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St Blaise of Sebaste

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As a physician, St. Blaise was a healer of bodies as much as he later became a healer of souls. After he was elected bishop by popular acclaim, he performed many miracles of healing on people who sought his aid as well as on wild animals. Blaise is particularly invoked for the healing of injuries to the throat owing to a miracle where a woman begged for his help as her son was choking on a fishbone, and Blaise cured the boy. St. Blais is one of the fourteen holy helpers , a group of saints venerated in the middle ages for healing from illness. Lifetime: ? to 316 Region:  Modern Turkey Patronages:  Throats; Physicians; Veterinarians; Woolworkers Iconograpy:  Crossed candles; Comb; Animals Feast Day:  February 3 (Western); February 11 (Eastern)

St. Agnes of Rome

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Like many of the virgin martyrs , St. Agnes was born to a wealthy noble family. She was raised Christian, but as she started to become of age, many suitors were attracted to her. Agnes, however, had promised her life to God and intended never to marry. One of those suitors was the governor's son, and enraged by the rejection, turned her in to the Roman government, as Christianity was against the law at that time. The Roman governor tried many ways to get her to change her mind and marry his son, but Agnes refused each time. He tried to put her in chains, but she only smiled radiantly. He had her stripped naked in the street to try to embarrass her, but her hair instantly grew long enough to cover her entire body. Anyone who tried to do harm to her were blinded. The governor, feeling he had exhausted all other options, sentenced her to execution. She was tied to a post to be burned, but the fire would not light. Finally, a soldier cut her throat and Agnes bled to death, still smilin

St. Lucian of Antioch

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St. Lucian of Antioch was a controversial priest during his lifetime and after. His teachings on literalism formed the basis of the Arian heresy , and he was even the teacher of Arius and several of the other leaders in the movement, though Lucius may not have been an Arian himself. He was also excommunicated for much of his life due to his connection to his bishop, who was a proponent of another heresy. However, even his critics during his life agreed that Lucian was a devout and holy man. His corrected mistranslations of Scripture were later used by St. John Chrysostom and St. Jerome, and he was renowned as a teacher, scholar, and piety. Lucian was eventually arrested by Roman officials for his faith, and starved and tortured for nine years, never recanting his faith. On Theophany, he wished desperately to receive holy communion, and some Christians snuck in the bread and wine for him to bless. He was so weak from his abuse and chained by his jailers that he had to bless the element

St. Stephen the Protomartyr

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St. Stephen is one of the select martyrs mentioned by name in scripture. He was one of the first seven deacons ordained by the church as mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles. During his life, Stephen performed many miracles and was considered to be very holy. He was martyred by stoning after calling out the sins of the Sanhedrin, a martyrdom witnessed by Saul (who would go on to become St. Paul ). Stephen prayed for his killers' forgiveness as he died. Afterwards, many of the disciples fled the holy land for safety. Lifetime:  ~5 to ~33 Region:  Jerusalem Patronages:  Headaches; Brick layers; Altar servers; Harsh truths Iconograpy:  Stones; Censer; Deacon vestments Feast Day:  December 26 (Western); December 2 (Eastern)

St. Crispina

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St. Crispina was a mother and noblewoman from northern Africa who began to be persecuted after she refused to offer sacrifice to pagan gods. In an attempt to shame her into recanting her faith, the judge ordered her head to be shaven, but she remained steadfast. After continued failed attempts to get her to convert, the judge ordered her beheading and she was martyred. St. Augustine, who lived in the century following her martyrdom, preached about her example often. Lifetime:  200s to 304 Region:  Numidia (modern Algeria) Patronages:  None defined Iconograpy:  Shaved head; Holding crown; Wearing red Feast Day:  December 5

Bl. Miguel Pro

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Bl. Miguel Pro was a Jesuit priest in Mexico at a time when the government was trying to suppress the Catholic faith. Priests were forced to marry, arrested for false crimes, or just killed, and churches were forced to close. Miguel continued to run his church secretly, for which he was arrested. He was released, but soon after he was arrested again and accused of attempting to assassinate a general. Despite witnesses saying he wasn't involved, Miguel was executed for the crime, refusing a blindfold so he could face the firing squad. He held a crucifix in one hand and a rosary in the other, and after forgiving the soldiers who were about to kill him, his last words were "¡Viva Cristo Rey!" - "Long live Christ the King!".  Lifetime:  1891 to 1927 Region:  Mexico Patronages:  Martyrs; Those facing persecution Iconograpy:  Rosary; Priest garb; Holding out arms at execution; Viva Cristo Rey banner Feast Day:  November 23