Friday 16th November 2018

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Catholic Heroes… Blessed Joseph Allamano

February 6, 2018 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Blessed Joseph Allamano

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the lives of the saints one thing is very common: They have such a strong desire to do God’s will that nothing will hinder their work. Many saints, despite illness, weak health, or many other obstacles achieved their goals. Frequently the amount of work accomplished by such individuals seems humanly impossible — and, of course, it is. Flooded with abundant graces because they opened their minds and hearts to God’s will, they could move mountains. Such was the case of Blessed Joseph Allamano. Joseph was born on January 21, 1851 at Castelnuovo d’Asti, Italy, which is just ten miles east of Turin. Two other saints also came from that village about the same time: St. Joseph…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Jeanne De Lestonnac

January 30, 2018 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Jeanne De Lestonnac

By CAROLE BRESLIN Is it possible to have two vocations? There are men who have become priests after their wives have died. There are also women saints who, after their husbands died, became religious, such as St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, St. Jane Frances de Chantal, and St. Jeanne de Lestonnac. Jeanne was born on December 27, 1556 in Bordeaux, France. She was the firstborn child of Richard de Lestonnac, a member of the Bordeaux parliament, and Jeanne Eyquem, the sister of Michel Eyquem de Montaigne who became widely known and respected for his philosophical essays. During Jeanne’s lifetime, France suffered from the intense conflict between the Catholic Church and the Protestant reformists. Sadly, her mother fell prey to the enemies…Continue Reading

St. Polycarp Of Smyrna

January 23, 2018 saints Comments Off on St. Polycarp Of Smyrna

By CAROLE BRESLIN Researching Church history usually begins with studying the fathers of the Church. Many rely heavily on the writings on spirituality, traditions, and the development of doctrine of these men, including St. Augustine of Hippo, St. Ignatius of Antioch, St. John Chrysostom, and St. Jerome. Who are these men and why are they called fathers of the Church? There are four qualities that are considered when categorizing these fathers: They lived before the close of the eighth century, they preserved doctrinal integrity, they possessed personal sanctity, and they earned the approval of the Church. Many lived in the first few centuries after the death of Christ and are very well known, having left abundant writings that have been…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Raymond Penafort

January 16, 2018 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Raymond Penafort

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Catholic Church has been blessed with a plethora of doctrinal resources, thanks in large part to Pope St. John Paul II. The Code of Canon Law, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the many encyclicals, apostolic exhortations, books, and letters continue to provide the Church with a solid foundation for learning and applying the truths of our faith. Canon Law has been around for many centuries thanks to the pioneering work of a man who lived at the beginning of the 13th century: Raymond Penafort. Although St. Ivo of Chartres (1040-1115) and St. Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621) are credited with great contributions to the development of canon law, St. Raymond Penafort (1175-1275) is recognized for making the…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Marguerite Bourgeoys

January 9, 2018 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Marguerite Bourgeoys

By CAROLE BRESLIN Our Lord has no limits and conditions for persons whom He calls to sainthood. They may be the richest, such as St. Francis of Assisi, or the poorest such, as the children of Fatima. They may be powerful, such as St. Louis, king of France, or humble, such as our Lady. They may be the most brilliant, such as St. Augustine of Hippo, or the simplest, such as St. Joseph of Cupertino. They can also be very normal, average persons. Marguerite Bourgeoys was not outstandingly brilliant, poor, smart, or simple. Her greatest trait was her love of God and her eagerness to serve. Marguerite was born into unusual times in France. King Louis XIII of France, with…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. John The Apostle

January 2, 2018 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. John The Apostle

By CAROLE BRESLIN John the Apostle, who wrote one of the four Gospels, three letters, and the Book of Revelation, is known as the disciple whom Jesus loved. Perhaps because John was so young, innocent, virginal, and pure Jesus loved him in a special way. Or perhaps it was because He knew that John would be the only apostle who would stand by His Mother at the foot of the cross. Could it be because John’s Gospel would be the one that spoke of Christ in an ethereal way, uncommon to the other Evangelists? John the Apostle, also called John the Evangelist, was born around AD 15. Although some claim he came from noble birth, others point to the fact…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Stephen, Protomartyr

December 26, 2017 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Stephen, Protomartyr

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the popular Christmas carol, The Twelve Days of Christmas, a different gift is given for each of the twelve days of Christmas. This celebration of twelve days begins with December 26, the Feast of St. Stephen, and ends with the Epiphany, traditionally celebrated on January 6. The Catholic Church celebrates the Christmas octave, eight days of observing the great Feast of Christmas, from December 25 through January 1. The day after the birth of Christ, the Feast of St. Stephen, the first martyr of the Church, is celebrated by many Christian denominations. Outside of Sacred Scripture little or nothing is known about St. Stephen. In the Acts of the Apostles, the speech given by Stephen when…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Blessed Peter Friedhofen

December 19, 2017 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Blessed Peter Friedhofen

By CAROLE BRESLIN Feeling sick, suffering from prolonged and terminal illness, not being able to eat, a Catholic cannot use any of these reasons for not doing God’s work. The Church has many saints who suffered such conditions. Teresa of Avila had severe digestive troubles; Saint Therese of Lisieux suffered from tuberculosis; and Saint Catherine of Siena could not eat anything except Holy Communion. Blessed Peter Friedhofen also suffered from bad lungs for many years before they finally caused his death. The sixth of seven children, Peter Friedhofen was born to Peter Friedhofen and Anna Maria Klug on February 5, 1819 in Weitersburg, Koblenz, in the Kingdom of Bavaria. He lost both of his parents at a young age. His…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . Blessed Miguel Pro

December 12, 2017 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . Blessed Miguel Pro

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Cristero War in Mexico (1926-1929) was one more episode in the universal and eternal conflict between the Catholic Church and secularist governments. The seeds of the conflict were sown at the turn of the century, leading to the enactment of the Mexican constitution in 1917. Then it was enflamed when President Plutarco Elias Calles (president from 1924-1928) decided to enforce the rules of the constitution in order to eradicate the influence of the Catholic Church in Mexican society. When the Mexican government suppressed religious celebrations, and closed Catholic hospitals, schools, and churches, a grassroots uprising began and spread rapidly. Over 500 Cristero leaders were executed, along with the more than 2,000 supporters and 40 priests who…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Pope St. Damasus I

December 5, 2017 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Pope St. Damasus I

By CAROLE BRESLIN Our Lord gave us a very comforting promise in Matt. 16:18 when He said, “And I say to thee: ‘Thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it’.” The Catholic Church has survived the intrigues of numerous antipopes. An antipope is a “false claimant to the Holy See in opposition to the Pope canonically elected” (Modern Catholic Dictionary, Fr. John A. Hardon, SJ, p. 31). Pope St. Damasus was the fourth Pope who had to persevere against an antipope: Ursinus (366-367). Damasus’ parents originally came from Lusitania, an ancient Iberian Roman province. His father, Antonius, and his mother, Laureatia, lived in Rome when he…Continue Reading