• 00:26

    Saint Valentine

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    Saint Valentine -- Valentine was a holy priest in Rome, who, with St. Marius and his family, assisted the martyrs in the persecution under Claudius II. He was apprehended, and sent by the emperor to the prefect of Rome, who, on finding all his promises to make him renounce his faith ineffectual, commanded him to be beaten with clubs, and afterwards, to be beheaded, which was executed on February 14, about the year 270. Pope Julius I is said to have built a church near Ponte Mole to his memory, which for a long time gave name to the gate now called Porta del Popolo, formerly, Porta Valetini. The greatest part of his relics are now in the church of St. Praxedes. His name is celebrated as that of an illustrious martyr in the sacramentary of St. Gregory, the Roman Missal of Thomasius, in the calendar of F. Fronto and that of Allatius, in Bede, Usuard, Ado, Notker and all other martyrologies on this day. To abolish the heathens lewd superstitious custom of boys drawing the names of girls, in honor of their goddess Februata Juno, on the fifteenth of this month, several zealous pastors substituted the names of saints in billets given on this day.

  • 00:30

    St. Odillia

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    St. Odillia -- About the year 300, Saint Odilia and ten other virgins set out from England on a pilgrimage to the East. By accident or plan the ship in which they sailed went up the Rhine. They were captured by some soldiers and taken to Cologne. There the young women were killed in defense of their Christian faith and their purity. St. Odilia's future role as the Patroness of the Order of the Holy Cross is pictured by the Crosier standard and her motto, "I have chosen the cross."

  • 00:29

    Saint Brigid of Ireland

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    Saint Brigid of Ireland -- Daughter of Dubtach, pagan Scottish king of Leinster, and Brocca, a Christian Pictish slave who had been baptized by Saint Patrick. Just before Brigid’s birth, her mother was sold to a Druid landowner. Brigid remained with her mother till she was old enough to serve her legal owner Dubtach, her father.


    She grew up marked by her high spirits and tender heart, and as a child, she heard Saint Patrick preach, which she never forgot. She could not bear to see anyone hungry or cold, and to help them, often gave away things that were Dubtach’s. When Dubtach protested, she replied that “Christ dwelt in every creature”. Dubtach tried to sell her to the King of Leinster, and while they bargained, she gave a treasured sword of her father‘s to a leper. Dubtach was about to strike her when Brigid explained she had given the sword to God through the leper, because of its great value. The King, a Christian, forbade Dubtach to strike her, saying “Her merit before God is greater than ours”. Dubtach solved this domestic problem by giving Brigid her freedom.


    Saint Brigid's  feast day is February 1st.

  • 00:30

    Blessed Mary of Pisa

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    Blessed Mary of Pisa -- More often than not, the women saints that the Church venerates have been cloistered virgins. Blessed Mary of Pisa also founded a religious order, but like St. Elizabeth Seton, she did so as a widow. Unlike our American saint, she had been married twice and borne many children.


    Catherine Mancini belonged to a distinguished family in Pisa, Italy, in the days when the great Italian cities were engaged in civil war against each other. The story is told of her that when she was only five, she had a sort of vision of the torturing of one Peter Gambacorta. He had been accused of political conspiracy and sentenced to be hanged. The legend says that the child, on experiencing the vision, prayed so hard for Peter that the rope by which he was being hanged broke, whereupon the judges commuted his death penalty. Our Lady then appeared to Catherine, the story continues, and told her to say seven Our Fathers and Hail Marys for Gambacorta every day, for he was going to become her benefactor in the years to come. 

  • 00:29

    St. Aloysius of Gonzaga

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    St. Aloysius was born in Castiglione, Italy. The first words St. Aloysius spoke were the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. He was destined for the military by his father (who was in service to Philip II), but by the age of 9 Aloysius had decided on a religious life, and made a vow of perpetual virginity. To safeguard himself from possible temptation, he would keep his eyes persistently downcast in the presence of women. St. Charles Borromeo gave him his first Holy Communion. A kidney disease prevented St. Aloysius from a full social life for a while, so he spent his time in prayer and reading the lives of the saints. Although he was appointed a page in Spain, St. Aloysius kept up his many devotions and austerities, and was quite resolved to become a Jesuit. His family eventually moved back to Italy, where he taught catechism to the poor. When he was 18, he joined the Jesuits, after finally breaking down his father, who had refused his entrance into the order. He served in a hospital during the plague of 1587 in Milan, and died from it at the age of 23, after receiving the last rites from St. Robert Bellarmine. The last word he spoke was the Holy Name of Jesus.

  • 00:29

    Blessed Godfrey of Cappenberg

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    Blessed Godfrey of Cappenberg -- Descendant of Charlemagne through his father, of the dukes of Swabia through his mother. Wealthy count in Westphalia with extensive lands. Layman, married to a noble woman. After being brought to an active faith by his friend Saint Norbert of Xanten, Godfrey turned his castle into a Premonstratensian abbey, and in the face of violent family opposition, gave his lands and wealth over to Norbert for use by the Church. He and his brother then joined the order as monks; Godfrey’s wife and two sisters tooks vows as nuns in a convent he founded for them nearby. Built several hospitals and other houses. Was studying for the priesthood when he died.

  • The Servant of God Jane of Saint Erasmus

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    Jane of Saint Erasmus - As in many other lives we read of a woman, the epitome of all that is righteous and holy, whose marriage was difficult and loveless and whose husband was given to gambling and quarrelling, even duelling


    Fulfilling her role as wife and housewife, and as mediator for her husband she endeavoured to convert him to better ways.


    She was to be host to her husband’s friends and mother to the poor and sick and in doing this proved such an example to her husband that he converted to better ways.


    Jane experienced a mighty impulse to enter a convent, when he returned she asked him leave to enter a convent and he refused because he now loved her and valued her as wife. While previously she had desired him to love her and now he does love her she wants to go off to a nunnery.


    Her name in Religion was Jane of St. Erasmus – her husband’s name out of her gratitude to him She pledged to him the best of her merits and once his death was near, offered to suffer his purgatory.


    At fifty-five years of age Jane happily observed the strictest practices of the novices and regarded herself as the lowliest one of all. During the nineteen years remaining to her Jane was a model to every one of her sisters; her extraordinary graces from god were confirmed when she was seen in ecstasy and raised above the ground.


    At the very sight of the image of our Lord scourged at the pillar Jane would break out with tears in compassion for her Lord. Forbidden from gazing upon it by her superiors, Jane never looked toward it again.


    Jane died whilst making the sign of the Cross as she said it.

  • 00:28

    A Stranger Passes By - A Christmas Story

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    Hotel owners, Paul and Maureen, trying to make a living and promote their business in tough times, try to figure out the best way to increase holiday bookings. A husband in wife who is expecting a baby need a room at the last second, and what ensues give the Innkeepers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to discover the true meaning of Christmas.

  • 00:29

    St. Fidelis

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    St. Fidelis - A former lawyer who left his profession to become a Capuchin Franciscan priest, Saint Fidelis of Sigmaringen has his liturgical memorial on April 24.


    Leaving his legal practice behind, Mark decided to give his life directly to the service of Christ and the Church. In short order he received ordination as a priest, and joined the Capuchin Franciscans in Freiburg.


    During 1614 a Swiss Catholic bishop had sought help from the Capuchins, to restore the faith and counteract the spread of Calvinist Protestantism. In 1621, Fidelis was sent on the mission. He brought just four items: a Bible, a prayer book, a crucifix and a copy of the Capuchin rule.


    The winter of 1621-22 was a busy period of preaching, instruction and theological disputation for the Franciscan priest. He preached not only in the pulpits of Catholic churches, but also in public places, and even in the meeting-places of the Calvinists themselves. Some Swiss Protestants responded with hostility, but many others were also brought back to the Church.


    Like many cases of religious persecution during this time, Fidelis’ treatment at the hands of the Calvinists did not stem exclusively from doctrinal disagreement. National and cultural tensions also contributed, with many Swiss Protestants suspecting that the Catholic mission was part of an Austrian plot against their nation.


    Fidelis' life bridged the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, a time of religious conflict in Western Europe. He died at the hands of a mob while preaching in Switzerland, where he had gone to combat the Calvinist heresy.

  • 00:29

    St. Emma of Austria

    in Religion

    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    St. Emma of Austria - Hemma, also called Emma of Gurk, was born Countess of Zeltschach to a noble family called Peilenstein in present-day Pilštanj, Slovenia. They were related to the Liutpoldings of Bavaria and thus to Emperor Henry II. She was brought up at the Imperial court in Bamberg by the Empress Saint Cunigunde. She married Count Wilhelm of Friesach and of the Sanngau, by whom she had two sons, Hartwig and Wilhelm. Both of her sons and her husband were murdered, the latest of them probably in 1036. Hemma became wealthy through inheritance upon the death of her husband and sons.


    Countess Hemma used her great wealth for the benefit of the poor and was already venerated as a saint during her lifetime. In addition, she founded ten churches throughout present-day Carinthia, Austria. In 1043 she founded the Benedictine double monastery of Gurk Abbey, where she withdrew during the last years of her life.


    After her death, Gurk Abbey was dissolved by the Archbishop of Salzburg, Gebhard, who instead used the funds to set up the Diocese of Gurk-Klagenfurt in 1072. Admont Abbey, another Benedictine foundation in Austria, was founded in 1074 by the same Gebhard, and also owes its existence to Hemma's wealth.


    Since 1174 Hemma has been buried in the crypt of Gurk Cathedral, of which she is accounted the founder. She was beatified on 21 November 1287 and canonised on 5 January 1938 by Pope Pius XI. Her feast day is 27 June.[2]


    Hemma is the patron saint of the Diocese of Gurk-Klagenfurt as well as of the Austrian state of Carinthia, and her intercession is sought for childbirth and diseases of the eye.

  • 00:28

    St. Columbanis of Bobbio

    in Religion

    St. Columbanis of Bobbio


    Rebroadcast of the long running radio program, "The Ave Maria Hour", a presentation of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. www.AtonementFriars.org


    St. Columbanis - Columbanus of Bobbio The founder of several European monasteries, St. Columbanus was born c. 543 in Leinster, Ireland, and was educated at Bangor. Late in life (c. 590), he left Ireland to establish, at the invitation of King Childebert of Burgandy, a monastery at Annegray. He founded monasteries at Luxovium (Luxeuil) and at Fountaines as well. In 603, a synod accused him of keeping Easter by the Celtic date, although the real charge seems to have been criticizing the lax morals of the Burgundian court. Columbanus appealed to Gregory the Great, but nothing is known of the outcome of this act. Seven years later, Columbanus left Burgandy to preach to the Allemani of Switzerland; when Burgandy captured Switzerland, he fled to northern Italy, where he established a monastery at Bobbio in 613. His monasteries were known for the strictness of their rules (which the Benedictines later ameliorated) and their emphasis on corporal punishment. In addition to his rule for monks, Columbanus wrote a peneteniary and poems.

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