Francis Xavier Bianchi, of Arpino, Italy, suffered much in striving to overcome his father’s opposition to his religious vocation. Having been ordained a Barnabite priest at the age of twenty-four, Father Bianchi spent hour upon hour in the confessional, sustained by a deep prayer life. His personal resolve to make himself always and everywhere available to anyone seeking his priestly ministry and counsel seemed to impart to his words and prayers an extraordinary efficacy. Later in life, Father Bianchi was crippled by the swelling and ulceration of both his legs, rendering him incapable of moving about or even standing on his own. He nonetheless managed to continue celebrating Mass. When in 1805 a lava flow from the erupting Mount Vesuvius threatened Naples, he had himself carried to the advancing edge of the lava, where with a blessing he halted it. Although bedridden, Father Bianchi continued to counsel those who came to him. Three days before his death, he experienced a vision of his deceased penitent, Saint Mary Frances of Naples, who before her own death in 1791 had promised to appear to him thus.
It would be easy to concentrate on the mystical experiences God gave this saint, rather than on her life. In fact, it would be difficult to do differently, so overwhelming were those gifts from God. ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Empress mother of Constantine the Great. She was a native of Bithynia, who married the then Roman general Constantius I Chlorus about 270. Constantine was born soon after, and in 293, Constantius was made Caesar, or junior emperor. He divorced Helena to marry co ... 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
Widow of Palestine who rescued the remains of St. Varus, martyred in some earlier persecution. She enshrined the saint’s remains in her home in Dera, in Syria. When a church was dedicated to St. ... 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