ALL POSTS TAGGED: SAINT


TAGS: Italy, Pope, Saint

Born in Rome toward the end of the third century, Pope Sylvester was the leader of the Catholic Church at a great turning point in the Church’s history. For the first time in nearly 300 years, Christians were freed from the threat of persecution. The powerful emperor, Constantine, had given Christians the right to practice their faith openly. Constantine even made Sunday a weekly holiday.


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In the Opening Prayer of the Mass on the feast of St. Thomas, we pray, “Almighty God, you granted the martyr Thomas the grace to give his life for the cause of justice” (Sacramentary). The justice Thomas died for was the right of the Church to be free from control by the government.


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John is sometimes called “the beloved disciple” or “John the Evangelist.” He was the only one of Jesus’ apostles who did not leave him during his crucifixion and death. In the gospel Jesus even asks John to take care of Mary, the Blessed Mother, after his death.


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On Christmas Day, we celebrate the birth of Jesus. The next day we celebrate the birth of Stephen. But this is a different kind of birth. It is the birth of Stephen into eternal life. Death brought life for him. He is the first martyr of the Christian Church.


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Born in 1542, John was raised in Spain by a widowed mother who could barely provide for her sons. At a young age, he worked in a hospital and developed a great love for the poor and the sick. He sometimes felt that he was in the presence of Jesus when he was tending the patients. But John wanted to become even closer to God. He became a Carmelite friar when he was almost 20 years old.


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Lucy lived so long ago that many details of her life are unknown to us. We do know that she came from the island of Sicily and that she died in the year 304. We have proof that she was beloved by the early Christians because her name is prayed in the first Eucharistic Prayer at Mass.


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TAGS: France, Germany, Saint

Odilia, also known as Odile, was born in France in the seventh century. Her father was the Duke of Alsace. When she was still an infant, her parents realized that she was blind. Her father was so angry that he ordered his only child put to death. But Odilia’s mother convinced him to allow Odilia to be raised by nuns.


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María Maravillas Pidal y Chico de Guzmán was born into an important royal family in Madrid, Spain, in 1891. Her father was also Spain’s ambassador to the Vatican. The family was very religious, and María was always encouraged to put God first in her life. She prayed that the Holy Spirit would guide her in knowing how God wanted her to serve him. God blessed María with a religious vocation.


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Juan was a simple man — a weaver and laborer. Before he could return to the Lady, he found out that his uncle was dying. Juan rushed to find a priest. On his way, the Virgin Mary met him on the path. She told Juan that his uncle had been cured. Then she asked Juan to go to the top of the hill where they first met. On the snow-covered hill, Juan found beautiful roses, a kind that did not grow in Mexico, growing in the frozen ground. Juan filed his cloak with the flowers and ran to see the bishop.


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God gave many talents to Saint Ambrose. He used them to keep the Church true to God's Word. In 340 AD, Ambrose was born in Trier, one of Germany's oldest cities. His father served there as an important Roman soldier. When he grew up, Ambrose became a lawyer and was the governor of Milan in Italy.


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