Meet Josephine Bakhita, who was kidnapped in 1876 from her loving family in Sudan at age seven and sold into slavery! Can you imagine how scared she must have felt? This horrible experience made her completely forget her name. Her kidnappers renamed her Bakhita, which means “fortunate one.” Online you’ll find her complete story and an activity for your Catholic kids.
St. Blaise, whose feast is celebrated on February 3, is another saint who lived a LONG time ago–during the 4th century, when being a Christian was a crime. He was a bishop and a doctor for people and animals. To avoid being caught, he lived in a cave outside of the city. Legend has it that sick animals would come to him to be cured. But if St. Blaise was praying, the animals would patiently wait so as not to disturb his prayers. On his feast day, some people go to church to have their throats blessed. You’ll find a St. Blaise activity online.
Saint Thomas was born at Roccasecca, Italy in 1225 of the family of the Counts of Aquino. He entered the Order at Naples at age 17, was a disciple of St. Albert the Great, and at age 25 earned the title of “doctor” from the University of Paris. The Summa Theologiae is his best-known work, and is one of the most influencial works of philosophy and the Church. It was published in 1485. Watch a video about St. Thomas online.
John Bosco was born August 16, 1815, in Becchi, Italy. He was the youngest son of Francesco Bosco and Margherita Occhiena and had two older brothers, Antonio and Giuseppe. St. John Bosco was canonized on Easter Sunday, 1934 and he was given the title, “Father and Teacher of Youth.” Saint John Bosco is the patron saint of apprentices, editors and publishers, schoolchildren, magicians, and juvenile delinquents. His feast day is on January 31. Watch a video about him online.
One feast day that often slips by without notice is the feast of the Conversion of St. Paul. This miraculous event, which has been part of the Church calendar for more than 1,500 years, is an unmovable feast — that is, it is always on the same calendar date, Jan. 25. (Some years, the feast day falls on a Sunday, and because only a Solemnity or a feast of Our Lord can trump the Sunday liturgy, the feast of the Conversion of St. Paul is not always widely commemorated then.) But these calendar circumstances in no way diminish the importance of Paul’s conversion, as he was among the greatest of the missionaries spreading the words of Jesus Christ. Further, he is an example that anyone, even the most hardened unbeliever or the vilest heretic, can be created anew by our loving Savior. Find out more about St. Paul online.