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 21. Saint Cristóbal Magallanes and Companions, 21 diocesan priests and three laymen, belonged to the Cristero movement during the 20th-century persecution of the Church in Mexico. Martyred over a number of years in eight Mexican states, they were beatified and canonized together.
May 22. Saint Rite of Cascia was a wife, widow, and mother before becoming an Augustinian nun. She seems to have done most of her ministry within the convent, yet counseled many lay people who came to the monastery. Rita was known for her austerity and charity, along with prayerfulness.
May 23. Saint Gregory VII, originally known as Hildebrand, was a reformer before and during his papacy (1073-1085). He struggled to gain the Church's freedom from undue civil influence and paid a price for his efforts. Gregory VII died in exile in 1085. Thirty years after his death, the Church won its struggle.
May 24. Saint Mary Magdalene de’ Pazzi is known as the “ecstatic saint” because of her unusual gifts from God. To safeguard the authenticity of her visions, her confessor had her dictate them to fellow sisters. The result was five volumes encompassing ecstasies, letters, and inspirational sayings. But her life was not all sweetness; she also battled with temptations.
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.