Mary Mother of GOD
15 Promises of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary
 Sunday  Saints of November  27 Quinto Kaléndas Decémbris  

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!)

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

November 27 – The Miraculous Medal (Paris, France, 1830) 
The nurse soaked the dressing in water from Lourdes and applied it to the wound. What happened next was a miracle! 
In September 1914, the first WWI casualties arrived in the Shrine of Lourdes, following the bishop’s decision to make rooms that were usually reserved for sick pilgrims available to the army. A soldier named Colin came in with a broken arm and a shrapnel-infected wound.  The doctor attempted an operation to remove it in vain. All dressing changes made Colin suffer horribly and caused heavy bleeding. Gangrene soon set in, alarming the nun in charge of him. She asked him if he would like to receive the last rites, but he declined the offer, preferring a non-religious burial.
The good Sister started a novena to Our Lady of Lourdes. By the second day, the soldier agreed to receive the last rites, but his condition worsened. The odor given off by the injury was such that the nun had to isolate the patient in the morgue, next to his coffin. She decided to redress the wound, soaking it in water from the Grotto.

The next day, the wound began to heal, to the amazement of the medical officer who finally managed to extract the shrapnel. The patient healed and fully recovered the use of his damaged limb.

November 27
871 St Herrmit worked many miracles and was buried in his cell near which the abbey of Saint Peter's was built   1637 Abalaka Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign" the Mother of God, accompanied by St Nicholas and St Mary of Egypt, appeared to the pious widow Maria.
Painted by Matthew, a protodeacon of the Tobolsk cathedral, in honor of Sophia (the Wisdom of God), in fulfillment of a vow by a paralytic peasant Euthymius to rebuild the church at the Abalaka monastery of the Mother of God "of the Sign."

This church was built in 1637 after the Mother of God, accompanied by St Nicholas and St Mary of Egypt, appeared to the pious widow Maria. After the temple's Icon "of the Sign" was painted, the paralytic Euthymius was completely healed.

Many healings took place during the solemn transfer of the icon to the Abalaka church.

November 27 - Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal (Paris, 1830)
Mary in the Temple (VII)  There, in her solitude ?
There, in her solitude, the Most High hides her, guards her, surrounds her with his power, animates her with his Spirit, He converses with her through his Word, He illumines her with his lights, He embraces her with his ardor, He visits her with his angels, while He himself is waiting to visit her in Person. He so fills her solitude, her lofty contemplation, and her most heavenly conversation, that the angels admire and venerate her like a person more divine than human.
   Cardinal de Bérulle

We know we are traveling together. If our pace is slow, go on ahead of us. We won't envy you but rather will seek to catch up with you. However, if you consider us capable of a quicker pace, run along with us. There is only one goal, and we are all anxious to reach it....some at a slow pace and others at a fast pace.
Let everyone's sighs be uttered in longing for Christ.
Let us run to Him and cry out for Him.  
-- St Augustine

The Rue du Bac Apparitions (I) November 27 -
Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal (Paris, 1830)
The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared in 1830 to Saint Catherine Laboure (1806-76), a young French novice of the Daughters of Charity. This visit of Mary gave rise to the devotion of the Miraculous Medal.
The Chapel of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal is located in the middle of the city of Paris. From July to December 1830, Sister Catherine received the extraordinary favor of conversing on three occasions with the Virgin Mary. The following text was told by Saint Catherine herself.

"It would be impossible for me to describe what I experienced. The Blessed Virgin told me how I should conduct myself with regard to my confessor and many other things. She pointed to the foot of the altar with her left hand, and said that I should prostrate myself there and give my heart to God, adding that I would receive all the consolations I would need right there.
"Then she said, 'My child, I want to charge you with a mission; you will have crosses to bear and many difficulties to overcome, but you will surmount them because of the inner certainty that all you do is for the glory of God. You will be faced with contradictions, but wonderful graces will come your way. Do not fear; tell your confessor everything that happens to you, with simplicity and trust. You will see amazing things; you will be inspired in your prayers, tell your confessor everything.'"  Saint Catherine Laboure
November 28 – Saint Catherine Labouré (d. 1876) –
 First Apparition of the Virgin Mary (Kibeho, Rwanda, 1981)
The Rosary of the Seven Sorrows: A Powerful Prayer
The Blessed Virgin appeared to three young Rwandan girls at their boarding school in Kibeho, Rwanda, from 1981 to 1989, just 13 years before the genocide.
Mary revealed during her "visitations" that the Rosary of the Seven Sorrows has immense spiritual power and promised to those who pray with an open and repentant heart that they will gain the forgiveness of their sins and the release of their souls from guilt and remorse.
Praying and meditation on the Rosary of the Seven Sorrows of the Mother of God gives the possibility to share the Cross of Jesus and to follow the path of Faith, Hope and Love in a life of sufferings.

God sent Our Lady to the heart of Africa, to Kibeho, Rwanda, with a message of Love and Peace. I invite you to take this Rosary in your hands, to pray with faith, and many of your petitions will be heard. Enter into this school of life where the teacher is the glorious Cross. This is one of the strong paths of conversion and healing in your life.

Father Leszek Czelusniak, MIC (2013), Director of the CANA - Marian Formation Center of Kibeho, Rwanda.
The Marian apparitions in Kibeho were officially approved by the Church in 2001. See:

    300 Saints Facundus and Primitivus MM (RM)
    305 Hirenarchus (Hiernarchus), Acacius & Comps Martyrs of Sebaste in Armenia  MM (RM)
           St. Basileus Bishop and martyr with Auxilius and Saturninus
    305 St. Acacius priest at Sebaste Armenia & Hirenarchus during Diocletian persecution
389 St. Valerian Bishop of Aquileia spent in combatting that heresy admired  Saint Jerome called the energetic Bishop Saint Valerian"papa."
 421 St. James Intercisus "cut to pieces" courtier of the Persian King Yezdigerd I in 421 M (RM)
The Tsarskoe Selo Sign Icon of the Mother of God present by St Athanasius of Constantinople
     421 Saint Romanus the Wonderworker born in the city of Rosa
     433 St. John Angeloptes "the man who saw an angel." an angel assisted Bishop of Ravenna
 447 St. Seachnall of Dunshauglin sent from Gaul in 439(?) to assist his uncle, Saint Patrick, in Ireland wrote several hymns, notably the alphabetical hymn Audites, omnes amantes Deum (the oldest known Latin hymn written in Ireland) in honor of Patrick and the earliest Latin hymn in Ireland, and Sancti, venite, Christi corpus sumite B (AC)
     460 St. Maximus reluctant Bishop of Reiz ordained by St. Hilary; celebrated for working miracles and prodigies.
     475 St. Secundinus bishop in 439 to assist St. Patrick in Ireland
     540 St. Severinus Hermit in the area near Lutetia (modem Paris)
     540 (or 660?) St. Siffred of Carpentras B (AC)
 St. Gallgo Welsh abbot founder Llanalgo Abbey Anglesey Wales Saint Cungar, Abbot monasteries he founded at Budgworth, Congresbury (Somerset) and at Llangonys (Glamorgan)
6th v.  St. Gallgo Welsh abbot founder Llanalgo Abbey Anglesey Wales (AC)

The Apparitions at Beauraing (I): Look! The Blessed Virgin! November 27
Beauraing is a small town in the southern, French-speaking part of Belgium, and it was here that the Blessed Virgin appeared to a group of 5 children, between late November 1932 and January 1933.  On the evening of Tuesday, November 29, 1932, Fernande Voisin (a 15 year-old girl) and her brother Albert (aged 11), were with Andrea Degeimbre (aged 14) and her sister Gilberte (aged 9), making their way to the local convent school to meet Fernande's and Albert's sister Gilberte (aged 13), who had stayed at school until 6:30 P.M. to study.
They entered the grounds and passed a small Lourdes Grotto in the convent gardens. Albert rang the bell, and then looking towards the Grotto he suddenly cried out:
"Look! The Blessed Virgin, dressed in white, is walking above the bridge!" (It is in fact railroad embankment.)
Without turning around, Fernande replied that it was only automobile lights. But Albert insisted, and when the girls looked back, they too saw the luminous figure of lady dressed in white walking mid air, feet hidden by a little cloud.
The religious answered the door could see nothing, but as soon as Gilberte came to the door she too saw the figure.
The next evening, the children went by themselves again to the convent to meet Gilberte. And, as the day before, the vision they claimed to have had took place again, just for them. Although very moved, the children took at closer look at the vision, and they were able to describe it: She was at the same place as the day before, holding her hands as in prayer, with rays of light surrounding her head.
Adapted from a Historical Summary of the Apparitions at Beauraing,
Doctrinal Commission (Beauraing Files Vol. 5: Official Inquiry 1933-1951)

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal (Paris, 1830)  THe Apparitions at Rue du Bac in Paris (II)
   On November 27, 1830, which was one Saturday and a day before the first Sunday of Advent, at 5:30 pm, during silent meditation, I thought I heard a noise like the rustling of a silk gown, on the right side of the chapel. I then saw the Blessed Virgin Mary near the painting of Saint Joseph. She was of medium height and her face was so exquisite, that it would be impossible for me to describe the beauty of it. She was standing upright, wearing in a white gown with a high-cut neckline and flat, simple sleeves. Her head was covered with a white veil that draped down to her feet. She wore her hair parted in the middle, with a small lace headband over her hair. Her face was uncovered, and her feet stood on a globe, or rather, a hemisphere globe. At least I could only see half of it. Her hands, raised to the height of her bosom, seemed to be holding another globe with ease. Her eyes looked up to heaven, and her face brightened as she offered the globe to Our Lord.
Suddenly, her fingers were filled with rings and very beautiful, precious stones... The rays of light that shone forth reflected on all sides, enlightening her with such light that I no longer saw her feet or her dress. Some of the stones were larger than the others, and the rays that emanated from each stone were more or less bright in proportion. I can not explain what I felt or all that I learned in such a short time.
While I was occupied in contemplating her, the Blessed Virgin lowered her eyes and looked at me, and from the bottom of my heart I could hear a voice say,
“This globe represents the whole world and particularly France and each person in particular.”       
Told by Saint Catherine Labouré, About the Apparitions at Rue du Bac in Paris in 1830
The Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign"

     640 St. Acharius monk bishop encouraging other holy men in his era
     710 St. Bilhild Benedictine abbess foundress
     721 St. Fergus part of the Roman Council in 721
     784 St. Virgilius Benedictine bishop A noted intellectual round World
     828 St. Apollinaris Benedictine abbot of Monte Cassino
     871 St Herrmit worked many miracles and was buried in his cell near which the abbey of Saint Peter's was built
1040 Saint Goustan , a Benedictine at Saint-Gildas OSB (AC)
1127 Diodorius Yuriev
1259 The Kursk Root Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign"
1346 Gregory of Sinai established a monastery on Mount Paroria, near Sozopol on the west coast of the Black Sea Born near Smyrna
1392 Saint James, Bishop of Rostov spread bishop's mantiya on water signed himself with the Sign of the Cross sailed off on it as if on a boat, guided by grace of God 1 1/2 versts from the city emerged on shore at site of future monastery
1386 Blessed Angelus Sinesio influenced all Sicilian Benedictine abbeys restoring monastic observance OSB Abbot PC
1503 Blessed Bernardinus of Fossa mission-preaching throughout Italy, Dalmatia, and Bosnia OFM (AC)
1619 Blessed Antony Kimura & Companions MM (AC)
1619 Bl. Anthony Kimura Japanese martyr noble family
1619 Bl. Alexius Nakamura Noble martyr Japan
1619 Bl. Bartholomew Sheki martyr Japan royal family of Firando
1619 Bl. Thomas Kotenda Jesuit Companions Japanese martyrs
1619 Bl. John Ivanango & John Montajana  Martyrs of Japan
Bl. 1619 Leo Nakanishi Martyr of Japan
1619 Bl. Romanus  Japanese martyr Born at Omura
1619 Bl. Matthias Kosaka & Matthias Nakano Two martyrs of Japan
1637 Blessed Humilis of Bisignano Observant Franciscan lay-brother so widely known for his sanctity that he was called to Rome, where both Pope Gregory XV and Urban VIII consulted him OFM (AC)
1637  The Abalaka Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign" the Mother of God, accompanied by St Nicholas and St Mary of Egypt, appeared to the pious widow Maria.
1742 St. Francesco Antonio Fasani
         Barlaam & Josaphat (Joasaph) (RM)
1879 The Seraphim-Ponetaevka Icon of the Mother of God "of the Sign" famous for its numerous miracles

St. Basileus Bishop and martyr with Auxilius and Saturninus
Antiochíæ sanctórum Mártyrum Basiléi Epíscopi, Auxílii et Saturníni.
    At Antioch, the holy martyrs Basileus, bishop, Auxilius, and Saturninus.
They died in Antioch, Turkey. Basileus was the bishop of an unknown diocese.
Basileus, Auxilius & Saturninus MM (RM). Basileus, a bishop of an unknown see, was put to death at Antioch, Syria, together with Auxilius and Saturninus. Nothing further is known about them (Benedictines).

300 Saints Facundus and Primitivus MM (RM)
Apud Cæam flúvium, in Gallæcia, sanctórum Facúndi et Primitívi, qui sub Attico Præside passi sunt.
    In Galicia, on the River Cea, the Saints Facundus and Primitivus, who suffered under the governor Atticus.
Born at León, Spain; Saints Facundus and Primitivus were beheaded by the River Cea, where the town of Sahagun now stands. At a later period the great Benedictine abbey of Sahagun (Sant Facun) arose, around which grew the present township called after Saint Facundus (Attwater 2, Benedictines).
305 Hirenarchus (Hiernarchus), Acacius & Comps Martyrs of Sebaste in Armenia  MM (RM)
Sebáste, in Arménia, sanctórum Mártyrum Hirenárchi, Acácii Presbyteri, ac septem mulíerum. Harum porro constántia Hirenárchus commótus, ad Christum convérsus, sub Diocletiáno Imperatóre et Máximo Præside, una cum Acácio, secúri percútitur.
    At Sebaste in Armenia, in the reign of Emperor Diocletian and under the governor Maximus, the holy martyrs Hirenarchus, the priest Acacius, and seven women.  Struck with the constancy of these women, Hirenarchus was converted to Christ, and with Acacius died under the axe.
Martyrs of Sebaste in Armenia. They include Acacius, a priest, seven women, and Hirenarchus, converted on witnessing the courage of the other martyrs (Benedictines).

He was arrested and executed under the governor Maximus with seven women and Hirenarchus, who was so impressed with the devotion to their faith he became a Christian and suffered the same fate. His feast day is November 27th.
The Tsarskoe Selo Sign Icon of the Mother of God.
Present by St Athanasius of Constantinople

an ancient wonderworking icon, was brought by way of a present to Tsar Alexis Mikhailovich by one of the Eastern Patriarchs, supposedly by St Athanasius of Constantinople (October 28). Tsar Peter I transferred the icon, together with other sacred items from Moscow, to his new capital city.

In the year 1747, a church was built for the icon at Tsarskoe Selo. Moliebens were served before it during times of national catastrophe, for example, during a plague in 1771, and of cholera in 1831. Through the intercession of the Mother of God, the terrible epidemics almost did not touch Tsarskoe Selo. Prayers before the Tsarsko Selo Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos "of the Sign," were also offered entreating the Mother of God's help during fires and shipwrecks.
On the icon, Cherubim shade the head of the Mother of God. More recent copies of the icon depict the Apostle Peter, Sts Zachariah, Alexis the Man of God, and Righteous Elizabeth.
389 St. Valerian Bishop of Aquileia spent in combatting that heresy; admired by Saint Jerome called the energetic Bishop Saint Valerian"papa."
Aquiléjæ sancti Valeriáni Epíscopi.    At Aquileia, St. Valerian, bishop.
 Italy, whose reign was much troubled by the Arians.
Valerian of Aquileia B (RM). Saint Jerome called the energetic Bishop Saint Valerian of Aquileia (northern Italy) "papa." Valerian was one man whom the irascible saint admired without his usual reservations. Valerian succeeded immediately after an Arian bishop and his pontificate (369-389) was spent in combatting that heresy (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

421 Saint Romanus the Wonderworker born in the city of Rosa.
lived an ascetical life on the outskirts of Antioch, acquiring the gifts of clairvoyance and healing. Through his intercession, the Lord granted many childless women the joy of motherhood.
St Romanus was strict in his fasting, and he wore heavy chains beneath his hairshirt. The saint spent many years as a hermit without lighting a fire. Reaching old age, he departed to the Lord in peace.
St Romanus is one of many saints to whom we pray for deliverance from childlessness and barreness. Some of the others are: St Stylianos (November 26), St Hypatius of Rufinus (March 31), Sts Theodore and John (July 12).
421 St. James Intercisus courtier of the Persian King Yezdigerd I in 421 M (RM)
In Pérside sancti Jacóbi intercísi, Mártyris conspícui, qui, témpore Theodósii junióris, cum in Isdegérdis Regis grátiam Christum negásset, et proptérea mater ejus et uxor ab ipsíus se consuetúdine subtraxíssent, hinc, in se revérsus, intrépide coram Vararáne, Isdegérdis fílio ac successóre, se Christiánum esse conféssus est; ideóque ab iráto Rege, lata in eum mortis senténtia, membrátim jussus est concídi et cápite obtruncári.  Quo étiam témpore innúmeri álii Mártyres ibídem passi sunt.
    In Persia, St. James Intercisus, a distinguished martyr.  In the time of Theodosius the Younger he denied Christ in order to please King Isdegerd, but his mother and his wife for this reason withdrew from his company.  Coming to himself, he returned to the king, now Vararanus, the son and successor of Isdegerd, to declare his faith in our Lord, whereupon the angry monarch condemned him to be cut in pieces and beheaded.  Countless other martyrs suffered at this time in the same country.

'Intercisus' means 'cut to pieces,' which is precisely what happened to James, a courtier of the Persian King Yezdigerd I in 421. How much of the legend is true, we're not sure. It seems that it is comprised of the stories of three martyrs who died about the same time: James Intercisus, Mar Peros, and James the Notary.
Once again we are reminded of the opening line of H. P. Van der Speeten's The Life of Saint Catherine of Alexandria: "Legend knows what history doesn't."

King Yezdigerd began to persecute Christians in 420. To his later shame, James of Beit decided it was politically expedient to apostatize from Christianity. When Yezdigerd died, the parents (or mother and wife) of the faithless courtier wrote to their son:
 "We have been told that you have abandoned the eternal God so that you might win the favor of an earthly king and the possession of the perishable riches of this world. We have only one question to ask you, and please answer it. This king, for whom you made so great a sacrifice, where is he now? He is dead, like any other man. He is dust. What can you expect to receive from him now? Can he save you from eternal torture? If you persevere in your apostasy, you will, like him, fall into the hands of an avenging God, and we will withdraw from you just as you have withdrawn from God. We ourselves want nothing more to do with you. It is all over. We no longer exist for you."

Ashamed, James quit the court of Yezdigerd's successor, King Bahram. Learning the James had become a Christian again, Bahram debated with his counsellors what to do with James, and they decreed that unless he once again denied his faith, the saint should be hung from a beam and his body slowly cut to pieces. Those commissioned to perform this cruel deed tried to make him give way. "This supposedly painful death is but little to pay for eternal life," replied James.

In 448, when the Christian Mar Peros apostatized to save his skin, he was treated by his family in the same way. Filled with remorse, he loudly proclaimed his Christian faith, was denounced, and executed.  Those are the principal variants of the great legend of James Intercisus, though, he never really had to repent because he never denied his faith.

James of Karka was a good-looking, 20-year-old notary to king Bahram V. His heart was dedicated to God and he remarked, off-handedly as people do, that he would rather be cut into small pieces than to say "yes" to men and "no" to God. One day he and 15 others were imprisoned for the faith, interrogated and tortured. But James stood his ground and so did the others thanks to his example.
  All winter they had to care for the king's elephants--quite a change from court life. In the spring, after celebrating Lent and Easter in the silence of their prison cells, they were sent to work on the new road that was being built to the king's summer residence. They worked like slaves, cutting rocks and breaking stones, whipped and harassed by the overseers. "I would rather be cut up into small pieces. . . ." James would remind himself.
When the king ordered them to apostatize, they bowed down with oriental politeness, but refused. After this, their punishments were increased. They were made to work barefoot and given less to eat. But the crew of Christians stood firm. Then they were handed over to Mihrschabur, who boasted that he would make them renounce their faith without the help of blows or executions.
One night he stripped them naked, bound them hand and foot, and left them on a mountain. After a week many had lost consciousness and their resolve was weakened. Mihrschabur repeated, "Worship the sun, or you will be dragged by your feet through the mountains, and your bodies will be torn to pieces on the stones until only your bones will be left at the end of the rope."
"But what does that matter?" thought James. "Christ died for us, and he lives in us. Some of his companions relented and worshipped the sun (though they later repented). Soon only James was left resolute in his faith.
 He, however, was released with the apostates and with energized zeal went to comfort the bishops who had suffered in the persecutions. His house was used as a secret church until the day when a spy among his friends told the king that James had not abjured the faith.  And so one day the police knocked on James' door. "So you still have not given up your faith?" "God preserve me from doing so! I never denied it, and never will. My faith is my life, just as it was the life of my fathers." And so James was again arrested.
In prison he was beaten unmercifully and tortured in other ways, but he still refused to deny Christ. According to the Syrian text this took place during the winter, when the skies were heavy with rain. When ordered by the judge to worship the sun, he responded, "Are you blind? Show me the sun that you want me to worship."
 "And where is the God that you worship," asked the judge.
 "You are not worthy to know it. But so that you won't think me a fool, let me tell you that my God is invisible in his nature and divinity. He shows himself to his people by his grace, providence, and aid. He lives in the souls of those who believe in him."
 "Silence!" shouted the judge. "Do you refuse to worship the fire which you can see before you?"
 "Order your people to carry the fire out into the rain. If it continues to burn, and is not put out by the rain, then I will admit that you are right. But if the clouds hide the sun and the rain puts out the fire, then the sun and the rain are not God, they are only our servants."
 Furious the judge replied, "You are insulting the king who worships and serves fire!"
James answered calmly, "Let the king worship the God who gave him his life, his crown, and his power."
When King Bahram heard of this, he had James brought before him and said: "Haven't you abjured the faith of the Nazarene?"
"No," replied James, calmly and resolutely, "I have not, and I never will. I would rather be cut up into small pieces..." Then the king interrupted with authority, "Very well, you shall be delivered to the torture of the nine deaths."
James didn't flinch for he had been preparing himself to bear witness to Jesus. He humbly reminded the king that his father, Jezdgerd, had also persecuted the Christians and that he had died abandoned by everyone and without burial, a terrible fate.

The writ was signed--it had been prepared a long time ago. James, the rebel against Mazdaism, was handed over to a eunuch assisted by two high priests and a secretary. Along the road that led to the place of torture (the road of Slik-Charobta) the crowd called out for him to obey the king and save his life.  Their efforts were futile for James had long preferred the eternal life of Jesus Christ to the pleasures of short-lived youth. The little group of Christian brothers followed the turbulent crowd in silence. When they arrived at the place of torture, a song rose up, like a choir of old, the song of the Church at prayer:
    "O Lord, mighty God, you who give strength to the weak and health to the sick, you who give life to the infirm and the dying, you who save those who are perishing, come to the aid of your servant and make him emerge the victor of this fearful fight. May he triumph for your glory, O Christ, Prince of victors, King of martyrs!"

James prayed in silence and then offered his body to the executioner. So they began slowly to cut pieces from his body. When they cut off his thumb, he began to pray: "O Savior, receive a branch of this tree. Let it die, corrupt in the grave and bud again, before being covered in glory."

His fingers were cut off--the first death. Many Christians and others in the crowd begged James to give way. But the saint said, "When I had all my fingers and could write and work I did not abjure my faith. Why should I now?"
They cut off his toes--the second death; and his hands, the third. Still James continued to pray, offering each hacked off piece of his body to God. Raising his amputated wrists to heaven, he offered to God everything that was good that this divine gift of human hands could perform--the hands of artists, workers, doctors, priests, mothers--and united with Christ expiated all the evil done by human hands, including thief and murder. He saw two hands lying on the ground and thought of Christ's hands pierced for the salvation of the world.

The fourth death entailed the severing of his feet. He thought of the blessedness of those who bring the Gospel, and the evil of the feet of conquerors and invaders. Then his arms were cut off at the elbow--the fifth death--and his legs at the knees, the sixth death. The martyr, full of pain and the love of God, did not utter a cry. He looked at his bleeding limbs, then at the crowd of fainting women, crying children, laughing youths, and praying Christians. And as the Christians prayed, they thought that tomorrow it might be their turn, but that the way of the Cross was always firmly fixed in the life of a saint, in his heart and in his flesh, and that nothing was spared those who followed in the footsteps of our crucified Master.
The seventh death took his ears; the eighth, his nose. Yet the saint refused mercy and continued to pray:
    "O God, you see me here with my limbs scattered. I have no fingers to clasp in prayer to you; I have no hands to stretch towards you; I have no feet nor legs nor arms. I am like a ruined house, whose walls are all that remain. O Lord, turn your anger from me and from your people! Give peace and rest to your flock that are persecuted and scattered by tyrants. Gather them together from the ends of the earth. Then I, the least of your servants, will bless and praise you with all the martyrs and confessors, from the East and from the West, from the North and from the South. Praise be to God, the Son, and Holy Spirit, world without end. Amen!"

As he said "Amen!" his head was cut off--the ninth and last death. His dead body lay in no fewer than 28 pieces, but his soul was then born into heaven. He was dead to all the sweet sights, sounds and smells of the world that give joy to life, but he was alive in God.  After his death, the Christians offered a considerable sum to obtain the martyr's relics, but were not allowed to redeem them. Nevertheless, they waited for an opportunity and carried them off by stealth. They placed all 28 pieces with the trunk and linen covered with his congealed blood into a chest or urn. The faithful buried his remains in a place unknown to the heathens.

The price of love is high. It costs little to love a little. It costs a lot more to love a lot; it costs everything to love God above all. May we all come to know this and willingly give up everything for the love of our Redeemer (Attwater 2, Benedictines, Bentley, Coulson, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth).
Saint James is portrayed as a young man cut to pieces before the Persian king; at times he is bearded and wears a Persian cap (Roeder).
The second great persecution of Christians in Persia began about the year 420, provoked by the intemperate zeal of the bishop Abdias, and the best known of its victims was this James. He was in high favour with King Yezdigerd I, and when that prince declared war against the Christian religion he had not the courage to renounce his master’s friendship; so he abandoned, or at least dissimulated, the worship of the true God that he before professed. His mother and wife were extremely grieved, and upon the death of King Yezdigerd they wrote to James, rebuking and warning him. He was strongly affected by this letter, and began to repent of what he had done. He appeared no more at court, renounced the honours, which had occasioned his fall, and openly condemned himself for it.
   The new king sent for him. James confessed himself a Christian. Bahram reproached him for ingratitude, enumerating the honours he had received from his father. James calmly said, “Where is he now? What is become of him?” These words annoyed King Bahram, who threatened that his punishment should be a lingering death. “Any kind of death is no more than a sleep,” replied St James. “May my soul die the death of the just.” “Death”, retorted Bahram, “is not a sleep it is the terror of kings.” James answered, “It indeed terrifies kings, and all others who ignore God, because the hope of the wicked shall perish”. The king took him up at these words: “Do you then call us wicked, you who worship neither sun nor moon nor fire nor water, the offspring of the god?” “I accuse you not replied James, “but I say that you give the incommunicable name of God to creatures.”

The council came to a resolution that, unless the criminal renounced Christ, he should be hung up and his limbs cut off one after another, joint by joint: the whole city flocked to see this new form of execution, and the Christians poured forth their prayers to God for the martyr’s perseverance. James was brought out, the executioners violently stretched out his arms, and in that posture explained to him the death he was to suffer, and pressed him to avert so terrible a punishment by obeying the king. They urged him to dissemble his religion just for the present, saying he could immediately return to it again. St James answered that, “This death which appears so dreadful is very little for the purchase of eternal life.”

Then turning to the executioners, he said, “Why do you stand looking on? Begin your work.” They therefore cut off his right thumb, at which he prayed aloud, “Saviour of Christians, receive a branch of the tree. It will putrefy, but will bud again and be clothed with glory. The vine dies in winter, yet revives in spring. Shall not the body when cut down sprout up again?” When his first finger was cut off, he cried out, “My heart hath rejoiced in the Lord, and my soul hath exulted in His salvation I Receive another branch, 0 Lord.” And at the lopping of every finger he exulted and thanked God afresh. When his fingers and toes had all been cut off, he said cheerfully to the executioner, “Now the boughs are gone, cut down the trunk “. Then his other limbs were hacked away and his thighs were torn from the hips. Lying a naked trunk, having lost half his body, St James still continued to pray and praise God till a soldier by severing his head from his body completed his martyrdom. The author of these “ acts “, who says he was an eyewitness, adds, “We all implored the intercession of the blessed James”, who on account of the manner of his passion was named Intercisus, that is, “the Chopped-to-pieces”.

The Syriac text of this passio has been edited by P. Bedjan, Acts martyrum, et sanctorum (1890—1897), vol. ii, pp. 539—558 and there is a German translation in the Bibliothek der Kirchenväter, vol. xxii, pp. 150-162. The story became very popular, though much of it is clearly fabulous. There are adaptations in Greek, Latin, Coptic, etc. See also S. E. Assemani, Acts sanctorum martyrum orientalium et occidentalium, vol. i, pp. 242—258. This martyr was much honoured in Cyprus, and some of his relics were believed conveyed to Braga in Portugal. Fr. P. DeVos gives the martyr’s dossier in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lxxi (1953), pp. 157—210, and lxxii, 213—256.

433 St. John Angeloptes "the man who saw an angel."; an angel assisted Bishop of Ravenna
 Italy, from 430 until his death. He was also metropolitan of Aemilia and Flaminia. John is called Angeloptes, meaning “the man who saw an angel.” Tradition states that an angel assisted him once at Mass.

John Angeloptes B (AC) Died 433. Bishop Saint John of Ravenna, Italy (430-433) was appointed by the pope metropolitan of Aemilia and Flaminia. The nickname Angeloptes means "the man who saw an angel." It was given to him because, according to the legend, an angel visible to him alone once came and assisted him in the celebration of Mass (Benedictines).

447 Seachnall of Dunshauglin sent from Gaul in 439 (?) to assist his uncle, Saint Patrick, in Ireland wrote several hymns, notably the alphabetical hymn Audites, omnes amantes Deum (the oldest known Latin hymn written in Ireland) in honor of Patrick and the earliest Latin hymn in Ireland, and Sancti, venite, Christi corpus sumite B (AC)
(also known as Secundinus, Sechnall)

447 St Secundinus, or Sechnall, Bishop
Secundinus, the Irish translation of whose name is Sechnall, was one of the three seniores sent from Gaul to help St Patrick. The Annals state that he came to Ireland in 439, together with Auxilius and Iserninus, Secundinus being named first; according to the same source he died there in 447. The Annals of Ulster add that he was then aged seventy-two, a particular that does not go back to the original Irish annals of the fifth century.

Secundinus is remembered as a hymn-writer. He is the author of Audite, omnes amantes Deum, the earliest known Latin hymn written in Ireland. It has twenty-three stanzas; the initial letters being alphabetical, and was composed in honour of St Patrick. It was regarded as a “preserver”, to be recited in emergency, and the last three stanzas, which were particularly valued, appear liturgically in the Book of Mulling. The beautiful communion hymn of the Irish church, Sancti, venue, Christi corpus sumite, is also attributed to St Sechnall, but in the Bangor Antiphonary, in which it is found, it is referred to only as “The hymn when the priests communicate”; the Tripartite Life of St Patrick speaks of Patrick and Sechnall hearing it sung by angelic voices.

The text of a Latin vita of medieval origin in the Royal Library of Belgium is printed in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lx (1942), pp. 26—34. A good many allusions to him may be collected from such sources as the Tripartite Life of St Patrick, the Lebar Brece, the additions to Tirechan’s Collections, etc. See in particular Bernard and Atkinson, The Irish Liber Hymnorum, vol. ii, p. 96, etc.; F. E. Warren, The Antiphonary of Bangor, Pt II, p. 44, etc.; Plummer, Miscellanea Hagiographica Hibernica, p. 223; Kenney, Sources for the Early History of Ireland, vol. i, pp. 250-260; and B. MacNeill, St Patrick (1934). The name of St Secundinus came next after St Patrick’s in the diptychs at Armagh; he is mentioned in the Félire of Oengus and reference is made there to his hymn on St Patrick. See also G. F. Hamilton, In St Patrick’s Praise (1920).  

Born c. 375 Sechnall was sent from Gaul in 439(?) to assist his uncle, Saint Patrick, in Ireland, together with Auxilius and Iserninus. He became the first bishop of Dunslaughlin in Meath, and then auxiliary bishop of Armagh. He wrote several hymns, notably the alphabetical hymn Audites, omnes amantes Deum (the oldest known Latin hymn written in Ireland) in honor of Patrick and the earliest Latin hymn in Ireland, and Sancti, venite, Christi corpus sumite (Attwater 2, Benedictines, Coulson, Delaney, Husenbeth).
460 St. Maximus reluctant Bishop of Reiz ordained by St. Hilary; celebrated for working miracles and prodigies.
Apud Régium, in Gállia, sancti Máximi, Epíscopi et Confessóris; qui, usque a primævæ ætátis annis omni virtútum grátia præditus, primum Lirinénsis cœnóbii Pater, deínde Regiénsis Ecclésiæ Epíscopus, signis et prodígiis ínclytus éxstitit.
    At Riez in France, St. Maximus, bishop and confessor, who, from his tender years, was endowed with every grace and virtue.  Being first superior of the monastery of Lerins, and afterwards bishop of the Church of Riez, he was celebrated for the working of miracles and prodigies.
Maximus was born near Digne and became a monk at Lerins. He was made abbot of Lerins in 426, having been trained by St. Honoratus. Maximus refused the see of Frejus and was made bishop of Riez against his will.

Maximus of Riez B (RM) Born at Decomer (Châteauredon near Digne), Provence, France;
Saint Maximus was baptized in infancy and raised in a Christian home, where he lived a reclusive life at home in order to mortify his senses and train his will. Finally he decided to enter religious life in the community of Lérins, which was then under the direction of its founder, Saint Honoratus.

When Honoratus was consecrated archbishop of Arles in 426, Maximus was chosen to be the second abbot of Lérins to succeed its founder. Saint Sidonius records that the monastery acquired a new luster because the prudent conduct and bright example of Saint Maximus were such that the monks did not mind the severities of the rule; they obeyed him cheerfully and quickly.

Maximus was also favored with the gift of working miracles which supplemented his reputation for great sanctity. So many came to consult him that he eventually had to hide in a forest to escape those seeking to make him bishop of Fréjus. Later he was promoted to the see of Riez in Provence and much against his will, in 434, received the episcopal consecration from Saint Hilary. (He had fled to the coast of Italy in an attempt to shun the dignity.) He was one of the most prominent prelates of the church of Gaul in his time. Throughout his episcopacy, he continued to wear his hair shirt and habit, and observe the monastic rule as far as it was compatible with his episcopal functions.

Among the sermons wrongly attributed to Eusebius Emisenus are several now ascribed to Saint Maximus. He attended the councils of Riez in 439, Orange I in 441, and Arles in 454. His body now rests in the cathedral of Riez, which is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin and Saint Maximus (Attwater 2, Benedictines, Coulson, Husenbeth).

St MAXIMUS was born in Provence, near Digne. His Christian parents brought him up in the love of virtue, and no one was surprised when as a young man he retired to the monastery of Lérins, where St Honoratus, its founder, received him. When the last named was made bishop of Arles in 426, Maximus was chosen the second abbot of Lérins. St Sidonius assures us that the monastery seemed to acquire a new lustre by his prudent example; and the gift of miracles and the reputation of his sanctity drew crowds to his monastery from the mainland. At one time he felt obliged to quit the house and conceal himself in a forest and we are assured that the reason why he thus lay hid, in a very rainy season, was that the clergy and people of Fréjus had demanded him for bishop. However, not long after, the see of Riez in Provence became vacant and he was compelled to fill it, although he tried to get away in a boat. His parents were originally of that city so the saint was looked upon as already a citizen and on account of his holiness received with great joy. As a bishop he continued to observe the monastic rule so far as was compatible with his duties. He retained the same love of poverty, the same spirit of penance and prayer, the same indifference to the world, and the same humility for which he had been so conspicuous in the cloister.

Faustus, the successor of Maximus, probably wrote a laudatory oration printed among the works of Eusebius of Emesa. Besides this we have a life by one Dynamius, who was a patrician of the period. It is printed in Migne, PL., vol. lxxx, cc. 31—40. See also Duchesne, Fastes Épiscopaux, vol. i, pp. 283—284.  

475 St. Secundinus bishop in 439 to assist St. Patrick in Ireland
also known as Sechnall and Seachnall. He was sent from Gaul in 439 to assist St. Patrick in Ireland together with Auxilius and Iserninus. He became the first bishop of Dunslaughlin in Meath, and then auxillary bishop of Armagh. He wrote several hymns, notably Audites, omnes amantes Deum in honor of St. Patrick and the earliest Latin hymn written in Ireland, and, Sancti, venite, Christi corpus sumite.

540 St. Severinus Hermit in the area near Lutetia (modem Paris).
Lutétiæ Parisiórum deposítio sancti Severíni, Mónachi et Solitárii.
    At Paris, the death of St. Severin, monk and solitary.

before residing in a hermitage at Novientum, near Paris.
Severinus of Paris, Hermit (RM) At first Saint Severinus lived as a hermit in Paris, then in a cell at Novientum near Paris (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

Saint Cungar, Abbot monasteries he founded at Budgworth, Congresbury (Somerset) and at Llangonys (Glamorgan) (AC) (also known as Congar, Cumgar, Cyngar, Docco)


THERE is very little satisfactory information to be found about St Cungar (Congar, Cyngar), but it is desirable to mention him here as his feast is observed today in the diocese of Clifton (November 7 is the traditional date in Wales). He is said to have established a monastery at a marshy place near Yatton in Somerset, now called after him Congresbury, and later, perhaps flying before the Saxons, went into South Wales and founded a church near Cardiff. According to Welsh legend he accompanied his “cousin” St Cybi to Ireland. St Cungar “was now an old man, and St Cybi bought for him a cow with her calf, because his age prevented him from taking any food but milk”. It was this calf that aggravated the feeling between Cybi and Fintan, as a consequence of which he and St Cungar left Aran and eventually came to Anglesey, where Cungar is said to have founded the church of Llangefni. According to a Breton tradition he died at Saint-Congard in Morbihan. The medieval vita identifies St Cungar with St Docco (Doccuin), who founded a monastery at St Kew in Cornwall and other churches in Wales. 

The whole question of the life and identity of St Cungar is a hopeless tangle there may have been two or three St Cungars. We can only give an indication of some of the attempts to throw light on the subject. See, for example, P. Grosjean in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xlii (1924), pp. 100—120; Armitage Robinson in the Journal of Theological Studies, vol. xx (1918), pp. 97—108 vol. xxiii (1921), pp. 15—22; and vol. xxix (1928), pp. 137—140; and G. H. Doble in Antiquity, vol. xix (1945), pp. 32-43, 86-95. Cf. also Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xlvii (1929), pp. 430—431 LBS., vol. ii, pp. 248-253; and Schofield on the Muchelney Calendar in the Proceedings of the Somerset Record Society, vol. xlii.  

Born in Devon; 6th century; feast day formerly on November 7 (although this could be a different saint). There may be several saints with this name or only one with two names. It's difficult to determine because of the paucity of documentary evidence. His vita was not produced until the 9th century, and it is moralistic rather than historical in nature. Nevertheless the memory of Saint Cungar survives in the monasteries he founded at Budgworth, Congresbury (Somerset) and at Llangonys (Glamorgan). There are dedications to this Celtic saint in Wales, Cornwall, and Brittany, and legends that suggest his was one of the great monks who evangelized throughout the Celtic lands. It is amazing that his name survived the influx of the heathen Saxons in his day, which again leads to the conclusion that he was an especially great missionary preacher. He is to be identified with Saint Docuinus (Doguinus). This seems to be the name that was later corrupted into Oue and Kew. Saint Cumgar was buried at Congresbury according to many medieval records including pilgrim guides, to which town his own name was given. His feast is celebrated in the diocese of Clifton (Attwater 2, Benedictines, Coulson, Farmer).
540 (or 660?) St. Siffred of Carpentras B (AC)
(also known as Siffrein, Syffroy, Suffredus)
Born at Albano (near Rome); died 540 (or 660?). The Italian Saint Siffred became a monk at Lérins. Later he was bishop of Carpentras, Provence, where he is now venerated as the principal patron saint of the diocese (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

6th century Gallgo of Wales, Abbot (AC).
A Welsh saint, founder of Llanallgo in Anglesey (Benedictines).

640 St. Acharius monk bishop encouraging other holy men in his era
Acharius served St. Eustace in a monastery in Luxeuil, France and soon gained a reputation for holiness and administrative abilities. As a result, he was appointed the bishop of Noyon-Tournai in 621.
There he aided St. Amandus in his missionary labors and worked to have St. Omer named as bishop of Therouanne.
Acharius of Noyon B (AC)

Died 640. In 621, Saint Acharius, a monk of Luxeuil under Saint Eustace, was chosen bishop of Noyon-Tournai. During his episcopacy he fostered the missionary efforts of Saint Amandus of Maestricht and obtained from King Dagobert I the erection of the see of Térouanne, in which he installed his friend Saint Omer as abbot (Benedictines).

710 St. Bilhild Benedictine abbess foundress
She was the widow of the duke of Thuringia. Bilhild founded the convent of Altenmunster in Mainz, Germany

Bilhild of Altenmünster, OSB Widow (AC) Born near Würzburg, Germany, c. 630; died in Mainz, c. 710. Saint Bilhild married the duke of Thuringia. After his death, she became the abbess-founder of Altenmünster Abbey in Mainz (Mayence), where her uncle was the bishop (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

721 St. Fergus part of the Roman Council in 721
An Irish bishop called "the Pict." He evangelized Scotland, where he was called Fergustian or Fergus of Scotland. He preached in Perthshire, Caithness, Buchan, and Forfarshire. Fergus was part of the Roman Council in 721.

Fergus B (AC) (also known as Fergustus, Fergusianus); feast formerly on November 18. An Irish bishop, possibly of Downpatrick, and surnamed "the Pict," he went to Scotland as a missionary and preached in Caithness, Buchan (where there is a town called Saint Fergus), and Forfarshire. In Strogeth he founded three churches; in Caithness, two (presumably Wick and Halkirk). He may also have established churches at Inverugy, Banff, and Dyce.

He finally settled at Strathearn, Perthshire, where he exerted a powerful influence in the area between Aberdeen and Wick. Saint Fergus is buried at Glamis, a central location of William Shakespeare's Macbeth and where a cave and well bear his name. During the reign of James IV (1488-1513), the abbot of Scone removed the head of Fergus and built a splendid marble tomb for his body relic at Glamis. Aberdeen had an arm relic.

He may be the same as Fergustus, bishop of the Scots, who signed the Acts of the synod in Rome in 721, which condemned irregular marriages of various kinds, sorcerers, and clerics who grew their hair long.

In the Aberdeen breviary he is called Fergustian. The feast of Saint Fergus, who was highly venerated by the Scottish kings, is kept in the dioceses of Dunkeld and Aberdeen. Although the Reformers attempted to suppress his cultus, Montague states that it is still growing, especially in the area around Paisley in Renfrewshire. A new church has been dedicated to his memory and the nearby town of Ferguslie is reputed to have been named after him (Attwater 2, Benedictines, Delaney, Farmer, Montague).

THIS Fergus was an Irishman and distinguished in his own country as “the Pict”.  According to tradition of the church of Aberdeen he was already a bishop when he left Ireland for Scotland, and settled in Strathearn in Perthshire, where he founded three churches and dedicated them all in honour of St Patrick. He was a missionary also in Caithness, Buchan and finally, Forfarshire, where at Glamis he founded the church and died. St Fergus may be identical with the “Fergustus, Bishop of the Scots”, who assisted at a synod held by Pope St Gregory II in Rome in 721. His feast was restored to the diocese of Aberdeen in 1898, and is also observed by Dunkeld.

We know little of this saint beyond what is contained in the lessons of the Aberdeen Breviary. It would seem, however, that the statements made therein are borne out in large measure by local dedications that can be traced. See A. P. Forbes in KSS., pp. 336—338, who has dealt with the matter very fully; and cf. DCB., vol. ii, pp. 505-506.

6thv. St. Gallgo Welsh abbot founder Llanalgo Abbey Anglesey Wales.
784. St. Virgil of Salzburg Irish monk 40 years he labored to convert Teutons and Slavs, founded monasteries, churches, and schools. (In 774, the council of Bavaria issued its first schools. OSB B (RM)
Salisbúrgi, in Nórico, sancti Virgílii, Epíscopi et Carinthiórum Apóstoli, qui a Gregório Nono, Pontífice Máximo, in Sanctórum númerum adscríptus est.
    At Salzburg in Austria, St. Virgil, bishop and apostle of Carinthia, who was placed among the number of saints by Pope Gregory IX.
(also known as Feargal, Fearghal, Fergal, Virgilius)
Born in Ireland; died in Salzburg, Austria, November 27, c. 781-784; canonized 1233 by Pope Gregory IX.

Virgil was an abbot possibly of Aghaboe, who went abroad about 740 intending to visit Palestine. With him were Dobdagrec, later abbot of a monastery at Chiemsee, and Sidonius, afterwards bishop of Passau. His learning and ability attracted the attention of Blessed Pepin the Short, who kept him at the Merovingian court for two years. About 743, Pepin sent Virgil with letters of recommendation to his brother-in- law, Duke Odilo of Bavaria, who, c. 745, appointed Virgil abbot of Saint Peter's Monastery at Salzburg, with jurisdiction over the local Christians, while Dobdagrec served its episcopal functions.

Instead of visiting Palestine he remained in Bavaria to help Saint Rupert, the apostle of Austria. For 40 years he labored to convert Teutons and Slavs, founded monasteries, churches, and schools. (In 774, the council of Bavaria issued its first pronouncement on the establishment of schools.)

Virgil appears to have been a somewhat difficult character and he incurred the strong disapproval of Saint Boniface, who seems to have detested him. (Perhaps because of differences in the interpretations of Roman observance or jurisdiction, or because Virgil succeeded John whom Boniface had as abbot of Saint Peter's, or just personal differences.) Boniface twice delated him to Rome. On the first occasion Pope Saint Zachary decided in Virgil's favor. Through carelessness or ignorance, a priest had used incorrect Latin wording during a baptism. Virgil and Sidonius ruled that the baptism was valid and need not be repeated; Boniface of Mainz disagreed. Zachary was surprised that Boniface should have questioned it and issued a statement to that effect.

The other case concerned Virgil's cosmological speculations and their implications, which, as reported to Zachary by Boniface, the pope found very shocking. In 748, the pope directed Boniface to convene a council to investigate the questionable views, but the council was never convened. The incident has been the subject of much discussion and has been used and exaggerated for polemical purposes, but in fact it is far from clear what Virgil's ideas really were. It appears that Virgil postulated that the world was round and that people might be living in what would now be called the Antipodes. He was both a man of learning and a successful missionary, and even after his cosmological views were called into question, he was consecrated bishop of the see of Salzburg (c. 766), whose cathedral he rebuilt.

Saint Virgil brought relics and the veneration of Saints Brigid and Samthann of Clonbroney to the areas he evangelized. In fact, Saint Samthann, who may have provided Virgil with his early education, is better known in Austria than in her homeland.

Among his other good works, Virgil sent fourteen missionary monks headed by Saint Modestus into the province of Carinthia, of which he is venerated as the evangelizer. He baptized two successive dukes of Carinthia at Salzburg (Chetimar and Vetune). His influence is revealed by the issuance during the time of duke Chetimar of a Carinthian coin, an old Salzburg rubentaler, with the images of Saint Rupert, who built Saint Peter's monastery, and Virgil. He fell ill and died soon after making a visitation in Carinthia, going as far as the place where the Dravo River meets the Danube.

His feast is kept throughout Ireland, although he is buried at St. Peter's in Salzburg. Virgil is widely venerated in southern Germany, Austria, Yugoslavia, and northern Italy (Attwater, Attwater 2, Benedictines, Coulson, D'Arcy, Encyclopedia, Farmer, Fitzpatrick, Gougaud, Healy, Husenbeth, Kenney, Montague).
Sometimes he is paired with Saint Rupertus in artwork (Roeder). Virgil is the patron of Salzburg, Austria (Farmer).

ST VIRGIL was an Irishman, Feargal or Ferghil by name, and in the Annals of the Four Masters and the Annals of Ulster he is identified with an abbot of Aghaboe. About the year 743 he started out on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, but after spending two years in France got no further than Bavaria. Here Duke Odilo appointed him abbot of St Peter’s at Salzburg and administrator of the diocese. St Virgil had a bishop, an Irishman like himself, to perform episcopal acts, reserving to himself the office of preaching and ruling, till he was compelled by his colleagues to receive episcopal consecration. In the course of his duties he came across a priest who was so ignorant of Latin that he did not pronounce the words of baptism properly (Ego te baptizo in nomine patria et filial et spiritu sancta, is what he is said to have made of them). St Virgil decided that as the error was an accidental one of language, with no religious significance, baptisms that this priest had adminis­tered were valid and need not be repeated. St Boniface, then archbishop of Mainz, strongly disapproved of the verdict of Virgil, and appeal was made to Pope St Zachary. He confirmed the ruling of Virgil, and expressed surprise that Boniface had questioned it.

Some time after this incident, Virgil was denounced to the Holy See, again by St Boniface, for teaching that—if his doctrine be accurately represented—there is beneath the earth another world and other men and also a sun and moon. St Zachary answered that this was “a perverse and wicked doctrine, offensive alike to God and to his own soul” and that if it were proved that Virgil did in fact hold it he should be excommunicated by a synod. This has been taken hold and made use of for controversial purposes, but without reason. For it is not known exactly what Virgil did hold about the earth and other races of men and it is clear that what brought him under suspicion was the idea that he taught something which involved a denial of the unity of the human race and the universality both of original sin and the Redemption. If he in fact taught that the earth is a sphere and that humans inhabited the antipodes, such prima-facie suspicion was not entirely unreasonable in the middle of the eighth century. There is not a tittle of evidence for supposing that Virgil was tried, condemned and made to retract but he must have satisfied his critics that he believed nothing “against God and his own soul”, for about 767 (or earlier) he was consecrated bishop.

St Virgil rebuilt the cathedral of Salzburg on a grand scale, and translated thereto the body of St Rupert, founder of the see. He baptized at Salzburg two successive Slav dukes of Carinthis, and at their request sent thither four preachers under the bishop St Modestus other missionaries followed. Virgil himself preached in Carinthis as far as the borders of Hungary, where the Drava falls into the Danube. Soon after his return home he was taken ill, and cheerfully departed to the Lord on November 27, 784. St Virgil was canonized in 1233, and his feast is kept throughout Ireland as well as in several parts of central Europe, where he is venerated as the apostle of the Slovenes.

The Life of St Virgil printed in MGH., Scriptores, vol. xi, pp. 86—95, is a late production and not wholly reliable what speaks more convincingly is the laudatory epitaph written by Alcuin (in MGH., Poetae Latini, vol. i, p. 340). See more particularly the valuable notice of L. Gougaud, Les saints irlandais hors d’Irlande (1936), pp. 170—172 and cf. J. Ryan, Early Irish Missionaries… and St Vergil (1924) H. Frank, Die Klosterbischöfe des Frankenreiches (1932) and B. Krusch, in MGH., Scriptures Merov., vol. vi, pp. 517 seq. For the cosmological dispute see H. Krabbo in Mitteilungen des Instituts fur Österreichische Geschichtsforschung, vol. xxiv (1903), pp.1-28 and H. Van der Linden in Bulletins de l’Acad. royale de Belg., Classe des lettres, 1914, pp. 163—187. Cf. also Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xlvi (1928), p. 203.  
784 St. Virgilius Benedictine bishop A noted intellectual round World
also called Vergilius, Virgil, Ferghil, and Feargal. A native of Ireland, he entered a monastery and probably served as abbot of Aghaboe before setting out on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.
He then spent two years in France, later going to Bavaria, Germany, where he assisted St. Rupert, the Apostle of Austria.
He was elected abbot of the Benedictine abbey of St. Peter at Salzburg and bishop of the city about 765.
A noted intellectual, he believed that the earth was a sphere, which brought him into conflict with St. Boniface of Mainz who twice denounced him to Rome. Both times Virgilius was exonerated, and his reputation as an Apostle of Carinthia (modern southern Austria), where he conducted missionary labors, was unblemished.
Besides rebuilding the cathedral of Salzburg, he encouraged a vast missionary venture into Carinthia. Virgilius died after returning from one such mission on November 27, in Salzberg. He was canonized in 1232.
828 St. Apollinaris Benedictine 14th abbot of Monte Cassino.
Italy. He served in this capacity for eleven years, edifying all with his piety. Apollinaris has long been venerated in Monte Cassino. He is listed as both blessed and saint.
Apollinaris of Monte Cassino, OSB, Abbot (PC). The 14th abbot of Monte Cassino, he governed the archabbey for 11 years. He has always been greatly venerated at Monte Cassino (Benedictines)

871 Edwold of Cerne, Hermit worked many miracles and was buried in his cell near which the abbey of Saint Peter's was built (AC)
Farmer gives him two feast days: August 29 and the feast of his translation, August 12. Saint Edwold is reputed to be the brother of Saint Edmund the Martyr, king of East Anglia. He lived on bread and water as a penitential recluse near Cerne in Dorsetshire. He worked many miracles and was buried in his cell near which the abbey of Saint Peter's was built. His relics were later translated into its church (Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Farmer).
1040 Saint Goustan , a Benedictine at Saint-Gildas OSB (AC),
Saint Goustan, a Benedictine at Saint-Gildas, originated in Ouessant, Brittany (Encyclopedia).

Diodorius Yuriev 1127
1259 The Kursk Root Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign"
is one of the most ancient icons of the Russian Church. In the thirteenth century during the Tatar invasion, when all the Russian realm was put to the extremest tribulation, the city of Kursk, ravaged by the Horde of Batu, fell into desolation.

One day in the environs of the city a hunter noticed the ancient icon, lying on a root face downwards to the ground. The hunter lifted it and saw that the image of the icon was similar to the Novgorod "Znamenie" Icon. With the appearance of this icon immediately there appeared its first miracle. Just as the hunter lifted up the holy icon from the earth, right then, at that place where the icon lay, gushed up strongly a spring of pure water. This occurred on September 8, 1259. The hunter decided not to leave the icon in the forest and settled on as a resting place an ancient small chapel, in which he put the newly-appeared image of the Theotokos. Soon inhabitants of the city of Ryl'a heard about this, and being in location not far away, they began to visit the place of the appearance for venerating the new holy image.

They transferred the icon to Ryl'a and put it in a new church in honor of the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos. But the icon did not long remain there. It disappeared and returned to its former place of appearance. The inhabitants of Ryl'a repeatedly took it and carried it to the city, but the icon incomprehensibly returned to its former place. Everyone then realized, that the Theotokos preferred the place of appearance of Her Icon. The special help granted by the Mother of God through this icon is bound up with important events in Russian history: with the war of liberation of the Russian nation during the Polish-Lithuanian incursion in 1612, and the 1812 Fatherland war. From the icon several copies were made, which also were glorified.

The Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign", depicts the Most Holy Theotokos with prayerfully uplifted hands, and the Divine Infant is at Her bosom in a mandorla (or sphere)

This depiction of the Mother of God is regarded as one of the very first of Her iconographic images. In the mausoleum of St Agnes at Rome is a depiction of the Mother of God with hands raised in prayer with the Infant Christ sitting upon Her knees. This depiction is ascribed to the fourth century. There is also an ancient Byzantine icon of the Mother of God "Nikopea" from the sixth century, where the Most Holy Theotokos is depicted seated upon a throne and holding in Her hands an oval shield with the image of the Savior Emmanuel.

Icons of the Mother of God, known as "The Sign", appeared in Russia during the eleventh-twelfth centuries, and were so called because of a miraculous sign from the Novgorod Icon in the year 1170.

In that year the allied forces of Russian appanage princes, headed by a son of Prince Andrew Bogoliubsky of Suzdal, marched to the very walls of Great Novgorod. For the people of Novgorod, their only remaining hope was that God would help them. Day and night they prayed, beseeching the Lord not to forsake them. On the third night Bishop Elias of Novgorod heard a wondrous voice commanding that the icon of the Most Holy Theotokos be taken out of the church of the Savior's Transfiguration on Ilina street, and carried about on the city walls.

When they carried the icon, the enemy fired a volley of arrows at the procession, and one of them pierced the iconographic face of the Mother of God. Tears trickled from Her eyes, and the icon turned its face towards the city. After this divine Sign an inexpressible terror suddenly fell upon the enemy. They began to strike one another, and taking encouragement from the Lord, the people of Novgorod fearlessly gave battle and won the victory.

In remembrance of the miraculous intercession of the Queen of Heaven, Archbishop Elias established a feastday in honor of the Sign of the Mother of God, which the Russian Church celebrates to the present day. The Athonite hieromonk Pachomius the Logothete, who was present at the festal celebration of the Icon in Russia, composed two Canons for this Feast.

On certain Novgorod Icons of the Sign, the miraculous occurrences of the year 1170 were also depicted. For 186 years afterwards, the wonderworking icon remained in the Savior-Transfiguration church on Ilina street. In 1356 it was transferred to a church built in Novgorod in honor of the Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos "of the Sign," which became the cathedral church of the monastery of the Sign.

Numerous copies of the Sign Icon are known throughout Russia. Many of them were also glorified by miracles in their local churches, and were then named for the place of the appearance of the miracle. Similar copies of the Sign Icon are the icons of Dionysievo-Glushets, Abalaka (July 20), Kursk, Seraphim-Ponetaev and others.
1346 Gregory of Sinai established a monastery on Mount Paroria, near Sozopol on the west coast of the Black Sea Born near Smyrna, c. 1290; died in Bulgaria, 1346; canonized by the Orthodox Church.

After being carried off from his home in a raid by Seljuk Turks, and ransomed by his neighbors, this Gregory joined the monks of Mount Sinai. In consequence of disagreements he left there, and while in Crete learned the practice of mental prayer from another monk. Coming to Mount Athos, he was disappointed to find its inhabitants knew little of 'true silence and contemplation,' so he set about teaching his ideas on prayer to the monks and solitaries. Then another piratical raid drove him away from Athos.

At length, about 1325, he established a monastery on Mount Paroria, near Sozopol on the west coast of the Black Sea; he lived there for the rest of his life, though not without further disturbance from the Turks. Gregory wrote little, but his teaching had considerable influence in the Orthodox Church. He emphasized the importance of physical aids (e.g., rhythmical breathing) to perfect concentration in mental prayer, which was part of the technique of Palamite Hesychasm (Attwater).

1386 Blessed Angelus Sinesio influenced all the Sicilian Benedictine abbeys in restoring monastic observance  OSB Abbot (PC)
Born in Catania, Sicily. He joined the Benedictines at San Martino della Scala in Palermo, and influenced all the Sicilian Benedictine abbeys in restoring monastic observance (Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

1392 Saint James, Bishop of Rostov spread bishop's mantiya on water signed himself with the Sign of the Cross sailed off on it as if on a boat, guided by the grace of God one and a half versts from the city emerged on shore at site of future monastery

According to a local tradition, he received monastic tonsure at Kopyrsk monastery on the River Ukhtoma, 80 kilometers from Rostov. For a long time he was igumen of this monastery, and in the year 1385 he was made Bishop of Rostov when Pimen was Metropolitan and Demetrius of the Don was Great Prince.

In defending a woman condemned to execution, the saint followed the example of the Savior, inviting whoever considered himself to be without sin to cast the first stone at her (John 8:7), and he then sent the woman forth to repentance. The Prince and the Rostov nobles, disgruntled over the bishop's judgment, threw St James out of Rostov.

Leaving the city, the saint proceeded to Lake Nero, spread his bishop's mantiya on the water, and having signed himself with the Sign of the Cross, he sailed off on it as if on a boat, guided by the grace of God. Traveling one and a half versts from the city, St James emerged on shore at the site of his future monastery. The prince and the people, repenting their actions, besought the saint's forgiveness. The gentle bishop forgave them, but he did not return again.

On the shore of Lake Nero he made himself a cell and built a small church in honor of the Conception of the Most Holy Theotokos by Righteous Anna, marking the beginning of the Conception-St James monastery. St James died there on November 27, 1392.

There is a story that St James fought against the Iconoclast heresy of a certain fellow named Markian, who appeared in Rostov toward the end of the fourteenth century. The more ancient Lives of our saint do not mention this, and even the great hagiographer St Demetrius of Rostov was unaware of it. More recent hagiographers were wont to draw material from the Service to St James of Rostov. But the Service itself, preserved in copies from the sixteenth-seventeenth centuries, was compiled by borrowing from the Service to St Bucolus (February 6), who struggled against the first century heretic Marcian, and from the Service to St Stephen of Surozh (December 15), who contended against the emperor Constantine Kopronymos (741-775).

1503 Blessed Bernardinus of Fossa mission-preaching throughout Italy, Dalmatia, and Bosnia OFM (AC)
(also known as Bernardino Amici) Born in Fossa, diocese of Aquila, Italy; died in Aquila, 1503. In 1445, Bernardino Amici was received the Franciscan habit in the Obsesrvant branch. After filling successfully several offices in the order, he embarked on a career of mission-preaching throughout Italy, Dalmatia, and Bosnia, and died while engaged in this apostolate (Attwater 2, Benedictines).

The great Franciscan apostle St Bernardino of Siena was buried at Aquila in the Abruzzi, where Bernardino Amici had his early education and took his namesake as his model and heavenly patron, and afterwards wrote his life. He had been born near by, at Fossa in 1420, and was sent from Aquila to Perugia to study law. Like another Bd Bernardino, “of Feltre”, a few years later, he was attracted to the Friars Minor of the Observance at a Lenten mission preached by St James of the March, and received the habit from him at Perugia in 1445. After his ordination he became a well-known and successful preacher in Italy. In 1464 he was sent as peacemaker into Dalmatia and Bosnia, where differences of nationality had caused difficulties among the friars, and he successfully united the diverse elements into one province. On his return he would have been promoted to the see of Aquila had not the Holy See accepted his plea to be allowed to continue his work as a simple friar. Among his writings is a historical Chronicle of the Friars Minor of the Observance. Bd Bernardino of Fossa died at the friary of St Julian near Aquila in 1503, and his cultus was approved in 1828.
A full account of Bd Bernardino is provided by Fr Van Ortroy in the Acta Sanctorum, November, vol. us, though he has to fall back for the details of the life upon the printed narrative of Mark of Lisbon. This, is supplemented by a memoir which Antony Amici, a grand-nephew of the beatus, contributed to a volume of Bernardino’s sermons. See also a short biography by Ugo de Pescocostanza (1872), and Léon, Auréole Séraphique (Eng. trans.), vol. iv, pp. 42—44.
1619 Blessed Antony Kimura & Companions MM (AC)
(also known as Antony Chimura)
beatified in 1867. Blessed Antony Kimura, Bartholomew Xeki, John Ivanango, John Montajana, Leo Nacanixi, Michael Takexita, and Thomas Cotenda were all born into Japanese royal family of Firando. (Antony is also a relative of Blessed Leonard Kimura (November 18), who was burned to death at Nagasaki.) All six native laymen and four other companions were beheaded at Nagasaki. Antony was only 23; Michael, described as a man of most amiable character, only 25. Thomas was educated by the Jesuits and lived in exile at Nagasaki until his beheading (Benedictines).

1619 Bl. Anthony Kimura Japanese martyr noble family.
he was also related to Blessed Leonard Kimura.
At age twenty-three, Anthony was beheaded at Nagasaki with ten companions.

1619 Bl. Alexius Nakamura Noble martyr Japan.
Alexius was a Japanese born in Figen, a member of the Ferando family. He was beheaded at Nagasaki for the faith.

1619 Bl. Bartholomew Sheki martyr Japan royal family of Firando.
Japan, Bartholomew was arrested as a Christian. He was beheaded at Nagasaki. His beatification took place in 1867.

1619 Bl. Thomas Kotenda Jesuit Companions Japanese martyrs.
A member of a high-ranking noble family of Japan, Thomas was a devoted Christian, having been educated by the Jesuits. Exiled for his beliefs from his native province, he lived at Nagasaki until his condemnation and beheading, He was martyred along with ten companions.

1619 Bl. John Ivanango & John Montajana  Martyrs of Japan.
beheaded at Nagasaki with nine companions. They were beatified in 1867 by Pope Pius IX.

1619 Bl. Leo Nakanishi Martyr of Japan.
He was a member of a Japanese noble family and was beheaded with ten companions at Nagasaki, Japan. Leo was beatified in 1867.

1619 Bl. Romanus  Japanese martyr Born at Omura.
 he was a Japanese layman of the royal clan of Firando, who was beheaded at Nagasaki with ten other martyrs.

1619 Bl. Matthias Kosaka & Matthias Nakano Two martyrs of Japan.
They were both members of a noble house of the country. Arrested in Omura, they were taken to Nagasaki where they were beheaded. Both were beatified in 1867.

1619 Bl. Michael Takeshita Jesuit martyr of Japan
 Michael was a member of a high noble Japanese family and was seized during the persecution against the Church. He was beheaded with ten companions at Nagasaki at the age of twenty-five. Pope Pius IX beatified him in 1867

1637 Blessed Humilis of Bisignano Observant Franciscan lay-brother so widely known for his sanctity that he was called to Rome, where both Pope Gregory XV and Urban VIII consulted him OFM (AC)
Born in Bisignano, Calabria, Italy, 1582;  beatified in 1882. Humilis was an Observant Franciscan lay-brother so widely known for his sanctity that he was called to Rome, where both Pope Gregory XV and Urban VIII consulted him. In addition to his wisdom, Humilis possessed the gift of working miracles (Attwater 2, Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

1637 The Abalaka Icon of the Mother of God "Of the Sign" the Mother of God, accompanied by St Nicholas and St Mary of Egypt, appeared to the pious widow Maria.
was painted by Matthew, a protodeacon of the Tobolsk cathedral, in honor of Sophia (the Wisdom of God), in fulfillment of a vow by a paralytic peasant Euthymius to rebuild the church at the Abalaka monastery of the Mother of God "of the Sign."

This church was built in 1637 after the Mother of God, accompanied by St Nicholas and St Mary of Egypt, appeared to the pious widow Maria. After the temple's Icon "of the Sign" was painted, the paralytic Euthymius was completely healed. Many healings took place during the solemn transfer of the icon to the Abalaka church.

In general appearance, the Abalaka Icon resembles the Novgorod Icon of the Sign, but with this distinction: on the Abalaka Icon, St Nicholas and St Mary of Egypt stand before the Most Holy Theotokos. St Basil of Mangazeya (March 23) is also depicted on this icon. Many wonderworking copies of the Abalaka Icon are venerated throughout Siberia.
The Abalaka Icon "Of the Sign" is also commemorated on July 20.
1742 St. Francesco Antonio Fasani
Born 1681 in Lucera (southeast Italy), Francesco entered the Conventual Franciscans in 1695. After his ordination 10 years later, he taught philosophy to younger friars, served as guardian of his friary and later became provincial. When his term of office ended, Francesco became master of novices and finally pastor in his hometown.

In his various ministries, he was loving, devout and penitential. He was a sought-after confessor and preacher. One witness at the canonical hearings regarding Francesco’s holiness testified, "In his preaching he spoke in a familiar way, filled as he was with the love of God and neighbor; fired by the Spirit, he made use of the words and deed of Holy Scripture, stirring his listeners and moving them to do penance." Francesco showed himself a loyal friend of the poor, never hesitating to seek from benefactors what was needed.

At his death in Lucera, children ran through the streets and cried out, "The saint is dead! The saint is dead!" Francesco was canonized in 1986.
Comment:    Eventually we become what we choose. If we choose stinginess, we become stingy. If we choose compassion, we become compassionate. The holiness of Francesco Antonio Fasani resulted from his many small decisions to cooperate with God’s grace.
Quote:   During his homily at the canonization of Francesco, Pope John Paul II reflected on John 21:15 in which Jesus asks Peter if he loves Jesus more than the other apostles and then tells Peter, "Feed my lambs." The pope observed that in the final analysis human holiness is decided by love. "He [Francesco] made the love taught us by Christ the fundamental characteristic of his existence, the basic criterion of his thought and activity, the supreme summit of his aspirations" (L'Osservatore Romano, vol. 16, number 3, 1986).
Francis Antony of Lucera (RM) (also known as Antony Fasani) Born at Lucera, Apulia, Italy, on August 6, 1681; died November 29, 1742; beatified by Pope Pius XII on April 15, 1951; canonized by John Paul II April 13, 1986.

Donato Anthony John Nicholas Fasani was born into a family of farm laborers. Although he was baptized with this august name, he was known simply as Giovanniello (Johnny). His mother remarried after his father died while Giovanniello was still very young. It was Giovanniello's stepfather who sent him to the Friars Conventual for his education. At age 15, the little saint was sent to Monte Gargano to begin his novitiate. Upon making his profession as a Franciscan on August 23, 1696, he took the name Francis Antony.

In 1703, Francis Antony was sent to Assisi, where he was ordained to the priesthood on September 11, 1705. He completed his master's degree in theology at the College of Saint Bonaventure in Rome. From that time he was called "Father Master" in his hometown, where he taught theology from 1707. At the convent of Lucera, he also served as guardian, novice master, and minister provincial of the Province of Sant'Angelo.

Although his scholarship was great, he was better known for his preaching in both the city and countryside. He spoke in a way that all who heard him could understand and directed his catechetical efforts to the poor. He produced several volumes of sermons, which include some in Latin. Francis Antony was devoted to the downtrodden: the poor, the suffering, and the imprisoned. He often accompanied those condemned to death to their execution.

Francis Antony promoted devotion to the Immaculate Conception, which was his own special love at a time when the dogma had not yet been defined. He had brought from Naples a statue of the Immaculate Conception that he put in the church of Saint Francis, and he wrote hymns for the people to sing before it. This statue is still an object of veneration in Lucera. He also established a novena to Our Lady under this appellation. On November 29, the first day of this novena, Francis Antony died, a man revered and loved as another Saint Francis of Assisi (Attwater 2, Walsh).
1879 The Seraphim-Ponetaevka Icon of the Mother of God "of the Sign" famous for its numerous miracles
painted in the year 1879 by the nuns of the Seraphim-Ponetaevka women's monastery, not far from Arzamas, near the village of Ponetaevka. The monastery was named after St Seraphim of Sarov by the founder of the monastery, a sister of the Diveyevo community.

Six years after it was painted, the icon became famous for its numerous miracles and became the chief holy item of the monastery. When the sisters were praying during the services, they noticed distinct changes in the countenance of the Mother of God: Her All-Pure face became bright and life-like. Numerous pilgrims thronged to the icon, and many were healed from blindness and crippling. In all, about seventy instances of healing were noted.

Barlaam & Josaphat (Joasaph) (RM).
Apud Indos, Persis finítimos, sanctórum Bárlaam et Jósaphat, quorum actus mirándos sanctus Joánnes Damascénus conscrípsit.
    In India, near the Persian boundary, the Saints Barlaam and Josaphat, whose wonderful deeds were written by St. John of Damascus.
“IN the Indies bordering upon Persia, the birthday of the holy Barlaam and Josaphat, of whose wonderful deeds St John Damascene has written.” Cardinal Baronius added this entry to the Roman Martyrology, but the document upon which he retied is now known not written by St John. The story it tells is that an Indian king persecuted those of his subjects who were Christians, and when it was foretold that his son Josaphat (Joasaph) would become a Christian he had him brought up in the closest confinement. But an ascetic, disguised as a merchant carrying “a pearl of great price”, called Barlaam, nevertheless converted the young man. The king, Abenner, tried to
undo the work but, when he failed, himself became a Christian and eventually a hermit. Josaphat, too, resigned his throne, joined his old master Barlaam in the desert, and there passed the rest of his days.

  Not only is this a purely imaginative romance about two saints who never existed, but its source is now recognized as being the legend of Siddartha Buddha, who was kept in confinement by the raja his father to prevent his becoming a professional ascetic. The Christian version of this legend spread in both East and West, and was translated into numerous languages. By this means was preserved a valuable piece of Christian apologetic, written by an Athenian philo­sopher called Aristides in the second century, which the compiler of the Barlaam legend incorporated in his text. This was not recognized as what it is till towards the end of the nineteenth century, when a Syriac version of the Apology” of Aristides was found in the library of the monastery of Mount Sinai (an Armenian translation had been found by the Mekhitarist monks at Venice a few years before). Thus a story of the Buddha was spread over Christendom in a Christian disguise, and carrying on its back a vindication of the Church’s teaching on the One God.  

A very considerable literature has grown up around this story in modern times. It will be sufficient here to call attention to the article “Joasaph” by H. Leclercq in DAC., vol. vii, cc. 2359—2554, in which abundant references are given. The text and English translation of the Greek novel, ed. G. R. Woodward and H. Mattingly, is in the Loeb Classical Library (1914). It is now argued that the adapter, or rather translator, “John the Monk” of Mar Saba, was St Euthymius the Hagiorite (May 13); it was translated into Latin at Constantinople about 1048: see P. Peeters in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xlix (1931), pp. 276—312 and Byzantion, vol. vii, p. 692. See also J. Sonet, Le roman de Barlaam et Josaphat (1949). There was of course a genuine St Barlaam, a martyr at Antioch (November 19).  

Fictional characters. How should we understand the mythical saints? Puritanical people sometimes become indignant over them, but these fabulous saints have a profound significance. They are the nursery tales of the Church, they testify to its antiquity, and to the wonderful creative power which can take the old, deep things of human nature and consecrate them. "For the Son of Man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them." They are the heirlooms of the Church, like the vestments which were once no stranger than the everyday clothing of a Roman gentleman.

Their names suggest that Barlaam and Josaphat came from the Far East, which indeed they did. Their story is a fable containing the entire text of the apologia for Christianity of the 2nd-century Saint Aristides the Athenian, which may otherwise have been lost. The present text of the story was included as a moral tale in Gesta Romanorum, traditionally assigned to Saint John Damascene and repeated by the wandering monks. It is a version of the legend of Siddhartha Buddha.

The story relates that Josaphat (Joseph) was the son of an Indian king, who kept the young man confined in close quarters to prevent him from becoming a Christian. He was nevertheless converted by an ascetic named Barlaam, who disguised himself as a merchant and converted the boy. Eventually Josaphat resigned his throne to become a hermit with Barlaam. There is a genuine Barlaam of Antioch, who was martyred c. 304 (Attwater, Attwater 2, Benedictines, Coulson, Encyclopedia, Sheppard).

You will recognize Barlaam in art as a man in a tree, clinging to it as he grasps at a beehive. Below him is a pit containing a dragon. A mouse gnaws through the tree. One painting shows the two saints praying in a cave (Roeder).

 Sunday  Saints of November  27 Quinto Kaléndas Decémbris  

November is the month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory since 1888;
Pope Francis  PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR  November 2016
Universal: Countries Receiving Refugees

That the countries which take in a great number of displaced persons and refugees may find support for their efforts which show solidarity.

Evangelization: Collaboration of Priests and Laity
That within parishes, priests and lay people may collaborate in service to the community without giving in to the temptation of discouragement.

God Bless Mother Angelica 1923-2016

On Death and Life
"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!    (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)

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

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

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

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

  Month by Month of Saintly Dedications

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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