A native of Valladolid, Spain, Alphonsus Navarette, a Dominican missionary priest, came to Nagasaki, Japan after serving in the Philippines. He established for the Japanese Catholic laity three confraternities dedicated to nursing the sick and to rescuing babies left to die by their pagan parents. On one occasion, Father Alphonsus courageously protected and defended several Japanese Catholic women threatened by a vicious pagan mob. While experiencing an ecstasy, he was inspired to travel to Omura to encourage the Catholics suffering persecution there. The Catholics of Omura flocked to Father Alphonsus and to the Augustinian priest Ferdinand Ayala, a native of Ballesteros, Spain, who had previously served in Mexico. The two priests were soon arrested by the pagan authorities. Thereafter, the laity’s continued attempts to visit Father Alphonsus and Father Ferdinand prompted the authorities to execute both priests. At their execution, Leo Tanaca, a Japanese lay catechist affiliated with the Jesuits, was beheaded for his faith together with them.
St. Zita was born into a poor but holy Christian family. Her older sister became a Cistercian nun and her uncle Graziano was a hermit whom the local people regarded as a saint. Zita herself always ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
In the fourth century appeared a Greek religious romance on the Loves of Cecilia and Valerian, written, like those of Chrysanthus and Daria, Julian and Basilissa, in glorification of the virginal life, and with the purpose of taking the place of the sensual romances of ... 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
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 ... 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