Boniface IX The second Roman pope of the Western Schism, Boniface IX was born Pietro Tomacelli in Naples c. 1350/1355. Urban VI appointed him cardinal deacon of San Giorgio in 1381 and cardinal priest of Santa Anastasia in 1385. Cardinal Tomacelli was elected pope four years later. The major issues of his papacy were the schism and the lack of money in the Roman coffers. Boniface refused to convoke a council to end the schism, and when Anti-pope Benedict XIII sent envoys to Rome in 1404, Boniface refused to receive them as equals. When Boniface died shortly after their arrival, the Romans took the envoys hostage and received a large ransom for them. Boniface addressed the financial problems by increasing taxes and by selling preferments, indulgences, and exemptions. He also insisted upon a portion of any benefice he bestowed. Although he got along better with the cardinals than his predecessor, Urban VI, did, Boniface's financial practices make him more enemies than friends.
Two martyrs, brother and sister, who were put to death at Edessa during the persecutions of Emperor Trajan. Sarbelius, also called Sharbel, was a high priest at Edessa, in Mesopotamia. They were ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
Generations of Catholics have admired this young saint, called her the "Little Flower", and found in her short life more inspiration for own lives than in volumes by theologians. Yet Therese died when she was 24, after having lived as cloistered Carmelite for ... continue readingMore Female Saints
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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. Leo the Great was born in Tuscany. As deacon, he was dispatched to Gaul as a mediator by Emperor Valentinian III. He reigned as Pope between 440 and 461. He persuaded Emperor Valentinian to ... 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