DAILY CATHOLIC    THURSDAY     October 8, 1998     vol. 9, no. 197


To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO

Thursday, October 8, 1998

      First Reading: Galatians 3: 1-5
      Psalms: Luke 1: 69-75
      Gospel Reading: Luke 11: 5-13

Friday, October 9, 1998

    Friday October 9:
    Twenty-seventh Friday in Ordinary Time
    Feast of Saint Denis, Bishop and Martyr and Companions
    Feast of Saint John Leonardi, Priest and Religious Founder

    Green or Red or White vestments

      First Reading: Galatians 3: 7-14
      Psalms: Psalm 111: 1-6
      Gospel Reading: Luke 11: 15-26

Feast of Saint Denis, Bishop and Martyr and his Companions

          Considered the Patron Saint of France, Saint Denis or Saint Dionysius was the first Bishop of Paris who was slaughtered by the Romans in Gaul around 258. Though historians differ on whether this St. Denis was the one converted by Saint Paul as referred to in Acts 17: 34 because he was called Dionysius, it is commonly thought this St. Denis was born in Italy and, with six other bishops, sent to Gaul as missionaries about the year 250. So on fire with conversions was Denis that he became a threat under the persecution of the Roman Emperor Decius. Thus, in early October 258, the Romans captured Denis along with a fellow priest Saint Rusticus and a deacon Saint Eleutherius. After a short time of incarceration they were all beheaded on October 9 on the boundaries of Paris as a show of force against Christianity by the Roman pagans in Gaul. Their decapitated bodies were tossed into the River Seine and that night fished out by faithful followers who gave them a proper burial on the side of the river. Later a chapel was built over their tombs which subsequently became the Benedictine Abbey of Saint-Denis. His feast was introduced into the Roman Calendar in 1568 by Pope Saint Pius V, though it had been celebrated since 800.

Feast of Saint John Leonardi, Priest and Religious Founder

          Born in Lucca, Italy in the year 1541, Saint John Leonardi sought the career of a pharmacist but at 25 was swayed by Heavenly inspiration to enter the seminary where at the age of 20 John became a priest. His vocation was to dedicate all he did to teaching the catechism to youth - childrens and teens. It was St. John Leonardi who founded the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine in 1571, known the world over today as CCD and three years later he founded the Congregation of Clerks of the Mother of God to help preach the catechism and live all the Church taught. The Congregation was approved in 1595 by Pope Clement VIII St. John was persecuted greatly by those who doubted his sincerity and thought he had a personal agenda in his efforts to form the Congregation. Thus, unable to execute his duties without slander in his own town, John went to Rome where he met St. John Calasanz and his spiritual director and confessor, the great St. Philip Neri. There, under his influence, St. John Leonardi sent many members of his Congregation to foreign missions and, with the help of Spanish prelate Bishop G.B. Vives, founded the seminary City College for the Propagation of the Faith (Collegium Urbanum de Propaganda Fide) for the specific purpose of forming priests to send to the missions. All his life St. John Leonardi lived the Gospel, dedicating his life to evangelizing as Jesus asked in Mark 16: 15 to "Go into the whole world and preach the Gospel to every creature." In 1607 Pope Paul V merged the Clerks Regular of the Pious Schools with the Congregation St. John founded to make it stronger and encouraged by this event and the universal evangelization efforts of his Order, their founder died in Rome on October 9, 1609.

October 8, 1998       volume 9, no. 197


Back to HomePort    |    Back to Text Only Front Page     |    Back to Graphics Front Page     |    Archives     |    Why the DAILY CATHOLIC is FREE     |    Why we NEED YOUR HELP     |    What the DAILY CATHOLIC offers     |    Ports o' Call LINKS     |    Books offered     |    Who we are    |    Our Mission     |    E-Mail Us     |    Home Page