Justin was born at San Fele, Italy on October 9th. He was taken to Naples when a child by his parents, joined the Vincentians when 18, and was ordained. After helping found a Vincentian house at Monopoly, he served as superior at Lecce and in 1839 was sent as the first prefect and vicar apostolic to the new Catholic mission at Adua, Ethiopia. His efforts to evangelize met with great opposition, but in 1841 he was included in a delegation of Ethiopian prelates to Cairo to request the Coptic patriarch of Alexandria to appoint one of his monks Abuna (patriarch) of the Ethiopian church. In Cairo, the patriarch denounced the presence of Father de Jacobis on the delegation and intrigued to a point one Salama as Abuna. Some of the delegation then accompanied Father de Jacobis to meet the Pope in Rome. On his return, Father de Jacobis founded a college and seminary at Guala, and in 1846 a vicariate apostolic of the Galla was established, with William Massaia as its first bishop. These developments caused Salama to launch an anti-Catholic campaign. The college was closed, Catholicism was proscribed, and bishop Massaia was forced to return to Aidan. In 1848, he secretly consecrated Father de Jacobis, now a fugitive, bishop at Massawa, with authority to administer the sacraments in the Ethiopian rite. By 1853, the new bishop had ordained some twenty Ethiopians, was ministering to 5000 Catholics, and was able to reopen the college. In 1860, Kedaref Kassa became king as Theodore II and in return for the backing he had received from Abuna Salama, launched a persecution of the Catholics. Bishop de Jacobis was arrested and after several month's imprisonment was released and managed to find his way to Halai in southern Eritrea. He spent the rest of his life in missionary work along the Red Sea coast and died in the valley of Alghedien on July 31 of fever he contracted while on a missionary trip. He was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1975. His feast day is July 31.
Martyr of England. She was born Margaret Plantagenet, the niece of Edward IV and Richard III. She married Sir Reginald Pole about 1491 and bore five sons, including Reginald Cardinal Pole. Margaret ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
St. Agnes was a Roman girl who was only thirteen years old when she suffered martyrdom for her Faith. Agnes had made a promise, a promise to God never to stain her purity. Her love for the Lord was very great and she hated sin even more than death! Since she was very ... 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
St. Catherine was born in Florence in 1522. Her baptismal name was Alexandrina, but she took the name of Catherine upon entering religion. From her earliest infancy she manifested a great love of ... 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