Happy birthday, St. John the Baptist!

Jesus said, “Among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist”. Each year on June 24 the Catholic Church honors the birth of John by reflecting on his unique role as the precursor of Jesus. The solemnity held on that date praises John as a worthy example of what it means to be a follower of Christ. A solemnity is the most significant feast the Church can establish. While other saints are remembered with feast days to remember their deaths, St. John the Baptist, like Our Lady, is honored with solemnities to recall both his birth and his death.

St. Barnabas: The forgotten apostle?

Aside from the Twelve, few others receive the designation of apostle in the New Testament. Chief among them is the apostle Paul. Among the others is his one-time collaborator Barnabas, whose memorial is celebrated by the Church on June 11. Legend recalls Barnabas as one of the 70 disciples of Christ in the Gospel, but few details about him were recorded in the New Testament. Find out more in today’s post.

St. Isidore the Farmer

St. Isidore was a Spanish laboring man. Born near Madrid, around 1070, he lived there until his death, May 15,1130. He served on the farm of a Juan de Vargas. Each morning before going to work he attended Mass in one of the churches in Madrid.

St. Matthias

St. Matthias is the apostle chosen to replace Judas Iscariot. Little is known of his missionary activity, but tradition states that he preached in Judea. He is credited with a Gospel and other discourses that have not been historically confirmed. His feast day is May 14.

Our Lady of Fatima: The visionaries

On May 13 we celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Fatima. The year 2017 marked the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady to the three shepherd children at Fatima, Portugal, where the Blessed Mother appeared once each month from May until Oct. 13 October. In today’s post you’ll meet the three children to whom Mary appeared in 1917: Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta.