When Saint Francis de Sales was born in 1567 in Thorens-Glières, France, his father had his life planned out for him. This life would be one of nobility, with a career in law that would culminate with his appointment as a magistrate. Francis’ earthly father planned a prosperous and prestigious future for him, but it turned out that his heavenly Father had other plans. Find out about those plans online.
The family of Barbara Koob — St. Marianne’s birth name — emigrated from Germany for America the year after her birth in 1838, and the immigrant family’s name became Cope. Although she felt called to religious life, Cope began factory work after eighth grade to help her family’s finances when her father became ill. When her father died in 1862, Cope could finally profess vows with the Franciscan Sisters in Syracuse. The newly named Sister Marianne soon began service in German immigrant schools. Discover more about her life and watch a short video online.
It’s hard to find a more substantial definition of missionary zeal than a 72-year-old French nun serving in an eighteenth-century Potawatomi mission. And that’s exactly what the godly missionary, Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne, whose feast is celebrated November 18. She wanted to do, even though her life seemed to be going in a different direction at first. Her story is an illustration of the greatness that can come from trusting in God’s providence. Read her biography online.
St. Margaret of Scotland, whose feast is celebrated November 16, was the granddaughter of an English king. She was born in Hungary due to her father’s exile there as a child. Her early years were spent in the Hungarian court, among pious and observant Catholic royals. St. Margaret’s piety was evident in the considerable amount of time she spent in prayer. The saint also illustrated the importance of silence and solitude when she would often retreat to the cloister of a cave for occasions of prayer and quiet reflection. Saint Margaret was a voracious reader, particularly of spiritual material. Read her complete biography online.
One of the words my 19-month-old son has latched onto at Mass within recent weeks is “body.” He first hears it at the consecration, then repeats it rapidly during much of the remainder of the Eucharistic prayer. This past week, though, as we walked to the car after Mass, he was saying it on repeat, intermingled with the name of Jesus.
It seems to me, by God’s grace, my toddler has latched onto what might be the two most important words that eventually will help him begin to understand the Eucharistic mystery. Let me explain.