A Catholic Monthly Magazine

April Saints

Saint1St Peter Calungsod 

(c 1655-1672)

Pedro Calungsod was born in Cebu, the Philippines. He received basic education from Jesuits, learning the catechism and Spanish, and serving Mass.

At about 14, Pedro accompanied the Jesuits in their mission to the Ladrones Islands and went with Father Diego Luis de San Vitores to Guam. Despite huge difficulties, the mission persevered and a number of locals were converted. When some sickly infants died not long after baptism, however, a Chinese merchant named Choco spread rumours that the baptismal water was poisonous.

On 2 April 1672, the priest and the catechist came to the village of Rumon. Learning that the chief’s wife, a Christian, had given birth to a daughter, they immediately went to baptise the child. The chief, influenced by Choco, was furious and enlisted a non-Christian to kill them. While the chief was away, Father Diego and Pedro baptised the baby girl.

The chief attacked the missionaries with spears. Pedro could have escaped but chose to stay with his priest. Both were then killed by machete. The chief pounded the priest’s crucifix with a stone, denuded the corpses, tied large stones to their feet, took them out to sea and threw them in the water.

Pope John Paul II said of Pedro: “In the face of imminent danger, Pedro would not forsake Father Diego, but as a ‘good soldier of Christ’ preferred to die at the missionary’s side.”

Saint Peter, help us to be true to our faith always.

(Source: Internet – various)

Saint2St André Bessette of Mt Royal


Alfred Bessette was born at St. Grégoire, Quebec of a French Canadian family. His father died in a logging accident when the boy was nine. His mother, shocked by the accident, faded away and died three years later of tuberculosis, at the age of 43. The family was scattered.

Alfred left school at the age of thirteen to look for work. Because of uncertain health and lack of money, he could never undertake prolonged studies. Only with great difficulty did he finally learn to sign his name and to read a little.

After he entered the Community of the Holy Cross as a lay Brother, he spent forty years washing the floors and windows, cleaning the lamps, bringing in the  firewood, acting as porter and commissioner, all in imitation of the great St Joseph, his model.

His dearest project was to see a sanctuary dedicated to St Joseph erected. Brother André never talked of “my work... my project”, but: “I am nothing, only a tool in the hands of Providence, a poor instrument of Saint Joseph.”

For 25 years, Brother André received people in his office for long hours every day. Thousands came. When asked for cures and spiritual favours, he simply said to them: “Do you have faith? Do you believe the good Lord can do something for you? Go and make your confession, go and receive Communion, then come back to see me.” He would suggest invoking Saint Joseph. He knew how to bring forth sprouts of hope in the hearts of those he met.

Brother André died on 6 January, 1937, at age 91.

Saint André, obtain for us a great love of Saint Joseph.

(Source: Internet – various)

Saint3Blessed Mary of the Incarnation


Barbara Avrillot was born in France. Married at age seventeen to Peter Acarie, she and her husband loved their Catholic faith and practised it. The couple had six children and their family life was happy. Barbara tried to be a good wife and mother. Her family learned from her a great love for prayer and works of charity.

Once, when her husband was accused unjustly of a crime, Barbara herself saved him. She went to court, and, all alone, proved that he was not guilty.

Although busy with her own family, she always found time to feed the hungry. She instructed people in the faith, helped the sick and dying, gently encouraged people who were living sinfully to change their ways. The good deeds she performed were works of mercy.

When her husband died, Barbara entered the Carmelite order where she spent the last four years of her life, taking the name Sister Mary of the Incarnation. She joyfully worked in the kitchen among the pots and pans. When her own daughter became the superior of the monastery, Blessed Mary willingly obeyed her, giving a great example of humility. Blessed Mary died in 1618.

Blessed Mary, teach us true devotion to the poor.

(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marie_of_the_Incarnation_%28Carmelite%29)


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