November 25. According to the Legend of St. Catherine, this saint was instrumental in the conversion of 50 pagan philosophers as well as over 200 soldiers and royal family members.
November 26. Saint Columban was an Irish missionary who worked on the European continent. He and 12 companions traveled to Gaul where they won the respect of the people. Columnban established several monasteries in Europe.
November 27. Saint Francesco Antonio Fasani was a Conventual Franciscan who taught the younger members of his community and served in administration. He was recognized as a great preacher and confessor. In the minds of the local people Francesco was considered a saint at his death.
November 28. Saint James was born in the Marche of Ancona. Before joining the Friars Minor, he earned doctorates in canon and civil law at the University of Perugia. He lived a very austere life, and was an extremely popular preacher, who spread devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus.
November 29. Saint Clement was the fourth pope of the Church, living toward the end of the first century. He is known for his letter to the Church at Corinth, in which he tried to reestablish peace between the clergy and the faithful.
November 30. Saint Andrew was Saint Peter’s brother, and was called by Jesus along with Peter. We know very little about Andrew except that he too was a fisherman, and a disciple of Saint John the Baptist.
December 1. Orphaned at the age of six, Charles was raised by his devout grandfather. He rejected the Catholic faith as a teenager, but resumed its practice around age 30. He then became a Trappist monk. After leaving the monastery, Charles traveled extensively, living a peaceful and somewhat hidden life.
December 2. This Polish Conventual Franciscan served in the military, but felt the call to the vowed religious life. Rafal was known for his simple and candid sermons, for his generosity, as well as for his ministry in the confessional. People of all levels of society were drawn to the self-sacrificing way he lived out his religious profession and priestly ministry. He also played the harp, lute, and mandolin to accompany liturgical singing.
December 3. Saint Francis Xavier was won over to Christ by the gentle persuasion of Saint Ignatius of Loyola. He then joined the Jesuits and soon after set off for the East, where he labored the rest of his life. Xavier was on his way to China when he died in 1552.
December 4. Saint John Damascene was born in Damascus, but spent most of his life in a monastery near Jerusalem. Little is known about his life, but he is remembered as the last of the Eastern Church Fathers. He gained fame as a poet and an author.