The Queen’s Speech and State Opening of Parliament:

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St. Teresa of Avila

Teresa Sanchez Cepeda Davila y Ahumada, born at Avila, Old Castile, 28 March, 1515; died at Alba de Tormes, 4 Oct., 1582.

The third child of Don Alonso Sanchez de Cepeda by his second wife, Doña Beatriz Davila y Ahumada, who died when the saint was in her fourteenth year, Teresa was brought up by her saintly father, a lover of serious books, and a tender and pious mother. After her death and the marriage of her eldest sister, Teresa was sent for her education to the Augustinian nuns at Avila, but owing to illness she left at the end of eighteen months, and for some years remained with her father and occasionally with other relatives, notably an uncle who made her acquainted with the Letters of St. Jerome, which determined her to adopt the religious life, not so much through any attraction towards it, as through a desire of choosing the safest course. Unable to obtain her father’s consent she left his house unknown to him on Nov., 1535, to enter the Carmelite Convent of the Incarnation at Avila, which then counted 140 nuns. The wrench from her family caused her a pain which she ever afterwards compared to that of death. However, her father at once yielded and Teresa took the habit…

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Casimir Pulaski

Casimir Pulaski, painted by Jan Styka.

Casimir Pulaski, painted by Jan Styka.

Patriot and soldier, born at Winiary, Poland, 4 March, 1748; died on the Wasp, in the harbour of Savannah, 11 Oct., 1779; eldest son of Count Joseph Pulaski and Maria Zislinska.

His father, a noted jurist, reared him for the bar, and he received his military training, as a youth, in the guard of Charles, Duke of Courland. Pulaski was one of those who, under the leadership of his father, formed, 29 Feb., 1768, the confederation of Bar, to free Poland from Russia. Driven into Moldavia he, returning, seized the monastery of Berdichev and for several weeks withstood with slender forces a siege by the Russians. Again finding refuge in Moldavia in 1769 after the arrest and death of his father, Pulaski in a series of brilliant marches overran and raised in revolt the greater part of Poland and Lithuania. Defeated by Suvaroff at Lomazy, near Wladowa, he fled with only ten men into the Carpathian Mountains. There he spent the winter of 1769-70, making forays into Poland, and in August, 1770, seized the fortified monastery of Czenstochowa…

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St. Bruno of Querfurt

(Also called BRUN and BONIFACE).

Second Apostle of the Prussians and martyr, born about 970; died 14 February, 1009. He is generally represented with a hand cut off, and is commemorated on 15 October. Bruno was a member of the noble family of Querfurt and is commonly said to have been a relative of the Emperor Otto III, although Hefele (in Kirchenlex., II, s.v. Bruno) emphatically denies this. When hardly six years old he was sent to Archbishop Adalbert of Magdeburg to be educated and had the learned Geddo as his teacher in the cathedral school. He was a well-behaved, industrious scholar, while still a lad he was made a canon of the cathedral. The fifteen year-old Otto III became attached to Bruno, made him one of his court, and took him to Rome when the young emperor went there in 996 to be crowned. At Rome Bruno became acquainted with St. Adalbert Archbishop of Prague, who was murdered a year later by the pagan Prussians to whom he had gone as a missionary. After Adalbert’s death Bruno was tied with an intense desire for martyrdom. He spent much of has time in the monastery on the Aventine where Adalbert had become a monk, and where Abbot Johannes Canaparius wrote a life of Adalbert. Bruno, however, did not enter the monastic life here, but in the monastery of Pereum, an island in the swamps near Ravenna…

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St. Hedwig

Duchess of Silesia, born about 1174, at the castle of Andechs; died at Trebnitz, 12 or 15 October, 1243.

She was one of eight children born to Berthold IV, Count of Andechs and Duke of Croatia and Dalmatia. Of her four brothers, two became bishops, Ekbert of Bamberg, and Berthold of Aquileia; Otto succeeded his father as Duke of Dalmatia, and Heinrich became Margrave of Istria. Of her three sisters, Gertrude married Andrew II, King of Hungary, from which union sprang St. Elizabeth, Landgravine of Thuringia; Mechtilde became Abbess of Kitzingen; while Agnes was made the unlawful wife of Philip II of France in 1196, on the repudiation of his lawful wife, Ingeborg, but was dismissed in 1200, Innocent III having laid France under an interdict. Hedwig was educated at the monastery of Kitzingen, and, according to an old biography, at the age of twelve (1186), was married to Henry I of Silesia (b. 1168), who in 1202 succeeded his father Boleslaw as…

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Marie Antoinette playing the clavichord painted by Franz Xaver Wagenschön shortly before her marriage.

Marie Antoinette playing the clavichord painted by Franz Xaver Wagenschön shortly before her marriage.

Queen of France. Born at Vienna, 2 November, 1755; executed in Paris, 16 October, 1793. She was the youngest daughter of Francis I, German Emperor, and of Maria Theresa. The marriage of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette was one of the last acts of Choiseul’s policy; but the Dauphiness from the first shared the unpopularity attaching to the Franco-Austrian alliance. Ambassador Mercy and Abbé de Vermond, the former tutor of the archduchess in Austria and now her reader in France, endeavoured to make her follow the prudent counsels as to her conduct sent by her mother, Maria Theresa, and to enable her thus to overcome all the intrigues of the Court. Marie Antoinette’s disdain of Madame du Barry, the mistress of Louis XV, was perhaps, from a political standpoint, a mistake, but it is an honourable evidence of the high character and self-respect of the Dauphiness. Having become queen on 10 May, 1774, she adopted an imprudent course of action, both in her political and private life. In politics she was always so uncompromisingly attached to the…

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St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

Religious of the Visitation Order. Apostle of the Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, born at Lhautecour, France, 22 July, 1647; died at Paray-le-Monial, 17 October, 1690.

Her parents, Claude Alacoque and Philiberte Lamyn, were distinguished less for temporal possessions than for their virtue, which gave them an honourable position. From early childhood Margaret showed intense love for the Blessed Sacrament, and preferred silence and prayer to childish amusements. After her first communion at the age of nine, she practised in secret severe corporal mortifications, until paralysis confined her to bed for four years. At the end of this period, having made a vow to the Blessed Virgin to consecrate herself to religious life, she was instantly restored to perfect health. The death of her father and the injustice of a relative plunged the family in poverty and humiliation, after which more than ever Margaret found consolation in the Blessed Sacrament, and Christ made her sensible of His presence and protection. He usually appeared to her as the Crucified or the Ecce Homo, and this did not surprise her, as she thought others had the same Divine assistance. When Margaret was seventeen, the family property was recovered, and her mother besought her to establish herself in the world. Her filial tenderness made her believe that the vow of childhood was not binding, and that she could serve God at home…

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By Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

Portrait of Marie-Antoinette of Austria by Jean-Baptiste Gautier Dagoty

Most Reverend Monsignor Director of this Academy, Gentlemen Academicians:

A simple listing of the titles with which she was known during her short life as Marie Antoinette of Habsburg, and later Marie Antoinette of Bourbon, brings to memory the series of extraordinary and unforeseen events that together make up the fabric of the most interesting female existences of the eighteenth century…

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St. Bercharius

(BERERUS).

Abbot of Hautvillers in Champagne, b. 636; d. 28 March, 696. Descended from a distinguished Aquitanian family, he received his instruction from St. Nivard (Nivo), Archbishop of Reims, under whose charge he advaneed rapidly in virtue and learning. Believing himself called to the sacred ministry, he entered the monastery of Luxeuil under St. Walbert, and by his humble and faithful performance of duty soon excelled his fellow-novices. Upon his return to Reims he induced St. Nivard to erect the cloister of Hautvillers, of which Bercharius himself became the first abbot. Wholly given up to prayer and meditation he also instructed his brethren to lead a contemplative life. Ever zealous for the propagation of the Faith, he founded two cloisters in the Diocese of Châlons-sur-Marne, the one (Puisye or Moutier-en-Der) for men, the other (Pellmoutier, Puellarum Monasterium) for women. These institutions he enriched by donations of valuable relics, procured on a journey to Rome and the Holy Land.

The monk Daguin, provoked by a reprimand from Bercharius, stabbed him during the night. No word of complaint or censure did he utter when the murderer was led before him; but he gloried in exhorting the transgressor to penance and in requesting him to make a pilgrimage to Rome to obtain pardon and absolution. Daguin left the monastery never to return. After two days of severe suffering, the saint succumbed to his wound, a martyr not for the Faith, indeed, but for charity and justice. His remains were preserved at Moutier-en-Der until the suppression of religious orders at the close of the eighteenth century. The commemoration of his name occurs in the martyrology on the 16th of October.

BUTLER, XV, 252; ADSO, Vita S. Bercharii; SURIUS, X, 481.

Barnabas Dieringer (Catholic Encyclopedia)

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St. Ignatius of Antioch

Also called Theophorus (ho Theophoros); born in Syria, around the year 50; died at Rome between 98 and 117.

More than one of the earliest ecclesiastical writers have given credence, though apparently without good reason, to the legend that Ignatius was the child whom the Savior took up in His arms, as described in Mark 9:35. It is also believed, and with great probability, that, with his friend Polycarp, he was among the auditors of the Apostle St. John. If we include St. Peter, Ignatius was the third Bishop of Antioch and the immediate successor of Evodius (Eusebius, “Hist. Eccl.”, II, iii, 22). Theodoret (“Dial. Immutab.”, I, iv, 33a, Paris, 1642) is the authority for the statement that St. Peter appointed Ignatius to the See of Antioch. St. John Chrysostom lays special emphasis on the honor conferred upon the martyr in receiving his episcopal consecration at the hands of the Apostles themselves (“Hom. in St. Ig.”, IV. 587). Natalis Alexander quotes Theodoret to the same effect (III, xii, art. xvi, p. 53)…

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Beaupréau

Beaupréau

The Battle of Cholet was fought on 17 October 1793 during the French Revolutionary Wars, between French Republican forces under General Léchelle and French Royalist Forces under Louis d’Elbée. The battle was fought in the town of Cholet in the Maine-et-Loire department of France, and resulted in a Republican victory. D’Elbée was wounded and captured; he was later executed by Republican troops in Noirmoutier. Royalist Charles Melchior Artus de Bonchamps was fatally wounded in the battle…

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Statue of Richard Coeur de Lion, also known as Richard the Lionheart, in Old Palace Yard outside the Palace of Westminster.

Who was eligible for knighthood? If we were to reply “Everybody,” we should not be far from the truth. No one could or can say that Chivalry was a “closed” institution, or, if you prefer the term, a caste. Only the infirm were excluded because they could not cut a good figure in battle, and the whole of Chivalry is summed up in the word “fighting.” The Church very wisely excludes cripples from the altar, where they would be ridiculed, and the warriors of the Middle Ages also very wisely excluded them from Chivalry, in which they would have been useless. Depravity of mind, infamous manners, the disdain which attaches to certain professions, or origin: all these moral infirmities were calculated to close the doors of Chivalry against such base and dishonored persons. It is true the Richard Coeur de Lion was very anxious to make Mercadier, the bandit chief, his companion-in-arms, a knight, but he could not. It was simply impossible. As he was unable to ennoble this brigand, he enriched him, which was a much more feasible feat.

However, Chivalry was “open.”

León Gautier, Chivalry, trans. Henry Frith (London: George Routledge and Sons, Ltd., 1891), 214–5.

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According to the Swedish Royal Court:

…the children of Their Royal Highnesses Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, and the children of Her Royal Highness Princess Madeleine and Mr Christopher O’Neill will no longer be members of The Royal House.

Prince Alexander, Prince Gabriel, Princess Leonore, Prince Nicolas and Princess Adrienne will continue to be members of The Royal Family. However, they will no longer enjoy the style of Royal Highness and, in the future, will not be expected to perform duties incumbent on the Head of State.

[They] will retain their titles of Duke and Duchess previously granted by His Majesty.

To read the entire Communiqué from the Swedish Royal Court, please click here.

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Rui Gomes da Silva, 1st Prince of Éboli and Ana de Mendoza, Princess of Éboli

The year 1569, and on a beautiful June afternoon, we shall see slowly entering Pastrana a covered wagon of the sort still called “galeras.” The mysterious vehicle excited much curiosity, and a crowd of men, women and children gathered round it when it stopped at the threshold of the ducal palace of Pastrana, whose heavy doors opened to receive it, leaving the curious outside. In the first courtyard Prince Ruy Gómez de Silva and his wife the Princess de Évoli were waiting with all their children, even down to the babies in the arms of their nurses and maids, the duennas, waiting-maids, pages and other retainers in rows, according to their standing. All eyes were fixed on the wagon, with curiosity mingled with respect, and those in the back row stood on tiptoe to see better. The curtains of the cart were at last withdrawn, and Ruy Gómez and his wife went forward respectfully; all heads were stretched out, and an old woman, who had been in the service of the Condesa del Mélito, the mother of the Princess, fell on her knees and beat upon her breasts. Three strange figures alighted, such as were never seen about the streets at that time; they wore tunics of coarse cloth, white cloaks of the same material, and their bare feet were shod with sandals of esparto grass; long, thick black veils covered their faces and almost all their persons. A small bundle tied up in a cloth was carried under the cloak by the last figure to alight.

Ducal Palace of Pastrana in Guadalajara, Spain.

All these marks of curiosity and respect, however, were well justified, as the woman who was first to get out, dressed in the coarse cloth, was St. Theresa de Jesus, who was come to found a convent of barefooted Carmelites at Pastrana. It was not two years since Ruy Gómez had come into possession of his duchy, and he was hastening to do all he could for the material and moral welfare of his vassals. He wished to establish a monastery in his town, and the Princess a convent for women, which she had given over to Mother Theresa, attracted by the wonderful things she had heard of this marvelous woman, and anxious to flatter her own curiosity and vanity by associating herself with one with whom God held familiar intercourse and to whom He showed such stupendous wonders. The saint accepted the offer; she was just beginning her great reforms, and for this purpose went from Toledo to Pastrana, passing by Madrid, where she stayed with an old friend of ours and a devoted follower of the saint, Doña Leonor Mascareñes, in the Franciscan convent which Doña Leonor had founded and to which she had retired.

She gave Mother Theresa many details of the Princess’s difficult temper, having known her well at Court. Well primed with this information the saint went to Pastrana, where she arrived towards the end of June. Here, she says in her book about her foundations, “I found the Princess and the Prince Ruy Gómez, who received me very well; they gave me a private apartment, which was more than I could have expected, because the house was so small that the Princess had had much of it pulled down and rebuilt, not the walls, but many things. We were there for three months, hard times, the Princess asking me things contrary to our religion. I had even determined to leave rather than give in, but the Prince Ruy Gómez, in his gentle way (he was very gentle and sensible), made his wife come to reason.” Besides the troubles alluded to by the saint the Princess made others from her capricious, domineering character and want of fine feeling. She had heard that St. Theresa was very beautiful, in spite of being fifty-four, and she was dying of curiosity to see her face, but the saint would not consent to show it to her, nor did she or her companions ever lift their veils before the Princess or anybody else. This exasperated the Princess, and she was always peeping through the windows and keyhole hoping to surprise Theresa in one of her trances, in which Our Lord used to appear to her. Theresa laughed at what she calls stupidities, but in the end this constant prying worried and became intolerable to her.

Ana de Mendoza, Princess of Eboli

The Princess also gave her another real cause for annoyance; knowing that her confessor had ordered her to write her wonderful life, the Princess, full of curiosity, wished to read it. Mother Theresa refused with much firmness; this piqued the capricious lady, who wrote to the saint’s superiors, asking them to order her to let the Princess read the manuscript she had with her at Pastrana. They, being either very complacent or not knowing the Princess’s character, did not hesitate to give the order. Theresa obeyed without delay, and then the Princess triumphed. She greedily read the ingenuous pages in which the divine marvels are told with such sublime simplicity; they excited her imagination, and, like all talkative women, feeling the necessity of imparting her feelings, she committed the breach of confidence of giving the manuscript to her duennas, waiting-maids and pages. So from hand to hand, in hall and antechamber, went the mysterious outpouring of the Virgen del Carmel, and so many comments were made that they reached the ears of the Inquisitor, who sent for the book. The severe tribunal kept it for ten years and then returned it without observation or alteration, but not before all this had caused very great annoyance.

Convent of El Carmen, Pastrana. Photo by Panoramio.

At last the foundation was finished, and Mother Theresa left for Salamanca and the Prince and Princess for Madrid, where a year afterwards Ruy Gómez died in his house in the lane of St. Mary. He expired in the arms of his old and faithful friend Juan de Escovedo; his last moments were aided by two barefooted Carmelite friars who came from Pastrana.

Rev. Fr. Luis Coloma, The Story of Don John of Austria, trans. Lady Moreton, (New York: John Lane Company, 1912), Book IV, Ch. XVII, pp. 382 – 385.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 695

 

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St. Bruno the Great, Archbishop of Cologne

St. Bruno the Great

St. Bruno the Great

Bruno the Great (or Bruno I) (925–965) was Archbishop of Cologne, Germany, from 953 until his death, and Duke of Lotharingia from 954. He was the brother of Otto I, king of Germany and later Holy Roman Emperor. Bruno was the youngest son of Henry the Fowler and his second wife Matilda of Ringelheim…

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Pope Boniface VIII

(BENEDETTO GAETANO)

Born at Anagni about 1235; died at Rome, 11 October, 1303.

Benedetto Cardinal Gaetano strongly advised Pope Celestine V to issue a constitution, either before or simultaneously with his abdication, declaring the legality of a papal resignation and the competency of the College of Cardinals to accept it. Ten days after Celestine’s resignation the cardinals went into conclave in the Castel Nuovo at Naples, and on the 24th of December, 1294, by a majority of votes elected Cardinal Benedetto Gaetani, who took the name of Boniface VIII.

He was the son of Loffred, a descendant of a noble family originally Spanish, but long established in Italy—first at Gaeta and later at Anagni. Through his mother he was connected with the house of Segni, which had already given three illustrious sons to the Church, Innocent III, Gregory IX, and Alexander IV. Benedetto had studied at Todi and at Spoleto in Italy, perhaps also at Paris, had obtained the doctorate in canon and civil law, and been made a canon successively at Anagni, Todi, Paris, Lyons, and Rome. In 1265 he accompanied Cardinal Ottobuono Fieschi to England, whither that prelate had been sent to restore harmony between Henry III and the rebellious barons. It was not until about 1276 that Gaetani entered upon his career in the Curia, where he was, for some years, actively engaged as consistorial advocate and notary Apostolic, and soon acquired considerable…

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St. Wilfrid

Bishop of York, son of a Northumbrian thegn, born in 634; died at Oundle in Northamptonshire, 709. He was unhappy at home, through the unkindness of a stepmother, and in his fourteenth year he was sent away to the Court of King Oswy, King of Northumbria. Here he attracted the attention of Queen Eanfleda and by her, at his own request, he was sent to the Monastery of Lindisfarne. After three years spent here he was sent for, again through the kindness of the queen, to Rome, in the company of St. Benedict Biscop. At Rome he was the pupil of Boniface, the pope’s archdeacon. On his way home he stayed for three years at Lyons, where he received the tonsure from Annemundas, the bishop of that place. Annemundas wanted him to remain at Lyons altogether, and marry his niece and become his heir, but Wilfrid was determined that he would be a priest. Soon after persecution arose at Lyons, and Annemundas perished in it. The same fate nearly came to Wilfrid, but when it was shown that he was a Saxon he was allowed to depart, and came back to England. In England he received the newly founded monastery at Ripon as the gift of Alchfrid, Oswy’s son and heir, and here he established the full Benedictine Rule. The Columbite monks, who had been settled previously at Ripon, withdrew to the North. It was not until he had been for five years Abbot of Ripon, that Wilfrid became a priest. His main work at Ripon was the introduction of Roman rules and the putting forward of a Roman practice with regard to the point at issue between the Holy See and the Scottish monks in Northumbria; to settle these questions the synod of Whitby was held in 664. Chiefly owing to Wilfrid’s advocacy of the claims of the Holy See the votes of the majority were given to that side, and Colman…

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October 12 – Martyr King

October 10, 2019

St. Edwin

The first Christian King of Northumbria, born about 585, son of Aella, King of Deira, the southern division of Northumbria; died October 12, 633.

Upon Aella’s death in 588, the sovereignty over both divisions of Northumbria was usurped by Ethebric of Bernicia, and retained at his death by his son Ethelfrid; Edwin, Aella’s infant son, being compelled until his thirtieth year to wander from one friendly prince to another, in continual danger from Ethelfrd’s attempts upon his life. Thus when he was residing with King Redwald of East Anglia, Ethelfrid repeatedly endeavored to bribe the latter to destroy him. Finally, however, Redwald’s refusal to betray his guest led in 616 to a battle, fought upon the river Idle, in which Ethelfrid himself was slain, and Edwin was invited to the throne of Northumbria. On the death of his first wife, Edwin, in 625, asked for the hand of Ethelburga, sister to Eadbald, the Christian King of Kent, expressing his own readiness to embrace Christianity, if upon examination he should find it superior to his own religion. Ethelburga was accompanied to Northumbria by St. Paulinus, one of St. Augustine’s fellow missionaries, who thus became its first apostle. By him Edwin was baptized at York in 627, and thenceforth showed himself most zealous for the conversion of his people…

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St. Daniel and Companions

Friars Minor and martyrs; dates of birth unknown; died 10 October, 1227. The martyrdom of St. Berard and his companions in 1219 had inflamed many of the religious of the Order of Friars Minor with the desire of preaching the Gospel in heathen lands; and in 1227, the year following St. Francis’s death, six religious of Tuscany, Agnellus, Samuel, Donulus, Leo, Hugolinus, and Nicholas, petitioned Brother Elias of Cortona, then vicar-general of the order, for permission to preach the Gospel to the infidels of Morocco. The six missionaries went first to Spain, where they were joined by Daniel, Minister Provincial of Calabria, who became their superior. They set sail from Spain and on 20 September reached the coast of Africa, where they remained for a few days in a small village inhabited mostly by Christian merchants just beyond the walls of the Saracen city of Ceuta. Finally, very early on Sunday morning, they entered the city, and immediately began to preach the Gospel and to denounce the religion of Mahomet. They were soon apprehended and brought before the sultan who, thinking that they were mad, ordered them to be cast into prison. Here they remained until the following Sunday when they were again brought before the sultan, who, by promises and threats, endeavoured in vain to make them deny the Christian religion. They were all condemned to death. Each one approached Daniel, the superior, to ask his blessing and permission to die for Christ. They were all beheaded. St. Daniel and his companions were canonized by Leo X in 1516. Their feast is kept in the order on the thirteenth of October.

STEPHEN M. DONOVAN (Catholic Encyclopedia)

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St. Edward the Confessor

Saint, King of England, born in 1003; died January 5, 1066.

He was the son of Ethelred II and Emma, daughter of Duke Richard of Normandy, being thus half-brother to King Edmund Ironside, Ethelred’s son by his first wife, and to King Hardicanute, Emma’s son by her second marriage with Canute.

When hardly ten years old he was sent with his brother Alfred into Normandy to be brought up at the court of the duke his uncle, the Danes having gained the mastery in England. Thus he spent the best years of his life in exile, the crown having been settled by Canute, with Emma’s consent, upon his own offspring by her. Early misfortune thus taught Edward the folly of ambition, and he grew up in innocence, delighting chiefly in assisting at Mass and the church offices, and in association with religious, whilst not disdaining the pleasures of the chase, or recreations suited to his station…

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Why celebrate Columbus Day?

October 10, 2019

Columbus and Divine Providence by Jeremias Wells Christopher Columbus certainly ranks as one of the greatest men of achievement the world has ever known, and also justly one of the most renowned, for the entire history of Europeans in America originated from his vision, religious sense and adventurous spirit. As can be expected in a […]

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Columbus, and how to make Key Lime Pie

October 10, 2019

When Christopher Columbus discovered the New World on October 12, 1492–a feat that earned for him the title of Admiral of the Indies and for his grandson Louis and his descendants in perpetuity the noble title of Duke of Veragua–he introduced into the Americas the greatest treasure possible: the Catholic Faith… Read more here.

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Who Was Christopher Columbus, and Why Is He Important?

October 10, 2019

Christopher Columbus (Italian CRISTOFORO COLOMBO; Spanish CRISTOVAL COLON.) Born at Genoa, or on Genoese territory, probably 1451; died at Valladolid, Spain, 20 May 1506. His family was respectable, but of limited means, so that the early education of Columbus was defective. Up to his arrival in Spain (1485) only one date has been preserved. His […]

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October 8 – St. Keyne

October 7, 2019

Keyne was a princess, one of the many children of King Brycan of South Wales. Growing up into a very beautiful young woman she was sought in marriage by many noble lords, but resolutely refused all of them. Instead, she took a vow of virginity and retired into solitude. It was after this resolution that […]

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October 9 – Superb and valiant knight

October 7, 2019

Baron Athanase-Charles-Marie Charette de la Contrie Born at Nantes, 3 Sept., 1832; died at Basse-Motte (Ille-et-Vilaine), 9 Oct., 1911. His father was a nephew of the famous General Charette who was shot at Nantes, 29 March, 1795, during the rising of the Vendee. His mother, Louise, Countess de Vierzon, was the daughter of the Duc […]

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October 9 – Royal penitent

October 7, 2019

Bl. Gunther A hermit in Bohemia in the eleventh century; born about 955; died at Hartmanitz, Bohemia, 9 Oct., 1045. The son of a noble family, he was a cousin of St. Stephen, the King of Hungary, and is numbered among the ancestors of the princely house of Schwarzburg. He passed the earlier of his […]

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October 9 – Even in his lifetime his reputation was for great holiness and miraculous powers

October 7, 2019

St. John Twenge Canon regular, Prior of St. Mary’s, Bridlington, born near the town, 1319; died at Bridlington, 1379. He was of the Yorkshire family Twenge, which family in Reformation days supplied two priest-martyrs and was also instrumental in establishing the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Bar Convent, York. John completed his studies […]

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October 9 – St. Louis Bertrand

October 7, 2019

St. Louis Bertrand Born at Valencia, Spain, 1 Jan., 1526; died 9 Oct., 1581. His patents were Juan Bertrand and Juana Angela Exarch. Through his father he was related to the illustrious St. Vincent Ferrer, the great thaumaturgus of the Dominican Order. The boyhood of the saint was unattended by any of the prodigies that […]

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October 10 – How to overcome bad ancestry

October 7, 2019

St. Francis Borgia (also known as Francisco de Borja y Aragon), born 28 October, 1510, was the son of Juan Borgia, third Duke of Gandia, and of Juana of Aragon; died 30 September, 1572. The future saint was unhappy in his ancestry… Read more here.

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October 10 – St. Paulinus, Archbishop of York

October 7, 2019

St. Paulinus Archbishop of York, died at Rochester, 10 October, 644. He was a Roman monk in St. Andrew’s monastery at Rome, and was sent by St. Gregory the Great in 601, with St. Mellitus and others, to help St. Augustine and to carry the pallium to him. He laboured in Kent — with the […]

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Vivien’s First Holy Communion and Death on the Battlefield of Aliscans

October 3, 2019

Our Chansons de geste somehow are silent concerning this festival, which is calculated to bring tears to the eyes of the most hardened: One can find only a  single reference which leads us directly to this grand ceremony. It is true, that this episode is incomparable, and ought to be placed beside—quite on a level […]

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Considerations On a Draft Beer Without a Head of Foam

October 3, 2019

I had the idea, which I don’t know was somewhat childish or true, that an authentic draft beer ought to be crowned with a layer of foam, albeit not very thick.  Lacking this foam, this beer seemed like a shirt without a collar. This was the first reservation I had regarding that draft beer. In […]

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October 4 – He chose a greater chivalry

October 3, 2019

St. Francis of Assisi Founder of the Franciscan Order, born at Assisi in Umbria, in 1181 or 1182 — the exact year is uncertain; died there, 3 October, 1226. His father, Pietro Bernardone, was a wealthy Assisian cloth merchant. Of his mother, Pica, little is known, but she is said to have belonged to a […]

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October 4 – He copied the Church of the Holy Sepulchre

October 3, 2019

St. Petronius Bishop of Bologna, date of birth unknown; died before 450. The only certain historical information we possess concerning him is derived from a letter written by Bishop Eucherius of Lyons (died 450-5) to Valerianus (in P. L., L, 711 sqq.) and from Gennadius’ “De viris illustribus”, XLI (ed. Czapla, Münster, 1898, p. 94). […]

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October 5 – Second founder of the Dominicans

October 3, 2019

Bl. Raymond of Capua Called “the second founder of the Dominicans”, Raymond della Vigna was born in Capua of a prominent family in the kingdom of Naples. He entered the Dominican Order when attending the university in Bologna and went on to fill several posts, including prior in Rome and lector in Florence and Siena… […]

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October 5 – Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos

October 3, 2019

Francis X. Seelos Born at Füssen, Bavaria, 11 January, 1819; died at New Orleans, La., 4 Oct., 1867. When a child, asked by his mother what he intended to be, he pointed to the picture of his patron, St. Francis Xavier, and said: “I’m going to be another St. Francis.” He pursued his studies in […]

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October 5 – St. Galla

October 3, 2019

A Roman widow of the sixth century; feast, 5 October. According to St. Gregory the Great (Dial. IV, ch. xiii) she was the daughter of the younger Symmachus, a learned and virtuous patrician of Rome, whom Theodoric had unjustly condemned to death (525). Becoming a widow before the end of the first year of her […]

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October 6 – Princes and popes coveted the advice of this silent man

October 3, 2019

St. Bruno Confessor, ecclesiastical writer, and founder of the Carthusian Order. He was born at Cologne about the year 1030; died 6 October, 1101. He is usually represented with a death’s head in his hands, a book and a cross, or crowned with seven stars; or with a roll bearing the device O Bonitas. His […]

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October 6 – Henri Delassus

October 3, 2019

Msgr. Henri Delassus (1836-1921), ordained a priest in 1862, served in parishes in Valenciennes (Saint-Géry) and Lille (Sainte-Catherine and Sainte-Marie-Madeleine). He was names chaplain of the basilica Notre-Dame-de-la-Treille (Lille) in 1874, an honorary canon in 1882, and domestic prelate in 1904. In 1911 he was promoted to protonotary apostolic. In 1914 he became canon of […]

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October 7 – How the Rosary saved Christendom

October 3, 2019

by Jeremias Wells The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary Here is but a small fraction of the victories directly obtained from God through the Holy Rosary: The Battle of Lepanto which saved Rome and Vienna, and thus the Pope and the Emperor, from Moslem subjugation The deliverance of Vienna by Sobieski The victory […]

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Lepanto: Turkish might buckles in the grandest naval battle of History

October 3, 2019

The Turkish fleet came on imposing and terrible, all sails set, impelled by a fair wind, and it was only half a mile from the line of galliasses and another mile from the line of the Christian ships. D. John waited no longer; he humbly crossed himself, and ordered that the cannon of challenge should […]

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October 1 – St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus, PROLOGUE: THE PARENTAGE & BIRTH OF MARIE FRANÇOISE THÉRÈSE MARTIN and CHAPTER ONE – EARLIEST MEMORIES

September 30, 2019

ST. THÉRÈSE OF LISIEUX Excerpts from THE STORY OF A SOUL: THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF ST. THÉRÈSE OF LISIEUX SOEUR THÉRÈSE OF LISIEUX, THE LITTLE FLOWER OF JESUS ______________________________ PROLOGUE: THE PARENTAGE & BIRTH OF MARIE FRANÇOISE THÉRÈSE MARTIN “To the Sacred Memory of Louis Joseph Stanislaus Martin and of Zélie Guérin, the blessed parents of […]

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October 1 – The Hon. George Spencer

September 30, 2019

In religion, Ignatius of St. Paul). Passionist, born at the Admiralty, London, 21 Dec., 1799; died at Carstairs, Scotland, 1 Oct., 1864. He was the youngest son of the second Earl Spencer and Lavinia, daughter of Sir Charles Bingham. From Eton he went to Trinity College, Cambridge, received Anglican orders, 13 June, 1824, and became […]

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October 1 – The martial and pious death of Don John of Austria: “A man sent by God”

September 30, 2019

Alarm was ended on the fourth day, seeing that the fever and other ills left D. John. But the next day, which was a Saturday, he suddenly grew worse, and while the other invalids went on getting better and became convalescent, he showed other symptoms of a strange illness, palpitations which made him get up […]

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October 2 – The Holy Guardian Angels

September 30, 2019

That every individual soul has a guardian angel has never been defined by the Church, and is, consequently, not an article of faith; but it is the “mind of the Church”, as St. Jerome expressed it: “how great the dignity of the soul, since each one has from his birth an angel commissioned to guard […]

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October 3 – Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

September 30, 2019

(December 13, 1908 – October 3, 1995) Brazilian intellectual and Catholic activist. Corrêa de Oliveira was born in São Paulo to Lucilia Corrêa de Oliveira, a devout Roman Catholic, and educated by Jesuits. In 1928 he joined the Marian Congregations of São Paulo and soon became a leader of that organization. In 1933 he helped […]

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October 2 – Falsely charged, mutilated and martyred

September 30, 2019

St. Leodegar (also Leger or Leodegarius) Bishop of Autun, born about 615; died a martyr in 678, at Sarcing, Somme. His mother was called Sigrada, and his father Bobilo. His parents being of high rank, his early childhood was passed at the court of Clotaire II. He went later to Poitiers, to study under the […]

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October 3 – Mother Théodore Guérin

September 30, 2019

Many of the early pioneers faced the hardships of this country where wars, famine and disease were the norm. Leaving everything behind, heroic souls came not only to save the souls of Indian nations, but also to minister to these frontier families. One such person was St. Mother Théodore Guérin, who became the eighth American […]

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October 3 – Military turned monk

September 30, 2019

St. Gérard, Abbot of Brogne Born at Staves in the county of Namur, towards the end of the ninth century; died at Brogne or St-Gérard, 3 Oct. 959. The son of Stance, of the family of dukes of Lower Austrasia, and of Plectrude, sister of Stephen, Bishop of Liège, the young Gérard, like most men […]

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October 3 – Enemy of King St. Louis, but still his friend in Christ

September 30, 2019

St. Thomas of Hereford (THOMAS DE CANTELUPE). Born at Hambledon, Buckinghamshire, England, about 1218; died at Orvieto, Italy, 25 August, 1282. He was the son of William de Cantelupe and Millicent de Gournay, and thus a member of an illustrious and influential family. He was educated under the care of his uncle, Walter de Cantelupe, […]

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The Boy Vivien Is Whipped for Exchanging 100 Bales of Merchandise for Hounds and a Hawk

September 26, 2019

Vivien was the son of Garni d’Anseüne: the grandson of Amieri de Narbonne, and the nephew of the great William of Orange. But the poor Vivien, alas, was as a child handed over and delivered to the Saracens in order to preserve his father’s life, and the King Gormond, a Danish pirate, one day took […]

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Tension and Relaxation In The Countenance of a Saint

September 26, 2019

By Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira In the Vatican Gardens, Pope St. Pius X receives some distinguished visitors, who present him their homage. The Pope’s figure, erect and vigorous despite his years, gives an impression of discipline and firmness, but something in his person, especially his unclouded countenance, expresses repose and relaxation. The Saint is strolling […]

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September 27 – Fr. Peter Skarga: Court Preacher

September 26, 2019

Fr. Peter Skarga Theologian and missionary, born at Grojec, 1536; died at Cracow, 27 Sept., 1612. He began his education in his native town in 1552; he went to study in Cracow and afterwards in Warsaw. In 1557 he was in Vienna as tutor to the young Castellan, Teczynski; returning thence in 1564, he received […]

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September 27 – St. Vincent de Paul had special charity to the impoverished nobility

September 26, 2019

St. Vincent de Paul founded a special organization for the relief of the nobility of Lorraine who had sought refuge in Paris during the Thirty Years War. In that period of the war known as the French period Lorraine, Trois-Evechés, Franche-Comté, and Champagne underwent for nearly a quarter of a century all the horrors and […]

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September 27 – These exemplary nobles personified virtue

September 26, 2019

Saint Elzéar of Sabran, Count of Arian, and Saint Delphina of Glandenes St. Elzear (also spelled Eleazarus) was descended of the ancient and illustrious family of Sabran, in Provence; his father, Hermengaud of Sabran, was created count of Arian (Ariano), in the kingdom of Naples; his mother was Lauduna of Albes, a family no less […]

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September 28 – Good King Wenceslaus

September 26, 2019

(Also Vaclav, Vaceslav.) Duke, martyr, and patron of Bohemia, born probably 903; died at Alt-Bunzlau, 28 September, 935. His parents were Duke Wratislaw, a Christian, and Dragomir, a heathen. He received a good Christian education from his grandmother (St. Ludmilla) and at Budweis. After the death of Wratislaw, Dragomir, acting as regent, opposed Christianity, and […]

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September 28 – Franciscan money lender

September 26, 2019

Bl. Bernardine of Feltre Friar Minor and missionary, born at Feltre, Italy, in 1439 and died at Pavia, 28 September, 1494. He belonged to the noble family of Tomitano and was the eldest of nine children. In 1456 St. James of the Marches preached the Lenten course at Padua, and inspired to enter the Franciscan […]

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September 29 – The Angelic Inspiration of Chivalry

September 26, 2019

Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael _____________________ Saint Michael the Archangel: “Who is like God?” In Hebraic, mîkâ’êl, means “Who is like God?” The Scriptures refer to the Archangel Saint Michael in four different passages: two of them, in Daniel’s prophesy (chap. 10, 13 and 21; and chap. 12, 1); one in Saint Jude Thaddeus (single […]

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September 29 – Military Orders of St. Michael

September 26, 2019

Military Orders of St. Michael (1) A Bavarian Order, founded in 1721 by Elector Joseph Clemens of Cologne, Duke of Bavaria, and confirmed by Maximilian Joseph, King of Bavaria, 11 September 1808. Pius VII, 5 Feb. 1802 granted to priests decorated with this order all the privileges of domestic prelates. Under Louis I it was […]

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September 29 – In battle or in prison, he never missed Mass

September 26, 2019

Blessed Charles of Blois (1320- September 29, 1364) Charles is the son of Guy I of Blois-Châtillon, count of Blois, by Margaret of Valois, a sister of king Philip VI of France. Early in life, he felt a call to be a Franciscan friar, but political duty kept him in secular life. Following his marriage […]

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