Image: Scenes from the Life of St Francis (Scene 7) | Benozzo Gozzoli

Saint Francis of Assisi

October 4. Saint Francis of Assisi: founder of the Franciscan family, Patron Saint of ecology, inspiration to thousands, claimed by people of all faiths as well as by those with no particular faith, a truly “catholic and apostolic man.” Though born in the 13th century, he belongs to all ages.

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Saint Faustyna and Jesus, I Trust in You sculpture | Piotrków Trybunalski

Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska

October 5. A Sister of Our Lady of Mercy, Saint Maria Faustina was blessed with unique messages from Christ concerning his mercy and forgiveness. These messages came at a time when many people viewed God as a strict judge. Like Pope Francis, Saint Faustina emphasized the mercy of God. She died in 1938, and was canonized in 2000: a truly modern saint.

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Saint Bruno | Girolamo Marchesi

Saint Bruno

October 6. Today we celebrate a saint who was never canonized and who wanted to live in solitide and prayer. Saint Bruno was a Carthusian who took great steps to find a quiet place to live in spite of being asked to assist the Pope in Rome.

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Our Lady of the Rosary | St. Nicholas Church, Osgood, Ohio

Our Lady of the Rosary

October 7. The rosary is a truly Catholic devotion. It is a form of prayer and meditation in honor of Mary and celebrates the mysteries of Jesus' and Mary’s lives. It has been called a miniature catechism highlighting the key events of our faith. Our Lady of the Rosary remembers Mary’s intercession and celebrates this popular devotion.

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Body of Saint John Leonardi | Santa Maria in Portico in Campitelli, Rome

Saint John Leonardi

October 8. Saint John Leonardi was a priest and founder of the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God. He also formed the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine. Father Leonardi and his priests became a great power for good in 16th century Italy.

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Detail | Louis XII of France Kneeling in Prayer | Jean Bourdichon

Saint Denis and Companions

October 9. This martyr and patron of France is regarded as the first bishop of Paris. His popularity is due to a series of legends, especially those connecting him with the great abbey church of St. Denis in Paris.

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Carlos V receives a visit from Saint Francis Borgia in Yuste | Joaquín María Herrer y Rodríguez

Saint Francis Borgia

October 10. Saint Francis Borgia had it made according to every social standard. He had name, position, power, etc. But after a series of events, including the death of his wife, he joined the Jesuits, where he used his professional talents and abilities in the service of his Order and the Church.

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Pope John XXIII begins the Mass | Saint Peter's Basilica, October 11, 1959 | photo by Medici con l'Africa Cuamm

Saint John XXIII

October 11. A shy, retiring man with a wonderful sense of humor, Cardinal Angelo Roncalli became our beloved Pope Saint John XXIII. Perhaps the greatest irony was that his fellow Cardinals elected him as a stop-gap pope to give them time to get the politics ironed out for a more permanent candidate. Little did they know what the Holy Spirit had in store for the Church through this “temporary” Pope.

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Shrine of Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, St Magn Basilica, Füssen, Germany | photo by Myke Rosenthal

Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos

October 12. Francis Xavier Seelos was born in Bavaria. He studied in Munich before coming to the United States to serve the German-speaking immigrants. He remained here his entire adult life serving both his parishioners and fellow Redemptorists.

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Blessed Marie Rose Durocher | Achona, The Online Newspaper of Academy of the Holy Names, Tampa | photo by Keri Kelly/Achona Online

Blessed Marie-Rose Durocher

October 13. When Marie-Rose Durocher was 29, Bishop Ignace Bourget became bishop of Montreal. He faced a shortage of priests and sisters and a rural population that had been largely deprived of education. Bishop Bourget founded the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, with Marie-Rose as its first member and co-foundress.

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