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St. Katherine Drexel

Saint Katherine Drexel


Katherine was born in 1858, to a wealthy Catholic couple in Philadelphia, and lost her mother at a young age. Her pious father and stepmother instilled great charity and magnanimity in their children. While still a laywoman, Katherine helped establish schools and funded Catholic missions for the Western Indian tribes. Then came a visit to Europe that included an audience with Pope Leo XIII. When Katherine asked the Holy Father to send more missionaries, Pope Leo suggested to the surprised Katherine that she become a missionary herself. With the help of her spiritual director Bishop James O’Connor, Katherine took religious vows and founded the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, an order of nuns dedicated to the evangelization and education of black Americans and American Indians. In 1925 Katherine founded Xavier University of Louisiana, the only Catholic historically black college or university in the United States. After suffering almost twenty years from a serious illness that left her nearly immobile, Katherine died in the year of Our Lord 1955.


Traditional Roman Martyrology for March 3rd

AT Caesarea, in Palestine, during the persecution of Valerian, the holy martyrs Marinus, soldier, and Asterius, senator. The former was examined by the judge on the charge laid against him by his fellow-soldiers of being a Christian, and as he admitted the accusation in no uncertain tone, he was beheaded and thus received the crown of martyrdom. His mutilated body was taken up by Asterius on his shoulders, and wrapped in the garment which he himself wore. This service gained for Asterius immediately the palm of martyrdom as a reward for the honors which he had given to a martyr.

In Spain, the birthday of the holy martyrs Hermiterius and Cheledonius, soldiers in the army at Leon, a city of Galicia. On the approach of a persecution they went to Calahorra, in order to confess the name of Christ, and after enduring many torments there, they were crowned with martyrdom.

The same day, the passion of the Saints Felix, Luciolus, Fortunatus, Marcia, and their companions.

Also, the holy soldiers Cleonicus, Eutropius, and Basiliscus, who gloriously triumphed by the death of the cross under the governor Asclepiades during the persecution of Maximian.

At Brescia, St. Titian, bishop and confessor.

At Bamberg, the empress St. Cunegundes, who preserved her virginity with the consent of her husband, the emperor Henry II. She terminated a life rich in meritorious good deeds with a holy death and worked many miracles afterward.

℣. And elsewhere many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

℟. Thanks be to God.

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