belonged to the monastery to supply with necessaries the destitute people who daily resorted to him in that time of distress.

 When St Basil was made bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia in 370 he promoted Peter to the priesthood. Basil died on January 1 in 379, and Macrina in the November of the same year. Eustathius, Bishop of Sebastea in Armenia, an Arian and a persecutor of St Basil, seems to have died shortly after them; for Peter was consecrated bishop of Sebastea in 380 to root out the Arian heresy in that diocese. The evil had taken such deep root that the zeal of a saint was necessary to deal with it. A letter which St Peter wrote, and which is prefixed to St Gregory of Nyssa’s books against Eunomius, has entitled him to a place among the ecclesiastical writers; and it is a standing proof that though he had confined himself to sacred studies, yet by good conversation and reading, and by his own natural gifts, he was inferior to none but his incomparable brother Basil and his colleague Gregory Nazianzen in solid eloquence. In 381 St Peter attended the general council held at Constantinople. Not only his brother St Gregory of Nyssa but also Theodoret, and all antiquity, bear testimony to his sanctity, prudence and zeal. His death occurred in summer
about the year 391, and his brother of Nyssa mentions that his memory was hon­oured at Sebastea (probably the very year after his death) by a solemn celebration, together with that of some other martyrs of the same city. His name occurs in the Roman Martyrology on January 9.

It is a wonderful thing to meet with a whole family of saints. This prodigy of grace, under God, was owing to the example, prayers and exhortations of the elder St Macrina. From her they learned to imbibe the true spirit of self-denial and humility that all Christians confess to be the fundamental maxim of the gospel. Unfortunately it generally happens that the principle is accepted as a matter of speculation only, whereas it is in the heart that this foundation is to be laid.
We have little information about St Peter of Sebastea beyond the casual allusions contained in St Gregory of Nyssa’s Life of Macrina (in Migne, PG., vol. xlvi, pp. 960 seq.). His letter addressed to his brother Gregory of Nyssa, entreating him to complete his treatise against Eunomius, is printed in PG., vol. xlv, pp. 241 seq. See also Acta Sanctorum, January 9 DCB., vol. iv, pp. 345—346 ; and Bardenhewer, Patrology (Eng. trans.), pp. 295—297.

683 St. Waningus Benedictine abbot entered a monastery founded Holy Trinity Church and Convent of Fecamp
also listed as Vaneng. A native of Rouen, France, he was a nobleman of the court of King Clotaire III (r. 613-629) of Neustria (parts of modern France) when he gave up a worldly life and entered a monastery, supposedly after receiving a dream in which Saint Eulalia of Barcelona told him of the difficulties faced by the rich in entering the Kingdom of Heaven. He became an assistant to St. Wandrille in the founding of Fontenelle Abbey and was singularly responsible for the establishing of the Holy Trinity Church and Convent of Fecamp.

683 ST WANINGUS, OR VANENG
FROM various Merovingian sources it appears that Vaneng was made by Clotaire III governor of that part of Neustria, or Normandy, which is called Pays de Caux, at which time he took great pleasure in hunting. Nevertheless, he was particularly devout to St Eulalia of Barcelona, called in Guienne St Aulaire. One night he seemed in a dream to hear that holy virgin and martyr repeat to him those words of our Redeemer in the Gospel, that “it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to be saved”. This was the turning point in his life. He was entirely converted to God. He assisted St Wandrille in founding the abbey at Fontenelle, and founded in the valley of Fécamp a church in honour of the Holy Trinity, with a great nunnery adjoining, under the direction of St Ouen and St Wandrille. Hildemarca, a very virtuous nun, was called from Bordeaux and appointed the first abbess. Under her three hundred and sixty nuns served God in this house, and were divided into as many choirs as were sufficient, in relays, to continue the divine office night and day without interruption.
See the Acta Sanctorum, January 9 and also Vacandard, Vie de Saint Ouen. The Vie de Saint Vaneng, by C. Labbé, was re-edited by Michael Hardy in 1873 (cf. BHL., n. 1272). 

700 St. Maurontus Benedictine abbot founder of Saint-Florentle-Vieil in Anjou.
He is also listed as Mauruntius or Maurontius.

710 St. Adrian, African Abbot near Naples tomb famous for miracles incorrupt
Born in Africa, Adrian became abbot of the monastery at Nerida, near Naples. He declined an appointment as archbishop of Canterbury, but accompanied St. Theodore to England when the latter was appointed Archbishop. Theodore appointed him Abbot of SS. Peter and Paul Monastery (later changed to St. Augustine's) in Canterbury, and during his thirty-nine years' abbacy, the monastery became renowned as a center of learning.
Adrian taught at the school for 40 years.
Adrian was serving as an abbot in Italy when the new Archbishop of Canterbury appointed him abbot of the monastery of Sts. Peter and Paul in Canterbury. Thanks to his leadership skills, the facility became one of the most important centers of learning. The school attracted many outstanding scholars from far and wide and produced numerous future bishops and archbishops. Students reportedly learned Greek and Latin and spoke Latin as well as their own native languages.

He died there, probably in the year 710, and was buried in the monastery. Several hundred years later, when reconstruction was being done, Adrian’s body was discovered in an incorrupt state. As word spread, people flocked to his tomb, which became famous for miracles. Rumor had it that young schoolboys in trouble with their masters made regular visits there.

710 ST ADRIAN, ABBOT OF CANTERBURY
ADRIAN was an African by birth, and was abbot of Nerida, not far from Naples, when Pope St Vitalian, upon the death of St Deusdedit, the archbishop of Canterbury, judged him for his learning and virtue to be the most suitable person to be the teacher of a nation still young in the faith. The humble servant of God found means to decline that dignity by recommending St Theodore in his place, but was willing to share in the more laborious part of the ministry. The pope therefore enjoined him to be the assistant and adviser of the archbishop, to which Adrian readily agreed.
St Theodore made him abbot of the monastery of SS. Peter and Paul, afterwards called St Augustine’s, at Canterbury, where he taught Greek and Latin, the learning of the fathers, and, above all, virtue. Under Adrian and Theodore this monastic school at Canterbury had a far-reaching influence—St Aldhelm came there from Wessex, Oftfor from Whitby, and even students from Ireland. Roman law could
be studied as well as the ecclesiastical sciences; and Bede says that there were pupils of St Adrian who had a good knowledge of Greek and spoke Latin as well as they did English. St Adrian had illuminated this island by his doctrine and the example of his holy life, for the space of thirty-nine years, when he departed to our Lord on January 9 in the year 710.
Goscelin of Canterbury has left an extremely interesting account of the discovery of St Adrian’s body, incorrupt and fragrant, in 1091 (see Migne, PL., vol. civ, cc. 36—38). The account is at least indirectly confirmed by later excavations; see Archaeologia Cantiana (1917), vol. xxxii, p. 18. His tomb was famed for miracles, as we are assured by Goscelin, quoted by William of Malmesbury and Capgrave; and his name was inserted in English calendars. See the Acta Sanctorum for January 9, where passages from Bede and Capgrave are reproduced; and BHL., n. 558.
731 St. Brithwald Benedictine Archbishop of Canterbury 37 years;  friendly relations with St Aldhelm, St Boniface and other prominent and holy ecclesiastics; letter written to Berhtwald by Waldhere, Bishop of London, is the first extant letter from one Englishman to another
Also called Berhtwald, Berthwald, Beretuald, or Brihtwald, he was of Anglo-Saxon lineage, educated at Canterbury, in England. Entering the Benedictines, Brithwald served as the abbot of Kent until 692, when he succeeded Theodore as archbishop of Canterbury. He served Canterbury for decades in a difficult era.

731 ST BERHTWALD, ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY
THE claim of Berhtwald (whose name is variously spelt Berctuald, Brithwald, etc.) to be counted as a saint is somewhat questionable, and there is next to no evidence of cultus. He was certainly abbot of Reculver in Kent, and was elected archbishop in 692, but only consecrated a year later, in Gaul by the archbishop of Lyons; he probably then went on to Rome for the pallium.
Berhtwald was tactful and energetic during the course of his long episcopate—thirty-seven years—and we find him in friendly relations with St Aldhelm, St Boniface and other prominent and holy ecclesiastics; but his attitude towards St Wilfrid was not sympathetic. He died in January 731. A letter written to Berhtwald by Waldhere, Bishop of London, is the first extant letter from one Englishman to another.
See Acta Sanctorum, January 9 DNB., vol. vi, p. 343 ; and Plummer’s Bede, vol. ii, p. 283. 
8th v. St. Foellan Irishman with his mother to Scotland became monk missionary.
Irishman who went with his mother, St. Kentigem, to Scotland, where he became a monk. His other relative was St. Comgan. Foellan died at Strathfillan after missionary activity.

1569 Saint Philip, Metropolitan of Moscow
in the world Theodore, was descended from the illustrious noble lineage of the Kolichevi, occupying a prominent place in the Boyar duma at the court of the Moscow sovereigns. He was born in the year 1507. His father, Stephen Ivanovich, "a man enlightened and filled with military spirit," attentively prepared his son for government service. Theodore's pious mother Barbara, who ended her days as a nun with the name Barsanouphia, implanted in the soul of her son a sincere faith and deep piety. Young Theodore Kolichev applied himself diligently to the Holy Scripture and to the writings of the holy Fathers. The Moscow Great Prince Basil III, the father of Ivan the Terrible, brought young Theodore into the court, but he was not attracted to court life. Conscious of its vanity and sinfulness, Theodore all the more deeply immersed himself in the reading of books and visiting the churches of God. Life in Moscow repelled the young ascetic. The young Prince Ivan's sincere devotion to him, promising him a great future in government service, could not deter him from seeking the Heavenly City.

On Sunday, June 5, 1537, in church for Divine Liturgy, Theodore felt intensely in his soul the words of the Savior: "No man can serve two masters" (Mt.6:24), which determined his ultimate destiny. Praying fervently to the Moscow wonderworkers, and without bidding farewell to his relatives, he secretly left Moscow in the attire of a peasant, and for a while he hid himself away from the world in the village of Khizna, near Lake Onega, earning his livelihood as a shepherd.

His thirst for ascetic deeds led him to the renowned Solovki monastery on the White Sea. There he fulfilled very difficult obediences: he chopped firewood, dug the ground, and worked in the mill. After a year and a half of testing, the igumen Alexis tonsured him, giving him the monastic name Philip and entrusting him in obedience to the Elder Jonah Shamina, a converser with St Alexander of Svir (August 30).

Under the guidance of experienced elders Philip grew spiritually, and progressed in fasting and prayer. Igumen Alexis sent him to work at the monastery forge, where St Philip combined the activity of unceasing prayer with his work with a heavy hammer.

He was always the first one in church for the services, and was the last to leave. He toiled also in the bakery, where the humble ascetic was comforted with a heavenly sign. In the monastery afterwards they displayed the "Bakery" image of the Mother of God, through which the heavenly Mediatrix bestowed Her blessing upon the humble baker Philip. With the blessing of the igumen, St Philip spent a certain while in wilderness solitude, attending to himself and to God.

In 1546 at Novgorod the Great, Archbishop Theodosius made Philip igumen of the Solovki monastery. The new igumen strove with all his might to exalt the spiritual significance of the monastery and its founders, Sts Sabbatius and Zosimus of Solovki (September 27, April 17). He searched for the Hodigitria icon of the Mother of God brought to the island by the first head of Solovki, St Sabbatius. He located the stone cross which once stood before the saint's cell. The Psalter belonging to St Zosimus (+1478), the first igumen of Solovki, was also found. His robe, in which igumens would vest during the service on the days when St Zosimus was commemorated, was also discovered.

The monastery experienced a spiritual revival. A new monastic Rule was adopted to regulate life at the monastery. St Philip built majestic temples: a church of the Dormition of the Mother of God, consecrated in the year 1557, and a church of the Transfiguration of the Lord. The igumen himself worked as a simple laborer, helping to build the walls of the Transfiguration church. Beneath the north portico he dug himself a grave beside that of his guide, the Elder Jonah. Spiritual life in these years flourished at the monastery: struggling with the brethren with the disciples of Igumen Philip were Sts John and Longinus of Yarenga (July 3) and Bassian and Jonah of Pertominsk (July 12).

St Philip often withdrew to a desolate wilderness spot for quiet prayer, two versts from the monastery, which was later known as the Philippov wilderness.

But the Lord was preparing the saint for other work. In Moscow, Tsar Ivan the Terrible fondly remembered the Solovki hermit from his childhood. The Tsar hoped to find in St Philip a true companion, confessor and counsellor, who in his exalted monastic life had nothing in common with the sedition of the nobles. The Metropolitan of Moscow, in Ivan's opinion, ought to have a certain spiritual meekness to quell the treachery and malice within the Boyar soul. The choice of St Philip as archpastor of the Russian Church seemed to him the best possible.

For a long time the saint refused to assume the great burden of the primacy of the Russian Church. He did not sense any spiritual affinity with Ivan. He attempted to get the Tsar to abolish the Oprichniki [secret police]. Ivan the Terrible attempted to argue its civil necessity. Finally, the dread Tsar and the holy Metropolitan came to an agreement: St Philip would not meddle in the affairs of the Oprichniki and the running of the government, he would not resign as Metropolitan in case the Tsar could not fulfill his wishes, and that he would be a support and counsellor of the Tsar, just as former Metropolitans supported the Moscow sovereigns. On July 25, 1566 St Philip was consecrated for the cathedra of Moscow's hierarch saints, whose number he was soon to join.

Ivan the Terrible, one of the greatest and most contradictory figures in Russian history, lived an intensely busy life. He was a talented writer and bibliophile, he was involved in compiling the Chronicles (and himself suddenly cut the thread of the Moscow chronicle writing), he examined the intricacies of the monastic Rule, and more than once he thought about abdicating the throne for the monastic life.

Every aspect of governmental service, all the measures undertaken to restructure civil and social life, Ivan the Terrible tried to rationalize as a manifestation of Divine Providence, as God acting in history. His beloved spiritual heroes were St Michael of Chernigov (September 20) and St Theodore the Black (September 19), military men active with complex contradictory destinies, moving toward their ends through whatever the obstacles before them, and fulfilling their duties to the nation and to the Church.

The more the darkness thickened around Ivan, the more resolutely he demanded cleansing and redemption of his soul. Journeying on pilgrimage to the St Cyril of White Lake monastery, he declared his wish to become a monk to the igumen and the brethren. The haughty autocrat fell on his knees before the igumen, who blessed his intent. Ivan wrote, "it seems to me, an accursed sinner, that I am already robed in black."

Ivan imagined the Oprichnina in the form of a monastic brotherhood, serving God with weapons and military deeds. The Oprichniki were required to dress in monastic garb and attend long and tiring church services, lasting from 4 to 10 o'clock in the morning. "Brethren" not in church at 4 o'clock in the morning, were given a penance by the Tsar. Ivan and his sons fervently wished to pray and sing in the church choir. From church they went to the trapeza, and while the Oprichniki ate, the Tsar stood beside them. The Oprichniki gathered leftover food from the table and distributed it to the poor at the doorway of the trapeza.

Ivan, with tears of repentance and wanting to be an esteemer of the holy ascetics, the teachers of repentance, he wanted to wash and burn away his own sins and those of his companions, cherishing the assurance that even his terribly cruel actions would prove to be for the welfare of Russia and the triumph of Orthodoxy. The most clearly spiritual action and monastic sobriety of Ivan the Terrible is revealed in his "Synodikon." Shortly before his death, he ordered full lists compiled of the people murdered by him and his Oprichniki. These were then distributed to all the Russian monasteries. Ivan acknowledged all his sins against the nation, and besought the holy monks to pray to God for the forgiveness of his tormented soul.

The pseudo-monasticism of Ivan the Terrible, a dark most grievous oppression over Russia, tormented St Philip, who considered it impossible to mix the earthly and the heavenly, serving the Cross and serving the sword. St Philip saw how much unrepentant malice and envy was concealed beneath the black cowls of the Oprichniki. There were outright murderers among them, hardened in lawless bloodletting, and profiteers seeking gain, rooted in sin and transgressions. By the sufferance of God, history is often made by the hands of the impious, and Ivan the Terrible wanted to whiten his black brotherhood before God. The blood spilled by its thugs and fanatics cried out to Heaven.

St Philip decided to oppose Ivan. This was prompted by a new wave of executions in the years 1567-1568. In the autumn of 1567, just as the Tsar was setting out on a campaign against Livonia, he learned about a boyar conspiracy. The plotters intended to seize the Tsar and deliver him to the Polish king, who already was on the move with an army towards Russian territory.

Ivan dealt severely with the conspirators, and again he shed much blood. It was bitter for St Philip, and the conscience of the saint compelled him boldly to enter into defense of the executed. The final rift occurred in the spring of 1568. On the Sunday of the Veneration of the Cross, March 2, 1568, when the Tsar with his Oprichniki entered the Dormition cathedral in monastic garb, as was their custom, St Philip refused to bless him, and began openly to denounce the lawless acts committed by the Oprichniki. The accusations of the hierarch shattered the harmony of the church service. In a rage Ivan retorted, "Would you oppose us? We shall see your firmness! I have been too soft on you."

The Tsar began to show ever greater cruelty in persecuting all those who opposed him. Executions followed one after the other. The fate of the saintly confessor was sealed. But Ivan wanted to preserve a semblance of canonical propriety. The Boyar Duma obediently carried out his decision to place the Primate of the Russian Church on trial. A cathedral court was set up to try Metropolitan Philip in the presence of a diminished Boyar Duma, and false witnesses were found. To the deep sorrow of the saint, these were monks of the Solovki monastery, his former disciples and novices whom he loved. They accused St Philip of a multitude of transgressions, including sorcery.

"Like all my ancestors," the saint declared, "I came into this world prepared to suffer for truth." Having refuted all the accusations, the holy sufferer attempted to halt the trial by volunteering to resign his office. His resignation was not accepted, however, and new abuse awaited the martyr.

Even after a sentence of life imprisonment had been handed down, they compelled St Philip to serve Liturgy in the Dormition cathedral. This was on November 8, 1568. In the middle of the service, the Oprichniki burst into the temple, they publicly read the council's sentence of condemnation, and then abused the saint. Tearing his vestments off, they dressed him in rags, dragged him out of the church and drove him off to the Theophany monastery on a simple peasant's sledge.

For a long while they held the martyr in the cellars of the Moscow monasteries. They placed his feet into stocks, they held him in chains, and put a heavy chain around his neck. Finally, they drove him off to the Tver Otroch monastery. And there a year later, on December 23,1569, the saint was put to death at the hands of Maliuta Skuratov. Only three days before this the saint foresaw the end of his earthly life and received the Holy Mysteries. At first, his relics were committed to earth there at the monastery, beyond the church altar. Later, they were transferred to the Solovki monastery (August 11, 1591) and from there to Moscow (July 3, 1652).

Initially, the memory of St Philip was celebrated by the Russian Church on December 23, the day of his martyric death. In 1660, the celebration was transferred to January 9.
1622 Bl. Alix Le Clercq nun founded Augustinian Canonesses Congregation of Our Lady from Rome {see larger article in Butlers} La fiesta de la Beata Alix se celebra el 22 de octubre.
Alix Le Clercq was born at Remiremont in the duchy of Lorraine in 1576. Her family was a solid one, of good position, but little is known about her life until she was nearly seventeen. Alix was attractive and intelligent, what the French call "spirituelle." About this time, she became a nun. When her family moved to Hymont, she met Peter Fourier, who became her spiritual director, and in 1597 she and three other women formed a new foundation under his direction. At her father's insistence, she went to a convent at Ormes, was unimpressed by its secular atmosphere, and in 1598 the wealthy Judith d'Apremont gave Alix and her group a house on her estate, which they used as their Motherhouse in the founding of a new congregation dedicated to the education of children. Despite opposition from Alix's father and others, and the lack of formal ecclesiastical approval, they established several new foundations.
   In 1616 they received two papal bulls formally approving the Augustinian Canonesses of the Congregation of Our Lady from Rome. Differences about what the bulls granted and internal strife caused Father Fourier to replace Alix as superioress of the Congregation, and the last years of her life were bitter, as even Father Fourier seemed to turn against her. She died in her convent at Nancy on January 9, and was beatified in 1947.

1622 Bd Alix Le Clercq, Virgin, Co-Foundress of The Augustinian Canonesses Regular of The Congregation of Our Lady
On of the outstanding achievements of the Counter-Reformation—like some of its others, long overdue—was the beginning of proper provision for the schooling and education of girls. In 1535 St Angela Merici had founded the Ursulines for this work; the teaching Religious of Notre Dame were begun by St Joan de Lestonnac in 1606; in 1609 Mary Ward opened her first school for poor children; and to these must be added the establishment by St Peter Fourier of the Augustinian Canonesses of the Congregation of Our Lady, an undertaking in which Alix Le Clercq came to be associated as co-foundress.
She was born at Remiremont in the duchy of Lorraine in 1576. Her family was a solid one, of good position, but little is known about her life until she was nearly seventeen. By that time she was a tall, good-looking girl, fair in colouring, of a somewhat delicate constitution, attractive and intelligent: in a word Alix was, as Mgr Francis Gonne remarks, what the French call spirituelle. Another account, written by herself, tells us that she revelled in such pleasures as music and dancing, and being very popular was subjected to a good deal of flattery. The implication is that she “revelled” too much: perhaps she did; but it should be remembered that, when once people have become convinced that they have any faults at all, they are apt to exaggerate them. And there is good evidence, her own, that even at this time Alix Le Clercq was not devoid of “seriousness” : “amid all the gaiety her heart was sad”, and gradually her harmless pleasures seemed to her to be no more than frivolity.
Then, when she was nineteen, she had the first of the striking dreams that became so marked a feature in her life. In this dream she was in church and approaching the altar, when beside it she saw our Lady, dressed in a strange religious habit, who beckoned her, saying, “Come, daughter, and I will welcome you”. Soon after, the Le Clercq family moved to Hymont, and Alix first met St Peter Fourier, who was parish priest of Mattaincourt, near by. It was in the church of this village, at Mass on three Sundays running, that she seemed to hear the seductive music of a dance-drum, and then seemed to see its player, an evil spirit, followed by a crowd of young people, “full of sprightly merriment”. There and then her conversion to a different sort of life was complete: “I resolved on the spot that I would not belong to such a company”.
Alix straightway cast aside her fine clothes and wore a simple peasant dress; she hardly left her home; and, under the careful direction of Father Fourier, she set herself to discover—not without much spiritual suffering—what it was that God required of her. Both her father and the priest proposed that she should go into a convent: but she said “No” to this, for from another dream she had learned that it was in no existing order that her vocation lay. She told St Peter Fourier that she was obsessed by the idea of a new, “active”, foundation. He was very properly sceptical about this, but at length told her to see if she could find other girls of like mind—unlikely enough in a remote village of the Vosges. But sure enough Alix found them.
And so at the midnight Mass of Christmas 1597 Alix Le Clercq, Ganthe André, and Isabel and Joan de Louvroir were allowed publicly to dedicate themselves wholly to God. Four weeks later it was made clear to St Peter Fourier that these neophytes were to found a community under his direction. But meanwhile they were the subject of adverse criticism. “The unassuming behaviour of these girls was called singularity; their zeal, religiosity; their simple dress, hypocritical affectation; and their humble bearing, silliness.” This gossip naturally upset Mr Le Clercq; but he lacked imagination, and could think of nothing better than to order his daughter to go as a boarder to a convent of Tertiaries of St Elizabeth at Ormes. She obeyed; and found this relaxed convent to be something like what we should call a women’s residential club. But her father would not let her come home.
A way out of the impasse was opened from an unexpected quarter. Three miles from Mattaincourt, at the village of Poussay, there was an abbey of secular canonesses, aristocratic and wealthy ladies who led a form of the conventual life mercifully no longer existing in the Church. One of these good ladies, Madame Judith d’Apremont, made up her mind to sponsor Alix Le Clercq and her three companions and to lodge them in a small house on her estate. Accordingly they took up their quarters there on the eve of Corpus Christi 1598; and after a retreat they unanimously and independently declared to Father Fourier that they believed themselves called to begin a new congregation, that for them this was what would be most pleasing to God. It was decided that their work should be education, “to teach children to read and write and sew, and especially to love and serve God”; that they should never give up this work; and that it should be done, whether for rich or poor, without charge, “as that is more pleasing to God”.

The life of the embryonic congregation was notable in these early days for a measure of physical austerity that was later to be found incompatible with the hard discipline of teaching the young. But the spectacle of such devotion at their very door inspired some of the younger canonesses of the abbey to ask to be transferred to the new foundation—they wanted to stop having “all the privileges of the conventual life with none of its hardships”. Their lady abbess, Madame d’Amoncourt, was alarmed—many monasteries in France had learned nothing from the impact of the Reformation on monasticism in other lands—fearing that her own community might be broken up; and for some weeks there was a rather critical situation. But again Madame d’Apremont solved the difficulty, by providing another house, this time at Mattaincourt. It was to be the first proper convent of the new congregation.
But as yet the sisters were not formally religious, and their anomalous position upset Mr Le Clercq, who again interfered with his daughter, telling her that she was to withdraw to the Poor Clare house at Verdun. St Peter Fourier told Alix she must obey, and in great anguish of spirit she got ready. But her father, moved as he said by some power beyond his understanding, withdrew his order and ceased to interfere. There then occurred a determined attempt on the part of a Franciscan Recollect friar, Father Fleurant Boulengier, to “capture” the community for the Poor Clares. Peter Fourier’s belief in the divine acceptance of his foundation wavered: he recommended, with a force only short of a direct command, that they should regularize their position by joining the Clares—Alix and her companions refused. “We have banded together”, they said, “to look after neglected children:  why should we be dragged away from this and sent to a convent that God does not want us to go to?”
Father Fourier, in equal good faith, interpreted the will of God in the opposite sense. It is an old dilemma. Or was he just trying them? In any case, after months of uncertainty, he accepted the sisters’ decision, and so did Father Fleurant.
In 1601 St Peter Fourier and Bd Alix made their second foundation, at Saint-Mihiel; Nancy, Pont-à-Mousson, Saint-Nicolas de Port, Verdun and Châlons followed, the last, in 1613, being the first outside Lorraine. All this time there was no sign from Rome of official approval for the new congregation. The novel request that day-pupils should be taken, and therefore admitted into the enclosure, roused hostility (“The Church is going to the dogs, sir!”); and the delay in approbation lent an edge to wagging tongues and endangered the existence of the convents. Fourier sent Bd Alix and another sister to the Ursulines in Paris to learn more about monastic life and teaching methods and again they were invited to give up a separate existence. This time Alix seriously considered if it were not the best thing to do. Father (afterwards cardinal) de Bérulle settled it. “I don’t believe”, he declared to her bluntly, “that God is asking for this fusion. Dismiss it from your mind.”
It was not till 1616 that in two bulls the Holy See signified its first approval of the Augustinian Canonesses of the Congregation of Our Lady.* {* Their style as “canonesses “ was confirmed in 1628; it carried with it of course the obligation and privilege of reciting the Divine Office in choir.} Subsequently the Bishop of Toul approved their constitutions; and St Peter Fourier then proceeded to clothe thirteen of them with the habit, designed in accordance with what Bd Alix had seen our Lady wearing in the dream recorded above; and then they all had to begin a twelve months’ novitiate, in spite of the fact that some of  them had been leading a conventual life for twenty years. But all was not well. The papal bulls of approbation had not mentioned the congregation as a whole, but only its convent at Nancy. Now there was already a certain “feeling” between this house and the others, for Nancy was under the protection of Cardinal Charles of Lorraine, and the primate of Lorraine, Antony de Lénoncourt, had practically taken its direction out of Father Fourier’s hands into his own. The apparent partiality of the bulls aggravated this spirit of dissension, and a very unhappy state of affairs resulted. In the upshot Bd Alix had to yield her rightful place as superioress in the congregation to Mother Ganthe André, “without whom”, in the words of Father Fourier, “our order would never have been established”, though she and Alix were far from being in agreement about its organization.
That sort of trial heroic sanctity seems to take in its stride. But that was not all. Bd Alix was subjected to personal attack and the venom of slanderous rumour. At the same time she had to face spiritual dryness, temptations and a “dark night” of great severity. And as, in the words of one of her nuns, “she entered into the sufferings of others so feelingly that she made them her own”, her burden was indeed heavy: she had plenty of opportunity to put into practice her own axiom— common to all saints, and mystics—“I value one act of humility more than a hundred ecstasies”. St Peter Fourier himself provided further opportunities. Bd Alix is now recognized as the co-foundress of the Augustinian Canonesses of Our Lady; but it was not so while she lived, and Father Fourier did not allow it to appear so. He consistently and openly “kept her in her place”. It is possible that he was, in a sense, a little afraid of her, for in contrast with his own solid, cautious temperament, Alix Le Clercq must often have seemed to him alarmingly “imaginative”.
In December 1621 she was allowed to resign the office of local superioress at Nancy, and she entered upon a few weeks of radiant peace, which was in fact a prelude to death a month later. She had been seriously ill for a long time, and now when it was known the doctors had given up hope all Nancy was grieved, from the duke and duchess of Lorraine to the schoolgirls and the beggar-women. St Peter Fourier hurried to Nancy, but he would not enter the conventual enclosure till the bishop ordered him to do so. Then he heard Alix’s confession and prepared her for the passage “from death to life”. On the Epiphany she took a solemn farewell of her community, exhorting them to love and unity, and on January 9, after a searching agony, the end came. Bd Alix was not quite forty-six.
High and low acclaimed her as a saint, and steps were taken to collect evidence for the prosecution of her cause. But nothing was done more definitely, war pushed it out of sight, and it was not till 1947 that Alix Le Clercq was beatified. Her body was buried in the crypt under the convent chapel at Nancy. During the Revolution this convent was sacked; it is said that Bd Alix’s body was hastily buried in the garden for safety, but all efforts to find it have failed. That would have pleased her humility, she whose deeds of love and spiritual insights and visions were so far as possible concealed. She was completely at ease only when she could be humble and obedient, teaching the ABC and simple addition to half-a-dozen little children at Poussay or Mattaincourt, for instance. But in the long disagreements and uncertainties about the organization of the congregation, in such matters she was mistress of herself and of the policies she believed right; and she was always an excellent superior. But a Protestant historian, Professor Pfister, has acutely remarked that, “When she was appointed to direct the Nancy house, she had only one ambition; and that was again to be a simple sister, teaching their letters to the four and five-year-olds in the bottom class”. The last word about Bd Mix Le Clercq is with Mother Angelique Milly—“she was the child of deep silence”.

In 1666 the Nancy convent published what purported to be a life of Alix le Clercq but was in fact an extremely valuable collection of documents bearing on that life. It was due to a copy of this book coming into the hands of the young Count Gandelet that the cause of her beatification was begun by the Bishop of Saint-Die in 1885. The first biography proper to be published appeared at Nancy in 1773 (one of 1766 remains in manuscript), and then not another till 1858, after which there were several. La Mere Alix Le Clercq (1935), by Canon Edmond Renard, is the standard modern work, full, critical and well written. In English there is a short but very good biography by Margaret St L. West (1947). Reference can also be made to the standard lives of St Peter Fourier by Father Bedel (1645), Dom Vuillemin (1897), and Father Rogie, of which the last is the best. The writer of the preface to the English life of Bd Alix speaks of the excellent methods used in the schools conducted by her congregation. Fourier himself used to instruct his canonesses in pedagogy, and brief reference to some of his enlightened educational ideas is made in the notice accorded to him herein on December 9. The feast of Bd Alix is now kept on October 22.

 Monday  Saints of the Day January 09 Quinto Idus Januárii.  

Pope Francis  PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR  January 2017
Universal: Interreligious Dialogue;  That sincere dialogue among men and women
of different faiths may produce the fruits of peace and justice.

Evangelization: Christian Unity; That by means of dialogue and fraternal charity
and with the grace of the Holy Spirit, Christians may overcome divisions.

   `   

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!)
                      
 
                                                                           
     
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'

"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.
Saints of January 01 mention with Popes
2nd v. St. Elvan & Mydwyn;   Supposedly two Britons sent by King St. Lucius to Pope St. Eleutherius (c. 174-189) to ask for missionaries.

3rd v. St. Martina, virgin Item Romæ, via Appia, corónæ sanctórum mílitum trigínta Mártyrum, sub Diocletiáno Imperatóre. In the same city, on the Appian Way, the crowning with martyrdom of thirty holy soldiers under Emperor Diocletian. Alban Butler informs us correctly that there was a chapel in Rome consecrated to her memory which was frequented with great devotion in the seventh century. We also may learn from him that her relics were discovered in a vault in the ruins of her old church, and translated in the year 1634 under Pope Urban VIII, who built. a new church in her honour and himself composed the hymns used in her office in the Roman Breviary. He adds further that the city of Rome ranks her amongst its particular patrons.

510 St. Eugendus 4th abbot of Condat, near Geneva Switzerland. Also called Oyand, Eugendus was never ordained, but he was a noted Scripture scholar.  In the lives of the first abbots of Condat it is mentioned that the monastery, which was built by St Romanus of timber, being consumed by fire, St Eugendus rebuilt it of stone; and also that he built a handsome church in honour of SS. Peter, Paul and Andrew.
   His prayer was almost continual, and his devotion most ardent during his last illness. Having called the priest among his brethren to whom he had committed the office of anointing the sick, Eugendus caused him to anoint his breast according to the custom then prevalent, and he breathed forth his soul five days after, about the year 510, and of his age sixty-one.*{* The rich abbey of Saint-Claude gave rise to a considerable town built about it, which was made an episcopal see by Pope Benedict XIV in 1748, who, secularizing the monastery, converted it into a cathedral. The canons to gain admittance were required to give proof of their nobility for sixteen degrees, eight paternal and as many maternal.}

533 St. Fulgentius Bishop of Ruspe, Tunisia friend of St. Augustine; “A person may be endowed with the gift of miracles, and yet may lose his soul. Miracles insure not salvation; they may indeed procure esteem and applause; but what will it avail a man to be esteemed on earth and afterwards be delivered up to torments?”   Born Fabius Claudius Gordianus Fulgentius of Carthage, he was a Roman of senatorial rank. His mother, widowed, opposed Fulgentius’ religious career, but he became a monk. He became abbot with Felix but had to flee the monastery in 499 when Vandals or Numidians invaded, going to Sicca Veneria. Retuming to the area, Fulgentius was named bishop of Ruspe, circa 508. King Thrasamund , an Arian, banished Fulgentius to Sardinia, Italy where he and other bishops were aided by Pope St. Symmachus. Fulgentius founded a monastery and wrote such eloquent defenses of orthodox Catholic doctrines that King Thrasamund returned him to his see, only to banish him again. In 523, Fulgentius returned to his see, where he set about rebuilding the faith.

660 ST CLARUS, ABBOT; many marvellous stories of the miracles he worked, *{* It is perhaps desirable to remind the reader once for all that only Almighty God can do miracles. The use of the above and similar expressions is permissible by custom, but in fact God does the miracle through the agency or at the intercession of the saint concerned.}  patron of tailors.  St. Clarus Abbot  numerous miracles  patron of tailors
Clarus was born near Vienne, Dauphine', France. He became a monk at St. Ferreol Abbey and later was spiritual director of St. Blandina Convent, where his mother and sister were nuns. In time he became Abbot of St. Marcellus monastery at Vienne and lived there until his death on January 1. He is reputed to have performed numerous miracles, and his cult was confirmed in 1903 by Pope Pius X. He is the patron of tailors.


1031 St William of Saint Benignus, Abbot; character was great zeal and firmness joined with tender affection for his subjects;  did not hesitate to oppose, both by action and writings, the most powerful rulers of his time, like Emperor St Henry, Robert, King of France, and Pope John XIX, when he felt the cause of justice was at stake; In interests of the Cluniac reform he was constantly active, making many journeys and travelling as far as Rome.

1048 St. Odilo monk at Cluny 5th abbot ecstacies great austerities inaugurated All Souls' Day.  Though he was a friend of princes and popes, he was exceedingly gentle and kind and known throughout Christendom for his liberality to the needy. Odilo's concern for the people was also shown by the lavish help he gave during several famines, especially in 1006, when he sold Church treasures to feed the poor, and again from 1028-1033.

1252 Bl. Berka Zdislava founded Dominican priory of St. Laurence Communion daily;   Zdislava had visions and ecstasies, and even in those days of infrequent communion she is said to have received the Blessed Sacrament almost daily. When she fell grievously ill she consoled her husband and children by saying that she hoped to help them more from the next world than she had ever been able to do in this. She died on January 1, 1252, was buried in the priory of St Laurence which she had founded, and is stated to have appeared to her husband in glory shortly after her death. This greatly strengthened him in his conversion from a life of worldliness. Pope Pius X approved the cult paid to her in her native country in 1907. The alleged connection of Bd Zdislava Berka with the third order of St Dominic remains somewhat of a problem, for the first formal rule for Dominican tertiaries of which we have knowledge belongs to a later date.

1713 St. Joseph Mary Tomasi;  Cardinal confessor of Pope Clement XI {1649 1721}; He answered that the days of actual physical martyrdom are over, and that we are now in the days of hidden martyrdom, seen only by God; the lesson of it all being trust in God; Even before his death the sick were healed through touching his clothing, and when the end had come cures multiplied round his bier. Bd Joseph Tommasi was beatified in 1803.
.  Born the son of the duke of Palermo, he became a member of the Theatine Order. Sent to Rome, he became the confessor of Cardinal Giovanni Francesco Albani, proving instrumental in convincing the cardinal to accept elevation as pope in 1700 under pain of mortal sin. In return, the newly elected pontiff forced Joseph to accept appointment as a cardinal. While he served capably as a cardinal, his first preoccupation was as a brilliant liturgical scholar who published some of his works under the pseudonym J. M. Carus.Among his most notable contributions were: Codices Sacramentorunz Nongentis Annis Vetustiores (1680), including the Missale Gothicurn and the Missale Francorum; Responsalia etA ntiphonaria Ronzanae Ecclesiae a Sancto Gregorio Magno Disposita (1686); and the Antiqua Libri Missaruni Romanae Ecclesiae (1691). Beatified in 1803, he was canonized in 1986 by Pope John Paul II.

Saints of January 02 mention with Popes
379 St. Basil the Great  vast learning and constant activity, genuine eloquence and immense charity Patron of hospital administrators.  379 St Basil The Great, Archbishop of Caesarea and Doctor of The Church, Patriarch of Eastern Monks
St Basil was born at Caesarea, the capital of Cappadocia in Asia Minor, in the year 329.
St. Basil the Great (329-379)
Basil was on his way to becoming a famous teacher when he decided to begin a religious life of gospel poverty. After studying various modes of religious life, he founded what was probably the first monastery in Asia Minor. He is to monks of the East what St. Benedict is to the West, and his principles influence Eastern monasticism today.

One of a family of ten, which included St Gregory of Nyssa, St Macrina the Younger, and St Peter of Sebaste, he was descended on both sides from Christians who had suffered persecution. His father, St Basil the Elder, and his mother, St Emmelia, were possessed of considerable landed property, and Basil’s early years were spent at the country house of his grandmother, St Macrina, whose example and teaching he never forgot. He was less successful in his efforts on behalf of the Church outside his own province. Left by the death of St Athanasius the champion of orthodoxy in the East, he strove persistently to rally and unite his fellow Catholics who, crushed by Arian tyranny and rent by schisms and dissensions amongst themselves, seemed threatened with extinction. His advances, however, were ill-received and he found himself misunderstood, misrepresented, and accused of ambition and of heresy. Even appeals which he and his friends made to Pope St Damasus and the Western bishops to intervene in the affairs of the East and to heal the troubles met with little response—apparently because aspersions upon their good faith had been made in Rome itself.
Nevertheless, relief was at hand, and that from an unexpected quarter. On August 9, 378, the Emperor Valens was mortally wounded at the battle of Adrian­ople, and with the accession of his nephew, Gratian, came the end of the Arian ascendancy in the East. When the news reached St Basil he was on his death-bed, but it brought him consolation in his last moments. He died on January 1, 379 at the age of forty-nine, worn out by his austerities, his hard work, and a painful disease. The whole of Caesarea mourned him as a father and protector—pagans, Jews, and strangers joining in the general lamentation. Seventy-two years after his death the Council of Chalcedon described him as “The great Basil, the minister of grace who has expounded the truth to the whole earth”. He was undoubtedly one of the most eloquent orators the Church has ever produced and his writings have entitled him to a high place amongst her doctors. In the Eastern church his chief feast-day is on January 1.


1146? BD AYRALD, Bishop of MAURIENNE; “Here lies Ayrald, a man of noble blood, monk of Portes, glory of pontiffs, a light of the Church, stay of the unfortunate, shining with goodness and unnumbered miracles.”   THE identity of this holy bishop is involved in much confusion and obscurity. His cultus was confirmed in 1863, and in the decree published on that occasion a summary of his life is given.
If we may credit this account, he was a son of William II, Count of Burgundy. Of his three brothers, one was elected pope under the name of Callistus II; another, Raymond, became king of Castile; and the third, Henry, count of Portugal.


1836 St. Caspar del Bufalo Various miracles many graces were obtained by his intercession.  In 1814 he founded the Congregation of the Most Precious Blood and in 1815, it was formally approved. The second foundation was made in 1819 and the third shortly afterwards at Albano. His wish was to have a house in every diocese, the most neglected and wicked town or district being chosen. The Kingdom of Naples in those days was a nest of crime of every kind; no one's life or property was safe, and in 1821 the pope asked del Bufalo to found six houses there. He joyfully responded but met with endless difficulties before subjects and funds were collected.

Saints of January 03 mention with Popes

236 ST ANTHERUS, POPE AND MARTYR; the Liber Pontificalis states that he was put to death for obtaining copies of the official proceedings against the martyrs with the view of preserving them in the episcopal archives.  THE name of St Antherus occurs in the list of popes after that of St Pontian. He is believed to have been elected November 21, 235, and to have died January 3, 236, thus reigning only forty-three days. Nothing certain is known regarding his martyrdom, though the Liber Pontificalis states that he was put to death for obtaining copies of the official proceedings against the martyrs with the view of preserving them in the episcopal archives. He was buried in the “papal crypt” in the catacombs (Cemetery of St Callistus), and De Rossi discovered the site in 1854, together with the fragments of a Greek inscription.

  512 St. Genevieve Paris averted Attila scourge by fasting/ prayer;  500 ST GENEVIEVE, or GENOVEFA, VIRGIN
GENEVIEVE’S father’s name was Severus, and her mother’s Gerontia; she was born about the year 422 at Nanterre, a small village four miles from Paris, near Mont Valérien. When St Germanus, Bishop of Auxerre, went with St Lupus into Britain to oppose the Pelagian heresy, he spent a night at Nanterre on his way. The inhabitants flocked about them to receive their blessing, and St Germanus gave an address, during which he took particular notice of Genevieve, though she was only seven. After his sermon he inquired for her parents, and foretold their daughter’s future sanctity. He then asked Genevieve whether it was not her desire to serve God only and to be naught else but a spouse of Jesus Christ. She answered that this was what she desired, and begged that by his blessing she might be from that moment consecrated to God. The holy prelate went to the church, followed by the people, and during the long singing of psalms and prayers, says Constantius—that is during the recital of None and Vespers, as one text of the Life of St Genevieve expresses it—he laid his hand upon the maiden’s head. After he had supped he dismissed her, telling her parents to bring her again to him the next morning. The father obeyed, and St Germanus asked the child whether she remembered the promise she had made to God. She said she did, and declared that she hoped to keep her word. The bishop gave her a medal or coin, on which a cross was engraved, to wear about her neck, in memory of the consecration she had received the day before; and he charged her never to wear bracelets or jewels or other trinkets. The author of her life tells us that the child, begging one day that she might go to church, her mother struck her on the face, but in punishment lost her sight; she only recovered it two months after, by washing her eyes with water which her daughter fetched from the well and over which she had made the sign of the cross. Hence the people look upon the well at Nanterre as having been blessed by the saint.  

The city of Paris has frequently received sensible proofs of the divine protection, through St Genevieve’s intercession. The most famous instance is that called the miracle des Ardents, or of the burning fever. In 1129 a disease, apparently poisoning by ergot, swept off in a short time many thous and persons, nor could the art of physicians afford any relief. Stephen, Bishop of Paris, with the clergy and people, implored the divine mercy by fasting and sup­plications. Yet the epidemic did not abate till the shrine of St Genevieve was carried in a solemn procession to the cathedral. Many sick persons were cured by touching the shrine, and of all who then were suffering from the disease in the whole town only three died, and no others fell ill.

1130 Pope Innocent II, coming to Paris the year following, after due investigation ordered an annual festival in commemoration of the miracle on November 26, which is still kept in Paris. It was formerly the custom, in extraordinary public calamities, to carry the shrine of St Genevieve in procession to the cathedral. The greater part of the relics of the saint were destroyed or pillaged at the French Revolution.


Saints of January 04 mention with Popes
1821 St. ELIZABETH ANN SET0N (née Bayley). Born in New York City, 1774; married William Seton, 1794; widowed in 1803; received into the Catholic Church in 1805; made religious vows, 1809; died at Emmetsburg in Maryland, 4 January 1821. Mother Seton founded the American Sisters of Charity and was the first native-born American citizen to be beatified, in 1963.
Elizabeth Bayley Seton was the first native born American to be canonized by the Catholic Church.  Born two years before the American Revolution, Elizabeth grew up in the "cream" of New York society. She was a prolific reader, and read everything from the Bible to contemporary novels.  In spite of her high society background, Elizabeth's early life was quiet, simple, and often lonely. As she grew a little older, the Bible was to become her continual instruction, support and comfort; she would continue to love the Scriptures for the rest of her life.In 1794, Elizabeth married the wealthy young William Seton, with whom she was deeply in love. The first years of their marriage were happy and prosperous. Elizabeth wrote in her diary at first autumn, "My own home at twenty-the world-that and heaven too-quite impossible."
Born:  28 August 1774, New York City, New York, USA as Elizabeth Ann Bayley Died:  4 January 1821 Beatification:  17 March 1963 by Pope John XXIII Canonization:  14 September 1975 by Pope Paul VI Patronage:  death of children, in-law problems, loss of parents, opposition of Church authorities, people ridiculed for their piety, diocese of Shreveport Louisiana, widows.  
Readings
We must pray without ceasing, in every occurrence and employment of our lives - that prayer which is rather a habit of lifting up the heart to God as in a constant communication with Him.  Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.  
Our God is God. All is as He pleases. I am the happiest creature in the thought that not the least thing can happen but by His will or permission; and all for the best.  Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.  
The first end I propose in our daily work is to do the will of God; secondly, to do it in the manner he wills it; and thirdly to do it because it is his will.  Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton


Saints of January 05 mention with Popes
126 ST TELESPHORUS Pope in the time of Antoninus Pius, St. Telesphorus, pope, who, after many sufferings for the confession of Christ, underwent a glorious martyrdom.  Towards the year 126 he succeeded St Sixtus I, and saw the havoc which the persecution of Hadrian made in the Church. “He ended his life by a glorious martyrdom, says Eusebius, and he is the first one of the successors of St Peter whom St Irenaeus and other early writers refer to as a martyr. The ordinances attributed to him in the Liber Pontificalis, e.g. that the Mass of Christmas—a feast that did not then exist—should be celebrated at midnight, cannot with any probability be ascribed to his pontificate. St Teles­phorus is commemorated to-day in the Mass and Office of the vigil of the Epiphany.

 550 St. Emiliana Mystic aunt of Pope St. Gregory the Great    At Rome, the holy virgin Emiliana, aunt of Pope St. Gregory.  Being called to God by her sister Tharsilla, who had preceded her, she departed to heaven on this day.
She and a sister, Tharsilla, lived in Rome, in the home of their brother, Gregory’s father, practicing great austerity. Emiliana died on January 5, just a few days after Tharsilla.
550 Emiliana of Rome saintly life, visions  V (RM)
550 SS. THARSILLA AND EMILIANA, VIRGINS

 868 St. Convoyon Benedictine abbot exiled by Norseman in Brittany
IN 1866 Pope Pius IX approved the cultus, which from time immemorial had been paid in the neighbourhood of Redon in Brittany to the Benedictine monk who was the founder and abbot of the monastery of Saint Saviour. He was himself a Breton by birth, and it was in 831 that he, with six companions, obtained a grant of land on which to build an abbey. In the disturbed political conditions of the time, the early years of the new foundation seem to have been full of privation and hardship. Owing in part to a charge of simony brought against certain bishops of the province, Convoyon in 848 found himself a member of a deputation sent to Rome to appeal to Pope Leo IV. He is said to have brought back with him to his monastery a chasuble which Leo gave him, and also the relics of Pope St Marcellinus.
Later Convoyon was driven from his monastery by the incursions of the Norsemen, and was absent from it at the time of his death in 868. In 1866 the abbey of Saint Saviour at Redon had passed into the hands of a community of
the Eudist fathers, who were very active in procuring the confirmation of cultus for this local saint.

St. Charles of Sezze a lay brother at Naziano.  John Charles Marchioni was born at Sezze, Italy, on October 19, of humble parents. He became a shepherd and wanted to become a priest. When unable to do so because of his poor scholarship (He barely learned to read and write), he became a lay brother at Naziano, served in various menial positions - cook, porter, gardener - at different monasteries near Rome and became known for his holiness, simplicity, and charity.
He wrote several mystical works, lived a life of great mortifications, and worked heroically to help the stricken in the plague of 1656. He died in Rome on January 6. His family name may have been Melchior, and he is also known as Charles of Sezze. He was canonized by Pope John XXIII in 1959.


1236 St. Roger  da Todi  received the habit from St. Francis of Assisi.   Ruggiero da Todi (Roger) was appointed spiritual director of Blessed Philippa Mareri's Community at Rieti by Francis.
Roger died at Todi, shortly after Philippa's death January 5; his cult was confirmed by Pope Benedict XIV.
 

1860  Bd John NEPOMUCEN NEUMANN. Born in Bohemia, 1811; he was ordained priest in New York City in 1836 and joined the Redemptorist congregation; consecrated fourth bishop of Philadelphia in 1852; he died there on 5 January 1860. Bishop Neumann, a naturalized American citizen, organized Catholic schools into a diocesan system. He was beatified in 1963.
 January 5, 2010 St. John Neumann (1811-1860). The first American bishop to be canonized and the fourth bishop of Philadelphia. A native of Bohemia, he studied at the University of Prague, became a noted scholar, and entered the religious life. Deeply inspired by the letters of Father Frederic Baraga to the Leopold Missionary Society, he volunteered to labor in America, arriving in New York and receiving ordination on June 25, 1836. The next four years were spent in missionary work among the members of the German community around Niagara Falls. In 1840, he joined the Redemptorists in 1842- the first member to be professed in America - and ten years later, on March 28, 1852, he was consecrated bishop of Philadelphia at the suggestion of Archbishop Francis Kenrick of Baltimore. As bishop, Neumann founded fifty churches in the diocese, advanced the program on the cathedral, and was noted especially for his contribution to Catholic education. Finding only two parochial schools at his arrival, Neumann established nearly one hundred by the time of his passing. He also cared for the poor and orphans, and founded the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis. Beatified by Pope Paul VI in 1963, he was canonized in 1977.

Saints of January 06 mention with Popes
607 St. Peter of Canterbury  Benedictine 1st abbot monastery Sts. Peter/Paul - Canterbury. Peter was originally a monk in the monastery of St. Andrew’s, Rome, and was chosen by Pope St. Gregory I the Great {Doctor of the Church; b. Rome 540; d.12 March 604}to embark with St. Augustine of Canterbury and other monks on the missionary enterprise to England in 596.  Peter became the first abbot of the monastery of Sts. Peter and Paul at Canterbury in 602.  He died by drowning at Ambleteu, near Boulogne while on a mission to France.

 1275 St Raymond of Pennafort canon of Barcelona Dominican, Archbishop     At Barcelona in Spain, St. Raymond of Pennafort, of the Order of Preachers, celebrated for sanctity and learning.  His festival is kept on the 23rd of this month.
1175-1275) encouraged assisted and confessor for Peter Nolasco -- requested by the Blessed Virgin in a vision to found an order especially devoted to the ransom of captives from the Moors. The reputation of the saint for juridical science decided the pope to employ Raymond of Peñafort's talents in re-arranging and codifying the canons of the Church. He had to rewrite and condense decrees that had been multiplying for centuries, and which were contained in some twelve or fourteen collections already existing. We learn from a Bull of Gregory IX to the Universities of Paris and Bologna that many of the decrees in the collections were but repetitions of ones issued before, many contradicted what had been determined in previous decrees, and many on account of their great length led to endless confusion, while others had never been embodied in any collection and were of uncertain authority.

The pope announced the new publication in a Bull directed to the doctors and students of Paris and Bologna in 1231, and commanded that the work of St. Raymond alone should be considered authoritative, and should alone be used in the schools. When Raymond completed his work the pope appointed him Archbishop of Tarragona, but the saint declined the honour. Having edited the Decretals he returned to Spain. He was not allowed to remain long in seclusion, as he was elected General of the Order in 1238; but he resigned two years later.

1373 St. Andrew Corsini regarded as a prophet and a thaumaturgus miracles were so multiplied at his death that Eugenius IV permitted a public cult immediately; Feast kept on February 04.        At Florence, St. Andrew Corsini, a Florentine Carmelite and bishop of Fiesole.  Being celebrated for miracles, he was ranked among the saints by Urban VIII.  His festival is kept on the 4th of February.
He was born in Florence on November 30, 1302, a member of the powerful Corsini family. Wild in his youth, Andrew was converted to a holy life by his mother and became a Carmelite monk. He studied in Paris and Avignon, France, returning to his birthplace. There he became known as the Apostle of Florence. He was called a prophet and miracle worker. Named as the bishop of Fiesole in 1349, Andrew fled the honor but was forced to accept the office, which he held for twelve years. He was sent by Pope Urban V to Bologna to settle disputes between the nobles and commoners, a mission he performed well. Andrew died in Fiesole on January 6, 1373. So many miracles took place at his death that Pope Eugenius IV permitted the immediate opening of his cause.

1611  St. John de Ribera Archbishop Vice-roy of Valencia deported Moors Many miracles attributed his intercession.  Spain. He was the son of the duke of Alcala, and was born in Seville, Spain. Ordained a priest in 1557, he became archbishop in 1568, serving for more than four decades until he died on January 6, in Valencia. John ordered the Moors deported from his see. He was revered by Pope Pius V and King Philip II of Spain. Pope John XXIII canonized him in 1959.
 Providence seems perceptibly to have intervened to shield his virtue from danger. Realizing the perils to which he was exposed, he gave himself up to penance and prayer in preparation for holy orders. In 1557, at the age of twenty-five, Don John was ordained priest; and after teaching theology at Salamanca for a while, he was preconized bishop of Badajoz, much to his dismay, by St Pius V in 1562. His duties as bishop were discharged with scrupulous fidelity and zeal, and six years later, by the desire both of Philip II and the same holy pontiff, he was reluctantly constrained to accept the dignity of archbishop of Valencia. A few months later, filled with consternation at the languid faith and relaxed morals of this province, which was the great stronghold of the Moriscos, he wrote begging to be allowed to resign, but the pope would not consent; and for forty-two years, down to his death in 1611, St John struggled to support cheerfully a load of responsibility which almost crushed him. In his old age the burden was increased by the office of viceroy of the province of Valencia, which was imposed upon him by Philip III.


1925 BD RAPHAELA MARY, VIRGIN, FOUNDRESS OF THE HANDMAIDS OF THE SACRED HEART  her answer to misery was, I see clearly that God wants me to submit to all that happens to me as if I saw Him there commanding it.”  It cannot be doubted that it was in these years that she earned her halo of holiness.
The woman that inaugurated a religious congregation in the circum­stances that she did cannot have found such self-abnegation easy. Attention has several times been drawn in these pages to people who were popularly canonized because they accepted, not formal martyrdom, but simply an unjust death: Mother Raphaela is a beata who lived nearly half her life cheerfully carrying a weight of unjust treatment. Courage and sweetness shone out from her face in old age. The surgeon who operated on her in her last days said it all in a sentence:
Mother, you are a brave woman”; but she had said long before,
“I see clearly that God wants me to submit to all that happens to me as if I saw Him there commanding it.”
                           Bd Raphaela Mary died on the Epiphany in 1925, and she was beatified in 1952.

In English there is a good summary in pamphlet form, In Search of the Will of God (1950), by Fr William Lawson.



1937  Blessed André Bessette (b. 1845) expressed a saint’s faith by a lifelong devotion to St. Joseph.
 St. André Bessette  (1845-1937)  Brother André expressed a saint’s faith by a lifelong devotion to St. Joseph.
Sickness and weakness dogged André from birth. He was the eighth of 12 children born to a French Canadian couple near Montreal. Adopted at 12, when both parents had died, he became a farmhand. Various trades followed: shoemaker, baker, blacksmith—all failures. He was a factory worker in the United States during the boom times of the Civil War.


At 25, he applied for entrance into the Congregation of the Holy Cross. After a year’s novitiate, he was not admitted because of his weak health. But with an extension and the urging of Bishop Bourget (see Marie-Rose Durocher, October 6), he was finally received. He was given the humble job of doorkeeper at Notre Dame College in Montreal, with additional duties as sacristan, laundry worker and messenger. “When I joined this community, the superiors showed me the door, and I remained 40 years,” he said. He is buried at the Oratory. He was beatified in 1982 and canonized in 2010. At his canonization in October 2010, Pope Benedict XVI said that St. Andre "lived the beatitude of the pure of heart."



Saints of January 07 mention with Popes
St. Crispins 1/ Pavia Lombardy 30 yrs 2/bishop w Pope St. Leo I Great.
 Papíæ sancti Crispíni, Epíscopi et Confessóris.       At Pavia, St. Crispin, bishop and confessor.
Two brothers bore this name, both canonized. One served Pavia, in Lombardy, Italy, for thirty years.
The other was bishop in the reign of Pope St. Leo I the Great.

335-414 St. Nicetas of Remesiana Bishop Te Deum missionary friend of St. Paulinus of Nola who made fierce and barbarous nations humane and meek by preaching the Gospel to them.  Though a priest of Antioch, we find him at Nicomedia in the year 303, when Diocletian first published his edicts against the Christians. He there suffered a long imprisonment for the faith, for he wrote from out of his dungeon, “All the martyrs salute you. I inform you that the Pope Anthimus [Bishop of Nicomedia] has finished his course by martyrdom.” This happened in 303. Yet Eusebius informs us that St Lucian did not arrive himself at the crown of martyrdom till after the death of St Peter of Alexandria in 311, so that he seems to have continued nine years in prison.
856 St. Aidric Bishop court diplomat Charlemagne and son/successor Louis Raised at Aix-la-Chapelle, Germany, the royal residence of Charlemagne.   Aidric, or Aldericus, grew up serving Charlemagne and his son and successor, Louis. At twenty-one, Aidric left the honors of the court to study for the priesthood at Metz, France. After his ordination, he was recalled to the court by Louis. Nine years later he was made the bishop of Le Mans, where he became known for his sanctity and for his efforts on behalf of his people. When Louis died, Aidric supported Charles the Bald, one of Louis' sons fighting for the throne, and for this reason was forced out of Le Mans, only to be reinstalled by Pope Gregory IV. Aidric served as a legate to the court of King Pepin of Aquitaine, France, where he convinced that monarch to restore vast amounts of Church property stolen by the royal family.
Aidric also took part in the councils of Paris and Tours. He was paralyzed for the last two years of his life.

1131 St. Canute Lavard Martyred nephew of St. Canute son of King Eric the Good.  In Dánia sancti Canúti, Regis et Mártyris.  In Denmark, St. Canute, king and martyr.  Canute had spent part of his youth at the Saxon court, and in 1129 the Emperor Lothair III recognized his rule over the western Wends, with the title of king. This excited the anger of King Niels of Denmark, and on January 7, 1131, Canute was treacherously slain in the forest of Haraldsted, near Ringsted, by his cousins Magnus Nielssen and Henry Skadelaar. Canute, who had supported the missionary activities of St Vicelin, was canonized by Pope Alexander III in 1169 at the request of his son, Valdemar I of Denmark, and of Eskil, Archbishop of Lund. The Roman Martyrology, following the cultus, which Canute received in Denmark, calls him a martyr, but he seems to have been a dynastic hero rather than a martyr.
1225 St. Raymond of Peñafort Dominican Marian; sailed on water w/cloak; Patron of Canonists taught philosophy at 20-gratis. The brave religious of this Order devoted themselves to saving poor Christians captured by the Moors.  Raymund joined to the exercises of his solitude the functions of an apostolical life, by laboring without intermission in preaching, instructing, hearing confessions with wonderful fruit, and converting heretics, Jews, and Moors Among his penitents were James, king of Aragon, and St. Peter Nolasco, with whom he concerted the foundation of the Order of the B. Virgin of mercy for the redemption of captives. James, the young king of Aragon had married Eleonora of Castile within the prohibited degrees, without a dispensation. A legate was sent by pope Gregory IX. to examine and judge the case. In a council of bishops of the two kingdoms, held at Tar rayon, he declared the marriage null, but that their son Don Alphonso should be reputed lawfully born, and heir to his father's crown. The king had taken his confessor with him to the council, and the cardinal legate was so charmed with his talents and virtue, that he associated him in his legation and gave him a commission to preach the holy war against the Moors. The servant of God acquitted himself of that function with so much prudence, zeal, and charity, that he sowed the seeds of the total overthrow of those infidels in Spain.


Saints of January 08 mention with Popes
425 St. Atticus Bishop converted opponent of St. John Chrysostom then called a "true successor of Chrysostom" by Pope St. Celestine I.  Atticus was born in Sebaste. He was trained in a heretical sect but converted and was ordained in Constantinople. He and one Arsacacius aided in deposing St. John Chrysostom from the see of Constantinople at the Council of the Oak in 405. Atticus succeeded to the see of Constantinople in 406, recognized by Pope St. Innocent I. He was a tireless foe of heretics, called a "true successor of Chrysostom" by Pope St. Celestine I. Atticus died in Constantinople on October 10.

511 St. Maximus Bishop of Pavia, Italy. attended the councils of Rome convened by Pope Symmachus.  He attended the councils of Rome convened by Pope Symmachus.  

1309 Blessed Angela of Foligno dedicated to prayer and works of charity; her Book of Visions and Instructions Angela the title "Teacher of Theologians." She was beatified in 1693.  At her confessor’s advice, Angela wrote her Book of Visions and Instructions. In it she recalls some of the temptations she suffered after her conversion; she also expresses her thanks to God for the Incarnation of Jesus. This book and her life earned for Angela the title "Teacher of Theologians." She was beatified in 1693.
1456 St. Lawrence Justinian first Patriarch of Venice the death of Eminent for learning, and abundantly filled with the heavenly gifts of divine wisdom the 5th of September, on which day he ascended the pontifical throne.  The Diocese of Castello belonged to the Patriarchate of Grado. On 8 October, 1451, Nicholas V united the See of Castello with the Patriarchate of Grado, and the see of the patriarch was transferred to Venice, and Lawrence was named the first Patriarch of Venice, and exercised his office till his death somewhat more than four years later. His beatification was ratified by Clement VII in 1524, and he was canonized in 1690 by Alexander VIII. Innocent XII appointed 5 September for the celebration of his feast. The saint's ascetical writings have often been published, first in Brescia in 1506, later in Paris in 1524, and in Basle in 1560, etc. We are indebted to his nephew, Bernardo Giustiniani, for his biography.



Saints of January 09 mention with Popes
710 St. Adrian, African Abbot near Naples tomb famous for miracles.  710 ST ADRIAN, ABBOT OF CANTERBURY
ADRIAN was an African by birth, and was abbot of Nerida, not far from Naples, when Pope St Vitalian, upon the death of St Deusdedit, the archbishop of Canterbury, judged him for his learning and virtue to be the most suitable person to be the teacher of a nation still young in the faith. The humble servant of God found means to decline that dignity by recommending St Theodore in his place, but was willing to share in the more laborious part of the ministry. The pope therefore enjoined him to be the assistant and adviser of the archbishop, to which Adrian readily agreed.

Adrian was serving as an abbot in Italy when the new Archbishop of Canterbury appointed him abbot of the monastery of Sts. Peter and Paul in Canterbury. Thanks to his leadership skills, the facility became one of the most important centers of learning. The school attracted many outstanding scholars from far and wide and produced numerous future bishops and archbishops. Students reportedly learned Greek and Latin and spoke Latin as well as their own native languages.

He died there, probably in the year 710, and was buried in the monastery. Several hundred years later, when reconstruction was being done, Adrian’s body was discovered in an incorrupt state. As word spread, people flocked to his tomb, which became famous for miracles. Rumor had it that young schoolboys in trouble with their masters made regular visits there.


Saints of January 10 mention with Popes


Saints of January 11 mention with Popes


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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.