In 1997, Pope John Paul II named Saint Therese of Lisieux a Doctor of the Church. This was a startling decision. Perhaps since Saint John Paul II made many startling decisions during his pontificate—such as suddenly adding five mysteries to the rosary—it is easy to fail to notice how unusual this decision really was. Other […]
During Therese’s time as a Carmelite nun, she was ordered by her superiors to write her spiritual autobiography on three occasions. One of those superiors was her older sister, Pauline, who was also a Carmelite nun. Pauline knew her younger sister was not only holy but also gifted at explaining spiritual matters, and she obviously […]
Every human being has the experience of illness or injury from time to time, some of us more often than others. Whether it’s life-threatening or not, being sick forces us to do many things we don’t want to do and stop doing many things that we do want to do. Saint Therese recognized that she […]
In one of the most memorable passages of Saint Therese’s autobiography, The Story of a Soul, she describes a challenge she faced frequently after she had entered the Carmelite monastery. As the youngest member of the community, she was told to care for one of the oldest members of the community. The elderly sister needed […]
Saint of the Day
Blessed Basil Velychkovskyi (1903-1973) was born in the Ukraine into a Greek Catholic family. He became a priest, teacher, and missionary in his native country. In 1945, he was arrested by the Soviets for being a Catholic priest and sentenced to ten years in a forced labor camp. He served his fellow prisoners during his […]Continue reading
Want to read about a saint every day? The “Saint of the Day” blog posts for the entire month of June on this web site are designed to help you do that. Every day of the month of June, there’s a blog post about a holy man or woman you’ve probably never heard of, but who is formally acknowledged as a saint or blessed of the Church. Just like the book, Saints: Becoming an Image of Christ Every Day of the Year, these blog posts show you how to start (or interrupt or finish) your day with a brief, inspirational life story of a saint. Each biography concludes with a short prayer to help you identify some aspect of that saint’s life that might help you in your own spiritual life.
(Note that none of the saints in these blog posts are included in the book, Saints: Becoming an Image of Christ Every Day of the Year, but they are present in the Church’s latest official list of saints, the Martyrologium Romanum, dated 2004.)
As Ecclesiastes 1:9 says, there is nothing new under the sun, and the problems we face today are often startlingly similar to the problems that holy men and women of the past faced in their own lives. Other blog posts discuss saints celebrated in the current month or who have something to teach us about our current difficulties, such as dealing with an epidemic or how to handle suffering.
The saints and blesseds of the Church teach us that holiness is possible for anyone, in any state of life, and in any historical time period. We only have to be open to God’s grace so that He can form us into images of Jesus Christ.