ALL POSTS TAGGED: BE MY DISCIPLES



Are you a leader or a follower? When Jesus met Simon, he recognized his leadership qualities. But he knew that Simon would need help. Jesus began by giving Simon a new name. He called him Peter, which means “rock.” Later, Jesus told Peter that he was to be the rock on which Jesus would build his Church.


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Can you imagine an apostle, the closest followers of Christ, having doubts about Jesus? St. Thomas did, and his disbelief helps us to understand how important the gift of faith is.


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Maria Goretti was only 12 years old when she died in 1902, but the story of this young Italian girl has touched the hearts of Catholics everywhere for over 100 years. Maria’s parents were hard-working tenant farmers who raised crops on land they rented. When she was nine, Maria's father died. Her mother moved the family to a building where another family lived—a father and his son. The son’s name was Alessandro.


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Amabile Visintainer was born in a poor section of Italy in 1865. When she was 10 years old, her family and many of their neighbors sailed to South America. They were looking for a better life. The immigrants traveled to Brazil and started a new town, which they named Vigolo. Even though many things had changed for Amabile, the Catholic faith remained at the center of her family’s life. She made her First Communion, attended religion classes, and helped the women of the village clean the chapel the immigrants built when they arrived.


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Martyrs are people who die for their faith. In China, where Christian faiths were not allowed to be practiced for many centuries, there were many martyrs.


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Benedict was born to a noble family in Nursia, Italy, about 480 AD. When he grew up, he studied in Rome. Then, wanting to pray alone, Benedict lived for three years in a cave near Subiaco.
 


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We hear the story of Veronica when we pray the Stations of the Cross. At the Sixth Station, Jesus stopped to allow Veronica to wipe the blood, sweat, and dirt from his face. This simple act of kindness is all we know about Veronica, a woman in Jerusalem. She is not mentioned in the Gospels, but Jesus’ followers must have shared the story of her loving care for the Lord so often that it has become part of our tradition.


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When Louis Martin and his bride, Zelie, were married in 1858, they promised that they would “serve God first” together. They knew that putting God first in their lives would help them to always live with love.


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More than 300 years ago, around 1656, Kateri lived in what is now the state of New York. Her mother was a Catholic and a member of the Algonquin tribe, and her father was a Mohawk warrior. At the time, this Native American nation did not believe in the Christian God.


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O buona ventura!” If your Italian is a little rusty, in English it means, “Oh, good fortune!” or “What good luck!” Legend claims that these are the words exclaimed by Francis of Assisi when he prayed over the four-year-old Giovanno di Fidanza in 1225. The name “Bonaventure” stuck.


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