Wednesday 16th October 2019

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Catholic Heroes… St. Francis Borgia

October 10, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Francis Borgia

By CAROLE BRESLIN The mere sight of the name Borgia brings to mind the family that was influential in both the Church and society — notorious for their political maneuvering and murder. But God can bring good out of evil and even from this family: Francis Borgia had great influence in the development of the Society of Jesus and served as its third superior general. Francis Borgia was born on October 28, 1510 in Valencia, Spain. His father, Juan Borgia, was the Duke of Gandia, and the grandson of Pope Alexander VI. Juana, his mother, was the daughter of the archbishop of Zaragoza. When Juan died, Juana took her children back to her duchy to raise them in peace and…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… The Martyrs Of Turon

September 26, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… The Martyrs Of Turon

  By CAROLE BRESLIN The complex roots of the Spanish Civil War (February 1936 to April 1939) sprouted many years before hostilities broke out. Little by little the Catholic Church had lost its influence and then it became a prime target for both the revolutionaries and the government. Of Church personnel, those executed during the Spanish Civil War included 12 bishops; 283 religious sisters and nuns; 4,184 priests; 2,365 religious priests; and an unknown number of laypeople, according to a July 20, 2011 Our Sunday Visitor article by Russell Shaw. Among the martyrs are the Nine Martyrs of Turon, whose feast is celebrated on October 9. Eight of them were Brothers of the Christian Schools and one was a Passionist…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Thomas of Hereford

September 19, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Thomas of Hereford

By CAROLE BRESLIN During the High Middle Ages the power of kings began to disintegrate, as shown by the Magna Charta, which was established in 1215. Although neither party of the agreement held up to its commitments, the beginning of more democratic rule had arrived. Three years later a noble family gave birth to a man who played a significant role in the conflict between the barons and the king of England. This man, St. Thomas de Cantilupe, was born in 1218 in Hambleden in Buckinghamshire in England, just northwest of London. His father, William de Cantilupe, the second Baron Cantilupe, was a minister of King John while his mother, Millicent de Gournay, was also from an illustrious and influential…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Simon De Rojas

September 12, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Simon De Rojas

By CAROLE BRESLIN The subject of this article lived in a time of great saints, great Spanish saints, so it is not surprising that he is little known. St. Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556) who wrote the Spiritual Exercises, St. Teresa of Avila (1515-1582) who reformed the Carmelites and wrote The Interior Castle, and St. John of the Cross who wrote The Ascent of Mount Carmel and The Dark Night of the Soul (1542-1591) all lived during the lifetime of St. Simon de Rojas. While they focused on the spiritual formation of souls, St. Simon focused on organizing the laity to play a more active role in performing the corporal works of mercy. In the year 1552 there was a Catholic…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Child Martyrs Of Tlaxcala

September 5, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… Child Martyrs Of Tlaxcala

By CAROLE BRESLIN Viva Cristo Rey! This was the call of the Cristeros (1926-1929). Many Mexican saints were martyred during that massive and demonic persecution of the Catholic Church. One young man, José Sanchez del Rio, was only 14 years old when he died for his loyalty to the faith. He had refused to deny Christ, even under torture. Three young boys, Cristobal, Antonio, and Juan, were also martyred for their love of the Catholic faith. However, they died nearly 400 years before José Sanchez del Rio. These boys, full of fervor and zeal for Jesus, continually asked others to cease their pagan practices. As a result, they were put to death. Where was their city of Tlaxcala and why…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Peter Faber

August 29, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Peter Faber

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the hagiography of the saints in the Catholic Church, there are persons from all walks of life and all ages. A person does not have to live many years to make great accomplishments and leave a legacy worthy of emulation. Such was the life of St. Peter Faber who was called to eternity before he reached the age of forty. High in the pastures of the French Alps, on April 14, 1506, a peasant family welcomed a remarkable child into their lives. This was in the village of Villaret. They gave him the name Peter. Two of Peter’s uncles were Carthusian priors, showing that he came from a devout Catholic family. His early years were spent…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Stanislaus Papczynski

August 22, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Stanislaus Papczynski

By CAROLE BRESLIN New orders of religious are frequently born from existing orders. The discalced Carmelites were born via St. Teresa of Avila, who was inspired to live a more strict observance of religious life: more seclusion, simpler meals, and more prayer time. St. Teresa of Calcutta belonged to a religious order in India, but desired to serve the poorest of the poor after hearing her “call within a call.” Thus, she founded the Missionaries of Charity. Likewise, Stanislaus Papczynski belonged to an order of priests, but desired to live in greater poverty, greater service, and a deeper prayer life. Tomasz Papczynski, a blacksmith, and his wife Zofia Tacikowska, welcomed Stanislaus into their lives on May 18, 1631. Tomasz also…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Mariam Baouardy

August 15, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes… St. Mariam Baouardy

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the Bible, there are numerous references to Galilee with about 80 in just the New Testament. Galilee is an area in northern Israel and it includes the city of Nazareth, Mt. Tabor, and the site of the Sermon on the Mount. In John 1:46. Nathaniel responds to Philip, who told him of Jesus, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Some recall this as, “Can anything good come out of Galilee? The answer was yes then and it was yes in the nineteenth century. Good can come out of Nazareth. On January 8, 1846 a girl was born in the city of Ibillin, a small village between Nazareth and Haifa. Her parents, George Baouardy and Mariam…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Joseph Of Cupertino

August 8, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . St. Joseph Of Cupertino

By CAROLE BRESLIN Now that the school year is about to begin, students — especially Catholic students — will find recourse to their favorite patron saint of studying. Some may choose St. Thomas Aquinas or St. Augustine of Hippo. For those students who find it difficult to retain what they read and write about it, perhaps this saint will encourage them: St. Joseph of Cupertino. He was frequently called the village idiot. However, by God’s Providence, he became not only a priest but one of the most amazing levitating saints in the history of the Church. Joseph was born in Cupertino, a village about ten miles southeast of Rome, on June 17, 1603. His father had contracted so many debts…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. John Vianney

August 1, 2019 saints Comments Off on Catholic Heroes . . . St. John Vianney

By CAROLE BRESLIN During these challenging times in the Church and with the dangers of religious becoming secularized, the Church has a shining example of a holy and sanctifying priest in the Curé of Ars, the patron saint of priests. The Curé of Ars, also known as St. John Vianney, was not particularly brilliant and almost did not become a priest, but he had a love of both God and neighbor that led him to heroic practices to win souls for the Kingdom of God. On May 8, 1786, Matthieu Vianney and Marie Beluze brought their newborn baby straight to the church to be baptized in Dardilly, near Lyons, France. He was the fourth of six children. His baptismal name…Continue Reading