Born in 1414 near Savona, Francesco della Rovere was a Franciscan who taught at several universities and wrote treatises on the issues that divided his order from the Dominicans, until he was elected pope in 1471. He became Pope Sixtus and was the fourth of that name. He longed to crusade, but his calls for action did not receive the necessary support. The papal fleet did, however, participate in a landing that resulted in the capture of Smyrna in 1472. A patron of Botticelli, Sixtus was also responsible for the rebuilding of several Roman churches and the construction of the Sistine Chapel. He also founded the Sistine Choir and opened the Vatican library to scholars. He approved the feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary in 1476 and canonized St. Bonaventure in 1482. Although Sixtus appointed Thomas de Torquemata to the Spanish Inquisition, the pope condemned the inquistion's abuses. In 1483, Sixtus banned appeals of papal censure to general councils. Sixtus died the following year.
English martyr. He was born at Stocksteads, Hampshire, and was a convert. He was arrested the day he received his first Communion. A husbands man by trade, Ralph was allowed a leave from prison and ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
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 her husband was a man of violent temper. In anger he often mistreated ... 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
Although little is known about Simon Stock's early life, legend has it that the name Stock, meaning "tree trunk," derives from the fact that, beginning at age twelve, he lived as a hermit ... 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