Make a Novena and pray the Rosary to Our Lady of Victory
 Saturday  Saints of this Day October  22 Undécimo Kaléndas Novémbris  
Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum.
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!  (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)

40 days for Life Day 24

Six to Be Canonized on Feast of Christ the King Nov 23 2014
Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here
Acts of the Apostles

Mary Mother of GOD
October 22, 2016
1562 St. Peter of Alcantara {see also October 19} “To bear such an insult one must have the patience of Peter of Alcantara.
I do not praise poverty for poverty's sake; I praise only that poverty which we patiently endure for the love of our crucified Redeemer and I consider this far more desirable than the poverty we undertake for the sake of poverty itself; for if I thought or believed otherwise, I would not seem to be firmly grounded in faith. (Letter of Peter to Teresa of Avila).
1622 Bl. Alix Le Clercq nun founded Augustinian Canonesses Congregation of Our Lady from Rome
October 22 – Our Lady of Kazan (Russia) 
A smile appeared on the face of the Virgin when Bernadette recited the Ave Maria 
In Lourdes in 1858, the Virgin Mary introduced herself to Bernadette Soubirous saying: “I am the Immaculate Conception.” At the first apparition, Bernadette clutched her Rosary: "The Lady approved with a nod and she herself held up the Rosary she had over her right arm."

Then, with a gesture both serious and sweet, as if to encourage Bernadette, the Virgin Mary made the sign of the Cross.

During the apparitions at the grotto, Bernadette prayed the Rosary. The Virgin accompanied her, and a smile appeared on her face each time Bernadette recited the Hail Mary.

The Blessed Virgin carried a Rosary in her clasped hands. She asked Bernadette to pray it along with the multitude of visitors, to do penance and to pray for sinners.  Source:

Blessed Pope John Paul II 1920-2005 feast day October 22nd

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

We ought to deal kindly with all, and to manifest those qualities which spring naturally from a heart tender and full of Christian charity; such as affability, love and humility. These virtues serve wonderfully to gain the hearts of men, and to encourage them to embrace things that are more repugnant to nature. -- St Vincent de Paul
         St. Mary Salome One of the “Three Marys” who served Christ
        St. Mark First bishop of Jerusalem not of Jewish descent
  200 St. Abercius Marcellus Bishop of Hieropolis in Phrygia apologist
  270 St. Philip Martyr bishop of Fermo, Italy
  304 St. Philip of Heraclea Bishop of Heraclea martyr
        Sts. Alexander, Heraclius, and Companions Martyrs
  314 St. Mellon First bishop of Rouen
ordained by Pope St. Stephen and sent there to preach the Gospel
  395 St. Nepotian Bishop of Clermont; succeeded the famed St. Illidius in 386; Nepotian's successor was St. Artemius
4th v. St. Cordula, who was one of the companions of St. Ursula.
  522 St. Verecundus Bishop of Verona
  668 St. Nunctus Abbot of a monastery near Merida martyr
  730 St. Moderan Benedictine bishop of Rennes France
  851 St. Alodia Martyr confessor daughter of a Muslim father Christian mother;
This great era of the martyrs in Spain began in the year 850, under the Moorish Abdur Rahman II,
  874 St. Donatus of Fiesole Irishman became bishop of Fiesole
  884 St. Bertharius Benedictine abbot martyr
1562 St. Peter of Alcantara {see also October 19} “To bear such an insult one must have the patience of Peter of Alcantara.
Quote: I do not praise poverty for poverty's sake; I praise only that poverty which we patiently endure for the love of our crucified Redeemer and I consider this far more desirable than the poverty we undertake for the sake of poverty itself; for if I thought or believed otherwise, I would not seem to be firmly grounded in faith. (Letter of Peter to Teresa of Avila).
1622 Bl. Alix Le Clercq nun founded Augustinian Canonesses Congregation of Our Lady from Rome
October 22 - Our Lady of Kazan (1579, Russia)
In 1579, the icon of Our Lady of Kazan was discovered by a young girl of ten, at the site of a house that had been destroyed in a fire, a place as tradition recalls was revealed to her in a dream. The miraculous icon was travelling with the Russian troops when Moscow was liberated of its Polish invader at the end of the
Time of Trouble in 1612

October 22 - Our Lady of Kazan (Russia)
  He Limited Neither the Number nor the Time
             Jesus promised that, in His Church, there would be miracles greater than those which He had performed. He limited neither the number nor the time when these miracles would happen, so that, as long as the Church exists, we will always see the hand of the Lord expressing His power by extraordinary events. (…)
These perceptible signs of the absolute divine power always predict serious facts, expressing either God’s mercy and goodness, or His justice and indignation. This is done for His greater glory and for the good of many souls. May these events be for us a source of graces and blessings; contributing to enlivening the faith in our life, giving us an active faith, a faith that encourages us to do good works and to avoid all evil
in order to make us worthy of God’s infinite mercy in this life and for eternity.

Saint John Bosco (1815-1888)  Apparition of Blessed Virgin on the Mountain of La Salette, written in Turin, 1875
October 22 - Our Lady of Kazan (Russia)
Mary Has Revealed the Remedy
Dear brothers and sisters of Russia, you are the children of Mary, of the best mother one could ever dream of, a Mother who never abandons her children. This is why she, who the faithful of your country venerate as Our Lady of Kazan and patroness of Russia, cast her maternal gaze on your fatherland at Fatima in 1917 when she “declared war” against Lenin's revolution.

That revolution was, by its very essence, a rebellion against God, and therefore the work of Satan. (…) At Fatima, Mary revealed the remedy to us. Before people even knew that Lenin was on his way to Russia to set off the revolution, she called out to Western Christianity at six different times—from May 13th to October 13th—to pray, to convert, to do penance and to consecrate the whole world to his Immaculate Heart…

Father Werenfried van Straaten Appeal broadcast on Radio and Television to the Russian Nation, 1991.
In Fatima, la Russie et Jean Paul II, (Fatima, Russia and John Paul II) Timothy Tindal-Robertson, Téqui, Paris, 1993

October 22 - Our Lady of the Underground (Cairo, Egypt, 12th C.) - “Be Not Afraid!” By John Paul II
Mary had no fear
On 22 October 1978, when I inherited the Ministry of Peter in Rome, more than anything else, it was this experience and devotion to Mary in my native land which I carried with me. “Be not afraid!” Christ said to the apostles (cf. Lk 24:36) and to the women (cf. Mt 28:10) after the resurrection. According to the Gospel, these words were not addressed to Mary. Strong in her faith, she had no fear. Mary's participation in the victory of Christ became clear to me above all from the experience of my people.  Pope John Paul II Be Not Afraid, p. 220
The Shrine of Our Lady of Rocamadour (I) October 22 - OUR LADY OF THE ROCK (Rocamadour, France)

According to legend, Rocamadour was the home of an early Christian hermit named Zaccheus of Jericho. It is believed that he had conversed with Jesus himself, and that he died around 70 AD. This Zaccheus is said to have been the husband of St Veronica, who wiped the face of Jesus as he climbed to Calvary.

At some point after the hermit's death and burial in Rocamadour, the site became a place of pilgrimage. Some claim the town was named for the hermit because he was a
lover of rock (roc amator). Zaccheus is also said to have brought a statue of the Black Virgin to Rocamadour, though the statue is generally dated to the 9th century. Due to the double attraction of the tomb of Zaccheus and the statue of the Virgin, pilgrims began to flock to Rocamadour. Many reported experiencing miraculous healings and conversions at the shrine.

The situation of the shrine is extraordinary, amid medieval religious fortifications giddily perched atop a precipice, surrounded by a spectacular expanse of barren countryside. The miraculous statue is equally remarkable.
Our Lady appears to be resting her weight on her hands, which are supported on the arms of her chair;
the Child is balanced on her left knee.
A major event occurred in 1166, when an ancient grave and sepulcher containing an undecayed body was discovered on the cliff of Rocamadour, near the Chapel of Our Lady. This was believed to be the early Christian hermit St Amadour, who is often equated with Zaccheus. It is said that Amadour, a faithful servant of the Blessed Virgin, came to Gaul and built the first chapel of the Blessed Virgin Mary on French soil.

Blessed Pope John Paul II 1920-2005
“Open wide the doors to Christ,” urged John Paul II during the homily at the Mass when he was installed as pope in 1978.
Born in Wadowice, Poland, Karol Jozef Wojtyla had lost his mother, father and older brother before his 21st birthday. Karol’s promising academic career at Krakow’s Jagiellonian University was cut short by the outbreak of World War II. While working in a quarry and a chemical factory, he enrolled in an “underground” seminary in Kraków. Ordained in 1946, he was immediately sent to Rome where he earned a doctorate in theology.

Back in Poland, a short assignment as assistant pastor in a rural parish preceded his very fruitful chaplaincy for university students. Soon he earned a doctorate in philosophy and began teaching that subject at Poland’s University of Lublin. Communist officials allowed him to be appointed auxiliary bishop of Krakow in 1958, considering him a relatively harmless intellectual. They could not have been more wrong!

He attended all four sessions of Vatican II and contributed especially to its Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World. Appointed as archbishop of Krakow in 1964, he was named a cardinal three years later.
Elected pope in October 1978, he took the name of his short-lived, immediate predecessor. Pope John Paul II was the first non-Italian pope in 455 years. In time, he made pastoral visits to 124 countries, including several with small Christian populations. He promoted ecumenical and interfaith initiatives, especially the 1986 Day of Prayer for World Peace in Assisi. He visited Rome’s Main Synagogue and the Western Wall in Jerusalem; he also established diplomatic relations between the Holy See and Israel. He improved Catholic-Muslim relations and in 2001 visited a mosque in Damascus, Syria.
The Great Jubilee of the Year 2000, a key event in John Paul’s ministry, was marked by special celebrations in Rome and elsewhere for Catholics and other Christians. Relations with the Orthodox Churches improved considerably during his ministry as pope.
“Christ is the center of the universe and of human history” was the opening line of his 1979 encyclical, Redeemer of the Human Race. In 1995, he described himself to the United Nations General Assembly as “a witness to hope.”

His 1979 visit to Poland encouraged the growth of the Solidarity movement there and the collapse of communism in central and eastern Europe 10 years later. He began World Youth Day and traveled to several countries for those celebrations. He very much wanted to visit China and the Soviet Union but the governments in those countries prevented that.
One of the most well-remembered photos of his pontificate was his one-on-one conversation in 1983 with Mehmet Ali Agca, who had attempted to assassinate him two years earlier.

In his 27 years of papal ministry, John Paul wrote 14 encyclicals and five books, canonized 482 saints and beatified 1,338 people.
In the last years of his life, he suffered from Parkinson’s disease and was forced to cut back on some of his activities.

Pope Benedict XVI beatified John Paul II on May 1, 2011, Divine Mercy Sunday.
Comment:  Before John Paul’s funeral Mass in St. Peter’s Square, hundreds of thousands of people had waited patiently for a brief moment to pray before his body, which lay in state inside St. Peter’s for several days. The media coverage of his funeral was unprecedented. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, then dean of the College of Cardinals and later Pope Benedict XVI, presided at the funeral Mass and concluded his homily by saying: “None of us can ever forget how, in that last Easter Sunday of his life, the Holy Father, marked by suffering, came once more to the window of the Apostolic Palace and one last time gave his blessing urbi et orbi [‘to the city and to the world’]. “We can be sure that our beloved pope is standing today at the window of the Father’s house, that sees us and blesses us. Yes, bless us, Holy Father. We entrust your dear soul to the Mother of God, your Mother, who guided you each day and who will guide you now to the glory of her Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.”
Quote:  In his 1999 Letter to the Elderly, Pope John Paul II wrote: “Grant, O Lord of life,...when the moment of our definitive ‘passage’ comes, that we may face it with serenity, without regret for what we shall leave behind. For in meeting you, after having sought you for so long, we shall find once more every authentic good which we have known here on earth, in the company of all those who have gone before us marked with the sign of faith and hope....Amen.”

1st century St. Mary Salome One of the “Three Marys” who served Christ
Hierosólymis sanctæ Maríæ Salóme, matris sanctórum Jacóbi et Joánnis Apostolórum, quæ in Evangelio légitur circa Dómini sepultúram sollícita.
    At Jerusalem, St. Mary Salome, the mother of the apostles James and John, who is referred to in the Gospel as having cared for the burial of our Lord.
She was the mother of St. James the Great and St. John, and was the wife of Zebedee.
Mary Salome witnessed the Crucifixion and was among
the women at the burial place on the day of the Resurrection.

St. Mark First bishop of Jerusalem not of Jewish descent
Item Hierosólymis beáti Marci Epíscopi, claríssimi et doctíssimi viri, qui primus ex Géntibus Ecclésiam Hierosolymórum suscépit regéndam, ac, non multo post, sub Antoníno Imperatóre, martyrii méruit palmam.
    At Jerusalem, blessed Bishop Mark, a noble and learned man, who was the first Gentile to govern the Church of Jerusalem.  His brief episcopate was rewarded by the palm of martyrdom under Emperor Antoninus.

He is reported to have been martyred after two decades.
200 St. Abercius Marcellus Bishop of Hieropolis in Phrygia; apologist
Hierápoli, in Phrygia, sancti Abércii Epíscopi, qui sub Marco Antoníno Imperatóre cláruit.
    At Hieropolis in Phrygia, St. Abercius, bishop, who flourished under Emperor Marcus Antoninus.

whose hagiography dates to the second century. The bishop of Hieropolis in Phrygia, he made a visit to Rome at the age of seventy-two. In Rome, Abercius was supposedly commanded by Emperor Marcus Aurelius to rid his daughter, Lucilla, of a demon. Following this event, Abercius is recorded as visiting Syria and the Euphrates River. The details of Abercius' life led to debate through the centuries concerning their authenticity and veracity. It is known that Abercius was the bishop of Heiropolis in the area called Phrygia Salutaris. In the original “Inscriptions of Abercius, an epitaph on a stele now in the Vatican, the saintly bishop comments on the dazzling seal of Baptism that unites Christians everywhere. He speaks of the Holy Eucharist as well. Later interpretations of this Inscription were written in Greek and widely embellished, leading to debate.
Abercius appears in Greek records in the tenth century but was not included in St. Jerome's martyrology.
200 St Abercius, Bishop of Hieropolis
 There lived in Phrygia Salutaris during the second century a certain Abercius Marcellus, who was bishop of Hieropolis and who, while in his seventy-second year, made a visit to Rome. His homeward journey was taken through Syria and Mesopotamia, he visited Nisibis, and everywhere he went he met Christians, whose foreheads bore the shining seal of baptism and whose souls were nourished with the body and blood of Christ, the virgin-born, under the forms of bread and wine. Abercius when he returned home prepared a tomb for himself and had carved thereon an epitaph which, in symbolical and to the non-Christian baffling terms, briefly described the journey which had made so deep an impression on the Greek disciple of the all-seeing and universal Shepherd, who had gone to Rome “to contemplate majesty”.
    A Greek hagiographer made use of the epitaph as the basis of a fictitious account of the life of St Abercius. According to this ingenious narrative the bishop made so many converts by his preaching and miracles that he deserved to be called “equal to the Apostles” and his fame reached the ears of Marcus Aurelius. The expedition to Rome was made in consequence of a summons from the emperor, whose daughter Lucilla was afflicted by a devil (the symbolical gold-clad queen of the epitaph becomes the empress).  St Abercius successfully exorcized this evil spirit and commanded it to transport a great stone altar from the Roman hippodrome to his episcopal city, where it should provide materials for his tomb. Other episodes were added from the legends of other saints, and the writer appended to his tale a transcription of the original genuine epitaph of Abercius.
   This epitaph was formerly regarded with nearly as much suspicion as the vita of which it formed a part, until in 1882 the English archaeologist, W. M. Ramsay, discovered at Kelendres, near Synnada, an inscribed stone bearing the equivalent of the date A.D. 216.  It was a memorial inscription to one Alexander, the son of Antony, which was found to correspond almost word for word with the first and last verses of the epitaph of Abercius.  In the following year Ramsay found, built into the walls of the baths at Hieropolis, further fragments that supplied much of the part of the epitaph of Abercius missing from the other stone.  With these two inscriptions and the text given in the life of the saint an authentic text of great value was restored.  But the claim of Abercius to be a Christian was still not admitted by everyone to be established.  On account of the symbolism with which it was expressed, interpreters of the inscription identified him as a priest of Cybele or of Attis or of some syncretistic cult, and it was only after long and lively controversies that it was generally admitted that the Abercius of the inscription was a Christian bishop.  He has been venerated liturgically among the Greeks since the tenth century, and he is named today in the Roman Martyrology, but as bishop of Hierapolis (the see of St Papias) instead of Hieropolis, an error found in the bogus life.
  The inscriptions which Sir W. M. Ramsay found at Hieropolis, and which now, by the gracious act of the discoverer, adorns the Christian Museum at the Lateran have created a considerable literature. All the discussion, which has since arisen, has added very little to the interpretation that the Anglican Bishop Lightfoot, with sure scholarly instinct, published in vol. i of his Ignatius and Polycarp (1885). Such sceptical critics as G. Ficker and A. Dieterich have not produced a fragment of evidence that would raise a doubt regarding the Christian character of the inscription. The work of F. J, Dölger, Ichthys (see especially vol. ii, 1922, pp. 454—507), may be recommended as replying effectively, along with many other vindications, to the objections, which have been urged, Dom Leclercq’s article in DAC. (vol. i, cc. 66—87), provides good illustrations and a full bibliography the same scholar’s article in the Catholic Encyclopedia, vol. i, pp. 40—41, prints the Greek text of the inscription with an English translation. With regard to the Life of Abercius, the two more ancient texts of this Greek fiction have been critically edited by T. Nissen, S. Abercii Vita (1912) though historically worthless, it contains geographical data of value, and its quotations from Bardesanes are of curious interest. Writing in 1935 Father Thurston said he was inclined considerably to modify certain views expressed by him in the second of two articles on St Abercius in The Month for May and July 1890.
270 St. Philip Martyr bishop of Fermo, Italy
Apud Firmum, in Picéno, natális sancti Philíppi, Epíscopi et Mártyris.
    At Fermo in Piceno, the birthday of St. Philip, bishop and martyr.

He suffered martyrdom in the reign of Emperor Aurelian.
Little is known of him save that his relics are preserved in the local cathedral of Fermo.
304 St. Philip of Heraclea Bishop of Heraclea martyr.
Hadrianópoli, in Thrácia, natális sanctórum Mártyrum Philíppi Epíscopi, Sevéri Presbyteri, Eusébii et Hermétis; qui, sub Juliáno Apóstata, post cárceres et flagélla, incéndio cremáti sunt.
    At Adrianople in Thrace, the birthday of the holy martyrs Philip, a bishop, Severus, a priest, Eusebius, and Hermes.  After being imprisoned and scourged, they were burned alive in the time of Julian the Apostate.

During the persecution of the Church under Emperor Diocletian, Philip was arrested along with his deacon Severus and two other clergy, Hermes and Eusebius. Taken before the magistrate, Blassus, they were ordered to hand over the Sacred Scripture, but refused. Moved to Adrianople, they were burned at the stake. All four share the same feast day.

304 Ss. Philip, Bishop Of Heraclea, And His Companions, Martyrs
   Philip, Bishop of Heraclea, the metropolis of Thrace, was a martyr of Christ in the persecution of Diocletian. Having discharged every duty of a faithful minister as deacon and priest, he was raised to the episcopal dignity and governed that church with virtue and prudence when it was shaken by persecution.  To extend and perpetuate the work of God he trained many disciples in sacred learning and solid piety.  Two of the most eminent among them had the happiness to be companions of his martyrdom, namely, Severus, a priest, and Hermes, a deacon, who was formerly the first magistrate of the city, but after he was engaged in the ministry earned his livelihood with his hands, and brought up his son to do the same. 
When Diocletian’s first edicts against the Christians were issued, many advised the bishop to leave the city; but he would not stir, continuing to exhort the brethren to constancy and patience. Aristomachus, an officer, came by the governor’s order to seal up the door of the church. Philip said to him, “Do you imagine that God dwells within walls, and not rather in the hearts of men?” and continued to hold his assembly outside.  The next day officers came and set their seal upon the sacred vessels and books. The faithful who beheld this were much grieved; but the bishop stood leaning against the door of the church, encouraged them with burning words, and refused to leave his post.
  Afterwards the governor, Bassus, finding Philip and many of his flock keeping the Lord’s Day assembled before the church, gave orders that they should be brought before him. “Which of you”, he asked, “is the teacher of the Christians?” Philip replied, “I am”. Bassus said, “You know that the emperor has forbidden your assemblies. Give up to me the vessels of gold and silver which you use and the books which you read.”  The bishop answered, “The vessels we will give you, for it is not by precious metal but by charity that God is honoured. But the sacred books it becomes neither you to demand nor me to surrender.”  The governor ordered executioners to be called, and commanded one among them to torture Philip, who bore his torments with invincible courage.  Hermes told the governor that it was not in his power to destroy the word of God, even though he should take away all the writings in which the true doctrine is contained, and in reply Bassus had him scourged.  After this he was taken with Publius, the governor’s assistant, to the place where the sacred writings and plate were hid. Publius would have taken away some of the vessels, but being hindered by Hermes he gave him such a blow on the face that blood flowed.  The governor was provoked at Publius for this action, and ordered the wound to be dressed.  He then ordered Philip and the other prisoners to be brought to the market-place, and the church roof to be stripped. In the meantime soldiers burned the sacred writings the flames mounting so high as to frighten the bystanders.  This being told to Philip in the market-place, he spoke at great length of the vengeance with which God threatens the wicked and told the people how their gods and temples had been often burned.
  Then a pagan priest appeared in the market-place with his ministers, who brought with them the necessary preparations for a sacrifice, and the governor Bassus came, followed by a multitude, some of whom pitied the suffering Christians others, especially the Jews, clamoured loudly against them.  Bassus pressed the bishop to sacrifice to the gods, to the emperors and to the fortune of the city. Pointing at a large and beautiful statue of Hercules, he bid him just to touch it Philip replied by expounding the value of graven images to stone-carvers but their helplessness to worshippers.  Then, turning to Hermes, Bassus asked if he, at least, would sacrifice. “I will not”, replied Hermes, “I am a Christian.” Bassus asked, “If we can persuade Philip to offer sacrifice, will you follow his example?” Hermes answered he would not neither could they persuade Philip. After many useless threats and pressing them to sacrifice at least to the emperors, Bassus ordered them to be carried to prison. As they went along, some of the rabble pushed Philip and threw him down; he got up again with a smiling face. Many admired his patience, and the martyrs entered the prison joyfully, singing a psalm of thanksgiving to God. A few days after, they were allowed to stay at the house of one Pancras, near the prison, where many Christians and some neophytes came to them to be instructed, and later were removed to a prison near the theatre, which had a door into that building, with a secret entry. They there received at night the crowds that came to visit them.
   In the meantime, Bassus went out of office at the end of his term and Justin succeeded him. The Christians were much disappointed at this change for Bassus often yielded to reason and his wife had for some time been a Christian herself but Justin was a violent man.  Zoilus, the magistrate of the city, brought Philip before him, and Justin declared once more what was the emperor’s order, and pressed him to sacrifice. Philip answered, “I am a Christian, and cannot do what you require. You can punish our refusal, but you cannot force our compliance.”  Justin threatened him with torture, and the bishop replied, “You may torment, but will not conquer me no power can induce me to sacrifice”.  He was told he would be dragged by the feet through the streets and thrown into prison to suffer anew.  “God grant it may be so”, was Philip’s comment. Then Justin told the soldiers to tie his feet and drag him along.  They dashed him against the stones so roughly that he was torn and bruised all over, and the Christians carried him in their arms when he was brought back to his dungeon.
  The persecutors had long been in quest of the priest Severus, who had hidden himself. Moved by the Holy Ghost, he at length surrendered and was committed to prison.  Hermes was firm in his examination before Justin, and was treated in the same manner. The three martyrs were kept imprisoned in a bad place for seven months and then removed to Adrianople, where they were confined in a private house till the arrival of the governor.  The next day, holding his court at the Baths, Justin had Philip brought before him and beaten till his flesh was a pulp.  His endurance astonished the executioners and Justin himself, who remanded him to prison.  Hermes was next examined. The officers of the court were favourable to him because he had been magistrate of Heraclea and a popular one.  But he persisted in his profession, and was sent back to prison, where the martyrs joyfully gave thanks to Jesus Christ for this beginning of their victory.  Three days after this, Justin brought them again before his tribunal, and having in vain pressed Philip to obey the emperors, said to Hermes, “If the approach of death makes this man think life not worth preserving, do not you be insensible to its blessings. Offer sacrifice.”  Hermes replied by denouncing idolatry, so that Justin, enraged, cried out, “You speak as if you wanted to make me a Christian.”
Having then consulted his assessor and others, he pronounced sentence: “We order Philip and Hermes who, despising the commands of the emperor, have rendered themselves unworthy of the name and rights of Roman citizens, to be burned, that others may learn to obey.”
  They went joyfully to the stake. Philip’s feet were so mutilated that he could not walk, and had to be carried. Hermes also walked with much difficulty, and said to him, “Master, let us hasten to go to the Lord. Why should we be concerned about our feet, since we shall have no more use for them?” Then he said to the crowds that followed, “the Lord revealed to me that I must suffer. While I was asleep, methought I saw a dove as white as snow, which rested on my head. Then it descended upon my breast and offered me food that was very sweet to the taste. I knew that it was the Lord that called me, and was pleased to honour me with martyrdom.”  At the place of punishment the executioners, according to custom, covered Philip’s feet and legs with earth up to the knees, and tied his hands behind his back.  They likewise made Hermes go down into the ditch whereat, having to support himself on a stick because of the weakness of his feet, he exclaimed laughing, “Well, demon, you don’t help me even here.”
Before the executioners lighted the fire Hermes called Velogius, a Christian, and said to him, “I implore you, by our Saviour Jesus Christ, tell my son Philip from me to restore whatever was committed to my charge, that I may incur no fault; even the laws of this world ordain it. Tell him also, that he is young and must work for his living as he has seen me do; and behave himself well to everybody.”  Then his hands were tied, and fire was set to the pile. The martyrs praised and gave thanks to God as long as they were able to speak. Their bodies were found entire:  Philip, a venerable old man, seemed to have had his youth restored, and his hands were stretched out as in prayer Hermes with a clear countenance, only his ears a little livid. Justin ordered their bodies to be thrown into the river, but some citizens of Adrianople went in boats with nets, and fished them out. Severus the priest, who had been left alone in prison, when he was informed of their martyrdom, rejoiced at their glory, and earnestly besought God not to think him unworthy to partake in it, since he had confessed His name with them.  He was heard, and suffered martyrdom the day following.  The order for burning the Holy Scriptures and destroying the churches points out the time of their suffering to have been after the edicts of Diocletian.  The Roman Martyrology erroneously puts it in the time of Julian the Apostate, and adds the name of a St Eusebius who does not belong to this group.
The martyrdom of SS. Philip, Hermes and Severus may be counted among the best attested of the episodes of the Diocletian persecution. It is commemorated on this same day in the Syriac breviarium of the early fourth century. There is, moreover, a certain indirect confirmation in the reference made to it in the persia of SS. Gurius and companions (see Gebhatdt and Dobschutz in their edition of this last Text und Untersuchungen, vol. xxxvii, p. 6). The Latin text of the acts of Philip of Heraclea has been printed by Ruinart, and by the Bollandists, October, vol. ix. H. Leclercq provides a French translation in Les Martyrs, vol. ii, pp. 238—257. Cf. also P. Franchi de’ Cavalieri in Studi e Testi, no. 27, Note agiografiche, fascicule 5, and 175, 9.
Sts. Alexander, Heraclius, and Companions Martyrs.
Item sanctórum Mártyrum Alexándri Epíscopi, Heraclíi mílitis, et Sociórum.
    Also, the holy martyrs Alexander, a bishop, Heraclius, a soldier, and their companions.
Alexander was a bishop who preached the faith. He was arrested and tortured, converting his guard, Heraclius, during his imprisonment. Others at the prison joined them in martyrdom.
314 St. Mellon First bishop of Rouen.
Rotómagi sancti Melánii Epíscopi, qui, a sancto Stéphano Papa ordinátus, illuc ad prædicándum Evangélium missus est.
    At Rouen, St. Melanius, bishop, who was ordained by Pope St. Stephen and sent there to preach the Gospel.

France. A native of Cardiff, Wales, he is listed as Mallonous, Mellouns, and Melanius.
He was converted while in Rome and sent to France as a missionary by Pope St. Stephen.
St Mallonus, Or Mellon, Bishop Of Rouen
The name Mallonus (written Melanius in the Roman Martyrology) appears as that of the first bishop of Rouen in ancient lists and he lived perhaps in the earlier part of the fourth century, but nothing is known about him.  According to late and worthless legends he was a pagan Briton who was converted in Rome and sent by Pope St Stephen I to preach the gospel to the Gauls. At the village near Cardiff called in Welsh Llanlleurog the church is dedicated in his honour and the place is now known as Saint Mellons. Possibly this is the origin of the idea that he was a native of Cardiff.
There are three short Latin lives of St Mallonus, which are printed in the Acta Sanctorum, October, vol. ix, and in Sauvage (Ann de S. Mellon, 1884), but, as Vacandard maintains (Vie de Saint Ouen, p. 92), these biographies date only from the twelfth century and can deserve no confidence. See also Duchesne, Fastes Épiscopaux, vol. ii, pp. 200—203; and LBS., vol. iii, p. 466.
395 St. Nepotian Bishop of Clermont succeeded the famed St. Illidius in 386; Nepotian's successor was St. Artemius
also listed as Neptiamus. He succeeded the famed St. Illidius in 386. Clermont was blessed with a vast roster of sainted bishops. Nepotian's successor was St. Artemius.
4th v. St. Cordula, who was one of the companions of St. Ursula.
Apud Colóniam Agrippínam sanctæ Córdulæ, quæ, cum esset una ex sodálibus sanctæ Ursulæ, atque aliárum supplíciis et cædibus pertérrita se occultásset, postrídie, ejus rei pænitens, se ultro patefécit Hunnis, et, novíssima ómnium, martyrii corónam accépit.
    At Cologne, St. Cordula, who was one of the companions of St. Ursula.  Being terrified by the punishments and slaughter of the others, she hid herself, but repenting her deed, on the next day she declared herself to the Huns of her own accord, and thus was the last of them all to receive the crown of martyrdom.

Von Balthasar used her story in his book Cordula oder der Ernstfall (1966), later published in English as The Moment of Christian Witness. Little is known about her, except that she was one of the 11,000 companions of St Ursula, who made a pilgrimage to Rome and ended up being martyred at Cologne. As Cordula witnessed the massacre of her 10,999 companions, she took fright and hid in the ship. Ashamed of her cowardly (but very human) action, she came out the next day and was promptly martyred - which is why her feast (22 October) is the day after that of St Ursula and her company.
522 St. Verecundus Bishop of Verona Italy.
Verónæ sancti Verecúndi, Epíscopi et Confessóris.    At Verona, St. Verecundius, bishop and confessor.
The details of his labors are lost but the Goths ruled Verona at the time. St. Valens succeeded him.
668 St. Nunctus Abbot of a monastery near Merida martyr.
 also called Noint.
The abbot of a monastery near Merida, Spain, he was murdered by a group of robbers. He was venerated as a martyr.
730 St. Moderan Benedictine bishop of Rennes France.
from 703-720. He made a pilgrimage to Rome and resigned his see to become a hermit in Berceto Abbey, in Parma, Italy.
He is also called Moran and Moderammus.
851 St. Alodia Martyr confessor daughter of a Muslim father Christian mother.
Oscæ, in Hispánia, sanctárum Vírginum Nunilónis et Alódiæ sorórum, quæ, a Saracénis ob fídei confessiónem capitáli senténtia punítæ, martyrium consummárunt.
    At Huesca in Spain, the holy virgins Nunilo and Alodia, sisters, who endured martyrdom by being condemned to capital punishment by the Saracens for the confession of the faith.

in Huesca, Spain. Alodia and her sister, Nunilo, were caught up in the persecutions conducted by Abdal-Rabman II, the ruler of Cordoba. Alodia and Nunilo dedicated themselves to Christ, despite their father's disapproval, and were arrested.
When they refused to deny Christ, they were placed in a brothel and later beheaded.
This great era of the martyrs in Spain began in the year 850, under the Moorish Abdur Rahman II, and these two maidens were among the numberless martyrs who in those days sealed their fidelity to God with their blood. They were sisters, living at Huesca, their father being a Mohammedan and their mother a Christian.
After the death of her first husband, she was so foolish as to take a second who also was a Mohammedan.  Her two daughters, who had been brought up in the Christian faith, had much to suffer from the brutality of their stepfather, who was a person of importance. They were also pestered by many suitors to marry, but having decided to serve God in the state of virginity they obtained leave to go to the house of a Christian aunt.
When the laws of Abdur Rahman were published against the Christians, they were too well known by their family and the repute of their zeal and piety not to be soon arrested. They appeared before the kadi not only undaunted but with a holy joy. He employed flattery and promises to try to work them into compliance, and proceeded to threats.  When these failed him, he put them into the hands of wicked women, hoping these would be able to insinuate themselves into the hearts of the Christian women.  But Christ enlightened and protected them, and the temptresses were obliged to declare to the judge that nothing could conquer their resolution. He therefore condemned them to be beheaded, which was accordingly done, and their passion is mentioned in the Roman Martyrology on this day.
Our information is all, practically speaking, derived from the Memoriale Sanctorum of St Eulogius. The relevant passages are quoted and commented upon in the Acta Sanctorum, October, vol. ix.
874 St. Donatus of Fiesole; Irishman, became bishop of Fiesole
In Túscia sancti Donáti Scoti, Epíscopi Fæsuláni.
    In Tuscany, St. Donatus of Scotland, bishop of Fiesole.

Italy. Traveling through that city while returning from a pilgrimage to Rome in 829, Donatus entered the cathedral. Candles caught light and bells rang, prompting the people to elect him bishop.
He wasa noted scholar and became advisor to Lothair I and his son, Louis II.

THE tradition of Fiesole is that Donatus was a man of Irish birth who in the early part of the ninth century made a pilgrimage to Rome. On the return journey he arrived at Fiesole at a time when the clergy and people were gathered together to elect a new bishop, praying earnestly that the Holy Ghost would send them one who would be a true pastor in the manifold troubles with which they were beset. No one would have taken any notice of the stranger Donatus as he entered the cathedral, for he was an insignificant little man, but at the moment he crossed the threshold the bells began to ring and all the lamps and candles were kindled without human agency. This was taken to be a sign from Heaven in favour of Donatus, and he was unanimously acclaimed bishop.

The life of St Donatus is interspersed with verses and an epitaph, supposed to have been written by himself, according to which he was an enthusiastic teacher of grammar and prosody and a trusted servant of King Lothair I and his son Louis II. One of the poems describes the beauty of Ireland. The feast of St Donatus of Fiesole is observed today throughout Ireland.
There is a biography—in fact more than one—printed in the Acta Sanctorum, October, vol. ix. See further DNB, vol. xv, p. 216; M. Esposito in the Journal of Theological Studies, vol. xxxiii (1923), p. 129 L. Gougaud, Les saints irlandais hors d’Irlande (1936), p. 76 A. M. Tommasini, Irish Saints in Italy (1937), pp. 383—394 and J. F. Kenney, Sources for the Early History of Ireland, vol. i, pp. 601—602.
884 St. Bertharius Benedictine abbot martyr.
A member of the royal house of France, he became abbot of Monte Cassino, in Italy, in 856. Invading Saracens martyred him and several companions in the chapel. An altar in Monte Cassino commemorates his death.
1562 St. Peter of Alcantara {see also October 19}
Peter was a contemporary of well-known 16th-century Spanish saints, including Ignatius of Loyola and John of the Cross. He served as confessor to St. Teresa of Avila. Church reform was a major issue in Peter’s day, and he directed most of his energies toward that end. His death came one year before the Council of Trent ended.

Born into a noble family (his father was the governor of Alcantara in Spain), Peter studied law at Salamanca University and, at 16, joined the so-called Observant Franciscans (also known as the discalced, or barefoot, friars). While he practiced many penances, he also demonstrated abilities which were soon recognized. He was named the superior of a new house even before his ordination as a priest; at the age of 39, he was elected provincial; he was a very successful preacher. Still, he was not above washing dishes and cutting wood for the friars. He did not seek attention; indeed, he preferred solitude.
Peter’s penitential side was evident when it came to food and clothing. It is said that he slept only 90 minutes each night. While others talked about Church reform, Peter’s reform began with himself. His patience was so great that a proverb arose:
"To bear such an insult one must have the patience of Peter of Alcantara."
In 1554, Peter, having received permission, formed a group of Franciscans who followed the Rule of St. Francis with even greater rigor. These friars were known as Alcantarines. Some of the Spanish friars who came to North and South America in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries were members of this group. At the end of the 19th century, the Alcantarines were joined with other Observant friars to form the Order of Friars Minor.
As spiritual director to St. Teresa, Peter encouraged her in promoting the Carmelite reform. His preaching brought many people to religious life, especially to the Secular Franciscan Order, the friars and the Poor Clares.  He was canonized in 1669.
Comment: Poverty was a means and not an end for Peter. The goal was following Christ in ever greater purity of heart. Whatever obstructed that path could be eliminated with no real loss. The philosophy of our consumer age—you are worth what you own—may find Peter of Alcantara’s approach severe. Ultimately his approach is life-giving while consumerism is deadly.
Quote: I do not praise poverty for poverty's sake; I praise only that poverty which we patiently endure for the love of our crucified Redeemer and I consider this far more desirable than the poverty we undertake for the sake of poverty itself; for if I thought or believed otherwise, I would not seem to be firmly grounded in faith. (Letter of Peter to Teresa of Avila).
1622 Bl. Alix Le Clercq nun founded Augustinian Canonesses Congregation of Our Lady from Rome.
January 9th (France) In France, the name Alix has a Name Day celebrated on January 9th.
October 22nd (Catholic Church) The Catholic Church has designated
October 22nd as an official Saint Day for the baby name Alix in honor of Bl. Alix Le Clercq.
Alix Le Clercq was born at Remiremont in the duchy of Lorraine in 1576. Her family was a solid one, of good position, but little is known about her life until she was nearly seventeen. Alix was attractive and intelligent, what the French call spirituelle. About this time, she became a nun. When her family moved to Hymont, she met Peter Fourier, who became her spiritual director, and in 1597 she and three other women formed a new foundation under his direction. At her father's insistence, she went to a convent at Ormes, was unimpressed by its secular atmosphere, and in 1598 the wealthy Judith d'Apremont gave Alix and her group a house on her estate, which they used as their Motherhouse in the founding of a new congregation dedicated to the education of children. Despite opposition from Alix's father and others, and the lack of formal ecclesiastical approval, they established several new foundations.
   In 1616 they received two papal bulls formally approving the Augustinian Canonesses of the Congregation of Our Lady from Rome. Differences about what the bulls granted and internal strife caused Father Fourier to replace Alix as superioress of the Congregation, and the last years of her life were bitter, as even Father Fourier seemed to turn against her. She died in her convent at Nancy on January 9, and was beatified in 1947.

1622 Bd Alix Le Clercq, Virgin, Co-Foundress of The Augustinian Canonesses Regular of The Congregation of Our Lady
One of the outstanding achievements of the Counter-Reformation—like some of its others, long overdue—was the beginning of proper provision for the schooling and education of girls. In 1535 St Angela Merici had founded the Ursulines for this work; the teaching Religious of Notre Dame were begun by St Joan de Lestonnac in 1606; in 1609 Mary Ward opened her first school for poor children; and to these must be added the establishment by St Peter Fourier of the Augustinian Canonesses of the Congregation of Our Lady, an undertaking in which Alix Le Clercq came to be associated as co-foundress.
 She was born at Remiremont in the duchy of Lorraine in 1576. Her family was a solid one, of good position, but little is known about her life until she was nearly seventeen. By that time she was a tall, good-looking girl, fair in colouring, of a somewhat delicate constitution, attractive and intelligent: in a word Alix was, as Mgr Francis Gonne remarks, what the French call spirituelle. Another account, written by herself, tells us that she revelled in such pleasures as music and dancing, and being very popular was subjected to a good deal of flattery. The implication is that she “revelled” too much: perhaps she did; but it should be remembered that, when once people have become convinced that they have any faults at all, they are apt to exaggerate them. And there is good evidence, her own, that even at this time Alix Le Clercq was not devoid of “seriousness” “amid all the gaiety her heart was sad”, and gradually her harmless pleasures seemed to her to be no more than frivolity.
Then, when she was nineteen, she had the first of the striking dreams that became so marked a feature in her life. In this dream she was in church and approaching the altar, when beside it she saw our Lady, dressed in a strange religious habit, who beckoned her, saying, “Come, daughter, and I will welcome you”.  Soon after, the Le Clercq family moved to Hymont, and Alix first met St Peter Fourier, who was parish priest of Mattaincourt, near by. It was in the church of this village, at Mass on three Sundays running, that she seemed to hear the seductive music of a dance-drum, and then seemed to see its player, an evil spirit, followed by a crowd of young people, “full of sprightly merriment”. There and then her conversion to a different sort of life was complete “I resolved on the spot that I would not belong to such a company”.
   Alix straightway cast aside her fine clothes and wore a simple peasant dress; she hardly left her home; and, under the careful direction of Father Fourier, she set herself to discover—not without much spiritual suffering—what it was that God required of her.  Both her father and the priest proposed that she should go into a convent but she said “No” to this, for from another dream she had learned that it was in no existing order that her vocation lay.  She told St Peter Fourier that she was obsessed by the idea of a new, “active”, foundation.  He was very properly sceptical about this, but at length told her to see if she could find other girls of like mind—unlikely enough in a remote village of the Vosges. But sure enough Alix found them.
  And so at the midnight Mass of Christmas 1597 Alix Le Clercq, Ganthe André, and Isabel and Joan de Louvroir were allowed publicly to dedicate themselves wholly to God. Four weeks later it was made clear to St Peter Fourier that these neophytes were to found a community under his direction. But meanwhile they were the subjects of adverse criticism. “The unassuming behaviour of these girls was called singularity; their zeal, religiosity; their simple dress, hypocritical affectation; and their humble bearing, silliness.”  This gossip naturally upset Mr Le Clercq; but he lacked imagination, and could think of nothing better than to order his daughter to go as a boarder to a convent of Tertiaries of St Elizabeth at Ormes.  She obeyed; and found this relaxed convent to be something like what we should call a women’s residential club. But her father would not let her come home.
   A way out of the impasse was opened from an unexpected quarter.  Three miles from Mattaincourt, at the village of Poussay, there was an abbey of secular canonesses, aristocratic and wealthy ladies who led a form of the Conventual life mercifully no longer existing in the Church. One of these good ladies, Madame Judith d’Apremont, made up her mind to sponsor Alix Le Clercq and her three companions and to lodge them in a small house on her estate. Accordingly they took up their quarters there on the eve of Corpus Christi 1598; and after a retreat they unanimously and independently declared to Father Fourier that they believed themselves called to begin a new congregation, that for them this was what would be most pleasing to God. It was decided that their work should be education, “to teach children to read and write and sew, and especially to love and serve God”; that they should never give up this work; and that it should be done, whether for rich or poor, without charge, “as that is more pleasing to God”.
The life of the embryonic congregation was notable in these early days for a measure of physical austerity that was later to be found incompatible with the hard discipline of teaching the young. But the spectacle of such devotion at their very door inspired some of the younger canonesses of the abbey to ask to be transferred to the new foundation—they wanted to stop having “all the privileges of the Conventual life with none of its hardships”. Their lady abbess, Madame d’Apremont, was alarmed—many monasteries in France had learned nothing from the impact of the Reformation on monasticism in other lands—fearing that her own community might be broken up; and for some weeks there was a rather critical situation. But again Madame d’Apremont solved the difficulty, by providing another house, this time at Mattaincourt. It was to be the first proper convent of the new congregation.
   But as yet the sisters were not formally religious, and their anomalous position upset Mr Le Clercq, who again interfered with his daughter, telling her that she was to withdraw to the Poor Clare house at Verdun. St Peter Fourier told Alix she must obey, and in great anguish of spirit she got ready. But her father, moved as he said by some power beyond his understanding, withdrew his order and ceased to interfere.  There then occurred a determined attempt on the part of a Franciscan Recollect friar, Father Fleurant Boulengier, to “capture” the community for the Poor Clares. Peter Fourier’s belief in the divine acceptance of his foundation wavered he recommended, with a force only short of a direct command, that they should regularize their position by joining the Clares—Alix and her companions refused. “We have banded together”, they said, “to look after neglected children:  why should we be dragged away from this and sent to a convent that God does not want us to go to?”
   Father Fourier, in equal good faith, interpreted the will of God in the opposite sense. It is an old dilemma. Or was he just trying them? In any case, after months of uncertainty, he accepted the sisters’ decision, and so did Father Fleurant.
   In 1601 St Peter Fourier and Bd Alix made their second foundation, at Saint-Mihiel; Nancy, Pont-à-Mousson, Saint-Nicolas de Port, Verdun and Châlons followed, the last, in 1613, being the first outside Lorraine.  All this time there was no sign from Rome of official approval for the new congregation.  The novel request that day-pupils should be taken, and therefore admitted into the enclosure, roused hostility (“The Church is going to the dogs, sir”); and the delay in approbation lent an edge to wagging tongues and endangered the existence of the convents. Fourier sent Bd Alix and another sister to the Ursulines in Paris to learn more about monastic life and teaching methods and again they were invited to give up a separate existence.  This time Alix seriously considered if it were not the best thing to do.  Father (afterwards cardinal) de Bérulle settled it. “I don’t believe”, he declared to her bluntly, “that God is asking for this fusion. Dismiss it from your mind.”
   It was not till 1616 that in two bulls the Holy See signified its first approval of the Augustinian Canonesses of the Congregation of Our Lady.*{*Their style as “canonesses” was confirmed in 1628; it carried with it, of course, the obligation and privilege of reciting the Divine Office in choir.}  Subsequently the Bishop of Toul approved their constitutions; and St Peter Fourier then proceeded to clothe thirteen of them with the habit, designed in accordance with what Bd Alix had seen our Lady wearing in the dream recorded above; and then they all had to begin a twelve months’ novitiate, in spite of the fact that some of them had been leading a conventual life for twenty years. But all was not well. The papal bulls of approbation had not mentioned the congregation as a whole, but only its convent at Nancy. Now there was already a certain “feeling” between this house and the others, for Nancy was under the protection of Cardinal Charles of Lorraine, and the primate of Lorraine, Antony de Lénoncourt, had practically taken its direction out of Father Fourier’s hands into his own. The apparent partiality of the bulls aggravated this spirit of dissension, and a very unhappy state of affairs resulted.  In the upshot Bd Alix had to yield her rightful place as superioress in the congregation to Mother Ganthe André, “without whom”, in the words of Father Fourier, “our order would never have been established”, though she and Alix were far from being in agreement about its organization.
   That sort of trial heroic sanctity seems to take in its stride. But that was not all.  Bd Alix was subjected to personal attack and the venom of slanderous rumour.  At the same time she had to face spiritual dryness, temptations and a “dark night” of great severity.  And as, in the words of one of her nuns, “she entered into the sufferings of others so feelingly that she made them her own”, her burden was indeed heavy: she had plenty of opportunity to put into practice her own axiom— common to all saints, and mystics—“I value one act of humility more than a hundred ecstasies”.  St Peter Fourier himself provided further opportunities.   Bd Alix is now recognized as the co-foundress of the Augustinian Canonesses of Our Lady; but it was not so while she lived, and Father Fourier did not allow it to appear so. He consistently and openly “kept her in her place”.  It is possible that he was, in a sense, a little afraid of her, for in contrast with his own solid, cautious temperament, Alix Le Clercq must often have seemed to him alarmingly “imaginative”.
   In December 1621 she was allowed to resign the office of local superioress at Nancy, and she entered upon a few weeks of radiant peace, which was in fact a prelude to death a month later. She had been seriously ill for a long time, and now when it was known the doctors had given up hope, all Nancy was grieved, from the duke and duchess of Lorraine to the schoolgirls and the beggar-women.  St Peter Fourier hurried to Nancy, but he would not enter the Conventual enclosure till the bishop ordered him to do so.  Then he heard Alix’s confession and prepared her for the passage “from death to life”.  On the Epiphany she took a solemn farewell of her community, exhorting them to love and unity, and on January 9, after a searching agony, the end came. Bd Alix was not quite forty-six.
  High and low acclaimed her as a saint, and steps were taken to collect evidence for the prosecution of her cause. But nothing was done more definitely, war pushed it out of sight, and it was not till 1947 that Alix Le Clercq was beatified.  Her body was buried in the crypt under the convent chapel at Nancy.  During the Revolution this convent was sacked; it is said that Bd Alix’s body was hastily buried in the garden for safety, but all efforts to find it have failed.  That would have pleased her humility, she whose deeds of love and spiritual insights and visions were so far as possible concealed.  She was completely at ease only when she could be humble and obedient, teaching the ABC and simple addition to half-a-dozen little children at Poussay or Mattaincourt, for instance.  But in the long disagreements and uncertainties about the organization of the congregation, in such matters she was mistress of herself and of the policies she believed right; and she was always an excellent superior.  But a Protestant historian, Professor Pfister, has acutely remarked that, “When she was appointed to direct the Nancy house, she had only one ambition and that was again to be a simple sister, teaching their letters to the four and five-year-olds in the bottom class”.  The last word about Bd Alix Le Clercq is with Mother Angélique Milly—“she was the child of deep silence”.
In 1666 the Nancy convent published what purported to be a life of Alix le Clercq but was in fact an extremely valuable collection of documents bearing on that life.  It was due to a copy of this book coming into the hands of the young Count Gandelet that the Bishop of Saint-Die began the cause of her beatification in 1885. The first biography proper to be published appeared at Nancy in 1773 (one of 1766 remains in manuscript), and then not another till 1858, after which there were several. La Mère Alix Le Clercq (1935), by Canon Edmond Renard, is the standard modern work, full, critical and well written.  In English there is a short but very good biography by Margaret St L. West (1947).  Reference can also be made to the standard lives of St Peter Fourier by Father Bedel (1645), Dom Vuillemin (1897), and Father Rogie, of which the last is the best.  The writer of the preface to the English life of Bd Alix speaks of the excellent methods used in the schools conducted by her congregation.  Fourier himself used to instruct his canonesses in pedagogy, and brief reference to some of his enlightened educational ideas is made in the notice accorded to him herein on December 9. The feast of Bd Alix is now kept on October 22.
BEATA ALIX LE CLERCQ,(*)  Virgen Fundadora (1622 P.C.)
    Una de las grandes obras de la contra reforma fue haber comenzado a preocuparse por la educación de las niñas. En 1535, Santa Ángela de Merici había fundado la congregación de las Ursulinas con este fin. Santa Juana de Lestonnac fundó, en 1606, la congregación de las Religiosas de Nuestra Señora. A su vez, San Pedro Fourier fundó a las Canonesas Regulares de San Agustín de la congregación de Nuestra Señora, empresa en la cual Alix Le Clrecq cooperó como cofundadora.

   Alix nació en Remiremont, ducado de Lorena, en 1576. Su familia ocupaba una posición destacada; pero es poco lo que sabemos de la vida de Alix hasta los diecisiete años. A esa edad era una joven alta y hermosa, rubia, de constitución delicada, atractiva e inteligente; en una palabra, como lo hace notar Mons. Francis Gonne, Alix era lo que los franceses llaman "spirituelle". Otro relato, escrito por ella misma, nos informa que se distinguía en la música y la danza, que era muy popular y que tenía muchos admiradores. Alix deja entender que se envanecía de todo esto, lo que es probable. En todo caso, no hay que olvidar que los santos tienden a exagerar sus defectos. Por otra parte, el relato de Alix muestra que la joven no carecía de seriedad: "En medio de todo esto, mi corazón estaba triste". Poco a poco, la frivolidad de su vida se le hizo insoportable.
   A los diecinueve años tuvo el primero de los sueños que habían de jalonar su vida. Se vio en una iglesia, cerca del altar; a su lado se hallaba Nuestra Señora, vestida con un hábito religioso desconocido, hablándole: "Ven, hija mía, que yo misma voy a darte la bienvenida", le decía. Poco después, la familia Le Clercq fue a habitar a Hymont. Ahí encontró Alix a San Pedro Fourier, que era vicario de una parroquia de Mattaincourt, en las cercanías. Un día que asistía a la misa en esa parroquia, Alix oyó un ruido de tambor y vio al demonio que hacía bailar a los jóvenes "ebrios de alegría". En ese instante se operó la conversión de Alix, quien nos dice: "Ahí mismo resolví no mezclarme con semejante compañía".
   Alix cambió sus finos vestidos por el sayal de las campesinas, y apenas salía de su casa. Bajo la prudente dirección de San Pedro Fourier, se dedicó a buscar la voluntad de Dios hacia ella, lo cual le produjo grandes sufrimientos espirituales. Tanto su padre como San Pedro Fourier, le aconsejaron que entrara a un convento. Pero ella se negó, pues un sueño le había revelado que no existía ninguna forma de vida religiosa adaptada a su vocación. Alix confió a San Pedro Fourier que estaba obsesionada por la idea de fundar una congregación activa. El santo se mostró escéptico; sin embargo, le aconsejó que buscara a otras jóvenes que compartieran su idea, cosa muy difícil en un apartado pueblecito de los Vosgos. Alix realizó su cometido con tanto tino, que logró encontrar compañeras.
   En la Misa de Navidad de 1597, Alix Le Clercq, Ganthe André, Isabel y Juana de Louvroir se consagraron públicamente a Dios. Cuatro semanas más tarde, San Pedro Fourier quedó convencido de que estaban llamadas a fundar una comunidad bajo su dirección. Naturalmente, las críticas no escasearon. "Las gentes tachaban de singularidad la desacostumbrada conducta de las jóvenes, no veían más que afectación en su manera de vestirse, y consideraban como una tontería su humildad". El padre de Alix se sintió herido por estas críticas, y la única solución que pudo encontrar fue la de enviar a su hija como pensionaria al convento de las terciarias de Santa Isabel, en Ormes. Alix obedeció, aunque aquel relajado convento cuadraba mal con sus aspiraciones, y el señor Le Clercq no le permitió volver a casa.
   Una solución inesperada se ofreció a Alix. En Poussay, a cuatro kilómetros de Mattaincourt, había una abadía de canonesas seculares. Se trataba de una comunidad de damas ricas y aristocráticas que llevaban una vida conventual que felizmente ha desaparecido. Una de esas buenas señoras, Judith d'Apremont, decidió proteger a Alix y a sus tres compañeras dándoles albergue en una casita de sus posesiones. Las jóvenes se instalaron ahí la víspera del Corpus Christi de 1598. Al terminar un retiro, declararon unánimemente a San Pedro Fourier que se sentían llamadas a fundar una nueva congregación, ya que tal era la voluntad de Dios para ellas. El fin de la nueva congregación era "enseñar a las niñas a leer, a escribir y a coser, pero sobre todo a amar y servir a Dios". A esta santa ocupación debían consagrarse, sin distinguir entre pobres y ricos, y sin cobrar ni un céntimo, "porque esto agrada más a Dios".
   La vida de las religiosas se distinguió al principio, por la severidad de la penitencia; pero el tiempo les hizo comprender que esto era incompatible con las grandes exigencias de la enseñanza de la juventud. El espectáculo de su devoción inspiró en algunas canonesas de la abadía el deseo de ingresar en la nueva fundación, pues estaban cansadas de gozar de "todos los privilegios de la vida conventual, sin experimentar su rudeza". La abadesa, madame d'Amoncourt, que no aceptaba las grandes reformas operadas en los monasterios de la época, temió que su comunidad se disolviera. La situación fue muy crítica durante varias semanas. Judith d'Apremont resolvió esta crisis, ofreciendo a las nuevas religiosas otra casa en Mattaincourt. Tal fue el primer convento propiamente dicho de la nueva congregación.
   Sin embargo, no se trataba todavía de una comunidad religiosa en el sentido estricto del término, lo cual inquietó al padre de Alix, quien le ordenó retirarse a Verdún. San Pedro Fourier declaró a la joven que estaba obligada a obedecer. Felizmente el señor Le Clercq, movido por el Espíritu Santo en forma irresistible, retiró la orden que había dado. Poco después, un franciscano recoleto, el P. Fleurant Boulengier, intentó asociar la nueva comunidad a las clarisas. San Pedro Fourier, cuya confianza en la nueva fundación no era todavía muy grande, recomendó insistentemente a Alix y sus compañeras que se asociaran con las clarisas, pero ellas se negaron diciendo: "Nos hemos reunido en comunidad para consagrarnos a la educación de las niñas, de suerte que no podemos apartamos de nuestra vocación y adoptar una forma de vida a la que Dios no nos ha llamado".
   San Pedro Fourier, por su parte, interpretaba en otra forma la voluntad de Dios, o fingía hacerlo así para probarlas. En todo caso, tras algunos meses de vacilaciones, aceptó finalmente la decisión.   En 1601, San Pedro Fourier y la Beata Alix fundaron una segunda casa en Mihiel, a la que siguieron las de Nancy, Pont-à-Mousson, Saint-Nicolas du Port, Verdún y Chalons. Esta última, establecida en 1613, fue la primera fundación fuera de Lorena. Hasta ese momento, Roma no había aprobado todavía la nueva congregación. La idea de recibir a las niñas en el interior de la clausura para impartirles instrucción, provocaba la hostilidad general. Por otra parte, la reticencia de Roma parecía dar la razón a quienes criticaban la novedad, y ponía en peligro la fundación. San Pedro Fourier envió a Alix y a una de sus compañeras al convento de las Ursulinas de París para que se documentaran sobre la vida monástica y los métodos de enseñanza. Las Ursulinas les propusieron que se unieran con ellas. Esta vez Alix reflexionó seriamente sobre la proposición, pero el P. Bérulle, que más tarde sería cardenal, resolvió sus dudas: "No creo -le dijo abiertamente- que Dios quiera esta fusión, de modo que lo mejor que puede hacer es olvidar el asunto".

   En 1616, dos bulas de la Santa Sede concedieron por fin la deseada aprobación. A raíz de ello, el obispo de Toul aprobó las constituciones. Trece religiosas llevaron por primera vez el hábito que vestía la Santísima Virgen en la visión de la Beata Alix, y comenzaron el año de noviciado, no obstante que algunas de ellas llevaban ya veinte años en el convento. Pero no todo iba viento en popa. Las bulas papales de aprobación, sólo mencionaban el convento de Nancy. Ahora bien, entre dicho convento y los otros, existía una especie de emulación, porque el de Nancy se hallaba bajo la protección del cardenal Carlos de Lorena, y el primado de Lorena, Antonio de Lénoncourt, había prácticamente asumido la dirección. La aparente parcialidad de las bulas no hizo sino agravar la disensión, lo cual produjo una desagradable crisis. El resultado fue que la Beata Alix tuvo que renunciar a su cargo de superiora de la congregación, en favor de la madre Ganthe André, "sin la cual -explica San Pedro Fourier- nuestra congregación no hubiera podido fundarse", a pesar de que la madre André y Alix no estuvieran de acuerdo sobre la organización.
   Como si no bastara esta prueba de santidad heroica, la beata se vio sujeta a ataques personales por parte de las malas lenguas. Al mismo tiempo, atravesaba una crisis de sequedad espiritual, tentaciones y "noche oscura del alma". Por otra parte, como lo atestiguaron sus hijas, "Alix tomaba los sufrimientos ajenos como si fueran propios", de modo que su situación era muy dificil. En esa época tuvo la ocasión de practicar su propia máxima, común a todos los santos y místicos: "Un acto de humildad vale más que cien éxtasis". El mismo San Pedro Foumier le proporcionó otras oportunidades de practicar la virtud.
   Actualmente se reconoce a la beata el título de cofundadora de las Canonesas de Nuestra Señora. No así durante su vida, y San Pedro Foumier era el primero en negarle ese título "para mantenerla en su lugar". Es probable que el santo haya temido por ella, puesto que Alix debía parecerle muy imaginativa en comparación con su temperamento sólido y cauteloso.
   En 1621, Alix obtuvo permiso de renunciar al cargo de superiora local de Nancy, y entró en un corto período de extraordinaria paz, que fue el preludio de su muerte. Estaba enferma desde tiempo atrás. Los médicos la de clararon incurable, diagnóstico que desconsoló a todo Nancy, desde el duque y la duquesa de Lorena hasta las colegialas y los mendigos. San Pedro Fournier acudió a toda prisa a Nancy, pero no pudo penetrar en la clausura, hasta que el obispo le autorizó a ello. La oyó en confesión y la preparó para el paso "de la muerte a la vida". La beata se despidió solemnemente de la comunidad el día de la Epifanía, exhortando a sus religiosas al amor y la unión. El fin llegó el 9 de enero, después de una larga agonía. La beata no había cumplido aún los cuarenta y seis años.
   Todos la aclamaron como santa, e inmediatamente empezaron a recogerse testimonios para introducir su causa; pero la guerra impidió llevar adelante el proceso, y Alix Le Clerq no fue beatificada sino hasta 1947. El convento de Nancy fue saqueado durante la Revolución, y se dice que el cuerpo de Alix fue quemado a toda prisa para evitar una profanación. Lo cierto es que, todos los esfuerzos para recuperarlo han resultado infructuosos. Su humildad debe complacerse en ello en el cielo, ya que en la tierra se esforzó tanto por ocultar sus obras de caridad y sus visiones. Sólo en la humildad y obediencia encontra ba reposo, enseñando el abecedario y las operaciones elementales de aritmética a las niñas de Nancy. Esto no obstante, en las largas dificultades e incertidum bres que precedieron a la organización de la congregación, la beata demostró gran firmeza de resolución y fue siempre una excelente superiora. Sin embargo, como lo hace notar el historiador protestante Pfister, "cuando la nombraron supe riora de Nancy, sólo tenía una ambición: la de entregarse como la más humilde de las hermanas a la enseñanza de las primeras letras en las clases más bajas". La madre Angélica Milly ha trazado el mejor retrato de Alix, al decimos: "era un alma silenciosa".

   En 1666, el convento de Nancy publicó una vida de Alix Le Clercq, que es en realidad una colección de valiosos documentos sobre la beata. El obispo de Saint-Dié introdujo, en 1885, la causa de beatificación, basándose en un ejemplar de esa biografía, que había caído en manos del conde Gandélet. La primera biografía propiamente dicha fue publicada en Nancy, en 1773; existe el manuscrito de otra, escrita en 1766; en 1858 vio la luz otra biogra fía, y a partir de entonces se han multiplicado los libros sobre la beata. La obra del ca nónigo Edmond Renard, La Mere Alix Le Clercq (1935), es la mejor biografía moderna, tanto desde el punto de vista de crítica, como de estilo. Hay que mencionar también las vidas de San Pedro Fournier, escritas por Bedel (1645), Dom Vuillemin (1897), y el P. Rogie; ésta última es la mejor. El autor del prefacio de la biografía inglesa de la Beata Alix, habla de los excelentes métodos de educación empleados por las canonesas. San Pedro Fournier enseñaba la pedagogía a sus religiosas; en el artículo a él consagrado en este libro (9 de diciembre) se hace mención dc sus ideas pedagógicas. La fiesta de la Beata Alix se celebra el 22 de octubre.

 Saturday  Saints of this Day October  22 Undécimo Kaléndas Novémbris   40 days for Life Day 24
Pope Francis  PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR  October 2016
Universal:   Universal: Journalists
That journalists, in carrying out their work, may always be motivated by respect for truth and a strong sense of ethics.
Evangelization:  Evangelization: World Mission Day
That World Mission Day may renew within all Christian communities the joy of the Gospel and the responsibility to announce it.

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!)

       40 days for Life Day 24
40 Days for Life  11,000+ saved lives in 2015
We are the defenders of true freedom.
  May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.
40 days for Life Campaign saves lives Shawn Carney Campaign Director
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
Morning Prayer and Hymn    Meditation of the Day    Prayer for Priests    Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here
We are called upon with the whole Church militant on earth to join in praising and thanking God for the grace and glory he has bestowed on his saints. At the same time we earnestly implore Him to exert His almighty power and mercy in raising us from our miseries and sins, healing the disorders of our souls and leading us by the path of repentance to the company of His saints, to which He has called us.
   They were once what we are now, travellers on earth they had the same weaknesses, which we have. We have difficulties to encounter so had the saints, and many of them far greater than we can meet with; obstacles from kings and whole nations, sometimes from the prisons, racks and swords of persecutors. Yet they surmounted these difficulties, which they made the very means of their virtue and victories. It was by the strength they received from above, not by their own, that they triumphed. But the blood of Christ was shed for us as it was for them and the grace of our Redeemer is not wanting to us; if we fail, the failure is in ourselves.
   THE saints and just, from the beginning of time and throughout the world, who have been made perfect, everlasting monuments of God’s infinite power and clemency, praise His goodness without ceasing; casting their crowns before His throne they give to Him all the glory of their triumphs: “His gifts alone in us He crowns.”
“The saints must be honored as friends of Christ and children and heirs of God, as John the theologian and evangelist says: ‘But as many as received him, he gave them the power to be made the sons of God....’ Let us carefully observe the manner of life of all the apostles, martyrs, ascetics and just men who announced the coming of the Lord. And let us emulate their faith, charity, hope, zeal, life, patience under suffering, and perseverance unto death, so that we may also share their crowns of glory” Exposition of the Orthodox Faith

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


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 of the offence against God, but also the effect of sins on human society as well as the need for undoing these social effects even when the offender repents and is converted. Further, this reparation emphasises our responsibility towards sinners who, themselves, will not pray and make reparation for their sins.
(6) FIVE CONSECUTIVE FIRST SATURDAYS: The idea of the Five First Saturdays is obviously to make us persevere in the devotional acts for these Saturdays and overcome initial difficulties. Once this is done, Our Lady knows that the person would become devoted to Her immaculate Heart and persist in practising such devotion on all First Saturdays, working thereby for personal self-reform and for the salvation of others.

Unless Russia is converted, the movement against God and for sin will continue to spread, promoting wars and persecutions, and making the attainment for peace and justice impossible for this world. One means of obtaining Russia's conversion is to practise the Fatima Message. The stakes are so great that to encourage Catholics to practise the devotion of the First Saturdays, Our Lady has assured us that She will obtain salvation for all those who observe the first Saturdays for five consecutive months in accordance with Her conditions.
At the supreme moment the departing person will be either in the state of grace or not. In either case Our Lady will be by his side. If in the state of grace, She will console and help him to resist whatever temptations the devil might put before him in his last attempt to take the person with him to hell. If not in the state of grace, Our Lady will help the person to repent in a manner agreeable to God and so benefit by the fruits of redemption and be saved.