As a thirteen-year-old shepherd of Sisan, Turkey, Simeon heard a Gospel reading of the Beatitudes that greatly affected him. Entering a nearly monastery, he learned all the Psalms by heart and began to manifest the extraordinary spirit of self-denial that was to become a hallmark of his spirituality. Thereafter Simeon lived as a hermit. In the year 423 he imposed on himself the unusual mortification of living atop a pillar only a few feet in diameter and about ten feet high. Later a much taller pillar over sixty-five feet high was built for him. The local bishops and abbots tested his virtue by commanding him to come down from the pillar, a command they immediately rescinded after the hermit demonstrated his humble willingness to obey them. One bishop even brought him Holy Communion. Simeon devoted himself to prayer, but also gave exhortations twice daily to those who gathered around the pillar to hear him. His words won the conversion of pagans in the audience. Simeon would urge his listeners to pray for the salvation of souls. Following his mother’s death, he offered particularly fervent prayers for her.
By tradition Joachim and Anne are considered to be the names of the parents of Mary, the Mother of God. We have no historical evidence, however, of any elements of their lives, including their names. ... continue readingMore Saint of the Day
In the fourth century appeared a Greek religious romance on the Loves of Cecilia and Valerian, written, like those of Chrysanthus and Daria, Julian and Basilissa, in glorification of the virginal life, and with the purpose of taking the place of the sensual romances of ... 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
St. Julie (Julia) Billiart was born in 1751 and died in 1816. As a child, playing "school" was Julie's favorite game. When she was sixteen, to help support her family, she began to teach ... continue reading
By Deacon Keith A Fournier
On July 15th in the Liturgical Calendar of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, we commemorate the life, holiness, work and death of a great Bishop and Doctor named Bonaventure. He was born in 1218, became a Franciscan Friar in 1243, and died in 1274. A friend ... continue readingMore Christian Saints & Heroes