In the June 28 entry of my book, Saints: Becoming an Image of Christ Every Day of the Year, the final saint biography and prayers for that day are followed by the recommendation to the reader to see the “Supplemental Calendar” in the book. However, as readers will quickly discover, there is no Supplemental Calendar.
Obviously, this is a typo, but the reason for the mistake makes for an interesting story.
When I submitted my manuscript about saints to Ignatius Press, I included many holy men and women who had not (yet) been canonized or beatified by the Church. Ignatius’ editors and I initially planned to put these men and women in a separate “Supplemental Calendar” of saints.
However, there are many books about the saints available today, and one of the unique things about my book is that the main calendar includes only those men and women who have been declared saints and blesseds by the Church. That is, all the saints in my book are either present in the 2004 Martyrologium Romanum, the latest official calendar of saints issued by the Vatican, or they have been formally declared saints or blesseds by the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints since 2004. Since the final version of my book, without these extra holy men and women, was 548 pages long, it made sense to omit these “not yet” saints.
Some of the men and women who were omitted are unlikely to be formally canonized by the Church in the future. In some cases, that’s because too many centuries have passed since the person lived. One of my personal favorites in this category is Saint Macrina the Elder. She was the grandmother of Saint Basil the Great, but when she was a young mother, she and her husband raised their children in the woods, Swiss Family Robinson-style, to avoid certain death during the time of the Roman persecution of Christians. I have future plans to write a book about the saints I had to omit.
Of the fifty-nine men and women who were removed from my book when the Supplemental Calendar section was dropped, it’s just been announced that one of them—Blessed Charles de Foucauld—will be canonized a saint in the near future, as described here. And you can find the Vatican biography of Blessed Teresa Maria Pia Mestana, who is referred to in my book but not present, here.
Another holy woman that I had to omit from my book is Sister Maria Laura Mainetti. This Italian nun agreed to meet three teenage girls late at night in the woods because they told her that one of them was pregnant and in need of help. The three girls had become involved in the occult, and they stabbed Sister Laura to death as some sort of satanic pact. When they were arrested, the girls said that Sister Laura prayed for God to forgive them, even while they were killing her. The murder of Sister Laura occurred on June 6, 2000.
On June 16, 2020, at about the same time that Pope Francis declared Sister Laura a martyr for the faith, someone broke into Saint Elizabeth of the Hill Country Church in North Carolina. The thief or thieves took only the church’s tabernacle and all the hosts inside. While the person responsible may not have stolen the Blessed Sacrament for explicitly satanic purposes, removing the hosts and desecrating the church in this way was clearly a demonic act. Since, as of this writing, law enforcement is still looking for the culprit, asking Sister Laura for help would be a very reasonable thing to do, even if she is not (yet) considered a saint.
Sister Laura Mainetti, help us to forgive those who have committed this act of desecration,
and intercede for the restoration of the Blessed Sacrament to the Church.