Blessed Aquaviva and his Companions were Jesuit priests. He was the son of the Duke of Atri, related to the family of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, and nephew of Claud Aquaviva, the fifth general of the Jesuits. He was admitted at the age of eighteen, in 1568, and after being ordained priest at Lisbon was sent to Goa, in India. Father Aquaviva was one of the two chosen for the mission at Fatehpur Sikri, near Agra, and he worked till 1583 in strenuous efforts to convert Akbar and his subjects, but had no success. He was then put in charge of the Salsette mission, north of Bombay. He and four companions, Father Pacheco, Father Berno, Father Francisco and Brother Aranha, together with other Christians, set out for Cuncolim, the heart of Hindu opposition in that mission, intending to choose there a piece of ground for a church and to plant a cross thereon. They were met with armed force by the villagers. Blessed Rudolf and Blessed Alfonso were killed praying for their murderers, and the other two priests were likewise slain outright. Blessed Francis was left for dead, but found living the next day; he was given a chance to venerate an idol, and on refusing was tied to a tree and shot with arrows. It was not till 1741 that Pope Benedict XIV declared the martyrdom proved, and even then the formal beatification did not take place till 1893. Their feast day is July 27th.
St Pantaleon came from Nicomedia, near the Black Sea, in Asia. He was such a famous doctor that the Emperor himself chose him for his own doctor. Pantaleon was a Christian, but the bad influence from ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Historians remember St. Rose of Lima for her piety and chastity. Born in 1586 in Lima, Peru to Spanish colonists, and named Isabel Flores de Olivia, she was exceptionally beautiful. Her beauty was so great that she was nicknamed "Rose," a name that remains with her to ... continue readingMore Female Saints
Saint Michael the Archangel isn't a saint, but rather he is an angel, and the leader of all angels and of the army of God. This is what the title "Archangel" means, that he is above all the others in rank. St. Michael has four main responsibilities or offices, as we ... continue reading
Seraphina was born in San Gimignano, Italy, to a poor family. She was known for her self denial and acts of penance as a young girl. A mysterious illness left this beautiful girl unattractive; her eyes, feet, and hands became deformed and eventually Seraphina was ... continue reading
Saint Christopher is one of the most popular, yet most enigmatic Catholic figures. He is considered a saint, although he is not in the official canon of the saints. He is listed as a martyr, possibly named Reprobus, who died under the Roman Emperor Decius, in 251 AD. ... continue reading
By Deacon Keith Fournier
This great defender of the faith insisted on the central claim of Christianity: God can be known and loved-indeed, that is why He came into our midst in the person of His Son; so that through a relationship with Jesus Christ, man could participate in the very ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes