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This ancient and venerable Catholic practice is rooted in the representation of the face of Christ said to have been left on the towel or veil used by a holy woman thought to be named, Veronica. An Archconfraternity of the Holy Face was established in Tours, France, 1884; its members make reparation for the blasphemies hurled at Christ. Since St. Therese’s devotion to the Holy Face has become known, this devotion has spread worldwide. Continue reading

Saint Peter’s Chair at Antioch

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Saint Peter’s Chair at Antioch

(ca. 36-43)

That Saint Peter, before he went to Rome, founded the see of Antioch is attested by many Saints of the earliest times, including Saint Ignatius of Antioch and Saint Clement, Pope. It was just that the Prince of the Apostles should take under his particular care and surveillance this city, which was then the capital of the East, and where the faith so early took such deep roots as to give birth there to the name of Christians. There his voice could be heard by representatives of the three largest nations of antiquity — the Hebrews, the Greeks and the Latins. Saint Chrysostom says that Saint Peter was there for a long period; Saint Gregory the Great, that he was seven years Bishop of Antioch. He did not reside there at all times, but governed its apostolic activity with the wisdom his mandate assured. Continue reading

St. Mildred

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St. Mildred, Virgin and Abbess

EORMENBURGA, 1 pronounced Ermenburga, otherwise called Domneva, was married to Merwald a son of King Penda, and had by him three daughters and a son, who all consecrated their whole estates to pious uses, and were all honoured by our ancestors among the saints. Their names were Milburg, Mildred, Mildgithe, and Mervin. King Egbert caused his two nephews, Etheldred and Ethelbright, to be secretly murdered in the isle of Thanet. Count Thunor, whom he had charged with that execrable commission, buried the bodies of the two princes under the king’s throne, in the royal palace at Estrange now called Estria. The king is said to have been miraculously terrified by seeing a ray of bright light dart from the heavens upon their grave, and in sentiments of compunction he sent for their sister Eormenburga, out of Mercia, to pay her the weregild, which was the mulct for a murder, ordained by the laws to be paid to the relations of the persons deceased. In satisfaction for the murder, he settled on her forty-eight ploughs of land, which she employed in founding a monastery, in which prayers might be continually put up to God for the repose of the souls of the two princes. This pious establishment was much promoted by the king, and thus the monastery was founded about the year 670; not 596, as Leland 2 and Speed mistake. Continue reading

St. Barbatus

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St. Barbatus, or Barbas, Bishop of Benevento, Confessor

A.D. 682.

ST. BARBATUS was born in the territory of Benevento, in Italy, towards the end of the pontificate of St. Gregory the Great, in the beginning of the seventh century. His parents gave him a Christian education, and Barbatus in his youth laid the foundation of that eminent sanctity, which recommends him to our veneration. Devout meditation on the holy scriptures was his chief entertainment; and the innocence, simplicity, and purity of his manners, and extraordinary progress in all virtues, qualified him for the service of the altar, to which he was assumed by taking holy orders as soon as the canons of the church would allow it. He was immediately employed by his bishop in preaching, for which he had an extraordinary talent; and, after some time, made curate of St. Basil’s, in Morcona, a town near Benevento. His parishioners were steeled in their irregularities, and averse from whatever looked like establishing order and discipline amongst them.  Continue reading

The Subsequent History of Bernadette Soubirous

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The Subsequent History of Bernadette Soubirous

by Richard F. Clarke, S.J., 1888

July 28, 1858, the Bishop of Tarbes issued a pastoral (mandement) in which he said that ecclesiastical authority was going to occupy itself with the Grotto at Lourdes, and that a commission was charged to make an official inquiry. The commission had for its object to furnish an answer to the following questions: Continue reading