Having entered the Order of the Most Holy Redeemer, Vasyl Velychkovsky, of Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine, was ordained a Byzantine Rite Catholic priest at the age of twenty-two. In 1945, while serving as hegumenos (prior) of his order’s monastery in Ternopil, Father Velychkovsky was arrested by the Russian Communists’ secret police (the KGB) and sentenced to death. The sentence was subsequently commuted to a ten-year prison term of hard labor. Following his release in 1955, Father Velychkovsky resumed his priestly labors. In 1963, he was secretly consecrated metropolitan (archbishop) of Moscow by his predecessor in this office, who had just been ordered to leave the country by the Soviet government. In 1969, Metropolitan Velychkovsky was again arrested and imprisoned. Three years later, he was deported out of the Soviet Union. Stricken with a heart disease stemming from his imprisonment, the metropolitan told a Canadian audience, “The prisons and camps ruined my health and my strength, but this was my fate; the Lord God placed this cross on my shoulders.” Metropolitan Velychkovsky died two weeks later, on June 30, 1973.
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 readingMore Saint of the Day
Gianna Francesca Beretta was born in Magenta in Italy. She was the tenth of thirteen children in her family, only nine of whom survived to adulthood. When she was three, her family moved to Bergamo, and she grew up in the Lombardy region of Italy. In 1942, Gianna ... 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
Francis was born at Paola, Italy and was educated at the Franciscan friary of San Marco there, and when fifteen became a hermit near Paola. In 1436, he and two companions began a community that is ... 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