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Memorial of Saint John of the Cross, Priest and Doctor of the Church

Saint John of the Cross

Also known as

• Doctor of Mystical Theology
• John della Croce
• John de la Croix
• John de la Cruz
• John vom Kreuz
• Juan de Santa María de Yepes
• Johannes av Korset

Profile

Born in poverty. Cared for the poor in the hospital in Medina del Campo, Spain. Carmelite lay brother in 1563 at age 21, though he lived more strictly than the Rule required. Studied at Salamanca, Spain. Carmelite priest, ordained in 1567 at age 25. Persuaded by Saint Teresa of Avila to begin the Discalced or barefoot reform within the Carmelite Order, he took the name John of the Cross. Master of novices. Spiritual director and confessor at Saint Teresa's convent. His reforms did not set well with some of his brothers, and he was ordered to return to Medina del Campo. He refused, and was imprisoned at Toledo, Spain, escaping after nine months. Vicar-general of Andalusia, Spain. His reforms revitalized the Order. Great contemplative and spiritual writer. Proclaimed a Doctor of the Church by Pope Pius XI on 24 August 1926.

Born

24 June 1542 at Fontiveros, Spain as Juan de Santa María de Yepes

Died

• 14 December 1591 at Ubeda, Andalusia, Spain of natural causes
• relics at Segovia, Spain

Canonized

27 December 1726 by Pope Benedict XIII

Patronage

• contemplative life, contemplatives
• mystical theology, mystics
• Spanish poets
• World Youth Day 2011
• Segovia, Spain
• Ta' Xbiex, Malta

Representation

eagle

Storefront

medals and pendants

Video

YouTube PlayList

Works

• Ascent of Mount Carmel
Dark Night of the Soul, Book 1
Dark Night of the Soul, Book 2
• A Spiritual Canticle of the Soul and the Bridegroom Christ

Readings

Never was fount so clear,
undimmed and bright;
From it alone, I know proceeds all light
although 'tis night.
- Saint John of the Cross

At the end of your life, you will be judged by your love. - Saint John of the Cross

Just as we can never separate asceticism from mysticism, so in Saint John of the Cross we find darkness and light, suffering and joy, sacrifice and love united together so closely that they seem at times to be identified. - Thomas Merton

If you do not learn to deny yourself, you can make no progress in perfection. - Saint John of the Cross

In detachment, the spirit finds quiet and repose for coveting nothing. Nothing wearies it by elation, and nothing oppresses it by dejection, because it stands in the center of its own humility. - Saint John of the Cross

The Lord measures our perfection neither by the multitude nor the magnitude of our deeds, but by the manner in which we perform them. - Saint John of the Cross

I wish I could persuade spiritual persons that the way of perfection does not consist in many devices, nor in much cogitation, but in denying themselves completely and yielding themselves to suffer everything for the love of Christ. And if there is failure in this exercise, all other methods of walking in the spiritual way are merely a beating about the bush, and profitless trifling, although a person should have very high contemplation and communication with God. - Saint John of the Cross

Live in the world as if only God and your soul were in it; then your heart will never be made captive by any earthly thing. - Saint John of the Cross

O you souls who wish to go on with so much safety and consolation, if you knew how pleasing to God is suffering, and how much it helps in acquiring other good things, you would never seek consolation in anything; but you would rather look upon it as a great happiness to bear the Cross of the Lord. - Saint John of the Cross

Though holy doctors have uncovered many mysteries and wonders, and devout souls have understood them in this earthly condition of ours, yet the greater part still remains to be unfolded by them, and even to be understood by them. We must then dig deeply in Christ. He is like a rich mine with many pockets containing treasures: however deep we dig, we will never find their end or their limit. Indeed, in every pocket new seams of fresh riches are discovered on all sides. For this reason the apostle Paul said of Christ, "In him are hidden all the treasures of the wisdom and knowledge of God." The soul cannot enter into these treasures, nor attain them, unless it first crosses into and enters the thicket of suffering, enduring interior and exterior labors, and unless it first receives from God very many blessings in the intellect and in the senses, and has undergone long spiritual training. The gate that gives entry into these riches of his wisdom is the cross; because it is a narrow gate, while many seek the joys that can be gained through it, it is given to few to desire to pass through it. - from a spiritual canticle by Saint John of the Cross

In giving us His Son, His only Word, He spoke everything to us at once in this sole Word - and He has no more to say...because what he spoke before to the prophets in parts, he has now spoken all at once by giving us the All Who is His Son. - Saint John of the Cross

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-john-of-the-cross/


Blessed Mary Frances Schervier

Also known as

Franziska Schervier

Profile

Daughter of Johann Heinrich Schervier, a wealthy needle-factory owner and vice-mayor of Aachen, Germany, and Maria Louise Migeon; god-daughter of Emperor Francis I of Austria. She ran her father's household at age 16 after the death of her mother and two older sisters to tuberculosis, and had a reputation for generosity to the poor. In 1844 she became a Secular Franciscan, and in 1845 she and four companions established a religious community devoted to caring for the poor. This group, Sisters of the Poor of Saint Francis, was approved by their bishop on 2 July 1851.

Their first community in the United States was founded 1858, and Mother Frances visited in 1863 to help her sisters nurse wounded Civil War soldiers. She visited the United States again in 1868, encouraging Philip Hoever in his establishment of the Brothers of the Poor of Saint Francis, and overseeing the foundation of several hospitals.

Mother Frances was cured of asthma in 1870 by making a pilgrimage to the healing waters of Lourdes. At her death, there were 2,500 members of her community worldwide, and the numbers continue to grow as they operate hospitals and homes for the aged.

Born

3 January 1819 at Aachen, Germany

Died

14 December 1876 at Aachen Germany of natural causes

Beatified

28 April 1974 by Pope Paul VI at Rome, Italy

Readings

"You are my friends if you do what I command you. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another." (John 15:14,17) If we do this faithfully and zealously, we will experience the truth of the words of our father Saint Francis who says that love lightens all difficulties and sweetens all bitterness. We will likewise partake of the blessing which Saint Francis promised to all his children, both present and future, after having admonished them to love one another even as he had loved them and continues to love them. - Mother Mary France, 1868, writing to her sisters

Video

YouTube PlayList

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-mary-frances-schervier/


Saint Venantius Fortunatus

Also known as

Venantius Honorius Clementianus Fortunatus

Profile

Born to a pagan family, Venantius converted to Christianity when still quite young. He grew up in Aquileia, Italy, and studied grammar, rhetoric, and law at Ravenna, Italy. While a student he became nearly blind, but recovered his sight by anointing his eyes with oil from a lamp that burned before the altar of Saint Martin of Tours. In gratitude to Saint Martin, he made a pilgrimage to Tours via the area of modern Germany, making the journey from about 565 to 567. In Tours he became a close friend of the bishop. Lived in the Loire Valley for while, then settled near Poitiers, France. During his travels he often paid for his supper by reciting poetry, singing, or making up rhymes on the spot. From 567 to 587 he counseled a local community of nuns on matters spiritual and financial. Priest. Advisor and secretary of Queen Saint Radegunde, wife of King Clotaire I. Bishop of Poitiers c.600.

A wanderer up to then, when Venantius became a bishop he became a model of temperance and stability, and was known for his love of food and friends and joy. He wrote hymns, essays, funeral elegies, homilies, and metrical lives of the saints including Saint Martin of Tours (which runs to 2,243 hexameter lines), Saint Hilary of Poitiers, Saint Germanus of Paris, Saint Albinus of Angers, Saint Paternus of Avranches, Saint Marcellus of Paris, and Saint Radegunde. His poetry and songs often concerned daily life and work and people and politics, and have become a valuable resource for historians of the era. He is considered the last of the Gallic Latin poets, and one of the first Christian poets to write works devoted to Mary.

Born

c.535 at Treviso, Italy

Died

c.605 at Poitiers, Gaul (in modern France) of natural causes

Works

• Hail to Thee, Festival Day
• Praise the Savior, Now and Ever
• See The Destined Day Arise
• The Royal Banners Forward Go
• Welcome, Happy Morning

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-venantius-fortunatus/


Saint Yusuf Jurj Kassab al-Hardini

Also known as

• Nimatullah al-Hardini
• Nimatullah Youssef Kassab Al-Hardini

Profile

Educated by the monks of San Antonio Aban. Lebanese Maronite monk in Batrun, Lebanon in 1828, taking the name Father Nimatullah. Worked as a bookbinder of religious works for his house. Ordained in 1833. Spiritual director and novice master in his house, and chosen to be part of the General Council of the Maronite Order. Spiritual teacher of Saint Charbel Mahklouf. Know for the zeal of his faith, his devotion to Christ and Mary, and his deep prayer life.

Born

1808 in Hardine, Batrun, Ash Shamal, Lebanon

Died

• 14 December 1858 in Kfifan, Batrun, Ash Shamal, Lebanon
• incorrupt remains at the monastery at Kfifan

Canonized

16 May 2004 by Pope John Paul II

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-yusuf-jurj-kassab-al-hardini/


Saint Abundius of Spain

Profile

Martyr.

Died

• 283 in Spain
• first burned at the stake, but when the flames would not touch him he was beheaded

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-abundius-of-spain/


Saint Agnellus of Naples

Profile

Hermit near Naples, Italy. Abbot of San Gaudioso monastery at Abtini, Italy. Reported to be a miraculous protector of Naples during the Saracen invasions, turning aside invaders by showing the cross.

Died

596 of natural causes

Patronage

• against invaders
• Naples, Italy

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-agnellus-of-naples/


Blessed Buenaventura Bonaccorsi

Also known as

• Buenaventura of Pistoia
• Bonaventura...

Profile

Experienced a conversion experience after hearing Saint Philip Benizi preach in Pistoia, Italy. Joined the Servites and worked as a peace-maker between the warring factions and city-states of Italy.

Died

1315 at Orvieto, Tuscany, Italy

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-buenaventura-bonaccorsi/


Saint Eutropia of Rheims

Profile

Sister of Saint Nicasius. Martyred in the barbarian invasion of Rheims, France. She attacked her brother's murderer, and was immediately killed.

Died

beheaded c.451 at Rheims, France

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-eutropia-of-rheims/


Saint Florentius of Rheims

Profile

Deacon. Martyred in the barbarian invasion of Rheims, France.

Died

beheaded c.451 at Rheims, France

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-florentius-of-rheims/


Saint Folcuino of Therouanne

Also known as

Folquin

Profile

Bishop in the area of Thérouanne, northern France for 39 years.

Died

c.955 in Morini, France

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-folcuino-of-therouanne/


Saint John Bread-and-Water

Also known as

John Pan y Agua

Profile

Benedictine Cistercian lay-brother at Sangra menia abbey, Spain. Received his nickname due to his life-long bread-and-water fast.

Died

c.1150 of natural causes

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-john-bread-and-water/


Blessed John Discalceat

Also known as

• John Descalzo
• John Discalceatus

Profile

Stone mason. Franciscan. Priest. Pastor of Saint Gregoire, Rennes, France, where he attended to his duties barefooted. Had a special ministry to the sick and the poor.

Born

c.1278 in Saint-Vougay, Finistère, diocese of Saint Paul-de-Lon, Brittany, France

Died

• 15 December 1349 of plague at Saint John's monastery, Quimper, Finistère, Brittany, France
• buried in the chapel of San Antonio at his monastery
• his tomb became known as a place of healing miracles, especially for head pain

Beatified

4 April 1989 by Pope John Paul II (cultus confirmation)

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-john-discalceat/


Saint Jucundus of Rheims

Profile

Lector. Martyred in the barbarian invasion of Rheims, France.

Died

beheaded c.451 at Rheims, France

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-jucundus-of-rheims/


Saint Justus of Spain

Profile

Martyr.

Died

• 283 in Spain
• first burned at the stake, but when the flames would not touch him he was beheaded

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-justus-of-spain/


Saint Matronianus of Milan

Also known as

Matronian

Profile

Hermit.

Born

Milan, Italy

Died

relics enshrined by Saint Ambrose of Milan in the church of San Nazario

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-matronianus-of-milan/


Saint Nicasius of Rheims

Profile

Brother of Saint Eutropia. Bishop of Rheims, France, and founder of its basilica. Martyred in the barbarian invasion of Rheims, an invasion he saw in a vision.

Died

• beheaded c.451 at Rheims, France in the doorway of his church, trying to slow the barbarians so his parishioners could escape
• buried at the church of the Saint-Nicaise monastery
• the monastery was destroyed during the French Revolution, and his remaining relics re-located to the cathedral of Rheim

Patronage

• against eye disease
• against mice
• Rheims, France

Representation

bishop holding a sword and his severed head

Readings

Let us abide the mercy of God and pray for our enemies. I am ready to give myself for my people. - Saint Nicasius

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-nicasius-of-rheims/


Saint Pompeius of Pavia

Profile

Bishop of Pavia, Italy. Some records indicate his martyrdom, others not.

Died

c.290

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-pompeius-of-pavia/


Blessed Protasi Cubells Minguell

Profile

Member of the Hospitallers of Saint John of God. Martyred in the Spanish Civil War.

Born

27 December 1880 in Coll de Nargó, Lleida, Spain

Died

14 December 1936 in Barcelona, Spain

Beatified

25 October 1992 by Pope John Paul II

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-protasi-cubells-minguell/


Saint Viator of Bergamo

Also known as

• Viater of Bergamo
• Viateur of Bergamo

Profile

Disciple of the Apostles. Bishop of Bergamo, Italy.

Died

c.78

Patronage

catechists

Storefront

medals and pendants

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-viator-of-bergamo/


Blessed William de Rovira

Profile

Mercedarian monk at the monastery of Saint Thomas the Apostle in Tortosa, Spain. Noted for his zealous faith and observance of the Rule of his Order, and his deep prayer life.

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-william-de-rovira/


Martyrs of Alexandria

Profile

A group of Egyptian Christians martyred together in the persecutions of Decius - Arsenius, Dioscurus, Heron and Isidore.

Died

burned to death in 250 at Alexandria, Egypt

http://catholicsaints.info/martyrs-of-alexandria-14-december/


Martyrs of Apollonia

Profile

Martyred in the persecutions of Decius. The only surviving details are three names - Callinicus, Leucio and Tirso.

Died

Apollonia, Bithynia (in modern Turkey)

http://catholicsaints.info/martyrs-of-apollonia-14-december/


Martyrs of Ashkelon

Profile

Several pilgrims from Egypt to Cilicia (in modern Turkey) who planned to minister to fellow Christians suffering in the persecutions of emperor Maximinus. They were arrested, torture, mutilated and then imprisoned in Ashkelon. Some were ordered to forced labour in the mines, but we have the names of three who were martyred by order of governor Firmilian - Ares, Elijah and Promo.

Died

burned at the stake or beheaded at the gates of Ashkelon c.308

http://catholicsaints.info/martyrs-of-ashkelon/


Martyrs of Hayle

Profile

Several Christians, including a brother and sister, who were martyred together by pagans. The only other information to survive are the names of the two siblings - Fingar and Phiala.

Died

5th century at Hayle, Cornwall, England

http://catholicsaints.info/martyrs-of-hayle/


Martyrs of Syria

Profile

Three Christians who were martyred together. Known to Saint John Chrysostom who preached on their feast day, and left us the only details we have - their names - Drusus, Theodore and Zosimus.

Died

date unknown, in Syria, possibly in Antioch

http://catholicsaints.info/martyrs-of-syria-14-december/


Also celebrated but no entry yet

• Berthold of Regensburg
• Joan Lambertini


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