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January

saul paul taursus fruit San Paolo Tarso frutto
Saul of Tarsus, aka Paul – Bearing Fruit

Saul of Tarsus the Pharisee to Paul, the apostle - both life and fruit were transformed. The story tells us where the bitter fruit of egoism and violence comes from, and how can it be changed into the fruit of the Spirit....

paul crown of glory john chrysostom feast of timothy titus january 26
Paul’s Crown of Glory – John Chrysostom

Here John Chrysostom praises the zeal of Paul to win the crown of glory and calls us to imitate his example of virtue. It is most appropriate reading for the feast of Saints Timothy and Titus on January 26 since they were among the...

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Devotion is for Everyone – Francis de Sales

Francis de Sales, one of the great masters of the spiritual life, here makes clear that devotion, his term for the pursuit of holiness, is not something tied to a specific state of life. All people, in a way appropriate to their own calling...

January 22 St. Vincent Deacon Martyr Augustine
St. Vincent, Deacon & Martyr – Augustine

St. Vincent was a deacon of the Church of Saragossa, Spain in the first years of the fourth century. In the course of the brutal persecution of the emperor Diocletian, Vincent was apprehended and ordered to surrender the sacred books. When he refused, he was...

saint sebastian martyrdom arrow arrows tree tied
Persecution & Martyrdom of St. Sebastian – Ambrose

St. Sebastian is is often depicted as tied to a tree and pierced by many arrows.  Ambrose says Sebastian was from Milan and was venerated there during Ambrose's episcopate in the latter part of the 4th century.  It appears Sebastian died in the great persecution...

Martyrdom of Pope Fabian Cyprian January 20
Martyrdom of Pope Fabian – Cyprian

Cyprian here writes of the martyrdom of St. Fabian who was elected bishop of the Church of Rome in 236. In 250, at the beginning of the persecution of the Emperor Decius, Pope Fabian was captured, martyred, and buried in the catacombs, in cemetery...

Athanasius on the call of St. Anthony Antony or Antony of the desert january 17
Call of St. Anthony of the Desert – Athanasius

Excerpt from Athanasius' famous Life of Antony, recounting the story of the call of St. Anthony of the Desert, father of monks and great supporter of Christian Orthodox belief in the divinity of Christ against the Alexandrian heretic Arius....

hunger for righteousness beatitudes leo the great mary mother of God January 1 theotokos blessed are the merciful pure in heart mercy purity
Mary, Mother of God?

January 1 is a Holy Day of Obligation for Catholics not because it is New Years, but because it is the octave (8th day) of Christmas, the feast of Mary the Mother of God. This feast helps bring home the reality of the incarnation, that...

st. don john bosco january 31 youth ministry principles boys
Principles for Youth Ministry – John Bosco

Here Don John Bosco provides some guiding principles for youth ministry based on his legendary success at evangelizing and teaching young boys on the streets of Turin Italy during the days of the Industrial Revolution. In a day when harsh corporal punishment was the...