The King received an unusual message one day. He was in his chamber when one of his noblemen quickly entered the room with the strange news that the lord of Vizcaya was waiting outside, disguised as an oxherd and very tired.

Saint Ferdinand IIIDon Lope, disguised! Because it was so unusual, Ferdinand anxiously ordered him to enter immediately. Seeing him, he said, “What is this, Don Lope?”

“I bring you bad news, Lord King,” answered the count, kissing his hand.

Ferdinand sensed, both by his face and his manner of greeting, that the count was coming to him like a shipwrecked person to the shore. “What has happened to you?”” he asked, increasingly alarmed.

“Lord, Don García Fernández and other noblemen are besieged in Castrejón and are insistently asking your help.”

“By the Count Alvaro?”

“And also by the King of León, your father.”

“My Lady Holy Mary, help me! Besieged by my own father!”

As poor Ferdinand, overcome with dismay, covered his face with his hands, Don Lope continued: “I was there with them, and we took counsel among ourselves to decide how to notify you of our predicament. We decided that one of us would disguise himself as a commoner and come to you, as we cannot expect help from anyone else.”

“From the Creator, Don Lope, because He has always helped me,” said the young King seriously, in spite of his anguish. “Count,” he added, getting up and taking the hands of the suffering nobleman firmly into his own, “remain assured I will help my own as I must.”

Subscription12What would he do? First he would seek light where he had always found it, at the feet of “his Counselor.” He sent word to his mother that he would await her at the chapel door.

Doña Berenguera was frightened at this unexpected request, and even more so when she noticed that he was suffering from a profound mental disturbance.

“Mother,” he said simply in a low and disturbed voice, “the King of León, my father, has besieged Don García and other noblemen in Castrejón.”

He remained silent, lacking the courage to resolve the dilemma: either take up the sword against his father or abandon his subjects. She joined her hands and lowered her head in dismay, for the first time in her life unsure of what advice to give him. For a few moments mother and son remained like this, mute as if petrified. Finally, Ferdinand broke the silence, saying, “Let us go to my Counselor because He can lead us out of this predicament.”

Kneeling before the altar, Ferdinand looked fixedly and in anguish at Christ. Little by little, his face became serene, and when, a half hour later, he touched Doña Berenguera lightly on the shoulder to prompt her to leave, his eyes already reflected a firm and certain confidence.

“I repent now of my little faith, as Christ is a very noble King. He does not want me to become discouraged through lack of confidence in Him. I must defend my own, but do not worry.”

Buy it today!

Buy it today!

 

Sr. Maria del Carmen Fernández de Castro Cabeza, The Life of the Very Noble King of Castile and León, Saint Ferdinand III (New York: The Foundation for a Christian Civilization, Inc., 1987), 55-60.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 431

[to be continued]

 

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The economic implications of this spirit were particularly reflected in a “Way of the Cross” economy, where the need for sacrifice and restraint in supplying human needs coincided with the consuming ideal of seeking the Cross of Christ. Medieval man looked for ways to offer up his sacrifices in the economic dealings of every day.
Blessing of the Wheat

One immediate manner of doing this was by offering to God the best fruits of one’s labor. The farmer, for example, planted his wheat thinking that his best grains might be turned into hosts for the Consecration. The vintner saw his wine being used for Mass as the highest honor. Builders gave their best to build magnificent churches to house Our Lord. Fine linens and silks adorned the altars. Members of the ancient guild of joiners and cabinetmakers under the patronage of Saint Anne “looked upon the making of tabernacles wherein God may dwell in our churches as their most choice work.”* The first and best apple of an orchard might be put in the hand of the Virgin statue at the village church as a symbolic gesture of this sacrifice.

Photo of Saint Joseph Day Altar byBart Everson.

Photo of Saint Joseph Day Altar by Bart Everson.

In this way, man “immolated” as an offering the best products of his hands in the service of the God Who immolated Himself for us.

 

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* Prosper Guéranger, The Liturgical Year, trans. Laurence Shepherd (Great Falls, Mont.: St. Bonaventure Publications, 2000), 13:192. If the Blessed Mother was the ciborium of Christ, Saint Anne was the tabernacle.

John Horvat II, Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Society—Where We’ve Been, How We Got Here, and Where We Need To Go (York, Penn.: York Press, 2013), 332.

 

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St. Antonio María Claret y Clará

St Anthony Mary ClaretSpanish prelate and missionary, born at Sallent, near Barcelona, 23 Dec., 1807; died at Fontfroide, Narbonne, France, on 24 Oct., 1870. Son of a small woollen manufacturer, he received an elementary education in his native village, and at the age of twelve became a weaver. A little later he went to Barcelona to specialize in his trade, and remained there till he was twenty. Meanwhile he devoted his spare time to study and became proficient in Latin, French, and engraving; in addition he enlisted in the army as a volunteer…

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Hugh Capet

King of France, founder of the Capetian dynasty, born about the middle of the tenth century; died about 996, probably 24 October.

King Hugh of France.

King Hugh of France.

He was the second son of Hugh the Great, Count of Paris, and Hedwig, sister of Otto I, German Emperor, and was about ten years old when he inherited from his father the Countship of Paris and the Duchy of France. About 970 he married Adelaide of Aquitaine, and as early as 985 the famous Gerbert wrote “The Carlovingian Lothair governs France only in name. The king of France is Hugh.” When Louis V died, 21 May, 987, the assistance of Adalberon, Archbishop of Reims, and of Gerbert, brought about the election of Hugh. The electoral assembly of Senlis listened to a discourse of Adalberon: “Crown the Duke”, he said. “He is most illustrious by his exploits, his nobility, his forces.

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From the Chapelle Saint-François de Paule in Fribourg. Swiss National Museum, Zurich

From the Chapelle Saint-François de Paule in Fribourg. Swiss National Museum, Zurich

Martyrs of the Early Church who were beheaded during the reign of Diocletian; the date of their execution is given as 25 October, 285 or 286. It is stated that they were brothers, but the fact has not been positively proved. The legend relates that they were Romans of distinguished descent who went as missionaries of the Christian Faith to Gaul and chose Soissons as their field of labour. In imitation of St. Paul they worked with their hands, making shoes, and earned enough by their trade to support themselves and also to aid the poor. During the Diocletian persecution they were brought before Maximianus Herculius whom Diocletian had appointed co-emperor. At first Maximianus sought to turn them from their faith by alternate promises and threats.

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St. Elesbaan, King of Ethiopia, Confessor

The Axumite Ethiopians, whose dominions were extended from the western coast of the Red Sea, very far on the continent, were in the sixth century a powerful and flourishing nation. St. Elesbaan their king, during the reign of Justin the Elder, in all his actions and designs had no other desire than to procure in all things the happiness of his people, and the divine glory. The mildness and prudence of his government was a sensible proof how great a blessing a people enjoy in a king who is free from inordinate passions and selfish views, to gratify which princes so often become tyrants. This good king, however, was obliged to engage in a war…

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According to the BBC:

The Queen laid a wreath at the Blood Swept Lands And Seas Of Red exhibit….

By 11 November – Armistice Day – there will be 888,246 ceramic poppies, one for each British and colonial death….

Stage designer Tom Piper, who helped create the poppy installation, said the Queen described the artwork as “‘impressive’…. It’s captured the imagination of the whole nation so I think it’s wonderful we’ve had the Queen at one end and also completely ordinary people at the other coming.”

To read the full article at the BBC, please click here.

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According to BBC.com

… The Queen laid a wreath at the Blood Swept Lands And Seas Of Red exhibit, where each poppy commemorates a fallen WWI serviceman.

By 11 November – Armistice Day – there will be 888,246 ceramic poppies, one for each British and colonial death.

The Tower of London was where more than 1,600 men swore an oath to the Crown after enlisting for the war.

It was also used as a military depot, ceremonial setting-off point for regiments stationed there and the execution location for 11 German spies.

To read the entire article in BBC.com, please click here.

 

 

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The Battle of Fontenoy, May 11, 1745. Oil by Louis Nicolas van Blarenberghe.

The Battle of Fontenoy, May 11, 1745. Oil by Louis Nicolas van Blarenberghe.

During the battle of Fontenoy, when French soldiers were being mowed down, the Dauphin positioned himself at the front of some troops and, sword in hand, shouted:

—   “Frenchmen, forward! Let’s fight for the honor of France!”

Some who were close to the Crown Prince cautioned that his life was too precious to risk in a charge, but he replied:

—   “On the day of battle, only the life of the general is precious, not mine.”

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Edmond Guérard, Dictionnaire encyclopédique d’anécdotes (Paris: Firmin Didot, 1872), Vol. 1, 262. (Nobility.org translation.)

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 430

 

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Making a Sacrifice

October 20, 2014

The baptism of Clovis in Reims in 496. Painting by François-Louis Dejuinne .

The baptism of Clovis in Reims in 496. Painting by François-Louis Dejuinne .

When these dedicated sectors flourished, the spirit of their constant personal self-sacrifice and restraint permeated and set the tone for all society and helped all to control and counter their disordered passions. It was by this spirit that the barbarians were gradually both restrained by force of arms and tamed by prayer and penance under the loving gaze of the Church.

Hence, Summerfield Ballwin succinctly writes that “it was the Way of the Cross . . . which preoccupied the minds and hearts of Christendom.”* The sublime perfume of this spirit of abnegation permeated economy, art, and thought, and gave value, meaning, and beauty to all things human.

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* Summerfield Ballwin, Business in the Middle Ages (New York: Cooper Square Publishers, 1968), 5.

John Horvat II, Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Society—Where We’ve Been, How We Got Here, and Where We Need To Go (York, Penn.: York Press, 2013), 331-2.

 

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Charles Martel

Born about 688; died at Quierzy on the Oise, 21 October, 741.

Charles MartelHe was the natural son of Pepin of Herstal and a woman named Alpaïde or Chalpaïde. Pepin, who died in 714, had outlived his two legitimate sons, Drogon and Grimoald, and to Theodoald, a son of the latter and then only six years old, fell the burdensome inheritance of the French monarchy.

Charles, who was then twenty-six, was not excluded from the succession on account of his birth, Theodoald himself being the son of a concubine, but through the influence of Plectrude, Theodoald’s grandmother, who wished the power invested in her own descendants exclusively.

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Blessed Karl, Emperor of Austria

Karl Franz Josef(Also known as Carlo d’Austria, Charles of Austria)

Born August 17, 1887, in the Castle of Persenbeug in the region of Lower Austria, his parents were the Archduke Otto and Princess Maria Josephine of Saxony, daughter of the last King of Saxony. Emperor Francis Joseph I was Charles’ Great Uncle.

The Imperial family, Franz Joseph I,  Karl I and Otto of Austria.

The Imperial family, Franz Joseph I, Karl I and Otto of Austria.

Charles was given an expressly Catholic education and the prayers of a group of persons accompanied him from childhood, since a stigmatic nun prophesied that he would undergo great suffering and attacks…

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St-Ursula-and-the-Holy-VirginsOnce upon a time, there was once a just and most Christian King of Britain, called Maurus. To him and to his wife Daria was born a little girl, the fairest creature that this earth ever saw. She came into the world wrapped in a hairy mantle, and all men wondered greatly what this might mean. Then the King gathered together his wise men to inquire of them. But they could not make known the thing to him, for only God in Heaven knew how the rough robe signified that she should follow holiness and purity all her days, and the wisdom of Saint John the Baptist. And because of the mantle, they called her Ursula, ‘Little Bear.’

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Statue of St. Wendelin

Statue of St. Wendelin

Born about 554; died probably in 617. His earliest biographies, two in Latin and two in German, did not appear until after 1417. Their narrative is the following: Wendelin was the son of a Scottish king; after a piously spent youth he secretly left his home on a pilgrimage to Rome. On his way back he settled as a hermit in Westricht in the Diocese of Trier. When a great landowner blamed him for his idle life he entered this lord’s service…

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St. John of Capistrano

Born at Capistrano, in the Diocese of Sulmona, Italy, 1385; died 23 October, 1456.

San Juan CapistranoHis father had come to Naples in the train of Louis of Anjou, hence is supposed to have been of French blood, though some say he was of German origin. His father dying early, John owed his education to his mother. She had him at first instructed at home and then sent him to study law at Perugia, where he achieved great success under the eminent legist, Pietro de Ubaldis.

In 1412 he was appointed governor of Perugia by Ladislaus, King of Naples, who then held that city of the Holy See. As governor he set himself against civic corruption and bribery.

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Blessed Thomas Thwing

Martyr. Born at Heworth Hall, near York, in 1635; suffered at York, 23 Oct., 1680. His father was George Thwing, Esq., of Kilton Castle and Heworth, nephew of Venerable Edward Thwing; his mother was Anne, sister of the venerable confessor Sir Thomas Gasciogne, of Barnbrow Hall.

A panoramic view of York in the 15th century.  Watercolour by E. Ridsdale Tate

A panoramic view of York in the 15th century. Watercolour by E. Ridsdale Tate. York Castle is on the right hand side of river, opposite the abandoned motte of Baile Hill.

Educated at Douai, he was sent to the mission in 1664 and laboured in his native country. Until April, 1668, he was chaplain at Carlton Hall, the seat of his cousins the Stapletons. He next opened a school at Quosque, the dower-house of the Stapletons. When in 1677 the “Institute of Mary” began their foundation in the house given by Sir Thomas Gasciogne at Dolebank, Thwing became their chaplain, three of his sisters being of the community. It was there that he was arrested in the early part of 1679. At the time of the Titus Oates scare, two servants who had been discharged from Sir Thomas Gasciogne’s employ for dishonesty, sought vengeance and reward by disclosing a pretend murder plot on the part of Gasciogne and others to murder the king. In their first allegation no mention was made of Thwing. Gasciogne, Thwing, and others were removed to London for trial at Newgate. All were acquitted except Thwing, who was brought back to York for trial in March, 1680. Owing to his challenging the jurors, his trial was postponed to the summer assizes, and he was brought to the bar on 29 July.

Stone marking the site of the Tyburn tree on the traffic island at the junction of Edgware Road, Marble Arch and Oxford Street

Stone marking the site of the Tyburn tree on the traffic island at the junction of Edgware Road, Marble Arch and Oxford Street

He was refused an impartial jury, and was found guilty on the very same evidence upon which his relatives had been acquitted. Upon receiving sentence, which in consideration of his gentle birth was passed on him apart from the felons and murderers found guilty at the same assizes, humbly bowing his head he replied “Innocens ego sum.” The king at first reprieved him, but owing to a remonstrance of the Commons the death-warrant was issued on the day after the meeting of Parliament. He was drawn from York Castle, past the convent where the sisters were dwelling, to Tyburn, where the sentence was carried out. He declared his innocence, protested his loyalty to the king and his charity to his neighbour; prayed for the king and royal family, and begged the prayers of all true Catholics. His dying words were “Sweet Jesus, receive my soul”. His mangled body was given to his friends, and buried in the churchyard of St. Mary, Castlegate.

Relics of the martyr are now preserved at the Bar Convent, York, and at Oscott College.

Knaresborough, MSS.; Coleridge, St. Mary’s Convent, York; Cobbett, State Trials, VII; Foley, Records S. J.; Waugh, Quosque Hall in Downside Review (July, 1909); Gillow in Cath. Rec. Soc., IV, IX; Dodd, Church History, III; Challoner, Memoirs of Missionary Priests (Edinburgh, 1877).

J. L. Whitfield (Catholic Encyclopedia)

[Nobility.org note: He was beatified by Pope Pius XI on 15 December 1929.]

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King Afonso V of Portugal and the Algarves

King Afonso V of Portugal and the Algarves

When King Afonso V of Portugal was in Ceuta he made some incursions into the lands of the Moors. On one of these raids into the mountains, he was surprised by numerous enemies and resolved to withdraw and spend the night in Tetouan. Upon reaching the city he saw that his troops were retreating in disorder and without direction. He therefore ordered Dom Duarte de Meneses, Count of Viana and captain of Alcácer, to return and organize the withdrawal. Knowing that death awaited him in this task, the noble said to the king:

— “Sire, I commend my wife and children to your care.”

When other nobles asked him why he was returning to the battlefield, he explained:

— “I return to die, for my lord the king commands it.”

And indeed, shortly thereafter, Dom Duarte de Meneses was killed in action.

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José Hermano Saraiva, Ditos portugueses dignos de memória (Sintra: Europa-América, 1997), 568. (Nobility.org translation.)

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 429

 

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Painting by Leopold Loeffler of a family that lost everything due to war.

Painting by Leopold Loeffler of a family that lost everything due to war.

Lest we be accused of glorifying the past, any dream of an ideal society cannot exclude the reality of hardship and suffering that comes from God’s punishment of our first parents: “With labor and toil shalt thou eat thereof all the days of thy life” (Gn 3:17). Dreams become nostalgic and romantic fantasies if they are not linked with the reality of suffering and tragedy. We must therefore take to heart the model of the Cross.

crucifixJust as consumer society presupposes the consumer, Christian civilization presupposed the Christian. The Christian was not just a religious label. Rather it was the development of “the human type that had been produced by ten centuries of spiritual discipline and intensive cultivation of the inner life.”* He was and is “another Christ,” inseparable from His Cross.

Livonia KnightWhat characterized early medieval man was his understanding that once disordered passions were let loose, they would unleash a tyrannical rule upon everything. This applied to private life, but this could also be seen in the barbaric and unruly passions of invading peoples who wreaked such havoc on medieval Europe.

Painting by Gustav Reinhold

Painting by Gustav Reinhold

Thus, medieval man perceived that the fight against these unbridled passions must play a central role in his private life. He also understood that in society there must always be dedicated sectors on the front lines of this great battle that, inspired by the Faith, take an attitude of fighting to the death at any moment to defend society as a whole.** The medieval knight, for example, held this ideal literally, as the civilizing monks of the West did analogously in their interior martyrdom.

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* Christopher Dawson, Religion and the Rise of Western Culture (New York: Sheed and Ward, 1950), 9.

 

** “The life of man upon earth is a warfare” (Jb 7:1).

 

John Horvat II, Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Society—Where We’ve Been, How We Got Here, and Where We Need To Go (York, Penn.: York Press, 2013), 331.

 

 

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Painting of St. Francis by Giovanni Da Milano

Painting of St. Francis by Giovanni Da Milano

This recipe from the Umbria region of Italy is served on the feast day of St. Francis. It is supposedly one of the few foods that St. Francis let himself really enjoy. The recipe, according to tradition, originated with St. Clare.

 

divider

Paletta di Mandorla

(Almond Slices)

1 cup butter
1 1/2 cup sugar
4 eggs
4 cups flour
2 cups almonds, whole, finely chopped, or 4 cups almonds, ground
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla

almond biscotti

Cream butter, sugar and eggs. Add the other ingredients and knead until smooth. Form 2 rolls about 1 inch (3 cm) diameter.

Bake in a preheated moderately hot oven 375°F for 10 to 12 minutes until golden brown.

When cool, cut into slices 3/4 inch (2 cm) thick, and toast in the oven for 3 minutes.

 

Taken from Cooking with the Saints by Ernst Schuegraf

 

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October 17 – St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

October 16, 2014

St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Religious of the Visitation Order. Apostle of the Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, born at Lhautecour, France, 22 July, 1647; died at Paray-le-Monial, 17 October, 1690. Her parents, Claude Alacoque and Philiberte Lamyn, were distinguished less for temporal possessions than for their virtue, which gave them an honourable position. […]

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October 17 – The Battle of Cholet

October 16, 2014

The Battle of Cholet was fought on 17 October 1793 during the French Revolutionary Wars, between French Republican forces under General Léchelle and French Royalist Forces under Louis d’Elbée. The battle was fought in the town of Cholet in the Maine-et-Loire department of France, and resulted in a Republican victory. D’Elbée was wounded and captured; […]

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October 18 – A day that sparked the Crusades

October 16, 2014

Destruction of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre On October 18, 1009, under Fatimid caliph Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah, orders for the complete destruction of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, also called the Church of the Resurrection, were carried out. The measures against the church were part of a more general campaign against Christian places […]

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October 18 – Adopted nobility

October 16, 2014

Pope Pius III (Francesco Todeschini Piccolomini). B. at Siena, 29 May, 1439; elected 22 Sept., 1503; d. in Rome, 18 Oct., 1503, after a pontificate of four weeks. Piccolomini was the son of a sister of Pius II. He had passed his boyhood in destitute circumstances when his uncle took him into his household, bestowed […]

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October 19 – From Spain to Rome, Barefoot

October 16, 2014

St. Peter of Alcántara Born at Alcántara, Spain, 1499; died 18 Oct., 1562. His father, Peter Garavita, was the governor of the place, and his mother was of the noble family of Sanabia. After a course of grammar and philosophy in his native town, he was sent, at the age of fourteen, to the University […]

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The Princess of Lamballe displays her magnanimity

October 13, 2014

In 1783, Montgolfier was preparing an experimental flight of his hot air balloon and planned to place live animals inside the basket. The laborer he employed insisted that he wanted to do the trip himself, but the inventor ruled this out as too risky and the rash endangering of the man’s life. At last the […]

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Post-mortem of a Revolution

October 13, 2014

French Revolution The last thirty years have given us a new version of the history of the French Revolution, the most diverse and hostile schools having contributed to it. The philosopher, Taine, drew attention to the affinity between the revolutionary and what he calls the classic spirit, that is, the spirit of abstraction which gave […]

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Why celebrate Columbus Day?

October 13, 2014

Columbus and Divine Providence by Jeremias Wells Christopher Columbus certainly ranks as one of the greatest men of achievement the world has ever known, and also justly one of the most renowned, for the entire history of Europeans in America originated from his vision, religious sense and adventurous spirit. As can be expected in a […]

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October 15 – St. Bruno of Querfurt

October 13, 2014

St. Bruno of Querfurt (Also called BRUN and BONIFACE). Second Apostle of the Prussians and martyr, born about 970; died 14 February, 1009. He is generally represented with a hand cut off, and is commemorated on 15 October. Bruno was a member of the noble family of Querfurt and is commonly said to have been […]

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October 15 – Interior Castle

October 13, 2014

St. Teresa of Avila Teresa Sanchez Cepeda Davila y Ahumada, born at Avila, Old Castile, 28 March, 1515; died at Alba de Tormes, 4 Oct., 1582. The third child of Don Alonso Sanchez de Cepeda by his second wife, Doña Beatriz Davila y Ahumada, who died when the saint was in her fourteenth year, Teresa […]

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October 15 – Casimir Pulaski

October 13, 2014

Casimir Pulaski Patriot and soldier, born at Winiary, Poland, 4 March, 1748; died on the Wasp, in the harbour of Savannah, 11 Oct., 1779; eldest son of Count Joseph Pulaski and Maria Zislinska. His father, a noted jurist, reared him for the bar, and he received his military training, as a youth, in the guard […]

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October 16 – Marie Antoinette

October 13, 2014

Queen of France. Born at Vienna, 2 November, 1755; executed in Paris, 16 October, 1793. She was the youngest daughter of Francis I, German Emperor, and of Maria Theresa. The marriage of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette was one of the last acts of Choiseul’s policy; but the Dauphiness from the first shared the unpopularity […]

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October 16 – Marie Antoinette, Archduchess of Austria, Queen of France and Capetian Widow

October 13, 2014

Most Reverend Monsignor Director of this Academy, Gentlemen Academicians: A simple listing of the titles with which she was known during her short life as Marie Antoinette of Habsburg, and later Marie Antoinette of Bourbon, brings to memory the series of extraordinary and unforeseen events that together make up the fabric of the most interesting […]

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October 16 – Duchess and saint

October 13, 2014

St. Hedwig Duchess of Silesia, born about 1174, at the castle of Andechs; died at Trebnitz, 12 or 15 October, 1243. She was one of eight children born to Berthold IV, Count of Andechs and Duke of Croatia and Dalmatia. Of her four brothers, two became bishops, Ekbert of Bamberg, and Berthold of Aquileia; Otto […]

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Queen moves out. Tourists move in. Who gets the criticism for not making money?

October 9, 2014

According to The Telegraph: …the Queen moved into the seven-bedroom Craigowan Lodge…about a mile away from [Balmoral] castle. The arrangements were made so the estate could stay open to the public for its normal seasonal period of April to July. The 88-year-old monarch’s move to Craigowan was prompted by the growing need to maximise tourist […]

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Labour: Royals “just like everyone else”

October 9, 2014

According to The Telegraph: The Queen and the royal family will have to pay a mansion tax on their portfolio of country estates if Labour is elected, Ed Balls has said. The shadow chancellor said that royals will not be exempt and will have to pay the taxes “just like everyone else” for properties which […]

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Prince of Wales saves wool farmers

October 9, 2014

According to the Sunday Express: When the Prince of Wales conceived his Campaign for Wool crusade five years, bringing together all sectors of the industry, farmers were being paid less for a fleece than it cost to shear. Today wool prices have tripled. “The primary aim of the Campaign is to increase the demand for […]

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Turenne’s horse leads the way

October 9, 2014

When he died on the battlefield, the Marshall de Turenne was riding a magnificent horse, which was well-known and admired by his soldiers. Deprived of their leader, the officers were momentarily at a loss as to what to do, when the soldiers spoke up: — “Put the Commandant’s horse in the front and we will […]

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The Great Works of Men

October 9, 2014

Great dreams are born of those who unite around sublime ideals. When we forsake our dreams, we put ourselves in the hands of bureaucrats in a regime of mediocrity. This is because these great dreams are never the work of social planners, but rather the joint effort of great men, true elites, and peoples. Each […]

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October 10 – What if you come from a family of bad nobility?

October 9, 2014

St. Francis Borgia (also known as Francisco de Borja y Aragon), born 28 October, 1510, was the son of Juan Borgia, third Duke of Gandia, and of Juana of Aragon; died 30 September, 1572. The future saint was unhappy in his ancestry. His grandfather, Juan Borgia, the second son of Alexander VI, was assassinated in Rome […]

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October 10 – St. Paulinus, Archbishop of York

October 9, 2014

St. Paulinus Archbishop of York, died at Rochester, 10 October, 644. He was a Roman monk in St. Andrew’s monastery at Rome, and was sent by St. Gregory the Great in 601, with St. Mellitus and others, to help St. Augustine and to carry the pallium to him. He laboured in Kent — with the […]

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October 11 – Model Archduke, both spiritual and temporal

October 9, 2014

St. Bruno the Great, Archbishop of Cologne Bruno the Great (or Bruno I) (925–965) was Archbishop of Cologne, Germany, from 953 until his death, and Duke of Lotharingia from 954. He was the brother of Otto I, king of Germany and later Holy Roman Emperor. Bruno was the youngest son of Henry the Fowler and […]

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October 11 – He dared step into the gap during the crisis

October 9, 2014

Pope Boniface VIII (BENEDETTO GAETANO) Born at Anagni about 1235; died at Rome, 11 October, 1303. He was the son of Loffred, a descendant of a noble family originally Spanish, but long established in Italy—first at Gaeta and later at Anagni. Through his mother he was connected with the house of Segni, which had already […]

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October 12 – Difficulties in his youth prepared him for later trials

October 9, 2014

St. Wilfrid Bishop of York, son of a Northumbrian thegn, born in 634; died at Oundle in Northamptonshire, 709. He was unhappy at home, through the unkindness of a stepmother, and in his fourteenth year he was sent away to the Court of King Oswy, King of Northumbria. Here he attracted the attention of Queen […]

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October 12 – Martyr King

October 9, 2014

St. Edwin The first Christian King of Northumbria, born about 585, son of Aella, King of Deira, the southern division of Northumbria; died October 12, 633. Upon Aella’s death in 588, the sovereignty over both divisions of Northumbria was usurped by Ethebric of Bernicia, and retained at his death by his son Ethelfrid; Edwin, Aella’s […]

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October 13 – King Confessor

October 9, 2014

St. Edward the Confessor Saint, King of England, born in 1003; died January 5, 1066. He was the son of Ethelred II and Emma, daughter of Duke Richard of Normandy, being thus half-brother to King Edmund Ironside, Ethelred’s son by his first wife, and to King Hardicanute, Emma’s son by her second marriage with Canute. […]

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Who Was Christopher Columbus, and Why Is He Important?

October 9, 2014

Christopher Columbus (Italian CRISTOFORO COLOMBO; Spanish CRISTOVAL COLON.) Born at Genoa, or on Genoese territory, probably 1451; died at Valladolid, Spain, 20 May 1506. His family was respectable, but of limited means, so that the early education of Columbus was defective. Up to his arrival in Spain (1485) only one date has been preserved. His […]

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Father Jean Le Vacher: Hero and Missionary, Blasted to Death by Muslims

October 6, 2014

In 1647, St. Vincent de Paul sent Father Jean Le Vacher to do missionary work among the Catholics enslaved by the Barbary Coast’s Muslim corsairs and he arrived in Tunis during an epidemic of the plague and did much to comfort the captives. Upon the death of the French consul, the Bey appointed Father Le […]

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Common Sense and the Balance We Seek

October 6, 2014

There is a second driving force that serves as a counterbalance to the first lest it degenerate into dangerous fantasy. It comes from realizing that this land of exile is not all marvelousness; we must adjust ourselves to the world that exists. Hence, there is born in balanced souls a veritable enthusiasm for common sense […]

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October 7 – How the Rosary saved Christendom

October 6, 2014

by Jeremias Wells The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary Here is but a small fraction of the victories directly obtained from God through the Holy Rosary: The Battle of Lepanto which saved Rome and Vienna, and thus the Pope and the Emperor, from Moslem subjugation The deliverance of Vienna by Sobieski The victory […]

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October 9 – Superb and valiant knight

October 6, 2014

Baron Athanase-Charles-Marie Charette de la Contrie Born at Nantes, 3 Sept., 1832; died at Basse-Motte (Ille-et-Vilaine), 9 Oct., 1911. His father was a nephew of the famous General Charette who was shot at Nantes, 29 March, 1795, during the rising of the Vendee. His mother, Louise, Countess de Vierzon, was the daughter of the Duc […]

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October 9 – Royal penitent

October 6, 2014

Bl. Gunther A hermit in Bohemia in the eleventh century; born about 955; died at Hartmanitz, Bohemia, 9 Oct., 1045. The son of a noble family, he was a cousin of St. Stephen, the King of Hungary, and is numbered among the ancestors of the princely house of Schwarzburg. He passed the earlier of his […]

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October 9 – St. John Twenge

October 6, 2014

St. John Twenge Canon regular, Prior of St. Mary’s, Bridlington, born near the town, 1319; died at Bridlington, 1379. He was of the Yorkshire family Twenge, which family in Reformation days supplied two priest-martyrs and was also instrumental in establishing the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Bar Convent, York. John completed his studies […]

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October 9 – St. Louis Bertrand

October 6, 2014

St. Louis Bertrand Born at Valencia, Spain, 1 Jan., 1526; died 9 Oct., 1581. His patents were Juan Bertrand and Juana Angela Exarch. Through his father he was related to the illustrious St. Vincent Ferrer, the great thaumaturgus of the Dominican Order. The boyhood of the saint was unattended by any of the prodigies that […]

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Belgian king visits former concentration camp

October 2, 2014

According to the Royal News Blog: On September 28, 2014 King Philippe attended a commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Belgium’s Fort Breendonk from the Nazis, who used it as a concentration camp. The fort is now a Belgian national memorial. Please click here to see a picture of his visit.

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One Noble Family’s Six Centuries of Stability in a Locale

October 2, 2014

Bishop Isoard…narrates a conversation he heard one month earlier between notre Monsieur and his farmer. The latter said to him: “Last December, it was three hundred forty-seven years that we have been with Monsieur.” And the former replied, “We, we were here before you. I don’t know for sure how many years… all I know […]

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Uniting the Idealist and the Pragmatist

October 2, 2014

Alas, there is a modern tendency to divide the world between the idealist and the pragmatist, the metaphysical and the physical, or the spiritual and material, as if we were dealing with two different realities. In a society that pursues its dreams, this separation need not be made. Both the ideal and the practical can […]

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October 3 – Military turned monk

October 2, 2014

St. Gérard, Abbot of Brogne Born at Staves in the county of Namur, towards the end of the ninth century; died at Brogne or St-Gérard, 3 Oct. 959. The son of Stance, of the family of dukes of Lower Austrasia, and of Plectrude, sister of Stephen, Bishop of Liège, the young Gérard, like most men […]

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October 3 – Mother Théodore Guérin

October 2, 2014

Many of the early pioneers faced the hardships of this country where wars, famine and disease were the norm. Leaving everything behind, heroic souls came not only to save the souls of Indian nations, but also to minister to these frontier families. One such person was St. Mother Théodore Guérin, who became the eighth American Saint […]

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October 3 – Enemy of King St. Louis, but still his friend in Christ

October 2, 2014

St. Thomas of Hereford (THOMAS DE CANTELUPE). Born at Hambledon, Buckinghamshire, England, about 1218; died at Orvieto, Italy, 25 August, 1282. He was the son of William de Cantelupe and Millicent de Gournay, and thus a member of an illustrious and influential family. He was educated under the care of his uncle, Walter de Cantelupe, […]

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