Painting of Saint Catherine of Siena | Siena Cathedral Choir | photo by Sailko

Saint Catherine of Siena

April 29. Saint Catherine of Siena was a Third Order Dominican known for her contemplation and prayer—as well as her involvement in Church and civil affairs. During the time when there were two and three popes each claiming the papacy, Saint Catherine sided with Pope Urban VI. She was named a Doctor of the Church in 1970.

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Portrait of Pope Saint Pius V | Bartolomeo Passarotti

Saint Pius V

April 30. Pope Saint Pius V, a Dominican, was the one responsible for the implementation of the results of the Council of Trent—no easy task. Refusing to remove his Dominican habit, he is also responsible for the tradition that popes wear white. His Dominican training and spirituality were great helps in his efforts to reform the Church.

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Childhood of Christ | Gerard van Honthorst,

Saint Joseph the Worker

May 1. Pope Pius XII emphasized both Catholic devotion to Saint Joseph and the dignity of human labor when he created the celebration of Saint Joseph the Worker. Work, as our Church teaches, should always be for the good and benefit of humanity. Saint Joseph is our model and patron in our work endeavors.

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San Atanasio | Maestro de San Ildefonso

Saint Athanasius

May 2. Saint Athanasius felt that spending his time and energy fighting for the truth of the doctrine of Christ’s divinity was worth it. He even endured five exiles to prove it. Through his writings and hard work, we today enjoy the truth of the Gospel in its fullness: Christ is both fully human and fully divine.

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Detail of reredos | Polytych by Maestà | Wikimedia

Saints Philip and James

May 3. Saints Philip and James share a feast day because their relics were brought to Rome together in early May. We know nothing more about either saint than what is found in the Scriptures. There we are told that they were apostles, and tradition has it that they were both martyred.

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Blessed Michael Giedroyc | Unknown

Blessed Michael Giedroyc

May 4. Little biographical data is available for Blessed Michael Giedroyc, but we do know that he was physically handicapped and that this caused him great suffering during his lifetime. But, despite his difficulties, Blessed Michael coped well, due in part to his rich spiritual life.

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Page from a manuscript | Anonymous

Saint Hilary of Arles

May 5. Saint Paul counsels against taking advantage of the youth of a person in authority. That advice applies well for Saint Hilary of Arles who was ordained a bishop at age 29. He suffered because of his young age, but managed to be an effective prelate before his death at age 49. He also set a good example for his diocese by living simply and working hard.

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"The Christian Martyrs' Last Prayer" | Jean-Léon Gérôme

Saints Marian and James

May 6. Two almost unknown martyrs courageously witnessed to the world many years ago about their faith. Saints Marian and James were martyred in the 3rd century, yet their deaths still speak to the Church today.

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Saint Rose Venerini (when she was a Blessed) | Unknown

Saint Rose Venerini

May 7. The death of a fiancé can be traumatic, and Saint Rose Venerini responded by joining a convent. That is not where God was calling her, however. She returned home to care for her widowed mother and eventually became a teacher, at which she thrived. Rose also gathered others to expand her ministry.

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Papal Bull of Pope Alexander III establishing the Abbey de Fontenay | photo by Ji-Elle

Saint Peter of Tarentaise

May 8. Have you ever felt like running away from your job? Saint Peter of Tarentaise “disappeared” from his diocese to an abbey where he quietly prayed for about a year. Called back to ministry, Peter performed his duties to his diocese well, focusing his energies on the poor.

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