Category Archives: Lives of the Saints

Lives of the Saints

The reason that the Church honors the saints is not just to give them glory, but to hold them up as exemplars for imitation. Many of the saints became saints themselves by reading the lives of saints. Saint Ignatius of Loyola’s by reading the Life of Christ and the Lives of the Saints. If these men can make such heroic sacrifices for God, then why can’t I, he wondered. Wonder turned into determination.

Some saints wrote biographies of other saints. Saint Athanasius wrote the Life of Saint Anthony of the Desert, a work that indirectly influenced Saint Augustine. Saint Gregory of Nyssa wrote the Life of Saint Gregory Thaumaturgus. Saint Bonaventure wrote the Life of Saint Francis of Assisi. Saint Bede wrote the Life of Saint Aidan. Some saints wrote autobiographies: Saints Augustine, Thérèse of Liseux, Antonio Maria Claret, and Margaret Mary Alacoque are among them.

In a letter to her aunt, Isidore Guerin, Saint Thérèse wrote: “I love to read the lives of the saints very much. The account of their heroic deeds inflames my courage and spurs me on to imitate them.”

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The Agony and the Ecstasy of the Death of Saint Catherine of Siena

I have never read the life of any saint that so affected me as that of Saint Catherine of Siena. The best biography was that of Sigrid Undset on which I based my own short life of Saint Catherine, “I Have Seen the Secrets of God”. We have her Dialogues, dictated to secretaries, but a great book would be a collection of all the things she said … More →

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Cal State Professor Defends Blessed Junipero Serra

Catholic World Report: California missionary Father Junipero Serra’s canonization is “long overdue,” says a university professor concerned that the priest’s history has been politicized and misrepresented. “When he died, many native peoples came to the mission for his burial. They openly wept. Others of his colleagues and even colonists, believed that he would be made a saint, because of the way he had lived his … More →

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Blessed Nykyta Budka, Bishop of Canada, Martyr

A Ukrainian martyr, Blessed Nykyta Budka,  who served as the first Greek Catholic bishop in Canada, is hardly known outside the Ukrainian Catholic Church, yet he was one of the most formidable bishops to grace not only the Church in Canada but the Church in Austria-Hungary and Ukraine. Born in 1877 in Dobromirka (then part of Austria-Hungary, now Ukraine), he was ordained in 1905 in … More →

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St. Rupert, Apostle to Germany, 7th Century

He made converts. Hopefully he did not proselytize or impose any fear upon the pagans as to their state of idolatry. Catholic Online: Tradition states that Rupert was a scion of the Frankish royal Merovingian family.[4] He was also the uncle of Saint Erentrude. Rupert was bishop of Worms until around 697, when unbelievers in the vicinity of Worms exiled him from the city.[4] He … More →

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Palestinian Artist’s Painting Honors Our Lady and Two Blessed Marys to be Canonized

Vatican Insider: The abouna.org site has the pleasure to post the excelling painting of artist Robert Giacaman, which represents the two new saints Blessed Marie-Alphonsine Ghattas and Blessed Mariam of Jesus Crucified Baouardy, being the major painting in modern time that unveils for the first time the canonization of the two Palestinian nuns on May 17. Read more here. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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St. Patrick’s Prayer for Idolaters and Heretics

Catholic Online: This prayer of St. Patrick called “St. Patrick’s Breast-Plate” was composed as he prepared for his most important battle against the paganism of the Druids. It should be prayed in our own day as we struggle against the new paganism and the “dictatorship of relativism” which our Pope has spoken of so often. This is a literal translation: I bind to myself today … More →

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Parents of Saint Thérèse to Be Canonized in October

CatholicPhilly.com: Pope Francis is expected to canonize Blessed Louis and Zelie Martin, the parents of St. Therese of Lisieux, during the world Synod of Bishops on the family in October. Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for Saints’ Causes, leading a conference Feb. 27 on the role of saints in the life of the church, announced that “thanks be to God, in October two … More →

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St. Katherine Drexel and Granny Clampett

Delightful article here on a great American saint Richard Becker, Catholic Exchange: St. Katharine and her two sisters were raised in a devout Catholic family that happened to be wealthy, and her parents refused to allow the wealth to disrupt the devotion. The girls assisted their parents in regularly welcoming the poor into their own home, and they were taught early on that such acts of … More →

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Saint Gregory of Narek was a Catholic

This morning, I telephoned an old Armenian Catholic friend to ask him about Saint Gregory of Narek, recently proclaimed Doctor of the Church by Pope Francis. Joe speaks fluent modern Armenian and reads the old classical Armenian literature. He was, for a time after Wold War II, a novice for the Mekhitarist Congregation of Armenian Catholic monks in Vienna, Austria. He is my go-to man for things Armenian … More →


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New Doctor of the Church: Armenian Saint Gregory of Narek

Catholic Culture: St. Gregory of Narek, an Armenian Catholic monk who lived in what is now Turkey and died in 1005, has been named by Pope Francis a Doctor of the Church. Read more here. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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Pope Canonizes First Sri Lankan Saint, Father Joseph Vaz

Vatican Information Service; On the morning of Wednesday 14 January, the Holy Father transferred from the apostolic nunciature in Colombo to Galle Face Green. This urban park in the heart of the financial district of Colombo spreads over five hectares up to the coast of the Indian Ocean and can hold up to half a million people. Twenty years ago, on 15 January 1995, St. … More →

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Blessed Palestinian Melkite Nun, Stigmatist, Approved for Canonization

CNA: Pope Francis on Saturday approved the advancement in the causes for sainthood of eight men and women, including two Palestinian nuns and an 20th century Italian wife and mother. The Holy Father authorized the promulgation of the decrees for three Blesseds and five Servants of God during a Dec. 6 audience with the prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Cardinal Angelo … More →

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St. Martin of Tours Raised Unbaptized Catechumen to Life

From the account of Saint Martin’s biographer, Sulpicius Severus, a certain man joined the saint’s monastery in France for instruction as a catechumen. He died while the saint was away. When Saint Martin returned the deceased was still laid out on his death bed, having died suddenly without baptism. Saint Martin raised him to life in order to baptize him. Here, according to Sulpicius Severus, … More →

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Just a Few Unusual Happenings in the Lives of the Saints

Unusual Things in the Lives of the Saints I am posting this without doing reference work. These accounts are in my memory, having read many books on the saints, including Father Alvin Butler’s magnum opus: short biographies for every saint for every day of the year. His work must have taken a lifetime. Saint John Chrysostom takes the prize for Father Butler’s longest entry: forty … More →


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New Jersey Sister of Charity to Be Beatified October 4

This is great news for my family. My aunt is a Sister of Charity at Saint Elizabeth’s Convent where Sister Miriam Theresa resided. My aunt worked with the late Sister Zita at the Sister Miriam Theresa League House. The new Blessed’s meditations are recorded in her book, Greater Perfection. CNA: October 4, 2014 marks an historic moment in the life of the Catholic Church in … More →

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