Commemorate the Life-Giving Spring of the Most Holy Theotokos.
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!)

CAUSES OF SAINTS April 13  2016

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


Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List

Acts of the Apostles

Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

How do I start the Five First Saturdays?

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

April 13 – Our Lady of Tears (Italy)  
A Lifetime in the Shadow of Our Lady
It was in 1947, at the end of a year and a half of extraordinary and almost daily revelations in which Jesus showed Mother Teresa what he desired from her, that she was shown a vision in three parts, symbolizing and summarizing all that she had been told… In the first scene of the vision, Mother Teresa was shown the painful plight of the poor, and the yet greater inner poverty that was hidden beneath their material poverty. She was shown a large crowd of the poor of every kind, young and old. They were all reaching out to her as she stood in their midst, calling out for her to save them, to bring them to the one Savior—Jesus.

In the second scene, Mother Teresa saw again the same crowd of the poor. This time she could make out the sorrow and suffering in their faces. Our Lady was there in the midst of them, and Mother Teresa was kneeling at her side. Mother Teresa was turned towards the suffering children and so could not see Our Lady’s face, but she heard her say: “Take care of them—they are mine. —Bring them to Jesus—carry Jesus to them. —Fear not. Teach them to say the Rosary—the family Rosary and all will be well. —Fear not—Jesus and I will be with you and your children.”

In the third and final scene, Mother Teresa was shown the same crowd yet again. This time they were covered in darkness. There, in the midst of an anguished crowd that seemed unaware of his presence, was Jesus on the Cross. Our Lady was before him… Jesus then said to her: “I have asked you. They have asked you, and she, My Mother has asked you. Will you refuse to do this for me—to take care of them, to bring them to me?”

These visions encapsulated Mother Teresa’s call, in her inner life as well as in her external work, for the rest of her life…
Joseph Langford MC, Mother Teresa: In the Shadow of Our Lady - Our Sunday Visitor, 2007, pp 19-20

April 13 – Our Lady of Tears (Italy)  
Mary shared the journey of her Son “to Jerusalem”
Following the events in her Son’s life, Mary shared in his drama of experiencing rejection from some of the chosen people. This rejection first appeared during his visit to Nazareth and became more and more obvious in the words and attitudes of the leaders of the people (…)

In Nazareth too she would have frequently been troubled by the disbelief of relatives and acquaintances who would try to use Jesus (cf. Jn 7:2-5) or to stop his mission (Mk 3:21). Through this suffering borne with great dignity and hiddenness, Mary shares the journey of her Son “to Jerusalem” (Lk 9:51) and, more and more closely united with him in faith, hope and love, she co-operates in salvation.

The Blessed Virgin thus becomes a model for those who accept Christ’s words (…). She teaches us to listen to the Savior with trust, to discover in him the divine Word who transforms and renews our life. Her experience also encourages us to accept the trials and suffering that come from fidelity to Christ, keeping our gaze fixed on the happiness Jesus promised those who listen to him and keep his word.
 Blessed John Paul II
General Audience, March 12, 1997

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

Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed. There is here a particular reference to ourselves; we hold in our hearts one we have not seen in the flesh. We are included in these words, but only if we follow up our faith with good works. The true believer practices what he believes. But of those who pay only lip service to faith, Paul has this to say: They profess to know God, but they deny him in their works. Therefore James says: Faith without works is dead. -- St.Gregory the Great

Mary and Diana (I) April 13 - Our Lady of Tears
In 1922 the servant of God Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, then a young priest and scholar, was offered to accompany a distinguished French novelist, Emile Baumann, on a trip tracing the travels of Saint Paul. Baumann's book was eventually published in more than 100 editions. Here is an interesting excerpt showing Mary's early role in the Church:
"One other moment in the voyage among countless ones that affected me was the visit to the city of Ephesus. When I saw it, it was a wilderness; when St Paul saw it, it was called the "Treasure House of Asia." He looked out on the great glory of the temple of Diana as she was called in Latin or Artemis as she was known in Greek--one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It was 425 feet long, 220 feet wide and 60 feet wide. The altar itself had been carved by Praxiteles, the greatest of all the Greek sculptors. Each of the 127 columns was of Parian marble weighing 150 tons, measuring 60 feet high and decorated in gold and precious stones. Eight of these columns I saw later in the Church of Santa Sophia in former Constantinople.

(...) Paul began preaching in the synagogue and then later on after it rejected him, he taught in the school of Tyrannus, the heathen Sophist who specialized in rhetoric and philosophy. During the month of May, which was the sacred month of Diana, Paul noticed that the drunkenness, debauchery and worship of Diana was beginning to decline, since he preached that there were no gods made with hands. Consequently there was in Ephesus muttered curses against him; finally, the ill-concealed exasperation came to an end when the chief victim of the decline of idol worship began to protest against Paul. His name was Demetrius; he had built a considerable business in the manufacture of little silver shrines and images of Diana which he sold to pilgrims on their visits to the temple. Also affected were the sacred slaves and musicians of the temple, as well as skilled artisans and ordinary workman.
Taken from Treasure In Clay, The Autobiography of Fulton J. Sheen, Image Books, 1982

 593 B.C. The Commemoration of the Great Prophet Ezekiel, the son of Buzi.
150 or 170 or 250 St. Carpus martyred in Pergamos with others bishop of Gurdos, Lydia
 303 St. Maximus Martyr with his brothers Dadas Quintilian from Dorostorum (now Silistraia) on the Danube Bulgaria beheaded at Ozobia
 303 The Hieromartyr Artemon was born of Christian parents in Laodicea, Syria many miracles talking animals etc. commemorated on March 24 on the Greek calendar.
       The Holy Martyr Crescens (Kreskes) was descended from an illustrious family and lived in Myra of Lycia
 396 Saint Ursus of Ravenna revived celebration of the feasts B
Romæ, in persecutióne Marci Antoníni Veri et Lúcii Aurélii Cómmodi, pássio sancti Justíni, Philósophi et Mártyris
Pérgami, in Asia, in eádem persecutióne, natális sanctórum Mártyrum Carpi, Thyatirénsis Epíscopi, Pápyli Diáconi et Agathonícæ
 476 The Holy martyr Thomais was born into a Christian family in the city of Alexandria raised in piety loved to read spiritual books miracle appeared after death
 530 Saint Martius the hermit attracted disciples founded For them the friary of Clermont Abbot (RM
583-586 St. Hermengild Prince of Visigothic Spain arian convert martyred for his faith
 656 Pope Saint Martin I martyred for defending dual nature of Jesus died at Kherson Crimea last pope die a martyr
 838 Saint Guinoc Bishop of Scotland Guinoc's prayers helped king vanquish Picts B (AC
1113 Blessed Ida of Boulogne descendent of Blessed Charlemagne Benedictine oblate Widow (AC)
1124 St. Caradoc Welsh hermit harpist
1292 BD JAMES OF CERTALDO, ABBOT he early developed a vocation to the religious life: devotion and austerity greatly edified all who came into contact with him
1300 Blessed Ida of Louvain OSB Cist. V (PC)
1320 Blessed Margaret of Città di Castello born blind abandoned then adopted very holy favored with heavenly visions many miracles V (AC)
1392 Blessed James of Certaldo parish priest 40 yrs OSB Cam. (AC)
1642 Blessed Edward Catherick priest missionary 44 yrs English Martyr M (AC

April 13 - Apparition of Our Lady to Bl. Jane of Mantua (1640)  The Myrrh-Streaming Icon (II)

Jose Munoz asked whether he could buy this icon, which had so much impressed him, but was told repeatedly that it was the first icon to have been painted at this skete and was not for sale. The Virgin was like the patroness of the studio.  That night at divine service, during the singing of the angelic hymn “Axion estin” to the Theotokos, Jose fell to his knees and prayed to the Mother of God. Peace came back to his soul. At dawn, as Jose and his friend were about to depart, the abbot came to them holding the icon. During the night he had received an interior order. He said, “This icon will be a sign in the west.” The icon was not for sale, it was an offering, a grace.  However, Jose Munoz felt the urge to go back into the Iveron monastery and ask to touch his icon to the original wonder-working Iveron icon. In this religion of the people, in a carnal world where the magic of love reigns, an icon is venerated by kissing it, posing one’s cheek against it for a moment. So Jose, in this same manner, placed his copy up close to its model as if he were hoping to capture some of its force through simple contact.  Adapted from an article published in France Catholique Magazine, 30 May 1986 by Olivier Clément
"All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord;
and all the families of the nations shall worship before him"
(Psalm 21:28)

Today we commemorate the Life-Giving Spring of the Most Holy Theotokos.
There once was a beautiful church in Constantinople dedicated to the Mother of God, which had been built in the fifth century by the holy Emperor Leo the Great (January 20) in the Seven Towers district.  Before becoming emperor, Leo was walking in a wooded area where he met a blind man who was thirsty and asked Leo to help him find water. Though he agreed to search for water, he was unable to find any. Suddenly, he heard a voice telling him that there was water nearby. He looked again, but still could not find the water. Then he heard the voice saying "Emperor Leo, go into the deepest part of the woods, and you will find water there. Take some of the cloudy water in your hands and give it to the blind man to drink.Then take the clay and put it on his eyes. Then you shall know who I am." Leo obeyed these instructions, and the blind man regained his sight. Later, St Leo became emperor, just as the Theotokos had prophesied.

Leo built a church over the site at his own expense, and the water continued to work miraculous cures. Therefore, it was called "The Life-Giving Spring."

After the Fall of Constantinople in 1453, the church was torn down by the Moslems, and the stones were used to build a mosque. Only a small chapel remained at the site of the church. Twenty-five steps led down into the chapel, which had a window in the roof to let the light in. The holy Spring was still there, surrounded by a railing.
After the Greek Revolution in 1821, even this little chapel was destroyed and the Spring was buried under the rubble. Christians later obtained permission to rebuild the chapel, and work began in July of 1833. While workmen were clearing the ground, they uncovered the foundations of the earlier church. The Sultan allowed them to build not just a chapel, but a new and beautiful church on the foundations of the old one.
Construction began on September 14, 1833, and was completed on December 30, 1834.
Patriarch Constantine II consecrated the church on February 2, 1835, dedicating it to the Most Holy Theotokos.

The Turks desecrated and destroyed the church again on September 6, 1955. A smaller church now stands on the site, and the waters of the Life-Giving Spring continue to work miracles.

There is also a Life-Giving Spring Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos which is commemorated on April 4.
KONTAKION Tone 8 O most favored by God, you confer on me the healing of your grace from your inexhaustible Spring. Therefore, since you gave birth incomprehensibly to the Word, I implore you to refresh me with the dew of your grace that I might cry to you: Hail, O Water of salvation.

God loves variety. He doesn't mass-produce his saints. Every saint is unique each the result of a new idea.
As the liturgy says: Non est inventus similis illis--there are no two exactly alike.  It is we with our lack of imagination, who paint the same haloes on all the saints.

Dear Lord, grant us a spirit not bound by our own ideas and preferences. Grant that we may be able to appreciate in others what we lack in ourselves.
O Lord, grant that we may understand that every saint must be a unique praise of Your glory.
Catholic saints are holy people and human people who lived extraordinary lives. Each saint the Church honors responded to God's invitation to use his or her unique gifts.

593 B.C. The Commemoration of the Great Prophet Ezekiel, the son of Buzi.

On this day the great prophet Ezekiel the son of Buzi departed.
This righteous man was a priest, and Nebuchadnezzar exiled him with king Jehoiachin to Babylon.
There in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar, the spirit of the Lord was upon him, and he prophesied about wondrous things for twenty two years.
He spoke concerning the birth of the Lord Christ by the Lady the Virgin St. Mary
and how after she had borne Him, she would remain a virgin:

"Then He brought me back to the outer gate of the sanctuary which faces toward the east,
 but it was shut. And the LORD said to me,

"This gate shall be shut; it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter by it, because the LORD God of Israel
has entered by it; therefore it shall be shut" (Ezekiel 44:1-2).

He prophesied concerning the baptism that sanctify the soul of the man and his body, soften his stony heart, and make him a son of God by the descent of the Holy Spirit upon him. He admonished the priests for their forsaken the teaching of the people, warning them that God will ask for their souls from them if they neglect teaching them. He prophesied concerning the common resurrection and the rising of the bodies with their souls, and about their rewards for whatever they deserve. He said many useful sayings which are of benefit to those who read them, and God manifested through him many signs and great wonders. When the children of Israel worshipped idols in Babylon, he rebuked them and their leaders rose up and killed him. They buried him in the tomb of Shem and Arphaxad.
May his prayers be with us. Amen
The Prophet Ezekiel ("God is strong") was the son of Buzi and a priest by rank.
He was taken captive and brought to Babylon during the reign of Jechonias. In the fifth year of this captivity, about 594 or 593 B.C., he began to prophesy.

Having prophesied for about twenty-eight years, he was murdered, it is said, by the tribe of Gad, because he reproached them for their idolatry.

His book of prophecy, divided into forty-eight chapters, is ranked third among the greater Prophets. It is richly filled with mystical imagery and marvelous prophetic visions and allegories, of which the dread Chariot of Cherubim described in the first Chapter is the most famous; in the

"gate that was shut," through which the Lord alone entered, he darkly foretold of the Word's Incarnation from the Virgin (44:1-3); through the "dry bones" that came to life again (37:1-14), he prophesied both of the restoration of captive Israel, and the general resurrection of our race.
150 or 170 or 250 St. Carpus martyred in Pergamos with others bishop of Gurdos, Lydia
Papylus, Agathonica, Agathodorus. Carpus was the bishop of Gurdos, Lydia. Papylus was a deacon. Agathonica was a mother and Papylus’ sister, and Agathodorus was their servant They were martyred in Pergamos.Agathonica, Papylus (Pamfilus), Carpus & Companions MM (RM)

IN the reign either of Marcus Aurelius or of Decius, a bishop, Carpus, from Gurdos in Lydia, and Papylus, a deacon from Thyateira, were together brought before the Roman governor at Pergamos in Asia Minor. Carpus, when he was asked his name, replied, “My first and noblest name is that of Christian: but if you want to know my worldly name, it is Carpus”. The proconsul invited him to offer sacrifice. “I am a Christian”, replied the prisoner. “I worship Christ, the Son of God, who came in these latter times to save us and who has delivered us from the snares of the Devil. I do not sacrifice to idols like these.” The governor ordered him to obey the emperor’s commands without more ado. “The gods that have not made heaven and earth shall perish”, protested Carpus, quoting from the prophet Jeremias, and he declared that the living do not sacrifice to the dead. “Do you think the gods are dead?” asked the magistrate. “They were never even living men that they should die”, retorted the martyr, when he was cut short and delivered to the torturers to be strung up and flayed.
The governor then cross-examined Papylus, who said he was a citizen of Thyateira. “Have you any children?” “Yes, many.” A bystander explained that this was a Christian mode of speech and that he meant that he had children according to the faith. “I have children according to God in every city and province”, insisted the deacon.. “Will you sacrifice or will you not?” asked the proconsul impatiently; and Papylus made reply, “I have served God from my youth and have never sacrificed to idols. I am a Christian and that is the only answer you will get from me—there is nothing greater or nobler that I could say.” He also was hung up and tortured. When it became evident that nothing could shake their fortitude, they were condemned to be burnt at the stake.  Papylus was the first to pass to his reward. As Carpus was fastened to the stake there came over his face an expression of such great joy that a bystander asked him what he was smiling at he replied, “I saw the glory of God and was glad”. ”.[ * Another version attributes these words to Papylus.] When the flames were leaping up, he cried aloud with his dying breath, “Blessed art thou Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, because thou hast deigned to give to me, a sinner, this part with thee.”
Then the governor had the God-fearing Agathonice brought before him, and she too refused to sacrifice to the gods. The bystanders urged her to spare herself and remember her children; but she answered, “My children have God, and He will look after them”. The proconsul threatened her with a death like the others, but Agathonice remained unmoved. So she too was taken to the place of execution, and when her clothing was removed the crowd marvelled at her beauty.  As the fire was kindled, Agathonice exclaimed, “Help me, Lord Jesus Christ, since I must hear this for thee”. And as she prayed thus a third time her spirit departed.
  These simple martyr-acts rank as belonging to almost the highest class of those which are preserved to us. One has, however, to add “almost”, for, as the texts published by Pio Franchi de’ Cavalieri in Studie Testi, no. 33 (1920) clearly show, all the existing recensions have undergone some process of retrenchment or amplification. Of the antiquity of the cult, the mention by Eusebius Hist. Eccles., iv, 15) and in the Syriac “Breviarium” (where the martyrs are spoken of as forming part of the older tradition) supplies adequate proof. We do not know for certain whether they belong to the time of Marcus Aurelius or of Decius. See upon the whole question the discussion by Delehaye in Les Passions des Martyrs et les genres littéraires, pp. 138-142, and the comments of Pio Franchi mentioned above. Cf. Harnack in Texte und Untersuchungen, vol. iii, n. 4; but the newly recovered Latin text rules out his hypothesis of a Montanist origin. This text, together with the two best Greek texts, is printed in Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lviii (1940), pp. 142—176, introduced by Fr Delehaye.

Died at Pergamum c. 170 or 250. Eusebius (History of the Church, iv, 15) records that during the Decian persecution, Carpus, bishop of Gordus in Asia Minor; Papylus, deacon of Thyatira; Agathonica, the sister of Papylus; and Agathodorus, their servant, were arrested. They were brought before Valerius, the Roman governor at Pergamos in Asia Minor, examined three times, and required to sacrifice to the gods. The third time, Agathodorus, was scourged to death in front of his masters.
Still the Christians remained resolute. Carpus answered the proconsul Optimus:
"I am a Christian, I worship Christ, the Son of God, who came in these latter times for our salvation and delivered us from the snares of the devil. I will not sacrifice to such idols. The living do not sacrifice to the dead . . . (the gods) look like men, but they are unfeeling. Deprive them of your veneration . . . and they will be defiled by dogs and crows."
When the proconsul insisted, Carpus said:
"I have never before sacrificed to images that have no feeling or understanding . . . I have pity on myself, choosing as I do the better part."
Carpus was hung up to be tortured with iron claws that flayed the skin from his sides. He continued to answer steadfastly until the pain overcame his voice.
The attention of the judges turned next to Papylus, a wealthy father of many children according to his testimony. A bystander interpreted his words as "He means he has children in virtue of the faith of the Christians." Papylus agreed that this was correct. Like Carpus, he continued to refuse and was treated in the same fashion as the bishop. After a time of silent endurance, he said:
"I feel no pain because I have someone to comfort me: one whom you do not see suffers within me."
The last words of Carpus were:
"Blessed are You, Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, because You judged me, a sinner, worthy to have this part in You!"
They refused to offer the oblations, and no arguments or ill treatment could overcome their resistance. They were therefore burnt alive in the amphitheater.
Saint Agathonica, a married woman, was admired by the crowd for her physical beauty. When they urged not to make her children motherless by her obstinacy, she replied, "God will look after them, but I will not obey your commands nor will I sacrifice to demons." She, too, went to the stake to be burnt to death. As the flames consumed her, she cried out: "Lord, Lord, Lord, help me, for I fly to You." The Christian witnesses came and took away the remains of the martyrs to cherish them.
Another version of the story relates that Agathonica was simply a woman in the crowd at the death of Carpus and Papylus, who was moved to share in their martyrdom, rather than the sister of the latter (Attwater, Attwater2, Benedictines, Coulson, Farmer, Husenbeth).

303 St. Maximus Martyr with his brothers Dadas Quintilian from Dorostorum (now Silistraia) on the Danube Bulgaria beheaded at Ozobia
Doróstori, in Mysia inferióre, pássio sanctórum Máximi, Quinctiliáni et Dadæ, in persecutióne Diocletiáni.
    At Silistria in Bulgaria, the passion of Saints Maximus, Quinctilian, and Dadas, during the persecution of Diocletian.
They lived in Silistria on the Danube in Bulgaria until the time of their beheading by Roman authorities.

Maximus, Dadas & Quintilianus MM (RM) Maximus, Dadas, and Quintilianus, brothers from Dorostorum (now Silistraia) on the Danube, Bulgaria, were beheaded at Ozobia under Diocletian. Maximus was a lector (Benedictines).

303 The Hieromartyr Artemon was born of Christian parents in Laodicea, Syria many miracles talking animals etc. commemorated on March 24 on the Greek calendar.  in the first half of the third century. From his youth, he dedicated himself to the service of the Church. The saint served the Church as a a Reader for sixteen years.
For his zeal in Church services, Bishop Sisinius ordained him deacon. St Artemon also fulfilled this service with fervor and diligence for twenty-eight years, then he was ordained to the priesthood. In this position, St Artemon served the Church of God for thirty-three years, preaching Christianity among pagans. When the emperor Diocletian (284-305) began his fierce persecution against Christians, St Artemon was already old. The emperor issued an edict ordering Christians to offer sacrifice to idols.
Saint Sisinius, knowing of the impending arrival of the military commander Patricius in Laodicea, went with the priest Artemon and other Christians into the temple of the goddess Artemis.
There they smashed and burned the idols, reducing them all to dust.

Afterwards, St Sisinius and St Artemon gathered the flock into the church and fervently exhorted the Christians to remain firm in the Faith and not to fear the threats of torturers.  When he arrived in Laodicea, Patricius celebrated a five-day festival in honor of the pagan gods, and then went to the temple of Artemis to offer sacrifice. He learned who had destroyed the temple, and went with a detachment of soldiers to the church where the Christians were praying.   As he approached the church, Patricius suddenly felt a chill, and then developed a fever, which left him barely alive. They carried him home and put him to bed. "The Christians have put a curse on me, and their God torments me," he said to those about him. Although Patricius prayed to the idols, they did not relieve his sufferings. He sent a messenger to St Sisinius and asked for his help, promising to set up a gold statue of the bishop in the middle of the city.
The saint replied, "Keep your gold, but if you believe in Christ, He will heal you."

Patricius was afraid of dying, so he declared that he believed in Christ, and the affliction left him. But even this miracle did not affect the obdurate soul of the pagan. Although he did not touch St Sisinius, he did enforce the imperial edict against other Christians in the city of Caesarea.
Along the way he encountered St Artemon, who was followed by six wild donkeys and two deer.

When Patricius asked how he was able to control these wild beasts, St Artemon replied that he held them with the Word of Christ.   Patricius learned from the pagans that the old man was the same Artemon who had destroyed the pagan temple of Artemis. He ordered that Artemon be arrested and taken to the city of Caesarea. St Artemon went with the soldiers without fear, but he ordered the animals to go to St Sisinius.
Seeing the animals Bishop Sisinius asked, "Why have these animals come here?" A doe received the gift of speech from God and said, "The servant of God Artemon is being held by the impious Patricius, and is being brought to Caesarea in chains. He commanded us to come here to give you this news."
Do not be astonished that the Lord, Who opened the mouth of Balaam's ass (Num. 22:28), also permits the doe to speak.
The bishop sent Deacon Phileas to Caesarea to verify this information.

In Caesarea Patricius brought St Artemon to trial and tried to force him to offer sacrifice in the temple of Asclepius. In this pagan temple there lived many poisonous vipers. The pagan priest never opened the doors, nor did he place the sacrifice before the idol. But St Artemon, calling on the Name of Jesus Christ, went into the temple and released the snakes.
The pagans fled, but the saint stopped them and killed the snakes by his breath. One of the pagan priests, Vitalius, believed in Christ and asked St Artemon to baptize him.
Patricius thought that St Artemon killed the snakes by sorcery, and again he interrogated and tortured him. Then the doe which had spoken arrived in Caesarea. The doe lay down at the feet of the martyr, licking his wounds.
By God's command the doe spoke again, denouncing the impious pagans.
Addressing Patricius, the doe predicted that he would be seized by two birds of prey, and dropped into a cauldron of burning pitch. Patricius was enraged because he had been censured by a wild beast. He commanded his soldiers to shoot the doe with arrows, but she escaped. Afraid that the miracles performed by St Artemon would draw more people to him, Patricius gave orders to execute him.

They filled an enormous cauldron with boiling pitch, intending to throw the saint into it. Patricius rode up to the cauldron on horseback to see if the pitch was indeed boiling. Then two angels in the form of eagles seized Patricius and threw him into the cauldron. His body was consumed so that not a single bone remained.

Seeing the miracle, everyone ran away except St Artemon, who blessed and glorified God. When the saint finished his prayer, a spring of water issued from the ground. St Artemon baptized the pagan priest Vitalius and many pagans, who had come to believe in Christ. On the following morning St Artemon communed the newly-baptized with the Holy Mysteries.

Many of the baptized were ordained to the diaconate and priesthood, and Vitalius was made Bishop of Palestine. The hieromartyr Artemon, instructed by the voice of God, preached the Gospel in Asia Minor. Then an angel appeared to him and transported him to the place which had been revealed to him, where he converted many to Christ. Pagans seized the saint and beheaded him (+ 303).
St Artemon is commemorated on March 24 on the Greek calendar.
Artemon der Syrer  Orthodoxe Kirche: 13. April
Artemon wurde Anfang des 3. Jahrhunderts im syrischen Laodicea geboren. Von Kind an wollte er in der Kirche tätig sein und mit 16 Jahren wurde er Lektor. Er diente 12 Jahre als Lektor, wurde dann zum Diakon geweiht und übte dieses Amt 28 Jahre aus. Dann wurde er zum Priester geweiht. Nach 33 Priesterjahren wurde er in der diokletianischen Verfolgung hingerichtet, weil er sich weigerte, die heidnischen Götzen zu verehren.
Romæ, in persecutióne Marci Antoníni Veri et Lúcii Aurélii Cómmodi, pássio sancti Justíni, Philósophi et Mártyris; qui, cum secúndum librum pro religiónis nostræ defensióne præfátis Imperatóribus porrexísset, eámque ibídem disputándo strénue propugnásset, Crescéntis Cynici, cujus vitam et mores nefários redargúerat, insídiis accusátus quod Christiánus esset, remuneratiónem linguæ fidélis, martyrii munus accépit.  Ipsíus tamen festum sequénti die recólitur.
At Rome, in the persecution of Marcus Antoninus Verus and Lucius Aurelius Commodus, St. Justin, philosopher and martyr.  He had addressed to the emperors his second Apology in defence of our religion, and upheld it by strong arguments.  By the intrigue of Crescens the Cynic, whose conduct and immorality he had reproved, he was accused of professing Christianity, and thus he obtained the reward of martyrdom in payment for his faithful confession.  His feast is kept on the following day.

Pérgami, in Asia, in eádem persecutióne, natális sanctórum Mártyrum Carpi, Thyatirénsis Epíscopi, Pápyli Diáconi et Agathonícæ, ejúsdem Pápyli soróris et óptimæ féminæ, atque Agathadóri, eórum fámuli, aliorúmque multórum.  Hi omnes, post vários cruciátus, pro beátis confessiónibus martyrio coronáti sunt.
    At Pergamum in Asia, during the same persecution, the birthday of the holy martyrs Carpus, bishop of Thyatira, the deacon Papylus, and his sister Agathonica, an excellent woman, Agathadorus, their servant, and many others.  After many torments they received their crowns of martyrdom for their worthy confessions.

The Holy Martyr Crescens (Kreskes) was descended from an illustrious family and lived in Myra of Lycia
When a throng of city inhabitants were on the way to the pagan temple, he urged them to forsake paganism and come to Christ. This incident became known to the city prefect.
When the prefect asked the saint about his parentage, the saint, not wishing to bring unpleasantness to his parents, said nothing except that he was a Christian. The prefect knew St Crescens' father and wanted to do him a favor. He suggested that St Crescens only appear to offer sacrifice to idols, while remaining a Christian.
The holy martyr replied, "It is impossible for the body not to do as the soul thinks, since the soul governs and moves the body." They beat the holy martyr Crescens and raked him with iron claws, and then burned him in a fire.
St Andrew of Crete (July 4) mentions the Martyr Crescens in his Sermon on the Feast of St Nicholas the Wonderworker (December 6), who also came from Myra of Lycia.

396 Saint Ursus or Ravenna revived celebration of the feasts B (RM)
Ravénnæ sancti Ursi, Epíscopi et Confessóris.
    At Ravenna, St. Ursus, bishop and confessor.
(also known as Ours)Bishop of Ravenna for 20 years, Ursus revived the celebration of the feasts of the saints in that city. Beyond that little is known of him (Attwater2, Benedictines, Encyclopedia).

476 The Holy martyr Thomais was born into a Christian family in the city of Alexandria raised in piety loved to read spiritual books miracle appeared after death
When she was fifteen, the girl married a fisherman, who was also a Christian. The young couple lived in the house of her husband's family, where St Thomais was loved for her mild and gentle disposition, and for other good traits.St Thomais' father-in-law, at the prompting of the devil, was captivated by her beauty. One night, when his son went out fishing, he attempted to lead his daughter-in-law into sin. Horrified, St Thomais admonished the senseless old man, reminding him of the Last Judgment and the penalty for sin. Infuriated by her steadfastness, he seized a sword and threatened to cut off her head. St Thomais answered resolutely, "Even if you cut me to pieces, I shall not stray from the commandments of the Lord." Overcome with passion, the old man cut St Thomais in two with the sword. The saint received the crown of martyrdom in the year 476.

Divine punishment overtook the murderer. He became blind and could not find the door in order to escape. In the morning, the companions of the saint's husband came to the door. They saw the body of the saint, and the blind old man covered with blood. The murderer confessed his evil deed and asked to be taken to the judge for punishment. He was beheaded for his crime.

At this time, St Daniel of Skete (June 7) happened to be in Alexandria. He told the monks of the Oktodekadian monastery (at the eighteenth mile on the road leading west from Alexandria) to bring the body of the martyr to the monastery and bury her in the cemetery with the departed fathers. Some of the monks were scandalized because he wanted to bury a woman's body with the monks.
St Daniel replied, "She is a mother to me and to you, because she died for her chastity."
After the funeral St Daniel returned to his own skete. Soon one of the young monks began to complain to him that he was tormented by fleshly passions. St Daniel ordered him to go and pray at the grave of the holy martyr Thomais. The monk did the bidding of the Elder. While he prayed at the grave, he fell into a light sleep.
St Thomais appeared to him and said, "Father, accept my blessing and go in peace."
When he awakened, the monk felt joy and peace in his soul. After this, he told St Daniel that he was no longer bothered by the temptations of the flesh. Abba Daniel exclaimed,
"Great is the boldness of those who have struggled for chastity."
Many found both spiritual joy and release from their passions at the grave of St Thomais. Her holy relics were transferred to Constantinople to one of the women's monasteries. The Russian pilgrim Archdeacon Zosimas venerated them in 1420.
St Thomais is invoked by those seeking deliverance from sexual impurity.
Other saints whose intercession we seek for this purpose are:

St John the Much-Suffering (July 18) and St Moses the Hungarian (July 26).

530 Saint Martius  the hermit attracted disciples founded For them the friary of Clermont Abbot; his tomb was the scene of many miracles.
(also known as Mars) A sober-minded and austere native of Auvergne, Martius the hermit, attracted disciples. For them he founded the friary of Clermont in 530 in the mountains above the city. Some information about Martius is found in Saint Gregory of Tours' Vitae Patrum (Attwater2, Coulson, Encyclopedia).
THE memory of St Martius or Mars, abbot of Clermont in the Auvergne, has been preserved by St Gregory of Tours, whose father when a boy had been cured by him of a fever.

From early youth, Martius had resolved to give himself to God, and upon attaining manhood he retired from the world to lead the solitary life; he, hewed himself a hermitage in the mountain side and carved the stone bed upon which he lay. His sanctity and spiritual gifts attracted disciples who gradually formed themselves into a community, whose time was divided between prayer and the cultivation of the soil, which they converted from a desert into a flourishing garden. St Gregory of Tours tells the following anecdote. One night a thief broke into the monastery enclosure and set about rifling its apples, onions, garlic and herbs. When he had collected as much as he could carry, he attempted to depart, but was unable to find his way out in the dark. He therefore lay down on the ground to await the daylight. In the meantime Abbot Martius in his cell was fully aware of all that had happened. At the break of dawn, he summoned the prior and told him to go into the garden to release a bull which had found its way in. “Do not hurt him”, he added, and let him have all he wants, for it is written, ‘Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out thy corn!’” The prior went forth and came upon the thief, who started up on seeing him, threw down his booty and attempted to escape. He was, however, caught by the briars. The monk smilingly released and reassured him. Then, after picking up the scattered spoil, he led the culprit to the gate where he laid the path upon the man’s shoulders saying, “Go in peace, and give up your evil ways”. St Martius lived to the age of ninety, and his tomb was the scene of many miracles.
All that we know concerning St Mars is found in the Vitae Patrum of St Gregory of Tours, ch. xiv; and see the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii.
583-586 St. Hermengild Prince of Visigothic Spain arian convert  martyred for his faith
Híspali, in Hispánia, sancti Hermenegíldi Mártyris, qui fuit fílius Leovigíldi, Regis Visigothórum Ariáni; atque ob cathólicæ fidei confessiónem conjéctus in cárcerem, et, cum in solemnitáte Pascháli Communiónem ab Epíscopo Ariáno accípere noluísset, pérfidi patris jussu secúri percússus est, ac regnum cæléste pro terréno Rex et Martyr intrávit.
    At Seville in Spain, St. Hermenegild, son of Leovigild, Arian king of the Visigoths, who was imprisoned for the confession of the Catholic faith.  By order of his wicked father he was beheaded because he had refused to receive communion from an Arian bishop on the feast of Easter.  Thus exchanging an earthly for a heavenly kingdom, he entered the abode of the saints, both as a king and as a martyr.

HERMENEGILD and his brother Reccared were the two Sons of the Visigothic king of Spain, Leovigild, by his first wife Theodosia. They were educated by their father in the Arian heresy, but Hermenegild married a zealous Catholic, Indegundis or Ingunda, daughter of Sigebert, king of Austrasia his conversion to the true faith was due as much to her example and prayers as to the teaching of St Leander, archbishop of Seville. Leovigild was furious when he heard of his son’s open profession of the faith, and called upon him to resign all his dignities and possessions. This Hermenegild refused to do. He raised the standard of revolt and, as the Arians were all-powerful in Visigothic Spain, he sent St Leander to Constantinople to obtain support and assistance. Disappointed in that quarter, Hermenegild implored the help of the Roman generals who, with a small army, still ruled the strip of Spanish land along the Mediterranean coast which remained in the possession of the Empire. They took his wife and infant son as hostages and made him fair promises which they failed to fulfil. For over a year Hermenegild was besieged in Seville by his father’s troops, and when he could hold out no longer he fled to the Roman camp—only to be warned that those he had reckoned upon as his friends had been bribed by Leovigild to betray him. Despairing of all human aid, he entered a church and sought refuge at the altar. Leovigild did not venture to violate the sanctuary, but permitted his younger son Reccared, who was still an Arian, to go to his brother with an offer of forgiveness if he would submit and ask for pardon. Hermenegild took his father at his word and a reconciliation took place, the genuineness of which there seems no reason to doubt. Leovigild appears to have restored his elder son to some measure of bis former dignities; but the king’s second wife, Gosvinda, soon succeeded in estranging him once more from the unfortunate prince, and Hermenegild was imprisoned at Tarragona. He was no longer accused of treason but of heresy, his liberty being offered to him at the price of recantation. With fervent prayer he asked God to give him fortitude in his combat for the truth, adding voluntary mortifications to his enforced sufferings and clothing himself in sackcloth.
At Easter his father sent him an Arian bishop, offering to restore him to favour if he would receive communion from the prelate. Upon learning that Hermenegild had absolutely refused, Leovigild fell into one of the paroxysms of rage to which he was subject, and despatched soldiers to the prison with orders to put the young prince to death. They found him fully prepared and quite resigned to his fate. He was killed instantaneously by one blow from an axe. St Gregory the Great attributes to the merits of St Hermenegild the conversion of his brother Reccared and of the whole of Visigothic Spain. Leovigild was stung with remorse for his crime, and although he never actually renounced Arianism, yet when he was on his death-bed he commended his son Reccared to St Leander, desiring him to convert him to the orthodox faith.
It is impossible to do otherwise than condemn the conduct of Hermenegild in taking up arms against his own father, but, as St Gregory of Tours has pointed out, his guilt was expiated by his heroic sufferings and death. Another Gregory, the great pope of that name, remarked of him that he only began to be truly a king when he became a martyr.

The question of Hermenegild’s title to be honoured as a martyr has been discussed with a certain amount of acrimony. Despite the account given by St Gregory the Great in his Dialogues (bk iii, ch. 31), other early writers even in Spain itself—notably the abbot of Vallclara, Johannes Biclarensis (in Florez, España Sagrada, vi, p. 384), Isidore of Seville, and Paul of Merida—seem only to suggest that Hermenegild was a rebel and put to death as such. An excellent summary of the question will be found in DCB., vol. ii, pp. 921—924. This is based mainly upon an article by F. Görres in Zeitschrift. his:. Theologie, vol. i, 1873. In  Razón y Fe Father R. Rochel (see especially vol. vii, 1903) vehemently replied to this criticism, but Father Albert Poncelet in the Analecta Bollandiana, xxiii (1904), pp. 360—361, found much that was unsatisfactory in this attempted vindication. A more moderate view is that of Gams in his Kirchengeschichte Spaniens. It should perhaps be mentioned that the best edition of the chronicle of Johannes Biclarensis is that edited by Mommsen in MGH., Auctores antiquissimi, vol. xi. A tradition of much later date identifies Seville as the scene of the “martyrdom” of St Hermenegild but Johannes Biclarensis, a contemporary, expressly declares that he was put to death at Tarragona. See Analecta Bollandiana, xxiii, p. 360. Pope Benedict XIV’s commission recommended that the feast of this saint he removed from the general calendar.
He was the son of Leovigild the Visigoth, king of Spain, and was raised as an Arian. His wife, Indegundis, converted him from that heresy, which brought about his disinheritance by Leovigild and his defeat at Seville, Spain, by his father. When Hermenegild refused to accept Arianism, he was axed to death. His feast is now confined to local calendars. 

Hermenegild, King M (RM) Died c. 583-586. Son of the Visigoth King Leovigild of Spain and his first wife, Theodosia, Saint Hermenegild was raised in Arian court of Seville. He married the Christian Inezonde (Ingunda), daughter of Sigebert of Austrasia. His conversion to orthodox Christianity was the result of the fervent prayers and virtuous example of his wife, as well as the teaching of Archbishop Saint Leander of Seville. At his conversion, his father disinherited him, whereupon he rose in arms.

Hermenegild sent Saint Leander to Constantinople to garner support. Finding no assistance there, he begged the help of the Roman generals who still governed a strip of land along the Mediterranean coast. They took his wife and son as hostages and made promises that they failed to fulfill. After being besieged by his father's troops for a full year at Seville, Hermenegild fled to the Roman camp, only to find that his father had bribed them to betray him.

Almost without hope, Hermenegild sought refuge in a church at the altar, where not even his father would violate the sanctuary. Instead, Leovigild sent his son Reccared, another Arian, to offer Hermenegild forgiveness if he would repent. Hermenegild believed his father and was reconciled for a time. Some of his former dignities were restored until Leovigild's second wife, Gosvinda, succeeded in estranging the two again. This time Hermenegild was arrested for heresy, rather than treason, and imprisoned at Tarragona. He was promised liberty if he would recant his profession of faith.

On Easter Day, his father sent the Arian bishop to him, offering to restore him to favor if he would receive the Eucharist from the prelate. Hermenegild, fortified by prayer and penance since his arrest, refused absolutely. Enraged, his father sent soldiers to behead him--which was accomplished by one blow from an axe. Saint Gregory the Great attributes the conversion of Reccared and the whole of Visigothic Spain to the witness of Hermenegild; however, many dispute his entitlement to be honored as a martyr (Attwater2, Benedictines, Coulson, Encyclopedia, Walsh).

Saint Hermenegild is depicted in art as a young prince wearing armor and being borne to heaven while contemplating the crucifix. Angels carry an axe, chains, royal regalia, a palm, and a rose wreath. Heretical bishops and king stand below. He might also be shown as a prince with an axe (Roeder). Venerated in Spain (Roeder).
656 Pope Saint Martin I martyred for defending dual nature of Jesus died at Kherson in the Crimea last pope to die a martyr
 St. Martin I  
When Martin I became pope in 649, Constantinople was the capital of the Byzantine empire and the patriarch of Constantinople was the most influential Church leader in the eastern Christian world. The struggles that existed within the Church at that time were magnified by the close cooperation of emperor and patriarch.
A teaching, strongly supported in the East, held that Christ had no human will. Twice emperors had officially favored this position, Heraclius by publishing a formula of faith and Constans II by silencing the issue of one or two wills in Christ.
Shortly after assuming the office of the papacy (which he did without first being confirmed by the emperor), Martin held a council at the Lateran in which the imperial documents were censured, and in which the patriarch of Constantinople and two of his predecessors were condemned. Constans II, in response, tried first to turn bishops and people against the pope.
Failing in this and in an attempt to kill the pope, the emperor sent troops to Rome to seize Martin and to bring him back to Constantinople. Martin, already in poor health, offered no resistance, returned with the exarch Calliopas and was then submitted to various imprisonments, tortures and hardships. Although condemned to death and with some of the torture imposed already carried out, Martin was saved from execution by the pleas of a repentant Paul, patriarch of Constantinople, who himself was gravely ill.
Martin died shortly thereafter, tortures and cruel treatment having taken their toll. He is the last of the early popes to be venerated as a martyr.

Comment:  The real significance of the word martyr comes not from the dying but from the witnessing, which the word means in its derivation. People who are willing to give up everything, their most precious possessions, their very lives, put a supreme value on the cause or belief for which they sacrifice. Martyrdom, dying for the faith, is an incidental extreme to which some have had to go to manifest their belief in Christ. A living faith, a life that exemplifies Christ's teaching throughout, and that in spite of difficulties, is required of all Christians. Martin might have temporized; he might have sought means to ease his lot, to make some accommodations with the civil rulers.

Quote:   The breviary of the Orthodox Church pays tribute to Martin: “Glorious definer of the Orthodox Faith...sacred chief of divine dogmas, unstained by error...true reprover of of bishops, pillar of the Orthodox faith, teacher of religion.... Thou didst adorn the divine see of Peter, and since from this divine Rock, thou didst immovably defend the Church, so now thou art glorified with him.”

Martin I lay too sick to fight on a couch in front of the altar when the soldiers burst into the Lateran basilica. He had come to the church when he heard the soldiers had landed. But the thought of kidnapping a sick pope from the house of God didn't stop the soldiers from grabbing him and hustling him down to their ship.
Elected pope in 649, Martin I had gotten in trouble for refusing to condone silence in the face of wrong. At that time there existed a popular heresy that held that Christ didn't have a human will, only a divine will. The emperor had issued an edict that didn't support Monothelism (as it was known) directly, but simply commanded that no one could discuss Jesus' will at all.
Monothelism was condemned at a council convened by Martin I. The council affirmed, once again, that since Jesus had two natures, human and divine, he had two wills, human and divine. The council then went further and condemned Constans edict to avoid discussion stating, "The Lord commanded us to shun evil and do good, but not to reject the good with the evil."
In his anger at this slap in the face, the emperor sent his soldiers to Rome to bring the pope to him. When Martin I arrived in Constantinople after a long voyage he was immediately put into prison. There he spent three months in a filthy, freezing cell while he suffered from dysentery. He was not allowed to wash and given the most disgusting food. After he was condemned for treason without being allowed to speak in his defense he was imprisoned for another three months.
From there he was exiled to the Crimea where he suffered from the famine of the land as well as the roughness of the land and its people. But hardest to take was the fact that the pope found himself friendless. His letters tell how his own church had deserted him and his friends had forgotten him. They wouldn't even send him oil or corn to live off of.
He died two years later in exile in the year 656, a martyr who stood up for the right of the Church
to establish doctrine even in the face of imperial power.

Martin I, Pope M (RM) Born in Todi in Umbria, Italy; died in the Crimea, September 16, 655; feast day was previously November 12 (November 10 in York); the Eastern Church celebrates his feast on September 20.

Martin became a deacon in Rome. He displayed a great intellect and charity, was sent by Pope Theodore I as nuncio (apocrisiarius) to Constantinople, and was elected pope in 649 to succeed Theodore I. At once, he convened the council at the Lateran that condemned Monothelitism (the denial that Christ had a human will), the Typos--the edict of the reigning Emperor Constans II, which favored it, and Heraclius's Ekethesis. Although he was supported by the bishops of Africa, England, and Spain, the imperial wrath fell upon the pontiff who was arrested by Constans and taken to Constantinople in 653.

He had taken refuge in the Lateran, but the officers broke in to capture him. His own letters give an account of how his health broke down under the long voyage and a three-month imprisonment on the island of Naxos en rute. He writes:
"For forty-seven days, I have not been given water to wash in. I am frozen through and wasting away with dysentery. The food I get makes me vomit. But God sees all things and I trust in Him."

He was so ill when he arrived in Constantinople that he had to be carried to jail on a stretcher. He was tried for treason, although he was clearly being incarcerated for not accepting the Typos. He was condemned to death during his trial without being able to speak in his own defense. He was insulted publicly, flogged, and imprisoned. Intercession of dying Patriarch Paul of Constantinople saved his life, but he was exiled to Kherson in the Crimea.
From exile he wrote of the bad treatment he received and berated the Romans for forgetting him while he had prayed steadily for their faith to remain in tact. It is likely that he died of starvation. He was the last pope to die a martyr. He is portrayed in art vested as a pope, holding money (alms); or with geese around him (possibly a confusion with Saint Martin of Tours); or seen through prison bars (Attwater, Attwater2, Benedictines, Bentley, Delaney, Farmer, White).
838 Saint Guinoc Bishop of Scotland Guinoc's prayers helped king vanquish Picts B (AC)
(also known as Guinochus) Bishop Guinoc of Scotland is commemorated in the Aberdeen breviary and is especially venerated in Buchan. Some scholars believe that Guinoc was a counsellor to King Kenneth. It is said that Guinoc's prayers helped the king to vanquish the Picts in seven battles on a single day (Benedictines, Farmer, Husenbeth).

1113 Blessed Ida of Boulogne descendent of Blessed Charlemagne Benedictine oblate Widow (AC)
Ida, daughter of Duke Godfrey IV (Dode) of Lorraine, was a descendent of Blessed Charlemagne. At age 17, she became the wife of Count Eustace II of Boulogne. She was the mother of Godfrey and Baldwin de Bouillon. After her husband's death, Ida endowed several monasteries in Picardy, and became a Benedictine oblate under the obedience of the abbot of Saint Vaast (Attwater2, Benedictines, Encyclopedia, Gill).
IDA of Boulogne may well be called a daughter and a mother of kings, for both her parents were descended from Charlemagne, two of her sons, Godfrey and Baldwin, became kings of Jerusalem, and her granddaughter Matilda was, destined to be queen consort of England. Ida herself was the child of Godfrey IV, Duke of Lorraine, by his first wife Doda, and at the age of seventeen she was given in marriage to Eustace II, Count of’ Boulogne. Their union seems to have been a happy one, and Countess Ida regarded it as her paramount duty to train her children in the paths of holiness and to set them the example of liberal almsgiving to the poor. She had the good fortune to have as her spiritual adviser one of the greatest men of the age, St Anselm, abbot of Bec in Normandy, afterwards archbishop of Canterbury, some of whose letters to Ida have been preserved in his correspondence. The death of Count Eustace left his widow the control of valuable property, much of which she expended in the relief of the needy and in the construction of monasteries. Thus she founded Saint-Wulmer at Boulogne and Vasconvilliers, restored Samer and Our Lady of the Chapel, Calais, besides bestowing generous benefactions upon Saint-Bertin, Bouillon and Afflighem.
Bd Ida gave herself ardently to prayer for the success of the First Crusade, and it is recorded that, while she was making intercession for the safety of her son Godfrey of Bouillon, it was revealed to her that he was at that very moment making his victorious entry into Jerusalem. Although as the years passed Ida retired more and more from the world (she had once visited England), she does not appear ever to have actually taken the veil. She died when she was over seventy, at the close of a long and painful illness, and was buried in the church of the monastery of St Vaast.

There are two short lives of Bd Ida printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii. The first is attributed to a monk of St Vaast, a contemporary, the other was compiled by the canon regular John Gielemans, at a much later date. The best popular account is that of F. Ducatel Vie de Ste Ide de Lorraine (1900).
1124 St. Caradoc Welsh hermit harpist
He served a local king in southern Wales before becoming a hermit at St. Cendydd Church in Gower, later taking up residence on Barry Island at St. Issels.
Forced into exile by Henry I's invasion of the re­gion, Caradoc went to Haroldston, where he occupied the cell of St. Ismael.
1292 BD JAMES OF CERTALDO, ABBOT he early developed a vocation to the religious life: devotion and austerity greatly edified all who came into contact with him
ALTHOUGH born at Certaldo near Florence, Bd James spent practically alt his life at Volterra, which his parents had made their home. He was in the habit of accompanying his father and mother to the church of St Clement and St Justus, served by Camaldolese monks, and he early developed a vocation to the religious life. In the year 1230 he was received into the order.
His devotion and austerity greatly edified all who came into contact with him, and so strongly affected his father that he resigned his property to his two remaining sons to enter the monastery, where he spent the last years of his life as a lay-brother. Bd James was placed in charge of the parish, where he discharged his duties with great wisdom, leading many souls into the paths of holiness. Twice he refused the post of abbot, and although he was obliged to accept office when elected for the third time, he resigned shortly afterwards to become once more parish priest. One of his brothers joined
the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, but left them after six months to begin again more humbly as a lay-brother at St Justus. Bd James survived this brother for ten years, dying in 1292.
See the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii. There is also an Italian life, printed early in the seventeenth century by S. Razzi.
1300 Blessed Ida of Louvain  OSB Cist. V (PC)
Born in Louvain; Ida became a Cistercian at the convent of Rossendael (Vallis Rosarum-Rosenthal), near Malines. According to a somewhat dubious biography, she exhibited many amazing supernatural charisms. Her cultus still survives in Louvain and among the Cistercians (Attwater2, Benedictines).
IT is curious that two saints, bearing the same not very common name and separated from each other by a considerable interval of time, should have died on the same day of the year; but in both cases the thirteenth day of April is definitely set down by their respective biographers as that of their departure from this world.
The account preserved of Bd Ida of Louvain is, it must be confessed, open to some suspicion, partly because we have no external corroboration of any of the incidents recorded, and partly because it abounds in marvels of a very astonishing character.

She was a maiden born of a well-to-do family in Louvain, and she is said to have been marked out from her earliest years by God’s special graces. Though she had much to suffer from her father and sisters, who did not approve of her devotional practices, her superabundant charity and extreme asceticism, she pursued her way of life unfalteringly, guided, as she believed, by the spirit of God. Among her observances was that of genuflecting or prostrating herself repeatedly before a picture of our Lady, reciting the Hail Mary at each genuflection, a form of salutation which she sometimes reiterated over 1000 times in one day. Her devotion to the sacred Passion was ardent beyond belief and earned for her the gift of the stigmata in hands, feet and side, as well, it seems, as the marks of the crown of thorns. She strove to hide them, but finding that they could not altogether be concealed, she obtained by her prayers the withdrawal of the external signs, though the pain which accompanied them still continued. Her love for the Blessed Eucharist was not less remarkable. More than once her biographer speaks of her having received communion miraculously, and it is noteworthy that the practice of communicating under-both kinds is represented as still surviving, apparently after 1250, in the neighbourhood of Louvain and Mechlin. On one occasion Ida is said, in her desire to possess our Lord, to have lowered the pyx in which the Blessed Sacrament was hanging above the altar and to have attempted, though without success, to open it.
All dates are sadly lacking in Bd Ida’s biography, and we do not know at what age she entered the Cistercian convent of Roosendael near Mechlin, nor how old she was when she died, nor whether the year 1300 assigned for her death is not the error of some transcriber. In her religious life she was remarkable for her ecstasies and miracles. She was seen radiant with heavenly light, she is said to have known the secrets of hearts, and a fragrant perfume was often perceived by those who came near her. There seems to be no doubt that her tomb became a place of pilgrimage after her death, though all traces of it appear to have been swept away by the Gueux in 1580.

The biography of Bd Ida which is printed in the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii, purports to have been compiled from memoranda carefully recorded by her confessor, Hugh by name. It is an interesting document from the point of view of the student of mystical theology and in atmosphere certainly corresponds with what we find in many similar records of the thirteenth century. See also an article by C. Kolb in the Cistercienser Chronik, vol. v (1893), pp. 129—140.
1320 Blessed Margaret of Città di Castello born blind abandoned then adopted very holy favored with heavenly visions many miracles V (AC)
also known as Margaret of Metola) Born in at Meldola (or Metola, diocese of S. Angelo), Umbria, Italy, in 1287; cultus approved in 1609.

1320 BD MARGARET OF CITTA-DI-CASTELLO, VIRGIN She set children little tasks which she helped them to perform; instructing them in their duty to God and to man, instilling into them her own great devotion to the sacred Childhood, and she taught them the psalms which, in spite of her blindness, she had learnt by heart at the convent:  where many remarkable miracles were wrought at her tomb
IT must have been about the year 1293 when some women of Città-di-Castello in Umbria, who had gone one day to pray in their parish church, found within a destitute blind child of about six or seven who had been abandoned there by her parents. The kind souls were filled with pity for the little waif, and, poor though they were, they took charge of her—first one family and then another sheltering and feeding her until she became practically the adopted child of the village. One and all declared that, far from being a burden, little Margaret brought a blessing upon those who befriended her. Some years later the nuns of a local convent offered her a home. The girl herself rejoiced at the prospect of living with religious, but her joy was short-lived. The community was lax and worldly: Margaret’s fervour was a tacit reproach to them, nor did she bring them the profit they had anticipated. Neglect was succeeded by petty persecution, and then by active calumny. Finally she was driven forth ignominiously to face the world once more.
However, her old friends rallied round her. One couple offered her a settled home, which became her permanent residence. At the age of fifteen Margaret received the habit of a tertiary from the Dominican fathers, who had lately established themselves in Citta-di-Castello, and thenceforth she lived a life entirely devoted to God. More than ever did God’s benediction rest upon her. She cured another tertiary of an affliction of the eyes which had baffled medical skill, and her mantle extinguished a fire which had broken out in her foster-parents’ house. In her desire to show her gratitude to the people of Città-di-Castello she undertook to look after the children whilst their parents were at work. Her little school prospered wonderfully, for she understood children, being very simple herself. She set them little tasks which she helped them to perform; she instructed them in their duty to God and to man, instilling into them her own great devotion to the sacred Childhood, and she taught them the psalms which, in spite of her blindness, she had learnt by heart at the convent. We are told that when at prayer she was frequently raised a foot or more from the ground, remaining thus for a long time. Thus she lived, practically unknown outside her own neighbourhood, until the age of thirty-three, when she died amidst the friends who loved her, and was buried by their wish in the parish church, where many remarkable miracles were wrought at her tomb. The cultus of Bd Margaret was confirmed in 1609.
The principal document we possess concerning Bd Margaret is a sketch of her life, written in the fourteenth century, which has been printed in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xix (1900), pp. 21—36. See also the Acta Sanctorum, April, vol. ii, and Procter, Dominican Saints, pp. 90—93, as well as Ganay, Les Bienheureuses Dominicaines. It is probable that the Franciscan Ubertino di Casale in an enthusiastic tribute which he pays in his Arbor Vitae to a devout mystic of Città-di-Castello was referring to Bd Margaret. An interesting popular account of the beata by W. R. Bonniwell, The Story of Margaret of Metola, was published in America in 1952; it is based on a biography discovered by Fr Bonniwell and differs in some particulars from the account given above. Cf. Analecta Bollandiana, vol. lxx (1952), p. 456.

Margaret was born blind into a poor, mountain family, who were embittered by her affliction. When she was five years old, they made a pilgrimage to the tomb of a holy Franciscan at Castello to pray for a cure. The miracle failing, they abandoned their daughter in the church of Città-di-Castello and returned to their home.

Margaret was passed from family to family until she was adopted by a kindly peasant woman named Grigia, who had a large family of her own.
Margaret's natural sweetness and goodness soon made themselves felt, and she more than repaid the family for their kindness to her. She was an influence for good in any group of children. She stopped their quarrels, heard their catechism, told them stories, taught them Psalms and prayers. Busy neighbors were soon borrowing her to soothe a sick child or to establish peace in the house.
Her reputation for holiness was so great that a community of sisters in the town asked for her to become one of them. Margaret went happily to join them, but, unfortunately, there was little fervor in the house. The little girl who was so prayerful and penitential was a reproach to their lax lives, so Margaret returned to Grigia, who gladly welcomed her home.
Later, Margaret was received as a Dominican Tertiary and clothed with the religious habit. Grigia's home became the rendezvous site of troubled souls seeking Margaret's prayers. She said the Office of the Blessed Virgin and the entire Psalter by heart, and her prayers had the effect of restoring peace of mind to the troubled.
Denied earthly sight, Margaret was favored with heavenly visions. "Oh, if you only knew what I have in my heart!" she often said. The mysteries of the rosary, particularly the joyful mysteries, were so vivid to her that her whole person would light up when she described the scene. She was often in ecstasy, and, despite great joys and favors in prayer, she was often called upon to suffer desolation and interior trials of frightening sorts. The devil tormented her severely at times, but she triumphed over these sufferings.
A number of miracles were performed by Blessed Margaret. On one occasion, while she was praying in an upper room, Grigia's house caught fire, and she called to Margaret to come down. The blessed, however, called to her to throw her cloak on the flames. This she did, and the blaze died out. At another time, she cured a sister who was losing her eyesight.
Beloved by her adopted family and by her neighbors and friends, Margaret died at the early age of 33. From the time of her death, her tomb in the Dominican church was a place of pilgrimage. Her body, even to this day, is incorrupt.
After her death, the fathers received permission to have her heart opened. In it were three pearls, having holy figures carved upon them. They recalled the saying so often on the lips of Margaret: "If you only knew what I have in my heart!" (Attwater2, Benedictines, Dorcy).
In art, Margaret is pictured as a Dominican tertiary holding a cross, lily, and heart with two flames offered to the crucifix (Roeder).

1392 Blessed James of Certaldo parish priest 40 yrs OSB Cam. (AC)
Born at Certaldo, Italy; James Guidi, son of a knight of Volterra, joined the Camaldolese Benedictines at the abbey of Saints Clement and Justus in his hometown. He spent 40 of his 60 years there as parish priest of the abbey church. Twice he was offered and refused the abbacy. His example was so powerful that both his father and his brother also joined the abbey as lay brothers (Attwater2, Benedictines).

1642 Blessed Edward Catherick priest missionary 44 yrs English Martyr M (AC)
Born at Carlton, Yorkshire, England; died at York in 1642; beatified in 1929. Blessed Edward was educated for the priesthood at Douai. Upon his ordination, he returned to the mission fields of England, where he worked from 1635 until his execution (Benedictines).
BOTH these noble martyrs were Yorkshiremen. Lockwood, who sometimes used his mother’s family name of Lassels, was born in 1561. He had studied at Douai and at Rome, and before his final apprehension had twice been arrested and imprisoned. After his first confinement he was banished in 1610, but returning to England he was again taken and this time condemned to death. He was, however, reprieved and kept in prison until he regained his liberty, we know not how. Resuming his apostolic labours, he was finally captured at the house of a Mrs Catesby, being then eighty-one years old.

Catherick was a much younger man, and when, after his studies at Douai, he came to the English mission about the year 1635 he was only thirty years of age. After seven years of labour he also fell into the hands of the pursuivants and was brought before Justice Dodsworth, a connection of his by marriage, who committed him to York Castle and afterwards very discreditably gave evidence against him founded on his own private knowledge. Both the prisoners were condemned to death for their priesthood. When they came to the scaffold at York, the elder, thinking he saw signs of some weakening in his companion, claimed in virtue of his years the privilege of suffering first, and Bd Edmund, thus encouraged, met his end with entire firmness. Some portion of their relics, secured by Mary Ward’s community, were conveyed to the convent of her institute at Augsburg, where they still remain. The body, or part of it, of Bd John Lockwood is at Downside.

See Challoner, MMP., pp. 411—416, and also Stanton’s Menology, pp. 155157.

Blessed John Lockwood M (AC) Born at Sowerby, Yorkshire, England; died at York in 1642; beatified in 1929. During the persecution of Catholics in England, John Lockwood, alias Lascelles, studied for the priesthood in Rome. After his ordination in 1597, he worked covertly in England for 44 years until his arrest in 1642. He was 81 years old when he was hanged, drawn, and quartered for the treasonable crime of being a Catholic priest (Attwater2, Benedictines).

Day 40 of 40 Days for Life
For Life, Shawn Carney   Campaign Director
Dear Charlie,

As this 40 Days for Life campaign comes to the end, we are reminded that the injustice of abortion is not an isolated occurrence that has no impact on us. It not only impacts us ... but generations to come.
I want to thank you for all you’ve done these past 40 days to pray, fast and act to end abortion in 253 locations (including these volunteers in Canton, Ohio).
The children who were scheduled to be aborted this campaign — and are alive today — will be living witnesses in a culture that has forgotten that life is sacred. Here are a couple of stories that illustrate this point.

Alexandria, Virginia
A woman pulled into an empty parking lot near the 40 Days for Life vigil in Alexandria – and waited there for about 30 minutes. Finally, she got out of the car … and approached one of the vigil participants.
She said she knew exactly why people were there praying. When she was 21, she had a low-income job, had little money – and learned she was pregnant. The child’s father was supportive, however – and asked her to pray about it. He said it was they who had made a mistake – it certainly wasn’t the baby’s fault – and they could get through this.
The woman was shaking as she spoke. She then took out her phone and showed a picture of her daughter, who is now 21 years old herself. This was her only child – she was never able to have others. “She is so grateful and happy for having chosen life,” the vigil participant said.
 “She works in the area and has been watching us during the campaign,” the volunteer said. “She wanted us to know that what we are doing there on the sidewalk really matters.”

Nashville, Tennessee
A woman drove up to the 40 Days for Life vigil in Nashville and rolled down her window. She noted that people had prayed outside this abortion center for quite some time, and that was a good thing.
At one point in her life, abortion seemed like the right thing to do. “I came here a couple of years ago,” she said, “and because of the people praying here … I now have him.”
 “She turned to the back seat,” said one of the vigil participants, “where a little toddler was making sweet noises.  I was so astonished. This joyful news was in such contrast to the gloom and ugliness that is the abortion center.”
Beyond that, this volunteer was pretty much speechless. “All I could do was thank her.  The young woman had a beautiful smile; she was lovely and happy and full of appreciation for those of you who were here about two years ago. May the Lord Jesus be praised forever and ever!”

Today's devotional is from Fr. Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life.
Day 40 intention
Let us keep our eyes fixed on the New Jerusalem, where death will be no more.

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" — Revelation 21:4-5
Reflection by Fr. Frank Pavone
Every activity we undertake in defense of the sanctity of life is prophetic, inasmuch as it points to the day when "death will be no more."
Every victory we have when an act of abortion is prevented is prophetic of that day when death itself will be definitively conquered.
Every triumph of grace in this world, whereby someone is brought to see the value of life and given the strength to welcome it, is a breaking into our history of that definitive future in which the old order of things will have passed, and all things will be made new.
As pro-life warriors, we must keep our eyes fixed on heaven, and our hearts secure in the hope that the day is coming when all evil will be conquered.
It is the future that shapes the present; it is victory that informs the battle; it is the destination that determines the journey.
Daily, we are called to reflect on heaven.
When we weep, we are to think of the day when every tear will be wiped away.
When we face the destructive power of death, we are to think of the day when death is swallowed up in victory.
When we labor against abortion, we are to think of the day when we will have the rest and peace of the final triumph of life.
Heaven is as real as earth, and its joys will be as real as our present sorrows.

Father, you are the God of hope. Your word fills us with the vision of the world to come, when every tear will be wiped away, and death will be no more.
Father, how we need that hope, how we are strengthened by that vision! Keep our hearts focused on heaven, and diligent in the labors of earth.
As we struggle against the culture of death, root our souls in the assurance of victory. We pray through Christ our Lord, Amen.
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Easter Weekday
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!)
Listen to the podcast

 40 Days for Life  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'
May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.

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

  Month by Month of Saintly Dedications

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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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.

God loves variety. He doesn't mass-produce his saints. Every saint is unique, for each is the result of a new idea.  As the liturgy says: Non est inventus similis illis--there are no two exactly alike. It is we with our lack of imagination, who paint the same haloes on all the saints. Dear Lord, grant us a spirit that is not bound by our own ideas and preferences.  Grant that we may be able to appreciate in others what we lack in ourselves. O Lord, grant that we may understand that every saint must be a unique praise of Your glory. Catholic saints are holy people and human people who lived extraordinary lives.  Each saint the Church honors responded to God's invitation to use his or her unique gifts.   God calls each one of us to be a saint in order to get into heavenonly saints are allowed into heaven. The more "extravagant" graces are bestowed NOT for the benefit of the recipients so much as FOR the benefit of others.
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 Benedict XVI (2005 - 2013) Francis (2013

Where there is no honor for the elderly, there is no future for young people.
During his weekly General Audience in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis made this strong statement while continuing his catechesis on the family, with this and next week focusing on the elderly.  Confining this week’s address to their problematic current condition, the Holy Father said the elderly are ignored and that a society that does this is perverse.
While noting that life has been lengthened thanks to advances in medicine, he lamented that while the number of older people has multiplied, "our societies are not organized enough to make room for them, with proper respect and concrete consideration for their fragility and their dignity.”

“As long as we are young, we are led to ignore old age, as if it were a disease to be taken away. Then when we become older, especially if we are poor, sick and alone, we experience the shortcomings of a society planned on efficiency, which consequently ignores the elderly.”

He went on to quote his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI, who, when visiting a nursing home in November 2012, “used clear and prophetic words: ‘The quality of a society, I would say of a civilization, is judged also on how the elderly are treated and the place reserved for them in the common life.’"  Without a space for them, Francis highlighted, society dies.

Cultures, he decried, see the elderly as a burden who do not produce and should be discarded.
“You do not say it openly, but you do it!” he exclaimed. "Out of our fear of weakness and vulnerability, we do not tolerate and abandon the elderly," he said. “It’s sickening to see the elderly discarded. It is ugly. It’s a sin. Abandoning the elderly is a mortal sin.”
“Children who do not visit their elderly and ill parents have mortally sinned. Understand?”

The Pope expressed his dismay at children who go months without seeing a parent, or how elderly are confined to little tables in their kitchens alone, without anyone caring for them.  He noted that he observed this reality during his ministry in Buenos Aires.  Unwilling to accept limits, society, he noted, doesn’t allow elderly to participate and gives into the mentality that only the young can be useful and enjoy life.
The whole society must realize, the Pope said, the elderly contain the wisdom of the people.
The tradition of the Church, Pope Francis reaffirmed, has always supported a culture of closeness to the elderly, involving affectionately and supportively accompanying them in this final part of life.  The Church cannot, and does not want to, Francis underscored, comply with a mentality of impatience, and even less of indifference and contempt towards old age.
Sooner or later, we will all be old, he said. If we do not treat the elderly well, he stressed we will not be treated well either.
“We must awaken the collective sense of gratitude, of appreciation, of hospitality, which make them feel the elderly living part of his community.”

Concluding his address, Pope Francis noted how old age will come to all one day and reminded the faithful how much they have received from their elders. He also challenged them to not take a step back and abandon them to their fate.

The Church without Mary is an orphanage
Pope Francis:
Cross Not Optional, Says Benedict XVI
Reflects on Peter's "Immature" Faith CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, AUG. 31, 2008 (
Taking up one's cross isn't an option, it's a mission all Christians are called to, says Benedict XVI.
The Pope said this today before reciting the midday Angelus with several thousand people gathered in the courtyard of the papal summer residence at Castel Gandolfo, south of Rome.
Referring to the Gospel reading for today's Mass, the Holy Father reflected on the faith of Peter, which is shown to be "still immature and too much influenced by the 'mentality of this world.'”  He explained that when Christ spoke openly about how he was to "suffer much, be killed and rise again, Peter protests, saying: 'God forbid, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen to you.'"
"It is evident that the Master and the disciple follow two opposed ways of thinking," continued the Pontiff. "Peter, according to a human logic, is convinced that God would never allow his Son to end his mission dying on the cross.  "Jesus, on the contrary, knows that the Father, in his great love for men, sent him to give his life for them, and if this means the passion and the cross, it is right that such should happen."
Christ also knew that "the resurrection would be the last word," Benedict XVI added.
Serious illness
The Pope continued, "If to save us the Son of God had to suffer and die crucified, it certainly was not because of a cruel design of the heavenly Father.  "The cause of it is the gravity of the sickness of which he must cure us: an evil so serious and deadly that it will require all of his blood. 
"In fact, it is with his death and resurrection that Jesus defeated sin and death, reestablishing the lordship of God."
Popes Html link here: 
 “Where there is no honor for the elderly, there is no future for young people.” Pope Francis:
It Is a Mortal Sin When Children Don't Visit Their Elderly Parents.

Popes mentioned in todays  articles of Saints April 12

649-655 Pope St. Martin I defender of the faith; buried in the church of Our Lady, called Blachernæ, near Cherson
Sancti Martíni Primi, Papæ et Mártyris, cujus dies natális sextodécimo Kaléndas Octóbris recensétur.
    The Feast of St. Martin I, pope and martyr, whose birthday is mentioned on the 16th day of September.

Many miracles are related wrought by St Martin in life and after death;
Pope St. Martin I of noble birth, great student, commanding intelligence, profound learning, great charity to the poor Saint Martin the Confessor, Pope of Rome native of the Tuscany convened Lateran Council at Rome condemn Monothelite heresy;
Last martyred Pope.
655 Martin I, Pope died in the Crimea great intellect and charity the last pope to die a martyr M (RM)
Born in Todi in Umbria, Italy; died in the Crimea, September 16, 655; feast day was previously November 12 (November 10 in York);
the Eastern Church celebrates his feast on September 20.

336 St. Julius elected Pope to succeed Pope St. Mark on February 6, 337 built several basilicas and churches in Rome
        declared that Athanasius was the rightful bishop of Alexandria and reinstated him

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints
Pope St. Leo I (the Great) April 11
"And to the angel of the Church of Pergamum write: the words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword. I know where you live, where the throne of Satan is, and you cleave unto My Name, and have not renounced My faith, even in those days when Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwells" (Rev 2:12-13).  St. Antipas

Pope Urban V, in 1360, appointed 1374 Blessed Antony of Pavoni  consistent poverty of Antony's life & example of Christian virtue combatting heresies of Lombards OP inquisitor-general of Lombardy and Genoa, making him one of the youngest men ever to hold that office. It was a difficult and dangerous job for a young priest of 34. Besides being practically a death sentence to any man who held the office, it carried with it the necessity of arguing with the men most learned in a twisted and subtle heresy.  Antony worked untiringly in his native city, and his apostolate lasted 14 years.
432 Saint Celestine Pope of Rome (422-432) zealous champion of Orthodoxy virtuous life theologian authority denounced the Nestorian heresy

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints
 180 Saint Hegesippus Father of Church History Jewish convert {Eusebius drew heavily on his writings for  Ecclesiastical History (Book I  through  Book X)}

432 Celestine I Pope treatise against semi-Pelagianism
Born in Campania, Italy; died at Rome, July 27, 432; feast day formerly on July 27 and/or August 1. Saint Celestine was a deacon in Rome when he was elected pope on September 20, 422, to succeed Saint Boniface. He was a staunch supporter of Saint Germanus of Auxerre in the fight against Pelagianism, and a friend of Saint Augustine with whom he corresponded, and which demonstrates that the bishop of Rome was the central authority even at that early date.

About the year 1234 Pope Gregory IX appointed 1252 St. Peter of Verona inquisitor inspiring sermons martyr accepted into the Dominican Order by St. Dominicinquisitor general for the Milanese territories.

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints
St Leo IX -- 1095 Saint Gerald of Sauve-Majeure monk cellarer of abbey Corbie; founded, directed, Benedictine Abbey of Grande -Sauveabbot  author of a hagiology His abbot chose him as companion to go with him to Rome, where he hoped the sufferer might be cured.Together they visited the tombs of the Apostles, and at the hands of St Leo IX Gerald was ordained priest.
Pope Urban IV) -- 1258 Blessed Juliana of Mount Cornillon visions in which Jesus pointed out that there was no feast in honor of the Blessed Sacrament OSA V (AC) her mission to some of her friends, notably to Bd Eva, a recluse who lived beside St Martin’s church on the opposite bank of the river, and to a saintly woman, Isabel of Huy, whom she had received into her community. Encouraged no doubt by the support of these two, she opened her heart to a learned canon of St Martin’s, John of Lausanne, asking him to consult theologians as to the propriety of such a feast. James Pantaleon (afterwards Pope Urban IV), Hugh of St Cher, the Dominican prior provincial, Bishop Guy of Cambrai, chancellor of the University of Paris, with other learned men, were approached, and decided that there was no theological or canonical objection to the institution of a festival in honour of the Blessed Sacrament.
127 Sixtus I, Pope survived as pope for about 10 years before being killed by the Roman authorities M (RM)
 Romæ natális beáti Xysti Primi, Papæ et Mártyris; qui, tempóribus Hadriáni Imperatóris, summa cum laude rexit Ecclésiam, ac demum, sub Antoníno Pio, ut sibi Christum lucrifáceret, libénter mortem sustínuit temporálem.
      At Rome, the birthday of blessed Pope Sixtus the First, martyr, who ruled the Church with distinction during the reign of Emperor Hadrian, and finally in the reign of Antoninus Pius he gladly accepted temporal death in order to gain Christ for himself. 
(also known as Xystus)

Saint Leo the Great --  469 St. Abundius Greek priest bishop noted theologian obvious intellect and holiness attended Councils of Chalcedon and Milan, Hermit (RM) (also known as Abondius, Abundias) Died c. 500. Saint Abundius, a Greek priest, was consecrated bishop of Como in northern Italy. Because he was an able theologian, Saint Leo the Great entrusted him with a mission to Emperor Theodosius the Younger, which led to the convening of the Council of Chalcedon in 451. At the council, Abundius presided as the pope's legate (Attwater2, Benedictines).
6th v. St. Musa Virgin child of Rome; a great mystic, visions and ecstasies, reported by St. Gregory I the Great

1220 Jacqueline V Hermit recluse in Sicily reprimanded Pope Innocent III

Popes mentioned in articles of Saints
During his 52-year episcopacy, 1132 St. Hugh of Grenoble Benedictine bishop amazing modesty took upon himself all sins of others the cross he carried was heavy laden holy and redemptive great reputation for miracles:
vainly tendered his resignation to each pope--Gregory VII, Gelasius II, Calixtus II, Honorius II, Innocent II, and others--and they refused him because of his outstanding ability. He never ceased imploring them to release him from the duties of his episcopal office up to the day of his death. During his last, painful illness he was tormented by headaches and stomach disorders that resulted from his long fasts and vigils, yet never complained. For a short time before his death, he lost his memory for everything but prayer, and would recite the Psalter and the Our Father unceasingly.

 440 Pope St. Sixtus III approved Acts of the Council of Ephesus endeavoured to restore peace between Cyril of Alexandria and John of Antioch prominent among the Roman clergy and in correspondence with St. Augustine