The so called second founder of the Dominican Order. Born at Capua, Italy, in 1330, Raymond delle Vigne entered the Dominicans while attending the University of Bologna and subsequently held several posts, including prior of the Dominican house in Rome and lector in Florence and Siena. While at Siena, he made the acquaintance of St. Catherine of Siena, serving as her spiritual director from 1376 and becoming her closest advisor. Through the years he was connected with most of Catherine’s important undertakings, including the call for a Crusade against the Turks, the negotiation of peace between the papacy and Florence, and the plea made to Pope Gregory XI to depart Avignon and return to Rome. Raymond also worked to bring aid and comfort to the victims of a plague which struck Siena, and when he fell sick with the disease, Catherine nursed him back to health. Upon the start of the Great Western Schism in 1378, both Raymond and Catherine gave their support to Pope Urban Vi against antipope Clement Vll. Raymond traveled to France in an unsuccessful bid to win the support of that kingdom; during the sojourn he was nearly killed by overzealous partisans of Clement VII. He continued to strive for a peaceful settlement of the crisis in the Church, even after Catherine’s death in 1380, and was elected master general of the Dominicans As head of the order until his death at Nuremnberg, he brought reforms to its houses and demanded the strict adherence to the rules laid down by St. Dominic. He also wrote biographies of Catherine of Siena and St. Agnes of Montepulciano.
St. Benjamin, Martyr (Feast Day - March 31) The Christians in Persia had enjoyed twelve years of peace during the reign of Isdegerd, son of Sapor III, when in 420 it was disturbed by the indiscreet ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Clare was a beautiful Italian noblewoman who became the Foundress of an order of nuns now called "Poor Clares." When she heard St. Francis of Assisi preach, her heart burned with a great desire to imitate Francis and to live a poor humble life for Jesus. So ... continue readingMore Female Saints
St. Michael the Archangel - Feast day - September 29th The name Michael signifies "Who is like to God?" and was the warcry of the good angels in the battle fought in heaven against satan and his followers. Holy Scripture describes St. Michael as "one of the chief ... continue reading
The name Gabriel means "man of God," or "God has shown himself mighty." It appears first in the prophesies of Daniel in the Old Testament. The angel announced to Daniel the prophecy of the seventy weeks. His name also occurs in the apocryphal book of Henoch. He was the ... continue reading
Saint John Gaulbert, Abbot - Feast day is July 12th The city of Florence gave to the world Saint John Gaulbert. Although he enjoyed the benefits of an early Christian education, his youthful heart ... continue reading
By Alex Basile
Every carpenter must practice patience. We can learn important lessons from the wood shop in Nazareth from the humble Saint Joseph. I have always been a "do it yourself" type of guy thanks to my father. My dad is always a steady presence during my home-improvement ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes