John and his younger brother Anthony were Lithuanian converts to the Catholic faith. While in the service of Lithuania's pagan Duke Olgierd, the two young men openly confessed their faith after the duke asked them whether they were Christians. In an effort to make them apostatize, Olgierd ordered the two to eat meat on a day of abstinence. Both refused and were thereupon imprisoned. After a year of incarceration, John lost his courage and renounced his faith so as to obtain his release. Olgierd was so pleased by this that he decided to release both brothers. Anthony reprimanded John for his inconstancy. Afterward, Anthony was imprisoned a second time for refusing meat on a day of abstinence. At length, John repented of his apostasy. Upon openly professing his faith, he was thrown into prison, where his brother Anthony joyfully welcomed him. The two received Holy Communion together before suffering martyrdom by hanging on separate days. A young relative of theirs named Eustace was also executed for being a Christian. All three are buried in the Holy Trinity Church of Vilna.
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 readingMore Saint of the Day
Barbara lived in the 4th century and brought up as a heathen. A tyrannical father, Dioscorus, had kept her jealously secluded in a lonely tower which he had built for that purpose. Here, in her forced solitude, she gave herself to prayer and study, and contrived to ... 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
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 reading
By Deacon Keith A Fournier
Over the centuries, the Jesuits have been relied upon by Popes as trustworthy, heroic soldiers for Jesus Christ and His Church. Yes, there have been times when the company seemed to lose its fervor. However, Jesus Christ the King has always sent His Spirit to ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes