Saint of the Day

May 3: Saint Juvenal of Narni

If you enjoy this daily blog of lesser-known saints, see my book, which contains short biographies of saints for every day of the year.

There are have been several saints named “Juvenal”; this Saint Juvenal was bishop of the city of Narni in Italy and died around the year 376.

He was a priest of the city when the pope separated the city into its own diocese, making Juvenal the bishop. Many of the residents of the town were pagans, and it’s said that while he was passing a statue of a bull in front of a temple one day, a pagan priest struck him with a sword for failing to make a sacrifice in honor of the god. According to tradition, Juvenal caught the sword in his teeth and survived. This public miracle brought many people to the faith.

A few years later, invaders from a neighboring town threatened Narni. Juvenal climbed up the city wall and recited a psalm asking for God’s deliverance; a storm broke out, and many of the opposing soldiers died, saving the city.

Saint Juvenal, show me how to trust in God to do the seemingly impossible.