Saints: June 2013 Archives

Today is a perfect day to pray for the Pope and our bishop. It is also a perfect day to pray for Christian unity and to pick up a good book on the Church's history. Perhaps even pray with Matthew 16.


Grant, we pray, O Lord our God, that we may be sustained by the intercession of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, that, as through them you gave your Church the foundations of her heavenly office, so through them you may help her to eternal salvation.

From a sermon by Saint Augustine, bishop

The martyrs realized what they taught

This day has been made holy by the passion of the blessed apostles Peter and Paul. We are, therefore, not talking about some obscure martyrs. For their voice has gone forth to all the world, and to the ends of the earth their message. These martyrs realized what they taught: they pursued justice, they confessed the truth, they died for it.

Saint Peter, the first of the apostles and a fervent lover of Christ, merited to hear these words: I say to you that you are Peter, for he had said: You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Then Christ said: And I say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church. On this rock I will build the faith that you now confess, and on your words: You are the Christ, the Son of the living God, I will build my Church. For you are Peter, and the name Peter comes from petra, the word for "rock," and not vice versa. "Peter" comes, therefore, from petra, just as "Christian" comes from Christ.


Saints are for the universal Church, not merely for a particular group. Making the universal call to holiness known seems to be one, among many, of the gifts Saint Josemaría Escrivá gave to us because he had first recognized this gift as coming from the Holy Trinity for the good of all of us.

The relevance and transcendence of this spiritual message, deeply rooted in the fruitfulness with which God has blessed the life of and work of Josemaría Escrivá. The land of his birth, Spain, is honored by this son of hers, an exemplary priest, who succeeded in opening up new apostolic horizons of missionary and evangelizing activity. May this joyful celebration be an auspicious occasion that will stimulate all the members of the Prelature of Opus Dei to greater commitment, in their response to the call to holiness and to a more generous participation in ecclesial life, being always witnesses of genuine evangelical values, and may this be expressed in an ardent apostolic dynamism, with particular attention to the poorest and most needy. [...] 

Beatification homily of Pope John Paul II

May 20, 1992

Saint Lazarus

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But make me like Lazarus, who was poor in sin,

lest I receive no answer when I pray,

no finger dipped in water to relieve my burning tongue;

and make me dwell in Abraham's bosom in Your love for mankind.

Hymn at Presanctified Liturgy , Lent

May Saint Lazarus always remind us Christ's love for us.

Saint Barnabas

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With the Church we pray

O God, who decreed that Saint Barnabas, a man filled with faith and the Holy Spirit, should be set apart to convert nations, grant that the Gospel of Christ, which he strenuously preached, may be faithfully proclaimed by word and by deed.

Saint Barnabas died in AD 61. What we know of Barnabas comes most from the Acts of the Apostles, which we heard in today's Mass readings but he also shows in several of Saint Paul's Letters.

Who was Barnabas? Some scholars say that Barnabas was the cousin of Saint Mark on the basis of Colossians 4. We know he was of the tribe of Levi (making him a member of the priestly class), a native of Cyprus and a landowner there before selling the land to support the Church in Jerusalem, Moreover, he was trained in the Christian faith and a teacher of the same (see Acts 13).

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Lord, have mercy on us,

Christ, have mercy on us,
Lord, have mercy on us,
Christ, hear us,
Christ, graciously hear us,

God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us,
God, the Son, Redeemer of the world,
God, the Holy Spirit,
Holy Trinity, one God,

Holy Mary, pray for us,
Holy Mother of God,
Holy Virgin of virgins,
Queen of the White-robed Order,

Thou who had a great love for St. Norbert,
Holy Father Norbert, pray for us,

St. Norbert, whose birth was foretold from Heaven,
St. Norbert, who was marvellously converted by God,
St. Norbert, mirror of true penance,
St. Norbert, who did trample earthly pomps under foot,
St. Norbert, despiser of the world,
St. Norbert, who did conquer thy passions and affections,
St. Norbert, who did gain the victory over temptations,
St. Norbert, who did quell and cast down devils,
St. Norbert, restorer of peace and concord,
St. Norbert, who did walk barefoot,
St. Norbert, who did practise mortification,
St. Norbert, lover of the Cross,
St. Norbert, pattern of abstinence,
St. Norbert, most strict observer of fasting,
St. Norbert, who did yourself practice and teach silence,
St. Norbert, who did receive the white habit from the Mother of God,
St. Norbert, most constant in faith,
St. Norbert, most firm in hope,
St. Norbert, most fervent in charity,
St. Norbert, zealous lover of chastity,
St. Norbert, model of poverty,
St. Norbert, mirror of obedience,

ME Hesselblad.jpgThe Sisters of Saint Birgitta honor their second foundress, "Bridget the Second," the woman who restored the Order of the Most Holy Savior, Blessed Mary Elizabeth Hesselblad. Her liturgical feast celebrated today.

Blessed Mary Elizabeth immigrated to the USA and converted to Catholicism through a Jesuit at Georgetown University. In time she felt called to refound the ancient order first founded by the Swedish saint Bridget, the Order of the Most Holy Saviour in the mid-14th century. The order is a semi-contemplative order of nuns officially approved by the Holy See on 7 July 1940, though it came together in 1911. The nuns run retreat houses and have some ecumenical work with the Protestant communities.

The Order of the Most Holy Saviour is a fascinating part of our Catholic ecclesial history in that the order of nuns and priests were part of a double monastery dedicated to the Lord's passion. The chaplains were under the rule of the abbess. The nuns have foundations in different parts of the world while there is one priory of monks in Oregon and they don't actively collaborate with the nuns.

Mother Mary Elizabeth taught, "We must nourish a great love for God and our neighbors; a strong love, an ardent love, a love that burns away imperfections, a love that gently bears an act of impatience, or a bitter word, a love that lets an inadvertence or act of neglect pass without comment, a love that lends itself readily to an act of charity."

Video part II

The Bridgettines have a convent and retreat house in Darien, CT (in the Diocese of Bridgeport).

In addition to Blessed Mary Elizabeth Hesselblad, the Church raised up and bestowed the title of blessed on Mother Mary Riccarda Beauchamp Hambrough, Mother Mary Catherine Flannagan and Sister Mary Magdalen  Moccia on 21 October 2011.

Blessed Mary Elizabeth, pray for us.
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The Church honors Saint Charles Lwanga, and his companions, today, who were burned at the stake for belief in Jesus Christ. They were the embodiment of a real love for God and his people. 

The Ugandan martyrs died because they refused to renounce his Christianity. Their death was also the result of the anger of a king who made sexual advances on Charles and others who refused. They were serious about the Christian faith. It was on this date in 1886, the solemnity of the Ascension that Charles and 21 others were killed.

The Church through the Servant of God Pope Paul VI canonized the Uganda Martyrs in 1964; they were beatified in 1920.

Here is a commentary by Father Barron on Saint Charles wherein he discusses the saint's legacy, spiritual and societal.

Saint Charles is the patron saint of the African Catholic Youth Action. May he and his companions be our guide in living the Christian faith in times of difficulty.

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Saint Justin Martyr

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O God, who through the folly of the Cross wondrously taught Saint Justin the Martyr the surpassing knowledge of Jesus Christ, grant us, through his intercession, that, having rejected deception and error, we may become steadfast in the faith.

We typically tell the narrative of Saint Justin Martyr, the second century orator, in these terms: Justin was among the first Christians to use his brain. Well, not really. But we do say that by the age of 30 Justin confessed faith in Jesus Christ as Messiah and began to use his philosophical training to explain what the Christian movement means to the believer, and why would want to be a Christian as opposed to being a pagan (i.e., an unbeliever) or an adherent to Judaism. His conversion was from paganism and not Judaism. 

Justin was well-eduacted man who later worked as a teacher first in Ephesus and later in Rome. His school of debate in Rome was followed by many in Rome which led to his death by beheading. This great apologist (defender of the faith, that is, one who gave reasons for our hope) is what we need today. The extant works by or about him are the Apologies, Dialogues with Trypho and the Acts.

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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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Saints category from June 2013.

Saints: May 2013 is the previous archive.

Saints: July 2013 is the next archive.

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