22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
St. Gregory the GreatSaint Gregory was born at Rome around the year 540. He rose through various public offices to the prefecture which he renounced. He entered the monastic life and, once ordained deacon, he. discharged the duties of legate at Constantinople. On September 3, 590 he was elevated to the Chair of Saint Peter and he proved to be a true shepherd by carrying out his office, helping the poor, spreading and strengthening the faith. He wrote extensively on moral and theological subjects. He died on March 12, 604.
Nativity of the Blessed Virgin MaryThis feast celebrates the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary, occurring exactly nine months after the commemoration of her Immaculate Conception on December 8. She was the answer to the prayers of her childless parents, Joachim and Ann.
23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Holy Name of MaryGod the Father is glorified by the exalted role in salvation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Thus, her name is a name of honor, a holy name, a maternal name and a name responsive to the needs of the Church.
St. John ChrysostomSaint John Chrysostom was born at Antioch about the year 349. After an extensive education he embraced a life of asceticism. He was ordained a priest and distinguished himself by his preaching which achieved great spiritual results among his hearers. He was elected bishop of Constantinople in 397 and proved himself a capable pastor, committed to reforming the life of the clergy and the faithful. Twice he was forced into exile by the hatred of the imperial court and the envy of his enemies. After he had completed his difficult labors, he died at Comana in Pontus on September 14, 407. His preaching and writing explained Catholic doctrine and presented the ideal Christian life. For this reason he is called Chrysostom, or Golden Mouth.
Exaltation of the Holy CrossEarly in the fourth century, St. Helena, mother of the Roman Emperor Constantine, went to Jerusalem in search of the holy places of Christ’s life. Her son built the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher over what was believed to be the tomb of the Lord. During the excavation workers found three crosses. Legend has it that the one on which Jesus died was identified when its touch healed a dying woman. This feast occurs on the anniversary of the dedication of the basilica.
Our Lady of SorrowsOn this day the Church honors Mary as Mother of Sorrows. As the prophet Simeon had predicted to her, a sword pierced her heart as she stood at the foot of the cross on which her Son was crucified.
24th Sunday in Ordinary Time
St. Robert BellarmineSaint Robert Bellarmine was born in 1542 in the town of Monte Pulciano in Tuscany. He entered the Society of Jesus and after ordination to the priesthood distinguished himself by brilliant disputations in defense of the Catholic faith. He also taught theology in the Roman College. Elected to the College of Cardinals and named bishop of Capua, he solved many pressing questions in the various Roman Congregations. He died at Rome in 1621.
St. JanuariusSaint Januarius was bishop of Benevento. Along with his companions he was martyred at Naples in the persecution of Diocletian. Today he is especially venerated in the city of Naples.
Sts. Andrew Kim, Paul Chong, and CompanionsSaint Andrew was born in Seoul, Korea to converts to the faith. His father was a martyr. Baptized at the age of 15, he traveled 1300 miles to the nearest seminary in South China and was ordained Korea’s first native priest. In 1846 he was tortured and beheaded along with his lay associate, St. Paul Chong Hasang. Between 1839 and 1867 113 martyrs gave their lives for the faith in Korea.
St. MatthewBorn at Capernaum, Saint Matthew was working as a tax collector when he was called by Jesus. He wrote his gospel in Hebrew and is said to have preached in the East.
25th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Sts. Cosmas and DamianAccording to ancient documents the tomb of Saints Cosmas and Damian is at Cyrrhus in Syria. There a basilica was built in their honor. Devotion to these martyrs spread to Rome and from there through the whole Church.
St. Vincent de PaulSaint Vincent de Paul was born in Gascony in 1581. After completing his studies, he was ordained a priest and went to Paris where he served in a parish. He founded the Congregation of the Mission to supervise the formation of priests and to give support to the poor. With the help of Saint Louise de Marillac, he also founded the Congregation of the Daughters of Charity. He died at Paris in 1660.
St. WenceslausSaint Wenceslaus was born in Bohemia around the year 907. Brought up as a Christian by his aunt, he began his rule around the year 925. Having experienced many difficulties in ruling over hIs subjects and in leading them to the faith, he was betrayed by his brother Boleslaus and killed by assassins in 935. He was immediately recognized as a martyr and venerated as the patron saint of Bohemia.
St. Lawrence Ruiz and CompanionsSaint Lawrence was a devoted husband and father of three children in the Philippines during the seventeenth century. After he was unjustly accused of murder, he fled with Christian missionaries to Japan where he was tortured for the faith and died professing: “I shall die for God, and for him I would give many thousands of lives if I had them.”
Sts. Michael, Gabriel, and RaphaelThis feast commemorates the three archangels who play prominent roles in scripture: Michael, who battles the dragon in the Book of Revelation; Gabriel, who announces the birth of John the Baptist and of Jesus; and Raphael, who cures the blind in the Book of Tobit.
26th Sunday in Ordinary Time