Monday, August 14, 2017


St. Simon

St. Simeon, Bishop of Jerusalem, Martyr


A.D. 116.

Feastday: February 18

 St. Simeon, amidst the consolations of the Holy Ghost and the great progress of the church, had the affliction to see two heresies arise within its bosom, namely, those of the Nazareans and the Ebionites; the first seeds of which, according to St. Epiphanius, appeared at Pella. The Nazareans were a sect of men between Jews and Christians, but abhorred by both. They allowed Christ to be the greatest of the prophets, but said he was a mere man, whose natural parents were Joseph and Mary: they joined all the ceremonies of the old law with the new, and observed both the Jewish Sabbath and the Sunday. Ebion added other errors to these, which Cerenthus had also espoused, and taught many superstitions, permitted divorces, and allowed of the most infamous abominations. He began to preach at Cocabe, a village beyond the Jordan, where he dwelt; but he afterwards travelled into Asia, and thence to Rome. The authority of St. Simeon kept the heretics in some awe during his life, which was the longest upon earth of any of our Lord’s disciples. But, as Eusebius says, he was no sooner dead than a deluge of execrable heresies broke out of hell upon the church, which durst not openly appear during his life.

ST. SIMEON was the son of Cleophas, otherwise called Alpheus, brother to St. Joseph, and of Mary, sister of the Blessed Virgin. He was therefore nephew both to St. Joseph and to the Blessed Virgin, and cousin-german to Christ. Simeon and Simon are the same name, and this saint is, according to the best interpreters of the holy scripture, the Simon mentioned, 1 who was brother to St. James the Lesser, and St. Jude, apostles, and to Joseph of José. He was eight or nine years older than our Saviour. We cannot doubt but he was an early follower of Christ, as his father and mother and three brothers were, and an exception to that of St. John, 2 that our Lord’s relations did not believe in him. Nor does St. Luke 3 leave us any room to doubt but that he received the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost with the Blessed Virgin and the apostles; for he mentions present St. James and St. Jude, and the brothers of our Lord. Saint Epiphanius relates, 4 that when the Jews massacred St. James the Lesser, his brother Simeon reproached them for their atrocious cruelty. St. James, bishop of Jerusalem, being put to death in the year 62, twenty-nine years after our Saviour’s resurrection, the apostles and disciples met at Jerusalem to appoint him a successor. They unanimously chose St. Simeon, who had probably before assisted his brother in the government of that church.
  In the year 66, in which SS. Peter and Paul suffered martyrdom at Rome, the civil war began in Judea, by the seditions of the Jews against the Romans. The Christians in Jerusalem were warned by God of the impending destruction of that city, and by a divine revelation 5 commanded to leave it, as Lot was rescued out of Sodom. They therefore departed out of it the same year, before Vespasian, Nero’s general, and afterwards emperor, entered Judæa, and retired beyond the Jordan to a small city called Pella; having St. Simeon at their head. After the taking and burning of Jerusalem, they returned thither again, and settled themselves amidst its ruins, till Adrian afterwards entirely razed it. St. Epiphanius  and Eusebius  assure us, that the church here flourished extremely, and that multitudes of Jews were converted by the great number of prodigies and miracles wrought in it.


St. Maximus

Feastday: February 18
Death: 295

Martyr with Alexander, Claudius, Cutias, and Praepedigna. Nothing can be documented about their sufferings under Emperor Diocletian.


Bl. Martin

Feastday: February 18

Martyr of China, a native Chinese who sheltered Blessed John Peter Neel. Martin was beheaded and beatified in 1909.

Sunday, August 13, 2017


Sts. Lucius, Classicus, Fructulus, Maximus, Rutulus, Secundinus, and Silvanus.

 Born  Africa

Died North Africa

Canonized Pre-Congregation

Feastday: February 18
Death: unknown

Group of Christians who were martyred together in Africa, date unknown. No other information has survived except seven of their names Classicus, Fructulus, Maximus, Rutulus, Secundinus, and Silvanus.


Bl. John Pibush

Feastday: February 18
Death: Hanged on 18 February 1601 at Saint Thomas’s Waterings, Camberwell, England

English martyr, born in Thirsk, Yorkshire. He went to Reims and was ordained in 1587. Returning to England in 1589, John was arrested at Gloucestershire in 1593 and kept in prison in London. He escaped but was recaptured and then tried and condemned. He was executed at Southwark. His beatification took place in 1929.

According to Gillow he was probably a son of Thomas Pibush, of Great Fencott, and Jane, sister to Peter Danby of Scotton. He came to Reims on 4 August, 1580, received minor orders and subdiaconate in September, and diaconate in December, 1586, and was ordained on 14 March, 1587. He was sent on the English mission on 3 January, 1588-9, arrested at Morton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, in 1593, and sent to London, where he arrived before 24 July. The Privy Council committed him to the Gatehouse at Westminster, where he remained a year. He was then tried at the Gloucester Assizes under 27 Eliz., c. 2, for being a priest, but not sentenced, and was returned to Gloucester gaol, whence he escaped on 19 February 1594-5. The next day he was recaptured at Matson and taken back to Gloucester gaol, whence he was sent to the Marshalsea, London, and again tried under the same statute at Westminster on 1 July, 1595. He was sentenced to suffer the penalties of high treason at St. Thomas's Waterings, and in the meantime was to be returned to the Marshalsea. However, by the end of the year he was in the Queen's Bench prison, where he remained for more than five years. The sentence was carried out after one day's notice.

Saturday, August 12, 2017


Sts. Leo & Paregorius


Feastday: February 18
Death: 260

Martyrs of Patara in Lycia. Paregorius was martyred first, and when Leo protested a pagan festival near Paregorius' grave, he was martyred.


St. Gertrude Caterina Comensoli

Feastday: February 18
Born January 18, 1847 Bienno, Brescia
Died February 18, 1903Bergamo, Italy

Beatified October 1, 1989,  by John Paul II
Canonized April 26, 2009, by Benedict XVI

Gertrude Comensoli, born Catherine, was an Italian who was canonized in 2009 by Pope Benedict XVI. Saint Gertrude was born in Bienne, Valcamonica, then under the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia.Catherine grew up in a family with ten brothers and sisters, of which only three females survived: Bartolomea, Cristina and Catherine precisely.She received her First Communion in 1867 and joined the Society of St. Angela Merici.On December 15, 1882, decided to found, with Francesco Spinelli, the Institute of the Sisters Adorers of the Blessed Sacrament which was also the origin of the Sisters Sacramentine and taking the name Sister Gertrude.On 1 November 1894, opened a house of nuns in Castelnuovo Bocca d'Adda and in the same year in the province of Lodi.Gertrude died February 18, 1903, on 1 October 1989 was proclaimed Blessed by Pope John Paul II, February 26, 2009 was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI, who gave evidence at the solemn ceremony of April 26, 2009.

Saint Geltrude Comensoli was born on January 18, 1847 in Bienno, Italy. Her name at birth was Caterina, and she was one of 10 children in the family, though only 3 of the girls, including her survived. When she was seven years old, she felt an urge to receive her First Communion, and so she dressed in her mother's black shawl and secretly received the Eucharist. She felt a “heavenly” feeling and swore to love Jesus as long as she lived.

As a child she was mature and wise beyond her years, exhibiting a great devotion to the Eucharistic Jesus. While still young, she organized the Guard of Honor among some of the girls she knew, under the motto: "Jesus, loving You and making others love You". This motto became the foundation of her work in life.

In 1862, she left her family and joined the Sisters of Charity, founded by St. Bartolomea Capitanio in Lovere, Brescia. It was not meant to be, however as she contracted a serious illness and was dismissed from the Institute. After she regained her health, her family was in a poor financial position, and she left her village and became a domestic servant of Rev. G. B. Rota, a parish priest of Chiari. A few years later, he became the Bishop of Lodi. Later, she served in the household of the Countess Fe

-Vitali. Towards the end of 1876 she reaffirmed her dedication to Jesus and wrote a strict personal rule of life, to which she remained faithful.

On the Feast of Corpus Christi in 1878, she made the vow of chastity that she had originally taken on the morning of her secret Communion, perpetual. While still serving as a domestic servant, Caterina also worked to educate the children of San Gervasio, Bergamo, instructing them in the Catholic faith and virtuous living.

Caterina lived a life of copious prayer, mortification, meditation, and works of charity. She grew closer to the Lord, and sought a way to live the life dedicated to the Eucharist that she had longed for her entire life. She confided in the Bishop of Bergamo, Mgr. Speranza, who was in Bienno visiting the Fé-Vitali’s. He gave her his assurance that she was following the will of God through her plans.

In 1880, she traveled to Rome with the Fé-Vitali’s, and was able to gain an audience with Pope Leo XIII, where she discussed her plans to establish a religious institute devoted to the adoration of the Eucharist. Pope Leo encouraged her to also work toward the education of young female factory workers as well. Encouraged by this charge, on December 15, 1882, Caterina and two of her friends founded the Congregation of the Sacramentine Sisters of Bergamo with the first adoration hour of the Blessed Sacrament. Two years later to the day, on December 15, 1884 she took the name of Sister Geltrude of the Blessed Sacrament.

The Sisters of the Congregation were advised by the new Bishop of Bergamo, Mgr. Camillo Guindani to abandon their first motherhouse in order to move to Lodi. Mgr. Rota, Bishop of Lodi, generously offered them a house in Lavagna di Comazzo, which temporarily became their new Mother House. After many obstacles were overcome, Mgr. Rota issued a Decree on September 8, 1891, granting the Institute canonical recognition. On March 28, 1892, Mother Geltrude returned with the Congregation to Bergamo. By this time, she had instituted perpetual public Eucharistic Adoration and had inspired the same love of the Eucharist among the members of her congregation.

On February 18, 1903, Mother Geltrude died, bowing her head towards the church where Eucharistic Adoration was proceeding. Those who knew her instantly called for her official sainthood. On August 9, 1926, her body taken from the cemetery of Bergamo to the Mother House of the Institute she established and placed in a chapel next to the Church of Adoration. On October 1, 1989, Pope John Paul II beatified her. She was canonized on April 26, 2009 by Pope Benedict XVI. Her feast day is February 18.