Patriarch of Constantinople and martyr. The son of the secretary of Emperor Constantine V, he was raised as an opponent of the Iconoclasts in the imperial capital and remembered always that his father had been tortured for opposing the Iconoclast emperor. Nicephorus became known for his intellect and his eloquence, and received the post of imperial commissioner. After founding a monastery near the Black Sea, he was chosen despite being a layman to succeed to the office of patriarch of Constantinople in 806, succeeding St. Tarasius. He was opposed for a time by St. Theodore Studites after Nicephorus forgave a priest who married Emperor Constantine VI toTheodota despite the fact the Constantine’s wife, Mary, still lived. The patriarch also challenged the Iconoclast policies of Emperor Leo V the Armenian and was deposed by a synod of Iconoclast bishops at the conniving of the emperor. Nearly assassinated on several occasions, Nicephorus was exiled to the monastery he had founded on the Black Sea, spending his remaining years there in prayer. He died on June 2 or March 13, 829. While patriarch, he brought various reforms to his large diocese and inspired the lay people. He was also the author of anti Iconoclast writings and two historical works, a Chronographia and Brevianim.
St. Rita was born at Spoleto, Italy in 1381. At an early age, she begged her parents to allow her to enter a convent. Instead they arranged a marriage for her. Rita became a good wife and mother, but ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Little is known of her life, and the information was received by private revelation from her. Martyred at about age 14 in the early days of the Church. In 1802 the remains of a young woman were found in the catacomb of Saint Priscilla on the Via Salaria. It was ... 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
Christians who breathed a sigh of relief when Constantine proclaimed Christianity the state religion, believing this would end the bloodshed and martyrdom. But it was all too short a time until they ... continue reading
By Justin Soutar
During his visit to the United States this coming September, Pope Francis will canonize Blessed Junipero Serra, the heroic 'Apostle of California.' Once that happens, the Golden State will have its own patron saint and the Church will have another great missionary role ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes