As a youth, Joseph-Marie Cassant, of Casseneuil, France, was hampered in his school studies by a very poor memory. Because of this difficulty, Joseph’s ardent desire to become a priest seemed unattainable, but his parish priest encouraged him to consider entering the Trappist Order, recognizing in the young man a contemplative disposition. At the age of sixteen, Joseph entered the Trappist monastery of Sainte-Marie du Desert near Toulouse. The novice master, Father Andre Mallet, took Joseph under his wing, telling him, “Only trust, and I will help you to love Jesus!” Father Andre patiently supported the insecure novice, who was plagued with the fear that Father Andre would give up helping him. Gifted with child-like simplicity, Joseph overcame his intellectual deficiencies, passing his examinations after suffering repeated humiliations from an impatient theology professor. Joseph was ordained a Trappist priest on October 12, 1902. Soon afterward, he was diagnosed with advanced tuberculosis. Resigned to his fate, he observed, “When I can no longer celebrate Mass, Jesus can take me from this world.” He died on June 17, 1903.
Casimir grew up in a world where his life was not his own. As a prince of Poland, the second son of King Casimir IV and Elizabeth of Austria, his life was scheduled to cement his father's authority ... 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
So often we hear people or even ourselves excuse an action by saying "I was only following orders." But for Nereus and Achilleus this excuse could not stand in the face of the cross. ... continue reading
By Deacon Keith Fournier
This great defender of the faith insisted on the central claim of Christianity: God can be known and loved-indeed, that is why He came into our midst in the person of His Son; so that through a relationship with Jesus Christ, man could participate in the ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes