Category Archives: Saints

Saint Vincent de Paul

St Vincent de Paul framed.jpgIn honoring Saint Vincent de Paul today let’s call to mind the myriad of ways he and his spiritual sons and daughters have served, and continue to serve, the Gospel by serving the poor and uneducated. Have you got your copy of the video “Charity’s Saint: St Vincent de Paul“? I pray in thanksgiving for the Vincentian priests in New Haven who were my spiritual guides as a child.

With glowing light sent from above,     

O Vincent, how you guide our way!     

Your virtues and example pure     

Show us the path to heaven’s day.


With self-effacing modesty,     

You made yourself of little state;     

Your gentleness and simple life     

Made you revered by small and great.


Amidst the graces of your life     

Your charity sheds brightest fire:     

How many of the poor it fed,     

Filled many hearts with Christ’s desire.


Urged on by zeal and charity,     

You preached in town and countryside,     

Proclaiming all God’s mysteries     

To poor and rich, both far and wide.


Beneath your wings you gathered those     

Who longed to share both work and strife.     

By word and deed you taught them well;     

You formed and taught them by your life.


To God, the holy Three-in-One,     

All praise and glory be addressed,     

Whose life divine is best reward,     

And light eternal for the blessed.


J. Michael Thompson

Copyright © 2009, World Library Publications



Don Bosco’s relic comes to New York City

A relic of Saint John Bosco, patron of youth, is visiting New York City on Friday, October 1. The relic’s pilgrimage is in preparation for the saint’s 200th anniversary of birth. Being in the USA is only one of 130 nations that the relic is visiting.

Don Bosco’s relic will be at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, NYC. Veneration of the relic will be 10 am until 11 pm. Mass will be celebrated by Archbishop Timothy Dolan at 7 pm.

More info can be found here (this is an excellent website!)

Saint John Bosco
born 1815
died 1888
canonized a saint 1934
the Salesians of Don Bosco, the religious order founded by the saint can be seen here.

Conception of Saint the Baptist

Rejoice, O
barren one, who had not given birth; for the behold you have conceived clearly
the one who is the dawn of eh Sun Who was about illuminate the whole universe,
blighted with sightlessness. Shout in joy, O Zachary, crying in favor, truly,
the one to be born is a Prophet of the High.
(Troparion, 4th tone)

Birth of John the Baptist, TINTORETTO,jpg.jpg

On the
Byzantine liturgical calendar, today is the feast of the Conception of Saint
John the Baptist. The Eastern Church, at least the Churches with a Greek
origin, keeps three conception feasts:  Our Lord (March 25), Our Lady
(December 9) and the Baptist (September 23). The Latin Church only keeps two. 

Calendar study will tell you that
only the Savior has a perfect 9-month gestation period; Our Lady is a day under
(September 8) and the Baptist, a day under (June 24). The liturgical calendar of
the Latin Church places the conception of Mary on December 8, the feast of the
Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The theology for today’s feast is rooted in the biblical
narrative of Zachary and Elizabeth, a couple who had no children and therefore
in the eyes of the world plagued by divine disfavor. All of their lives Zachary
and Elizabeth begged God to send them a son.  Providence heard their prayer and in His plan and mercy for
all, ordained that the dawn of salvation would be effected by the birth of John
through the agency of the barren Elizabeth. The Church calls John the Prophet
and Forerunner of Jesus, the Savior of the world.

Other significant divinely merciful
births to barren women who are a significant part of the Divine Plan of Salvation are  Isaac son of Sarah and Samson born to the wife
of Manoah (Samson’s mother is not named in Scripture).

Saint Jonah, prophet

Jonah Michelangelo.jpgYou did pass three days and night within the sea-monster’s entrails, showing forth the Lord’s descent into the belly of Hades. For when He had freely suffered His saving Passion, He arose out of the sepulcher on the the third day. Hence, we honor you, O Prophet, who wads deemed worthy to be a figure of Christ. (Kontakion, 3rd tone)

The Roman Martyrology notes today, in addition to the
evangelist Saint Matthew, as the feast day of the Old Testament prophet Jonah,
as a saint. Jonah lived in the eighth century BC and succeeded the Prophet
Elisha. His prophecies included judgments on the people of Israel and the downfall of Jerusalem,
the suffering of the Savior, and the
final destruction of the world; his prophetic utterances therefore focused on penance and repentance of all believers which is a central theme in the preaching of Jesus, which He the disciples to. The Fathers of the Church
have taught that Prophet Jonah is a type of Christ:

An evil and adulterous
generation asks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of
the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was in the belly of the huge fish for
three days and three nights, so the Son of Man will be in the heart of the
earth for three days and three nights. The people of Nineveh will stand up at
the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented when
Jonah preached to them – and now, something greater than Jonah is here!

(Matthew 12:39-41)

Saint Matthew: He did what he heard

Call of St Matthew caravaggio.jpg

Matthew collected tolls and customs,
Shunned for his work and his dishonesty, Till one day Jesus stood before him, Looked in his face, and told him, “Follow Me!” All that he’d spent his life acquiring, All that he’d scraped and saved and stopred away, Now was no longer worth desiring, Compared with Jesus, Truth and Life and way.

Some of the righteous were offended
That grace should come to such a sinful man. In hopes their hearts might be amended, Jesus explained so they could understand: “Just as the doctor treats the ailing, And passes by the healthy and the whole, So to the stumbling and the failing
I come to offer healing to the soul.”

Lord God, who chooses the unworthy,
Who once called out to Matthew, “Follow Me!”
Transform our weakness into glory
And our conceit into humility.
Teach us to know–and to believe it–
That Your unchanging love cannot be earned,
But as Your children we receive it
As did the prodigal when he returned.

Come, all in need of hope or healing,
Come, sick and weak, despondent or ashamed,
Come, bitter, faithless and unfeeling,
Turn your steps home again and be reclaimed!
And you, self-righteous and unbending,
Cast off your pride and your hypocrisy.
Come, leave your life for life unending,
As Matthew did when he heard, “Follow Me!”


(Text by Gail Gillispie)

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]
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