Calendar of Saints

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January 21

Saint Agnes

Saint Agnes was 12 years old when she died a martyr's death around the year 305 during persecutions of Christians by the Roman Emperor Diocletian. Patron saint of virgins, betrothed wives and gardeners.

January 31

Saint John (Don) Bosco

(1815-1888) Italian priest who fought for education for all children and educational reform.

Patron saint of teachers, children, students and publishers.

February 1

Saint Bridget of Ireland

Foundress (around 525) and abbess of the great monastery at Kildare. After St. Patrick the most important saint in Ireland. Sometimes carries a cow because of her youth as a milkmaid. Patron saint of milkmen and healers, among others.

February 18

Saint Giovanni Fra Angelico

Italian painter, later enters monastery. Paints beautiful religious works and is nicknamed "Fra Angelico," or angelic friar.

Patron saint of painters and artists.

March 20

Saint John of Nepomuk

(* ca.1345, Bohemia) Confessor to King Wenceslaus and Queen Johanna, but refuses to betray her confessional secrets to her husband. The king thereupon has him thrown into the river. Patron saint of sea and river sailors.

March 26

Saint Lucia Filippini

(1672-1732) Enters convent as a 16-year-old and devotes herself to teaching girls. Starts a foundation that trains women to become teachers.

Canonized in 1930.

April 9

Saint Casilda of Toledo

(* ca. 950) Daughter of the Emir of Toledo

Originally Muslim, but becomes a Christian after being cured of an illness by the water from a sacred spring in Burgos. Invoked against infertility.

April 25

Saint Mark

Apostle and evangelist. Founded the1st Christian church in Alexandria. Dies martyred there after being dragged through the city behind a rope. His attribute is the lion. Patron saint of notaries and opticians, among others.

May 13

Saint Servatius

Became bishop of Tongeren around 350 and is the oldest known bishop in the Low Countries. Enthusiastic defender of the true faith, fiercely opposed to heresy.

Patron saint of Maastricht.

May 30

Saint Joan of Arc

(1412- 1431) French peasant daughter, hears voices calling her to fight the English in the 100 Years' War. Is betrayed and ends up burned at the stake as a heretic. Patron saint of France.

June 3

Saint Clotildis

(*ca. 474) Wife of pagan king Clovis. Manages to convert him and have her sons baptized. Provides the sons with Christian advice during their struggles among themselves. Dies at Tours in 545.

June 15

Saint Vitus

Performs miracles even in his youth (4th century). Cures emperor's son of epilepsy, nevertheless tortured to death for refusing to sacrifice to gods. Patron saint of epileptics.

July 9

Martyrs of Gorkum

In 1572 Gorkum is occupied by Orange troops. Their commander orders all priests and monks to be tortured and interrogated. Eventually they are hanged.

Canonized in 1867.

July 23

Saint Birgitta of Sweden

Marries nobleman and has eight children with him. After his death, she enters monastery and founds the Order of the Holy Redeemer. Dies in Rome in 1373.

Patron saint of Sweden.

August 9

Saint Teresa Benedicta

(*1891) Of Jewish origin, but was baptized in 1922 and entered the Carmelite nuns. Arrested by the Gestapo in 1942 and died in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. One of the patron saints of Europe.

August 28

Saint Augustine

(*354, Algeria) After initial resistance, he was baptized in 386. Bishop of Hippo in 396. Writes many well-known theological and philosophical works.

Considered a church father.

September 3

Saint Gregory

Around 540 an important jurist in Rome. Chooses monastic life, founds monasteries and helps poor. Becomes pope in 590 and makes an important contribution to the development of (Gregorian) church music. Dies in 604.

September 17

Hildegard of Bingen

(* 1098) German Benedictine nun and mystic. Founded several monastic orders and wrote books, including about her visions.

Patron saint of philologists.

October 4

Saint Francis of Assisi

(*1181) Son of a wealthy merchant, who gives up everything after a vision. Starts as a mendicant monk and eventually founds his own order. According to legends, he could talk to animals.

October 21

Saint Ursula

Christian Breton princess from the 4th century. Marries a pagan prince when he converts and she is first allowed to go on a pilgrimage to Rome with a group of virgins. Dies in Rome by an arrow from the Huns. Patron saint of girls and apprentices.

November 11

Saint Martin

(* ±315 - + 397) Roman soldier, gives away half cloak to beggar and then receives vision of Jesus wearing his cloak. Therefore gets baptized and becomes bishop of Tours. Patron saint of beggars and soldiers.

November 25

Saint Catherine of Alexandria

Of distinguished lineage. Refuses to marry non-Christian governor and protests persecution of Christians by Roman emperor. Is tortured on rack in 305 and beheaded for this reason.

December 6

Saint Nicholas

(* around 280, Turkey) Became Bishop of Myra and was known for his mercy. Performed many miracles, such as bringing three murdered students to life. Patron saint of Amsterdam.

December 15

Saint Mary di Rosa

(*1813 - + 1855) Daughter of an Italian businessman. Takes vow of chastity at age 11. Takes care of the family after the death of her mother. Spends much time educating girls and caring for the sick even after that.