Saint Daniel and Companions

Saint of the Day for 10/10

Daniel, Franciscan provincial of Calabria, Italy, led a contingent of Franciscan friars who were inspired by the example of Saint Berard to preach the gospel in North Africa in 1227. The six other friars were Angelo, Domnus, Hugolino, Leo, Nicholas and Samuel. They came to Ceuta, Morocco, where the Christian merchants warned them against preaching.

The friars, however, were so enthusiastic they preached openly, but were immediately imprisoned. Unpersuaded by bribes and threats, they refused to renounce their faith. Like the early Christians in the Colosseum, Daniel and his companions went to their deaths singing. Their bodies were taken to Spain following their beheadings.

They were canonized in 1516.

Martyrs remind us of the high price Jesus paid for spreading the Good News. We are not free to choose the exact conditions of our witness to Jesus and the Good News. Remembering the martyrs of another era helps us persevere in living out the gospel that we, like Francis, are called to observe.