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Saint of the Day May 19: St. Dunstan of Canterbury

May 19th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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St. Dunstan of Canterbury

Feast Day: May 19

Edgar_and_dunstan_bath_abbey

Central portion of a 19th century stained glass window in Bath Abbey depicting King Edgar of England being crowned by Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury. Edgar was crowned by Dunstan at Bath, and the service, devised by Dunstan himself, forms the basis of the present-day British coronation ceremony. (Wikimedia Commons)

This abbot of Glastonbury and archbishop of Canterbury was influential in politics as well as the church. He fled at least twice from enemies in the English court, spending time in Monastic solitude. As abbot he instituted the Benedictine rule at Glastonbury and acted as a trusted advisor to King Edmund of Wessex. Dunstan’s influence spread beyond monastic and court circles after he became archbishop. He insisted on the observance of marriage laws as well as those of fasting and abstinence.

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Saint of the Day May 18: Blessed Blandine Merten

May 18th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Blessed Blandine Merten

Feast Day: May 18
Maria Merton was the ninth child in a devout German family. She taught school for six years until 1908, when she and a

St. Maurice Vienne, France

Blessed Blandine Merten (CNS)

sister entered the Ursulines near Ahrweiler. She took the name of an early Christian martyr, and in 1913 added a fourth vow at her consecration to religious life: She offered herself as a willing sacrifice to Christ. But Blandine soon contracted tuberculosis, and in 1916 entered a sanitarium at the Ursuline convent in Trier, where she died. Calm and cheerful as she faced prolonged suffering, she wrote, “I want to love God more than any creature has ever loved him.” She was beatified in 1987.

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Saint of the Day May 17: St. Paschal Baylon

May 17th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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St. Paschal Baylon

Feast Day: May 17

St. Mary's Basilica Phoenix AZ

St. Paschal Baylon (CNS)

Born to a Spanish shepherd family, Paschal was said to have taught himself to read while tending sheep. At age 21 he joined an austere group of Franciscans, devoting himself to prayer and charity. He was sent on a dangerous mission to French Franciscans, and a shoulder wound he received caused him pain for the rest of his life. Long hours of prayer on his knees before the Eucharist earned this lay brother the honor of being patron of Catholic Eucharistic congresses. His emblem in art is a monstrance.

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Saint of the Day May 16: St. Simon Stock

May 16th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Saint Simon Stock

Feast Day: May 16

Never formally canonized a saint, Simon Stock is venerated by the Carmelite order and some dioceses. He was the sixth

"Vierge et saint Simon Stock" by Nicolas Mignard (Wikimedia Commons, U.S. Public Domain)

“Vierge et saint Simon Stock” by Nicolas Mignard (Wikimedia Commons, U.S. Public Domain)

master general of the Carmelites and was responsible for their transformation to a mendicant order. Born in England, Simon supposedly became a hermit at 12. According to legend, Simon received a vision of the Virgin Mary who presented to him the brown scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Devotion to her and the wearing of the scapular have remained popular for centuries.

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Saint of the Day May 15: St. Isidore the Farmer

May 15th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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0515.Saint_Isidore_Catholic_Church_(Bloomingdale,_Illinois)_-_stained_glass,_St._Isidore_the_Farmer_-_detail

Saint Isidore the Farmer (Wikimedia Commons)

Saint Isidore the Farmer

Feast Day: May 15

A humble peasant born near Madrid, Spain, Isidore married and worked the same fields all his life. The couple was said to have lived celibately after their young son died. Always devout, Isidore visited church on his way t work, prayed while ploughing and made local pilgrimages. Legends associate him with miraculous feedings of birds and a crowd of poor men. He was canonized in the august company of Ignatius Loyola, Francis Xavier, Teresa of Avila and Philip Neri.

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Saint of the Day May 14: St. Mary Mazzarello

May 14th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Saint Mary Mazzarello

Saint Maria Mazzerello (Wikimedia Commons)

Saint Maria Mazzerello (Wikimedia Commons)

Feast Day: May 14

An Italian peasant, Mary worked long hours in the fields and vineyards. She attended Mass frequently and joined a sodality whose members in 1860 were asked to nurse typhoid victims. Mary caught the fever and nearly died. Because of weakened health, she started a dressmaking business to employ local girls. This was the beginning of the Salesian Sisters of St. John Bosco, which now has 1,400 houses in 54 countries. Mary is enshrined in Turin next to St. John Bosco, founder of the Salesians men’s order.

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Saint of the Day May 13: Our Lady of Fatima

May 13th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Our Lady of Fatima
Feast Day: May 13

Mary appeared to three peasant children near Fatima, Portugal, six times between May 13 and October 13, 1917, and asked for prayers for

Our Lady of Fatima (CNS)

Our Lady of Fatima (CNS)

 world peace and an end to World War I, for sinners, and for the conversion of Russia. She entrusted the children with three secrets, regarding devotion to her Immaculate Heart, a vision of hell, and a “bishop in white” shot by soldiers firing bullets and arrows.

Many connect the third secret to the attempted assassination of Blessed Pope John Paul II on May 13, 1981, and the pope thanked Mary for guiding the bullet and saving him. At the Vatican last October 13, Pope Francis stood before the statue of Our Lady from the Fatima shrine and formally entrusted the world to Mary.

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Saint of the Day May 12: St. Pancras

May 12th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Saint Pancras

Feast Day: May 12

According to an early legend, the Roman martyr Pancras was a native of Syria or Phrygia (now Turkey) brought to Rome by an uncle after he

St. Pancras (CNS)

St. Pancras (CNS)

was orphaned. They converted to Christianity there and were martyred during the persecution of Emperor Diocletian. Pancras reportedly was only 14, the likely reason for his being a patron saint of children.

A strong cult of Pancras developed in Rome and in England from the time of St. Augustine of Canterbury, who dedicated a church to him around 600. Pancras is also mentioned in St. Bede’s martyrology and in most medieval English calendars, and the famous north London train station takes its name from an ancient church there dedicated to St. Pancras.

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Sunday Scripture readings, May 14, 2017

May 11th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Fifth Sunday of Easter

            Cycle A. Readings:

            1) Acts 6:1-7

            Psalm 33:1-2, 4-5, 18-19

            2) 1 Peter 2:4-9

            Gospel: John 14:1-12

 

I was 19 when my cousin came to live with my family. He was just out of the Marines. He was not doing very well and was lost in many ways. When we were children we had been close, but it had been a few years since we had seen each other, and trying to re-establish our friendship was hard. To complicate things, my faith was becoming very important to me, and he rarely darkened the door of a church. Read more »

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Saint of the Day May 11: Francis di Girolamo

May 11th, 2017 Posted in Catechetical Corner Tags:

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Saint Francis di Girolamo

Feast Day: May 11

Already a priest in Naples, Italy, Francis entered the Society of Jesus at age 28.Saint.Cross.generic

From 1676 until his death, this Jesuit missioner, who wanted to evangelize in Japan, served in Naples and the surrounding countryside. A renowned preacher, he was said to be “a lamb when he talks and a lion when he preaches.”

He sought out sinners in prisons and brothels, and converted to Christianity a number of Moorish and Turkish prisoners. He also rescued children from dangerous situations, opened a charitable pawnshop and organized an association of workers to assist the Jesuits.

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