Comgall, of Ulster, Ireland, spent several years in a monastery at the foot of the Slieve Bloom mountains before becoming a priest. He then settled on an island to begin a religious community, but excessive austerities resulted in the deaths of seven monks there. From this tragedy, Comgall learned to moderate his monastic rule. Thereafter, he founded what was to become Ireland’s most renowned monastery, Bangor. Eventually three thousand monks were living under his authority. These religious undertook a variant of the laus perennis, the perpetual recitation of psalms by relays of monks. The monks of Bangor were divided into seven choirs of 300 monks each, praying in succession throughout the day and night. Once, as Comgall and some of his monks were strolling along a lake, they spotted several swans on the water. The others begged him, “O Father, may we coax the swans?” He gave them permission, but the monks were unable to find any bread crusts in their habits with which to attract the birds. Comgall then called out to the swans, all of which thereupon swam to him. One flew onto Comgall’s lap and let him stroke it.
Franciscan Capuchin martyr. He was born Mark Rey is Sigmaringen, Germany, in 1577. A practicing lawyer, he traveled across Europe as a tutor to aristocrats but then started defending the poor. In ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Brigid was probably born at Faughart near Dundalk, Louth, Ireland. Her parents were baptized by St. Patrick, with whom she developed a close friendship. According to legend, her father was Dubhthach, an Irish chieftain of Lienster, and her mother, Brocca, was a slave ... 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
Claretian archbishop and founder. Anthony was born in Salient in Catalonia, Spain, in 1807, the son of a weaver. He took up weaving but then studied for the priesthood, desiring to be a Jesuit. Ill ... 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