23 March • yesterday
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Optional Memorial, Saint Turibius of Mogroveio, Bishop

Saint Rafqa

Also known as

• Boutrossieh Ar-Rayes
• Lily of Himlaya
• Little Flower of Lebanon
• Purple Rose
• Rafka Al Rayes
• Rafqa Shabaq al-Rayes
• Rebecca Pierrette Ar-Rayes
• Agnes, Anissa, Boutrosiya, Boutrossieh, Petra, Petronilla, Pierette, Rafka, Rebecca

Profile

Daughter and only child of Mourad Saber Shabaq al-Rayes and Rafqa Gemayel. Her mother died when Rafka was six. She and her step-mother never got along. The girl worked as a maid from age 11 to 15, announcing at age 14 that she felt a call to religious life. Her father objected, but at 21 she became a nun in the Marian Order of the Immaculate Conception at Bikfaya, taking the religious name Anissa (= Agnes), and making her final vows in 1856.

In 1871, her Order merged with the order of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The sisters were given the choice of joining the new combined order, joining other orders, or being released from their vows. Following dreams in which Saint Anthony the Great appeared to her, she joined the Lebanese Order of Saint Anthony of the Maronites (Baladiya Order) on 12 July 1871, a novice at age 39, taking the new religious name of Rafqa (= Rebecca).

On the feast of the Holy Rosary in 1885, Rafqa prayed that she might share Christ's sufferings. Her health began to deteriorate, and she was soon blind and crippled. She spent as much of her remaining 30 years in prayer as she could, but always insisted on working in the convent as well as she could with her disabilities, usually spinning wool and knitting. By 1907 she was completely blind and paralyzed. In a 1981 medical report based upon the evidence presented in the Canonization process, specialists in ophthalmology, neurology and orthopedics diagnosed the most likely cause as tuberculosis with ocular localization and multiple bony excrescences. This causes unbearable pain, but Rafqa was thankful for her special form of communion.

Late in life her close friend and supporter, Mother Superior Ursula Doumit, ordered her to dictate her autobiography, and Rafka complied. Near the time of her death, Rafqa asked that her sight be restored for a single hour so she could again see the face of Mother Ursula; the hour of sight was granted.

Beginning four days after her death, miraculous cures were recorded at Rafka's grave, the first being Mother Doumit whose throat was slowly closing so there was fear she would starve to death. Elizabeth En-Nakhel from Tourza, northern Lebanon, was cured from uterine cancer, through Rafqa, in 1938, the miracle which permitted her beatification.

Born

29 June 1832 at Himlaya, Lebanon as Boutrossieh Ar-Rayes

Died

23 March 1914 at the Convent of Saint Joseph, Grabta, Lebanon of natural causes

Canonized

10 June 2001 by Pope John Paul II

Patronage

• against bodily ills or sickness
• against loss of parents
• sick people

Representation

• lily
• purple rose

Storefront

medals and pendants

Video

YouTube PlayList

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-rafqa/


Saint Walter of Pontoise

Also known as

• Walter of Pontnoise
• Gaucher, Gaultier, Gautier, Gualterio, Gualtiero

Additional Memorial

4 May (translation of relics)

Profile

Well educated in general, and a professor of philosophy and rhetoric. Joined the Benedictines at Rebais-en-Brie to escape the world and the temptations presented by success in his field. Against his will he was made abbot of Pontoise Abbey by King Philip I; Walter reminded the king that it was by God's will that he did such a thing, not the crown's. He fled the house several time to escape the position, the last time to Rome, Italy where he gave Pope Gregory VII his written resignation; the pope told him to return to his house, assume his responsibilities as abbot, and never leave again. He obeyed. Worked against simony, lax discipline, and dissolute lives of some of his clergy. He was opposed by the corrupt and the corrupters that he fought, and they finally resorted to imprisoning and beating him. On his release, he resumed his work, often spending the whole night in chapel, praying for strength and wisdom.

Born

c.1030 in Andainville, Picardy, France

Died

• Good Friday, 8 April 1099 of natural causes
• buried at Pontoise Abbey
• miracles at his tomb and by his intervention approved almost immediately by bishops of Rouen, Paris and Senlis in France
• relics re-translated in 1655
• relics lost in the anti-Christian excesses of the French Revolution

Patronage

• against job-related stress
• prisoners
• prisoners of war
• vintners
• Pontoise, France

Storefront

medals and pendants

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-walter-of-pontoise/


Blessed Pietro of Gubbio

Additional Memorial

29 October (Augustinians; Diocese of Gubbio, Italy)

Profile

Born to the Italian nobility, Pietro studied law at universities in Perugia, Italy, and Paris, France. He was a successful and brilliant lawyer known for his honesty, and who concentrated on representing the poor.

When he was 40 years old, Pietro came to know the Augustinians and was drawn to them, wanting to put himself and his law practice at the disposal of the Church. Priest. Friar in the Augustinian monastery in Gubbio, Italy. Chosen by the Order‘s vicar-general to serve as Provincial Visitor to Augustinian houses in France; tradition says that he travelled bare-footed and met all his brother Augustinians that way as a sign of humility. Noted preacher. Known for his holiness of life, his zeal for the Augustinian Rule and the Christian life, his patience with Augustinian brothers who had trouble living up to the Rule, and as a miracle worker. He spent later years as a prayerful monk the Gubbio monastery where he had begun.

Born

early 13th century in Gubbio, Umbria, Italy

Died

• between 1306 and 1322 in Gubbio, Umbria, Italy of natural causes
• buried in the common grave of friars in the center of the choir area in the Augustinian church in Gubbio
• legend says that one day soon after his burial, the monks were in the choir, sang the Te Deum, and heard a voice from the tomb that responded: Te Dominum confitemur! (Lord, we thank you!); the frightened brothers opened the tomb and found the body of Blessed Peter on his knees, looking up and hands crossed on his chest
• relics still enshrined in the Augustinian church

Beatified

1874 by Pope Pius IX (cultus confirmation)

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-pietro-of-gubbio/


Saint Ottone Frangipane

Also known as

Oddone, Oto, Otto

Profile

Born to the Italian nobility, he became a knight and fought in defense in the pope in the area of Frascati, Italy. Captured on the field, he was imprisoned in a tower until he prayed for the intercession Saint Leonard of Noblac and received miraculous assistance in escape. Pilgrim to the Benedictine abbey to Saints Trinity of Cava dei Tirreni; he did not become a monk, but lived there, spending his days in prayer and work. From there he moved to the monastery of Montevergine and became a spiritual student of Saint William of Vercelli. Moved to Ariano Irpino, Italy in 1117, and devoted himself to care for the pilgrims that came through the city en route to the Holy Lands. He began living nearby as a hermit in 1120; Ottone even dug a grave next to his cell as a reminder that death was always near. His reputation for holiness, wisdom and miracles soon spread and drew many would-be students.

Born

1040 in Rome, Italy

Died

• 23 March 1127 in Ariano Irpino, Italy of natural causes
• buried in the cathedral of Ariano Irpino
• during a siege of Ariano Irpino by Saracens, the locals prayed for Ottone's intercession; a shower of stones from the clouds chased off the besiegers
• relics transferred to Benevento, Italy in 1220 ahead of Saracen invasion
• some relics at the church of Saint Peter in Montemiletto, Italy

Patronage

• Ariano Irpino, Italy, city of
• Ariano Irpino-Lacedonia, Italy, diocese of
• Castelbottaccio, Italy

Representation

scourge, sword, tunic

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-ottone-frangipane/


Saint Joseph Oriol

Also known as

• José Orioli
• Josep Oriol Bogunyà
• Thaumaturgus of Barcelona• • Wonder Worker of Barcelona

Profile

Born poor. Studied at the University of Barcelona. Awarded a doctorate of theology on 1 August 1674. Ordained 30 May 1676. Pilgrim to Rome, Italy in 1686. Pope Innocent XI granted him a benefice at Santa Maria del Pino (Our Lady of the Pines), Barcelona, Spain, a parish he served for the rest of his life.

Wanted to evangelize infidels, and give himself over to martyrdom. On his way to Rome in April 1698 to ask to be a missionary, Joseph fell ill at Marseilles, France, and had a vision that gave him a new mission - revitalize the faith in his own back yard.

Returning home, he worked with the youngest of children and roughest of soldiers, and prayed without ceasing for the living and the dead. He wore a hair-shirt; lived for 26 years, half his life, solely on bread and water. Famed confessor, prophet, healer, and miracle worker, though many of the writers in his day and after have made him sound like some kind of medium or magician or somesuch.

Born

23 November 1650 at Barcelona, Spain

Died

• 23 March 1702 at Barcelona, Spain of natural causes
• predicted the date of his own death
• some locals lent him a bed to die on as he had always slept on a wooden bench or whatever was handy

Canonized

20 May 1909 by Pope Pius X

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-joseph-oriol/


Blessed Metodej Dominik Trcka

Also known as

• Dominik Trcka
• Metod Dominik Trcka
• Metodij Dominik Trcka

Profile

Redemptorist, making his profession on 25 August 1904. Priest, ordained in Prague (in modern Czech Republic) on 17 July 1910. Worked in parish missions. Vice-provincial of his order on 23 March 1946.

On 14 April 1950 the Communist government of Czechoslovakia outlawed religious communities. On 21 April 1952 Father Metodio received a show trial and was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for his work; he was repeatedly tortured by interrogators. Locked in an isolation cell as punishment for singing a Christmas hymn, he contracted pneumonia. Martyr.

Born

6 July 1886 at Frýdlant nad Ostravicí, Ostravský (modern Czech Republic)

Died

• 23 March 1959 in a Communist prison camp at Leopoldov, Trnavský kraj, Slovakia of pneumonia
• buried in the prison graveyard
• re-interred at the Redemptorist cemetery at the Greek-Catholic church in Michalovce on 17 October 1969

Beatified

4 November 2001 by Pope John Paul II

Video

YouTube PlayList

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-metodio-domenico-trcka/


Blessed Álvaro del Portillo Díez de Sollano

Profile

One of eight children. Joined Opus Dei in 1935. Engineering student. Member of the Saint Vicent de Paul Society, and taught catechism to children in in poor neighbourhoods where the Society worked. Priest, ordained on 25 June 1944 in Madrid, Spain. Assigned to work in Rome, Italy in 1946. Bishop of the Personal Prelature of the Holy Cross and Opus Dei on 28 November 1982. Titular bishop of Vita on 7 December 1990.

Born

11 March 1914 in Madrid, Spain

Died

23 March 1994 in Rome, Italy of natural causes

Beatified

• 27 September 2014 by Pope Francis
• beatification recognition celebrated in Madrid, Spain
• the beatification miracle involves the August 2003 healing of Chilean newborn Jose Ignacio Ureta Wilson; just a few days old, the boy suffered a 30-minute period of cardiac arrest and a major hemorrhage; his medical team thought the boy had died, but his parents prayed for healing through the intercession of the bishop, and Jose now lives a normal life

Video

YouTube PlayList

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-alvaro-del-portillo-diez-de-sollano/


Saint Turibius of Mogroveio

Also known as

• Turibius of Lima
• Toribio, Turribius Alphonsus, Turybiusz, Turibio de Mogrovejo

Profile

Born to the nobility. Lawyer. Professor of law at Salamanca, Spain. Ordained in 1578 at age 40. Judge of the Court of the Inquisition at Granada, Spain. Archbishop of Lima, Peru on 15 May 1579. Founded the first seminary in the Western hemisphere. Fought for the rights of the natives against the Spanish masters. Organized councils and synods in the New World.

Born

1538 at Mayorga de Campos, Leon, Spain

Died

23 May 1606 at Santa, Peru of natural causes

Canonized

10 December 1726 by Pope Benedict XIII

Patronage

• Latin American bishops
• native rights
• Lima, Peru
• Peru

Video

YouTube PlayList

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-turibius-of-mogroveio/


Saint Victorian of Hadrumetum

Profile

The wealthiest subject of the Vandal king Hunseric, Victorian served as governor of Carthage with the imperial Roman title of Proconsul, and was known for his devotion to orthodox Christianity. Hunseric offered him all the wealth and power he could bestow if Victorian would declare himself a supporter of Arianism; Victorian declined. He was arrested, tortured and killed for his refusal.

Died

484 in Carthage in North Africa

Readings

Tell the king that I trust in Christ. His Majesty may condemn me to any torments, but I shall never consent to renounce the Catholic Church, in which I have been baptized. Even if there were no life after this, I would never be ungrateful and perfidious to God, who has granted me the happiness of knowing Him, and bestowed on me His most precious graces. - Saint Victorian in response Huneric's offer to support Arianism

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-victorian-of-hadrumetum/


Saint Gwinear

Also known as

Fingar, Guigner, Gwinnear

Profile

Son of the pagan King Clito of Ireland. When Saint Patrick arrived at Clito's court, the king was hostile; Gwinear recognized Patrick‘s sincerity and piety, treated him well, and meditated on his message. Convert to Christianity. Hermit. Upon his father‘s death, he returned home, gathered 770 other converts, and worked to spread the faith in Wales and Brittany. Miracle worker. Martyr. The Cornish village of Gwinear is named for him. At Pluvigner there is a stained glass window of Gwinear hunting a stag with a cross between its antlers, and there is a holy well with his name near the church.

Born

Irish

Died

• beheaded c.460 at Hayle, Cornwall, England
• a basilica was built over his grave

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-gwinear/


Martyrs of Caesarea

Profile

A group of five Christians who protested public games which were dedicated to pagan gods. Martyred in the persecutions Julian the Apostate. The only details we know about them are their names - Aquila, Domitius, Eparchius, Pelagia and Theodosia.

Died

in 361 in Caesarea, Palestine

http://catholicsaints.info/martyrs-of-caesarea-23-march/


Blessed Peter Higgins

Also known as

Peadar Ó Huiggin

Additional Memorial

20 June as one of the Irish Martyrs

Profile

Joined the Dominicans in 1622. Priest. Prior of the Dominican house at Naas. He was ordered to acknowledge the English king as head of the Church; he declined. Martyr.

Born

1601 in Ireland

Died

martyred on 23 March 1642 in Dublin, Ireland

Beatified

27 September 1992 by Pope John Paul II in Rome, Italy

Video

YouTube PlayList

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-peter-higgins/


Blessed Annunciata Asteria Cocchetti

Profile

Orphaned at age seven. At 17 she opened a school for poor girls in her home. Taught school at Rovato, Italy at 22, and then at Cemmo Valcamonica, Italy. Helped found the Sisters of Saint Dorothy of Cemmo, and served in the order for 40 years.

Born

9 May 1800 in Rovato, Italy

Died

23 March 1882 in Cemmo, Italy of natural causes

Beatified

21 April 1991 by Pope John Paul II at Saint Peter's Basilica in Rome, Italy

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-annunciata-asteria-cocchetti/


Saint Ethelwald of Farne

Also known as

• Ethelwald the Hermit
• Aethelwold, Edelwald, Oidilwald

Profile

Priest. Benedictine monk at the monastery of Ripon, England. Hermit on the island of Inner Farne, England in 687. A miracle worker, his prayers were known to stop storms that threatened visitors to his island.

Died

• spring 699 of natural causes
• interred at Lindisfarne next to Saint Cuthbert of Lindisfarne and Saint Edbert of Lindisfarne
• relics moved from place to place with those of Saint Cuthbert
• relics re-interred in Durham cathedral

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-ethelwald-of-farne/


Blessed Edmund Sykes

Additional Memorials

• 29 October as one of the Martyrs of Douai
• 22 November as one of the Martyrs of England, Scotland, and Wales

Profile

Priest in the apostolic vicariate of England. Martyred in the persecutions of Queen Elizabeth I.

Born

c.1550 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England

Died

23 March 1587 in York, North Yorkshire, England

Beatified

22 November 1987 by Pope John Paul II

http://catholicsaints.info/blessed-edmund-sykes/


Saint Benedict of Campagna

Also known as

• Benedict the Hermit
• Benedict of Campania

Profile

Benedictine hermit in the Campagna region of Italy. Friend of Saint Benedict of Nursia. Captured by Totila the Goth, he was thrown in a fire to die; he stayed in the flames until the next day when he miraculously emerged unharmed.

Died

c.550 of natural causes

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-benedict-of-campagna/


Saint Nicon of Sicily

Profile

Distinguished Roman soldier. Converted to Christianity while travelling in Palestine. Spiritual student of Theodosius of Cyzicus. Leader of 200 Christian disciples who fled to Sicily to escape persecutions of Decius in Palestine. They could not escape it, however, and all were martyred.

Died

martyred c.250 in Sicily, Italy

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-nicon-of-sicily/


Saint Liberatus of Carthage

Profile

Martyred with his wife and children in the persecutions of the Arians; only the father‘s name has come down to us.

Died

484 at Carthage (modern Tunis, Tunisia)

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-liberatus-of-carthage/


Saint Frumentius of Hadrumetum

Profile

Wealthy merchant. Martyred in the persecutions of the Arian Vandal King Hunneric.

Died

martyred in 484 in Hadrumetum (modern Sousse, Tunisia)

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-frumentius-of-hadrumetum/


Saint Maidoc of Fiddown

Also known as

• Mo-Mhaedog of Fiddown
• Momhaedog

Profile

Fifth century abbot at the monastery at Fiddown in Kilkenny, Ireland.

Born

Irish

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-maidoc-of-fiddown/


Saint Felix the Martyr

Profile

Fifth century martyr, killed in the Vandal persecutions with 20 other Christians whose names have not come down to us.

Died

martyred in Africa in the 5th century

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-felix-the-martyr/


Saint Felix of Monte Cassino

Profile

Benedictine monk at Monte Cassino.

Died

• c.1000 of natural causes
• miracles reported at his tomb

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-felix-of-monte-cassino/


Saint Crescentius of Carthage

Profile

Priest. Martyred in the persecutions of the Arians.

Died

484 at Carthage (modern Tunis, Tunisia)

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-crescentius-of-carthage/


Daughters of Feradhach

Also known as

Filiae Feradachi

Profile

Mentioned in early calendars and martyrologies, but no information about them has survived.

http://catholicsaints.info/daughters-of-feradhach/


Saint Theodolus of Antioch

Also known as

Theodore, Theodoricus

Profile

Priest in Antioch, Syria.

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-theodolus-of-antioch/


Saint Fidelis the Martyr

Profile

Martyr.

Died

martyred in North Africa

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-fidelis-the-martyr/


Saint Julian the Confessor

Profile

Martyr.

http://catholicsaints.info/saint-julian-the-confessor/


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