Mary the Holy Mother of God


Theotokos Panachranta. Mid-11th-century Kievan illumination from the Gertrude Psalter.

Mary, our Blessed Mother, was only a young girl when she learned that she was going to be an important part of God’s plan for the whole world.

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Elizabeth Ann Seton

Feast Day: January 4
Canonized: September 14, 1975
Beatified: March 17, 1963
Venerated: December 18, 1959

Sometimes our choices change our lives. In 1805, Elizabeth Seton chose to become a Catholic. This choice changed her life and ours.

Elizabeth had been born to rich parents in New York City in 1774. Her parents taught her to care about others. When Elizabeth...
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John Nepomucene Neumann

Feast Day: January 5
Canonized: June 19, 1977
Beatified: October 13, 1963
Venerated: December 11, 1921

The new Bishop of Philadelphia had just about had it with the unfair treatment of Catholic students in the public school system of his city. We can hardly imagine such an occurrence today, but in the middle 1800s, school boards, administrators, and teachers were mostly Protestant and forced their beliefs...
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Genoveva Torres Morales

Feast Day: January 5
Canonized: May 4, 2003
Beatified: January 29, 1995
Venerated: January 22, 1991

Born in 1870 in a small town in Spain, Genoveva had a difficult childhood. By the time she was eight, her parents and four of her brothers and sisters had died. When she was 13, doctors had to amputate her leg because of an infection.

Genoveva spent much of her...
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André Bessette

Feast Day: January 6
Canonized: October 17, 2010
Beatified: May 23, 1982
Venerated: June 12, 1978

André Bessette was born in Quebec, Canada, in 1845. By the time he was 12 he was an orphan who had to take care of himself. He traveled to the United States and worked for a time in a textile mill in New England. But he soon returned home to Canada with a dream of entering...
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Raymond of Penyafort

Feast Day: January 7
Canonized: 1601

Raymond was born near Barcelona, Spain, in 1175. He was such a gifted student that he was already teaching philosophy at the university by the time he was 20. He went on to earn degrees in both Church and civil law. After hearing the homilies of a Dominican preacher, he decided to join the Dominican order and made his vows in...
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Marguerite Bourgeoys

Feast Day: January 12
Canonized: October 31, 1982
Beatified: November 12, 1950
Venerated: June 19, 1910

Hardship and danger can deter some people. But for St. Marguerite Bourgeoys, hardship and danger gave rise to an active and purposeful life.

Born in France in 1620 into a family with 12 children, Marguerite took care of many of her brothers and...
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Hilary of Poitiers

Feast Day: January 13
Canonized: Pre-Congregation

How does a pagan man eventually become one of the most important Christians of his time? The story of St. Hilary helps us to see that God can and does work through each one of us.

Hilary was born in Poitiers, France, sometime around the year 300. His parents were very wealthy and made sure he received a good education. Hilary was raised as a pagan. Pagans worshipped many gods. That did not make sense to Hilary. He thought that there could only be one true God. To learn more, Hilary read the Scriptures. Meeting Jesus in...
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Anthony of Egypt


Feast Day: January 17 (Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox)
Feast Day: January 30 (Coptic Orthodox, Coptic Catholic)
Canonized: Pre-Congregation

The Church calls Anthony the father of monks. Before his time, many men and women went out into the desert to pray and do penance. These hermits lived alone, far apart from other people. Anthony of Egypt formed...
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Basil Anthony Marie Moreau

Feast Day: January 20
Beatified: September 15, 2007
Venerated: April 12, 2003

Basil Moreau was born in 1799, near the end of the French Revolution, a conflict that lasted for ten years and during which time the Church was often suppressed. But Basil’s family was very religious. They prayed together as a family and attended Mass every week.

The Moreaus' parish priest saw that Basil had a special love for the Lord. He encouraged Basil to study for the priesthood. Because so many priests had been killed during the French Revolution, the country was desperately in...
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