This Week’s SAINTS
Week of January 18, 2015
St. Agnes, Feast Day is January 21.
Saint Agnes was only a teenager when she had to decide between life and dying for Jesus. She had been ordered to sacrifice her virginity to pagan gods, and she sacrificed her life instead. She is the patron saint of engaged couples. Please pray for those who are dating, planning to get married, divorced and lonely, co-habitating, married without the Sacrament, and everyone else who is facing the temptation of sexual relations outside of marriage. Help them to grow in their intimacy with Jesus, and teach them to rely on Him to remain pure and chaste.
St. Vincent of Saragossa Deacon, first Martyr of Spain.
His Feast Day is January 22.
Vincent was born in Huesca, near Saragossa, Spain, sometime during the latter part of the 3rd century.
Vincent spent most of his life in the city of Saragossa, Spain, where he was educated and instructed in the Catholic religion. He was ordained to the diaconate by Saint Valerius, Bishop of Saragossa, and commissioned to do the preaching in the diocese. Because Valerius suffered from a speech impediment, Vincent acted as his spokesman. When the Roman Emperor Diocletian began persecuting Christians in Spain, Vincent answered in the bishop’s name and both were brought before Dacian, the Roman Governor. He spoke eloquently for both his bishop and his church, proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ and condemning paganism.
Because of this, by order of the Governor Dacian, they were kept in prison for a long time. Then Valerius was exiled, but Vincent was subjected to many cruel torments, suffering agony yet singing the praises to God, he was overcome by wonder, and confessed in that hour his conversion.
On hearing this, the Roman governor was infuriated, but finding all his efforts to unnerve his victim were useless, gave orders for the torture to stop - perhaps to win Vincent by clemency or to prevent him from becoming a martyr. For a time Vincent had some relief. But he did not survive long and died of his injuries in prison on January 22 in 304.
St. Francis de Sales, Feast day is January 24.
Born in France in 1567, Francis was a patient man. He knew for thirteen years that he had a vocation to the priesthood before he mentioned it to his family. When his father said that he wanted Francis to be a soldier and sent him to Paris to study, Francis said nothing. Then when he went to Padua to get a doctorate in law, he still kept quiet, but he studied theology and practiced mental prayer while getting into swordfights and going to parties. Even when his bishop told him if he wanted to be a priest that he thought that he would have a miter waiting for him someday, Francis uttered not a word. Why did Francis wait so long? Throughout his life he waited for God’s will to be clear. He never wanted to push his wishes on God, to the point where most of us would have been afraid that God would give up!
Jesus told Saint Francis to “Leave all and follow Him,” he developed a life of devotion to Him, through self-discipline, prayer, and kindness toward all. Now he is the patron saint of authors, the Catholic press, and journalists. St. Francis died December 28, 1622.