Thursday, August 24, 2017

Saint Margaret Bourgeoys Virgin and Foundress 1620-1700

Saint Margaret Bourgeoys
Virgin and Foundress 1620-1700

      Saint Margaret Bourgeoys, the first Canadian Saint, was born in Troyes France in 1620. She emigrated to Canada in 1652, opened the first school for children in 1657, founded the Congregation of Notre Dame in 1671 and died in 1700.
     She was only twenty years old when she followed a call to consecrate herself to the service of God. She became a member of congregation of Troyes made up of Pious and charitable young women who were dedicated teachers of the children of the poorest in the neighborhood. At the direct invitation of the governor, Margaret migrated to Montreal, Canada to tutor the children of the French garrison. Her devotion to the service of others also included the young women who went to the French colony to marry and start their own families. This led to the establishment of a school system that eventually extended to the whole country. This holy and dedicated servant gained the titles Mother of Colony  and Cofoundress of the Church of Canada.
     Saint Margaret founded the Congregation of Notre Dame brought about by other women who wished to follow her life of prayer, heroic poverty, and service to others. Her Congregation, which received its civil charter from King Louis XIV in 1671, its canonical approval from Bishop Laval of Quebec in 1676, and the approbation of its religious constitutions in 1698, spread throughout Canada and later in different parts of the world.
     She was beatified and canonized in 1982. 

Saint Theodosius the Cenobiarch Abbot 423-529

Saint Theodosius the Cenobiarch
Abbot 423-529

        Saint Theodosius the Cenobiarch was born in Garisus, Cappadocia in 423, he had a very pious parents whose example contributed much to his excelling knowledge of the scriptures. His stay in the Holy land exposed him more to different means of sanctification.
     Having chosen a solitary life, he settled in the dessert in Judah. His extraordinary piety reached the many hermits who were also living in the dessert and this bought many disciples to his place. He built a monastery of cathismus to house these disciples. Attached to the monastery were three hospitals; for the sick, for the aged, and for the insane. Saint Theodosius’s friend and compatriot Saint Sabbas was appointed head of all those living in the hermitages in Palestine and Saint Theodosius took charge of all living in the community. That’s the reason for the name of cenobiach which means head of persons living in common.
He was removed from cenobiach by Emperor Anastacius because he honestly defended church teaching and fought against heretical doctrine. However, he was recalled when Justinian became Emperor. Saint Theodosius assumed his duties as the overall head of those living in his community until his death in 529.

Saint Peter Orseolo

Saint Peter Orseolo
Religious Man 928-987

          Saint Peter Orseolo was born 928 in Venice, Italy. He embraced a completely religious life after leading a multifaceted one.
     At the age of twenty he became the commander of the city’s fleet and he was able to clear his area from pirates who were victimizing their ships. Later, he was chosen as the new Doge to succeed Peter Candiani IV who was murdered. He was able to renew the fire raved city and bring back peace among its residents. He had a son by his wife of thirty-two years with whom he lived as celibate after the birth of their only child Peter.
     When decided to become a religious, he joined the Benedictine Abbey of Saint Michael at Cuxa in Roussillon on the border between France and Spain. He built a hermitage and after nine years of dedicated life of prayer and penance, he died in 987. Many miracles were reported to have happened at his tomb. Forty years later he was recognized as a saint by the local bishop as this was the custom for canonization in the church at the time.

Saint Adrian of Canterbury

        Saint Adrian of Canterbury
Abbot +710

Saint Adrian of Canterbury, A Latin and Greek scholar, was a learned and saintly man from Africa. He was well versed in the Holy Scriptures and in the Fathers of the church.
     During his early years as a religious, he became the abbot of a monastery near Monte Cassino, Italy. Later Pope St. Vitalian, who believed in St. Adrians talents, was instrumental in making him the abbot of the monastery of Saints Peter and Paul at Canterbury. His talents and his commitment to Christianity were needed in the country whose people needed much instruction and inspiration. Being a learned man, especially in the Holy Scriptures, he was sought out by many who later became his followers. He also excelled in Greek and in Latin. The subjects he taught included poetry, astronomy, and calendar calculations. Under his administration, the monastic school attracted many students from all over and Saint Adrian had a far reaching influence. Saint Adrian died on January 9,710.