In the sixth century, the king of Yemen, Dzu Nowass, a convert to Judaism, undertook a violent persecution against the Arab Christians under his rule, demanding that they convert to Judaism. To the largely Christian city of Nadjran the king sent a messenger bearing a pole-mounted cross and conveying this ultimatum: “Whosoever will not show insult to this sign shall be destroyed by fire and sword. Whosoever remains Christian…shall perish by fire and sword…Therefore, citizens of Nadjran, choose my favor, or your religion of the Crucified.” Following the people’s refusal to deny their faith, the king ordered a series of massacres. 427 priests, deacons, monks, consecrated virgins, and lay Catholics were thrown in pits and burned to death. The city’s governor, Prince Arethas, known to Arab historians as Abdallah Ibn Althamir, was beheaded. A far larger massacre followed, in which over four thousand of the faithful were slain in various ways. As the head veils were stripped from a Christian noblewoman and her two daughters in preparation for their beheading, the Jewish women among the spectators wept in sympathy for the martyrs.
By tradition Joachim and Anne are considered to be the names of the parents of Mary, the Mother of God. We have no historical evidence, however, of any elements of their lives, including their names. ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Clare was a beautiful Italian noblewoman who became the Foundress of an order of nuns now called "Poor Clares." When she heard St. Francis of Assisi preach, her heart burned with a great desire to imitate Francis and to live a poor humble life for Jesus. So ... 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
When the father of this Italian saint died, his good mother brought up her twelve children well, even though they were very poor. "Oh, if I could only have the joy of seeing one of you become a ... continue reading
By Deacon Keith A Fournier
On July 15th in the Liturgical Calendar of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, we commemorate the life, holiness, work and death of a great Bishop and Doctor named Bonaventure. He was born in 1218, became a Franciscan Friar in 1243, and died in 1274. A friend ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes