Beyond the fact that he was Abbot of the first Cistercian monastery ever established in Ireland, practically nothing at all can be stated with certainty about Blessed Christian, otherwise called Christian O'Conarchy or Giolla Criost Ua Condoirche. The various traditions and legends are confused and conflicting. According to some accounts, he was born at Bangor in Ulster, and Colgan says that he was the disciple and afterwards the archdeacon of St. Malachy of Armagh, and that he probably accompanied the prelate on a visit to Rome, staying at Clairvaux on his way there. He would appear to have been one of the four disciples who remained behind at Clairvaux on the homeward journey and who received the habit from St. Bernard himself. Upon his return to Ireland, St. Malachy was anxious to introduce the Cistercian Order into his country, and at his prompting Donouth O'Carroll set about building Mellifont. Malachy applied to the founder for a superior and some monks to start the new foundation, and St. Bernard sent Christian and several French brothers in 1142. Abbot Christian is said by some writers to have become bishop of Lismore and papal legate for Ireland. An ancient anonymous Irish analyst notes the year 1186 as the date of the death of Christian, the illustrious prelate of Lismore, "formally legate of Ireland, emulator of the virtues which he saw and heard from his holy father St. Bernard and from the supreme pontiff, the venerable man Eugenius, with whom he was in the novitiate at Clairvaux". His feast day is March 18th.
On April 16, 1879, Bernadette -- or Sister Marie-Bernard, as she was known within her order -- died in the Sainte Croix (Holy Cross) Infirmary of the Convent of Saint-Gildard. She was ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
St. Catherine Laboure, virgin, was born on May 2, 1806. At an early age she entered the community of the Daughters of Charity, in Paris, France. Three times in 1830 the Virgin Mary appeared to St. Catherine Laboure, who then was a twenty-four year old novice. On July ... continue readingMore Female Saints
St. Michael the Archangel - Feast day - September 29th The name Michael signifies "Who is like to God?" and was the warcry of the good angels in the battle fought in heaven against satan and his followers. Holy Scripture describes St. Michael as "one of the chief ... continue reading
The name Gabriel means "man of God," or "God has shown himself mighty." It appears first in the prophesies of Daniel in the Old Testament. The angel announced to Daniel the prophecy of the seventy weeks. His name also occurs in the apocryphal book of Henoch. He was the ... continue reading
The people of Olkusz in Bohemia in 1431 had every reason to be suspicious of their new pastor. They knew what a Cracow professor would think of their small rural town. But even more insulting, their ... continue reading
By Rev. Peter M. J. Stravinskas, Ph.D., S.T.D.
This model of Christian manliness recommends himself to us not for any strange or exciting things he did (because he really didn't) but for the daily listening to and heeding the voice of Almighty God - in the home, in the synagogue and Temple, in the ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes