Saint Quentin

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Saint Quentin

Apostle of Amiens, Martyr at Rome
(† 287)

Saint Quentin was a Roman, descended from a senatorial family. Full of zeal for the kingdom of Jesus Christ, he left his country and went into Gaul, accompanied by eleven other apostles sent from Rome. They separated to extend their campaign of evangelization to the various regions of France. Saint Quentin remained at Amiens and endeavored by his prayers and labors to make that region part of Our Lord’s inheritance. By the force of his words and works he preluded the glory of his martyrdom. He gave sight to the blind, vigor to paralytics, hearing to the deaf, and agility to the infirm, in the name of Our Lord, simply by the sign of the Cross. At all hours of the day he invoked his God in fervent supplications.

But this apostolate could not escape the notice of Rictiovarus, the Roman prosecutor who at that time represented Maximian Herculeus in Gaul. Saint Quentin was seized at Amiens, thrown into prison, and loaded with chains. Rictiovarus asked him: How does it happen that you, of such high nobility and the son of so distinguished a father, have given yourself up to so superstitious a religion, a folly, and that you adore an unfortunate man crucified by other men? Saint Quentin replied: It is sovereign nobility to adore the Creator of heaven and earth, and to obey willingly His divine commandments. What you call folly is supreme wisdom. What is there that is wiser than to recognize the unique true God, and to reject with disdain the counterfeits, which are mute, false and deceiving? Continue reading

St. Wolfgang

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St. Wolfgang, Bishop of Ratisbon

RADERUS derives this saint’s pedigree from the most illustrious families of Suabia; but the ancient author of his life published by Mabillon assures us, that his parents were of a middle condition in the world. He was a native of Suabia, and at seven years of age was put into the hands of a neighbouring virtuous ecclesiastic; but some time after removed to the abbey of Richenaw (in Latin Augia), founded by Charles Martel in 724, near Constance, united in 1536 to the bishopric of Constance. This monastery was at that time a most flourishing school of learning or piety, which furnished many churches with eminent pastors. In this house our saint contracted an intimacy with a young nobleman called Henry, brother to Poppo, bishop of Wurtzburg, who had set up a great school in that city, and engaged an Italian professor, called Stephen, to leave his own country to give lectures there. It was Wolfgang’s earnest desire never to know any other employment but that of Mary, and to spend his life in the contemplation and praises of his Creator; but Henry, who was charmed with his virtue and other great qualifications, could not bear to be separated from him, and prevailed upon him to bear him company to this new school at Wurtzburg.  Continue reading

Saint Marcellus

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Saint Marcellus, the Centurion
and His Children

Martyrs
(† 298)

It is believed that Saint Marcellus was born in Arzas of Galicia. A brave pagan, he entered upon the career of arms, hoping to gain a large fortune. He married a young lady named Nona and they were blessed with twelve children. Saint Marcellus was a valorous solider and was promoted to the charge of centurion; he had no thought for any advancement except the sort pertaining to his military life, when he heard the fervent preaching of a holy bishop of the church of Leon. He was converted with his entire family to the Christian religion. All of them except his wife would soon give their blood in honor of their Faith.

The birthday of the Emperor Maximian Herculeus was celebrated in the year 298 with extraordinary feasting and solemn rites. Marcellus, as a centurion of the army, a captain in the legion of Trajan then posted in Mauritania or Spain, in order not to defile himself in these impious sacrifices, left his company, throwing down his cincture and his arms and declaring aloud that he was a soldier of Jesus Christ, the eternal King. He was at once committed to prison. When the festival was over, he was brought before a judge, and having reiterated his faith, was sent under a strong guard to a prefect, Aurelian Agricolaus. This Roman officer passed upon him a sentence of death by the sword. Marcellus was immediately led to execution and beheaded on the 30th of October of the year 298. Cassian, the secretary or notary of the court, refused to record the sentence pronounced against the martyr, because of its injustice. He was immediately hurried to prison, and was beheaded in his turn on the 3rd of December.

The children of Saint Marcellus imitated his constancy, and all lost their lives for the defense of the Gospel; three of the boys were hanged and then decapitated at Leon. Their pious mother bought back their bodies for money and buried them secretly; they were later transferred to a church built in their honor in the city of Leon.

Reflection: We are ready to die rather than to transgress the laws of God! exclaimed one of the Maccabees. This sentiment must ever be that of a Christian in the throes of temptation.

Les Petits Bollandistes: Vies des Saints, by Msgr. Paul Guérin (Bloud et Barral: Paris, 1882), Vol. 13; Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints, a compilation based on Butler’s Lives of the Saints and other sources by John Gilmary Shea (Benziger Brothers: New York, 1894).

Saint Alphonsus Rodriguez

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Saint Alphonsus Rodriguez

Confessor, Jesuit Coadjutor
(1531-1617)

Saint Alphonsus Rodriguez was born in Spain in 1531, of a well-to-do commercial household of Segovia, the third of eleven children. When Alphonsus was eleven years old, he and his older brother were sent to a Jesuit college which had just been founded. He had already manifested great joy in serving the Jesuits when they had given a mission in Segovia and lodged in his father’s country home; now he rejoiced in the one year of study he was able to undertake, before the death of his father interrupted these pursuits. His brother, after certain affairs were settled, returned to school, but Alphonsus was obliged to remain at home, destined one day to replace his father.
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