May 20. Saint Bernardine of Siena seems to have been a man with a whole lot of energy. He preached, reconciled cities, fought heresy, and attracted great crowds. Bernardine always traveled by foot, and often preached in more than one city on a given day. He is best known today for his great devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus.
May 19. Saint Theophilus of Corte is a saint known more by reputation than by facts. We know that he was a Franciscan, ordained priest, and served at a retreat house near Subiaco. Theophilus was known for his poverty and his preaching.
May 18. Saint John I served as pope for about three years before he died of maltreatment at the hands of the emperor’s men. He had to face the Arian controversy and negotiate with the eastern part of the empire concerning the treatment of heretics.
May 17. Saint Paschal Baylon was born into the Golden Age of the Church in Spain: the 16th century. He worked as a shepherd where he had ample time for prayer and mortification. He eventually joined the Friars Minor and served as a brother in several capacities. Saint Paschal had a great devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.
May 16. Saint Margaret of Cortona’s life story certainly had its ups and downs. Having run away from her stepmother after her mother’s death, she lived with a man and bore him a son. When her lover was murdered, Saint Margaret had a change of heart, became a penitent, and founded a religious community. Her son became a friar.
May 15. A married man known for his love of prayer, Saint Isidore the Farmer is one of the five saints of Spain. Saint Isidore worked on the estate of a wealthy landowner and thus, attained the title of farmer.
May 14. The Acts of the Apostles records that Saint Matthias was selected by the early Church to replace Judas Iscariot in the ranks of the apostles. We know little more about him except that he was a witness to Jesus from his baptism to his ascension.
May 13. Like the apparition of Our Lady of Lourdes, this appearance was not given to Church officials, but to children. Through them, Mary requested that the Church spread devotion to the rosary to all the faithful.
May 12. Saint Leopold Mandic, a Capuchin Franciscan, was well known as a good confessor and spiritual director. His one aim in life was to work for the reunification of the Orthodox church with Rome: a goal he prayed for but was unable to achieve due in part to poor health.
May 11. Saint Ignatius of Laconi spent 40 years begging for the friars. He endeared himself to the local people and inspired them by his virtue. If it hadn’t been for an accident, Ignatius might never have become a Capuchin friar.