St. Veronica Giuliani

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St. Veronica Giuliani

Born at Mercatello in the Duchy of Urbino, Italy, 1660; died at Citt’ di Castello, 9 July, 1727. Her parents, Francesco Giuliana and Benedetta Mancini, were both of gentle birth. In baptism she was named Ursula, and showed marvelous signs of sanctity. When but eighteen months old she uttered her first words to upbraid a shopman who was serving a false measure of oil, saying distinctly: “Do justice, God sees you.” At the age of three years she began to be favoured with Divine communications, and to show great compassion for the poor. She would set apart a portion of her food for them, and even part with her clothes when she met a poor child scantily clad. These traits and a great love for the Cross developed as she grew older. When others did not readily join in her religious practices she was inclined to be dictatorial. In her sixteenth year this imperfection of character was brought home to her in a vision in which she saw her own heart as a heart of steel. In her writings she confesses that she took a certain pleasure in the more stately circumstances which her family adopted when her father was appointed superintendent of finance at Piacenza. But this did not in any way affect her early-formed resolution to dedicate herself to religion, although her father urged her to marry and procured for her several suitors as soon as she became of marriageable age. Owing to her father’s opposition to her desire to enter a convent, Veronica fell ill and only recovered when he gave his consent. Continue reading

Saint Elizabeth

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Saint Elizabeth

Queen of Portugal

Saint Elizabeth was born in 1271. She was the daughter of Pedro III of Aragon, and named for her aunt, Saint Elizabeth of Hungary. As a child she was holy, and when she was given in marriage to Dennis, King of Portugal, she became a saintly wife. She heard Mass and recited the Divine Office daily, but her devotions were arranged with such prudence that they interfered with none of her duties of state. She prepared for her frequent Communions by works of charity, austerities and fasts, and by her Communions for these heroic works of charity. Elizabeth herself cared for the sick whom she visited, and never did a poor beggar leave her palace without having received what he needed. Continue reading

Saints Cyril and Methodius

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Saints Cyril and Methodius

Apostles to the Slavic Nations

(†ca. 867 and †ca. 887)

These two brothers were born in Thessalonica of a senatorial family. Saint Cyril was sent to Constantinople to study, where he became known as the Philosopher; but it was the Holy Church that he desired to serve, and he was ordained a priest. While Cyril was still young, the Patriarch of Constantinople recommended in the year 848 to the reigning Emperor to place him at the head of a mission which was to be sent to the Khazars of the eastern Danube region. Their king desired to learn of Christianity and had requested missionaries. Cyril asked for the time to learn the Turkish language which this people spoke, and after only a short while was ready to preach. The prince of the Khazars received Baptism and the entire nation soon followed his example. Cyril founded churches and furnished them with excellent ministers, then returned to Constantinople, refusing all presents offered him by his converts. Continue reading