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Showing posts from September, 2020

St. Michael the Archangel

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When I first converted to the Catholic faith, I was very uncomfortable with the prayer to St. Michael. In my mind, there was something strange (or rather, even stranger) about praying for the intercession of an angel over the intercession of the saints. Initially, I refused to participate in the prayer, which at my parish is said at the end of each Mass.
Eventually, though, I opted to take a childlike submission to the church's teachings for a short while, and that humility was greatly rewarded. Now, the prayer to St. Michael is one of the most commonly used tools in my arsenal against sin, and I have come to realize the power of his special place as one of the protectors of humanity.

Lifetime: Eternity
Region: Heaven & Earth
Patronages: Grocers; Mariners; Police; Soldiers
Iconograpy: Angel with a sword; Defeating Lucifer / a dragon; Scales
Feast Day: September 29 (with other Archangels)
Michael is one of only three named angels in scripture, and accordingly, along with the archangel…

St. Simeon the Stylite

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St. Simeon the Stylite demonstrates a dedication to reliance on God to the extreme -- he spent most of his life atop a pillar, without shelter from the elements or any possessions. His unusual approach to asceticism was so inspiring that it kicked off a centuries-long trend of "pillar saints" following in his footsteps.
Lifetime: 390-459
Region: Syria
Patronages: Shepherds; Those who have left the church
Iconograpy: Atop a pillar; Habit; Long unkempt hair and beard
Feast Day: September 1 (Eastern Catholic & Orthodox) / January 5 (Roman Catholic) Young Simeon became enamored with the Christian faith when he was 13, after hearing a gospel reading of the Beatitudes ("Blessed are the meek", etc.). He joined a monastery before he was 16 and began pursuing an ascetic life immediately, giving away everything he could and restricting his niceties far beyond that which his fellow monks required -- or even found appropriate. It wasn't long before Simeon was asked to leave …