Stained glass window in Église Saint-Honoré-d'Eylau, Paris | photo by Mbzt's

Saint Jane Frances de Chantal

August 12. Saint Jane Frances de Chantal was a wife and the mother of six. When her husband was killed, Saint Jane took a vow not to remarry and sought to join a religious community. She was dissuaded by her spiritual director, Saint Francis de Sales. Eventually, she and two others founded a community intended for those who could not join the established congregations. They wanted to actively engage in the works of mercy, but social circumstances forced them to live a cloistered life.

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Image: Photo of Il Tempio Civico della Beata Vergine Incoronata | photo by Giovanni Novara

Saints Pontian and Hippolytus

August 13. Today we celebrate two men who were at odds most of their lives. Saint Pontian was a pope who abdicated his office when he was sent into exile. Saint Hippolytus had himself elected an anti-pope and opposed not only Saint Pontian, but others as well. Eventually, these two were exiled together where they reconciled and became good friends.

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Stained glass in Our Lady of Czestochowa Grotto (Sorrowful Mother Shrine) | photo by Nheyob

Saint Maximilian Mary Kolbe

August 14. Saint Maximilian Mary Kolbe, a Conventual Franciscan, is best known for volunteering to take the place of a condemned prisoner in the death camp. But he also worked tirelessly for the spiritual welfare of people through a deep devotion to the Blessed Mother. His whole life seemed to revolve around Mary as the path to God.

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Detail | Ceiling of the Assumption of Mary in Santa Maria Immacolata a via Veneto, Rome | photo by Livioandronico

Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary

August 15. The doctrine of the Assumption of Mary is recent: 1950. But the belief among the faithful that Mary was assumed body and soul into heaven at the time of her death dates to the early Church. Mary is also the summation of all Christians—what happened to her, will happen to us. Thus, she is the testimony of our own resurrection at the end of time.

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Saint Stephen of Hungary

Saint Stephen of Hungary

August 16. Saint Stephen was both a king and a Christian. So, he embodied both the civil and the religious aspects of life in his person. Saint Stephen expressed those aspects in the best way he knew how according to his culture and period of history. He serves as proof that the faith is definitely rooted in the persons who believe.

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Wooden statue of Saint Joan of the Cross | A l’école des soeurs de Jeanne Delanoue | unknown

Saint Joan of the Cross

August 17. Transformed from greedy and surly businesswoman to saint is the story of Saint Joan of the Cross. Her conversion is credited to an elderly woman whom most people thought was crazy, but who reached Saint Joan’s heart. Saint Joan of the Cross went on to found a religious congregation and several charitable institutions.

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Saint Louis of Toulouse | unknown

Saint Louis of Toulouse

August 18. Born into royalty and headed for the throne of his father, Saint Louis of Toulouse renounced his status, became a Franciscan, and was named a bishop. It was during the years that he was held hostage and under the tutelage of the Friars, that Saint Louis began to realize his call to something other than the throne. He was known for his generosity to the poor.

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Stained glass window in Saint-Pierre de Dourdain | photo by GO69

Saint John Eudes

August 19. Saint John Eudes was a noted preacher and confessor. He founded several seminaries because he saw the need for clerical formation. He also founded a couple of religious communities to address the needs that he saw. Saint John had a great devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

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Saints Oswald and Notburga | Hand-colored metalcut print | Meister mit dem Maschenhintergrun

Saint Oswald

February 29. Saint Oswald knew people in high places─his uncle was the archbishop of Canterbury. But even though he received “favors” from his uncle, he humbly served and gained holiness.

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