Archive for the ‘May 13’ Category

Feast of Unita Blackwell (May 13)   Leave a comment

Above:   Mayersville, Mississippi

Image Source = Google Earth



African-American Civil Rights Activist, Rural Community Development Specialist, and Mayor of Mayersville, Mississippi

Born U. Z. Brown


Politics is not just about voting one day every four years.  Politics is the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the road we walk on.

–Unita Blackwell


Unita Blackwell‘s Christian faith compelled her to resist systems of oppression and leave communities better than she found them.  Her faith led her to seek intercultural understanding on the local, national, and international levels.

U. Z, Brown, born in Lula, Mississippi, on March 18, 1933, grew up in the Jim Crow U.S. South.  Laws kept African Americans “in their place,” or subordinate to white people.  Our saint, the daughter of sharecroppers Willie Brown and Virda Mae Brown, was originally just U. Z,–initials, no name that abbreviated to them.  The Browns believed on a plantation and in fear of the estate’s owner.  In 1936, Willie fled the plantation.  His family joined him in Memphis, Tennessee, shortly thereafter.  The couple separated in 1938.  Virda Mae and her mother moved to West Helena, Arkansas.

Jim Crow laws restricted the educational opportunities of African Americans in West Helena.  The agricultural economy took precedence over schooling.  Furthermore, African Americans could not attend high school; their public education terminated at the eighth grade.  U. Z. chose her new name, Unita Zelma, in the sixth grade.  She also completed the eighth grade.  Her formal education did not progress until the 1980s.

Our saint met and married Jeremiah Blackwell, a cook for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  The site of the wedding was Clarksdale, Mississippi.  The couple had one child, Jeremiah, Jr., born on July 2, 1957.  The Blackwells moved to Mayersville, Mississippi, a small town and the seat of Issaquena County.  Mayersville remained our saint’s home for most of the remainder of her life.  She active in her Baptist church, taught Sunday School.

Blackwell became a civil rights activist in the summer of 1964.  That June, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) conducted a voter registration drive in Issaquena County.  Jeremiah and Unita tried to register to vote, but initially failed the the registration test, designed to cause people to fail.  Both of them lost their jobs for their trouble.  Unita eventually passed the registration test a few months later.  I have found no information about when Jeremiah successfully registered to vote.

That summer, with the aid and encouragement of Fannie Lou Hamer (1917-1977), Blackwell embarked upon activism.  She became a project manager with SNCC, directing voter registration drives in the state.  That summer, she also attended the Democratic National Convention as a delegate from the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party.

Blackwell paid a stiff price for her activism; police arrested her more than 70 times.  Yet she remained undeterred.  Our saint helped to introduce Head Start for African-American children in Mississippi in 1965.  Our saint and her husband successfully sued the Issaquena County Board of Education in 1965.  The local elementary school principal had expelled more than 300 African-American children for a range of alleged offenses, including wearing SNCC pins.  The federal district court agreed with the Blackwells.  It also ordered the integration of Issaquena County public schools by fall 1965.  The federal court of appeals upheld the district court’s ruling.  The public schools did not integrate until 1970, though.  Freedom schools for African-American chilldren operated through the summer of 1970.

Blackwell became an expert in rural community development, in the context of rural poverty.  In the late 1960s and the 1970s, she worked with the National Council of Negro Women on the issue of low-income housing.  Our saint encouraged poor people across the United States to construct their own housing.  She served as the Mayor of Mayersville from 1977 to 2001.  In that capacity, in the poor, rural Mississippi Delta, Blackwell expanded the range of basic services the local government provided to citizens.  The quality of life for all residents, especially poor and the vulnerable, improved.  Mayor Blackwell’s formal education leapfrogged from the eighth grade to a graduate degree in 1983.  In 1982 and 1983, she studied for her Master of Regional Planning degree from the University of Massachusetts–Amherst.

Blackwell’s efforts extended to the national level, too.  She was a member of the Democratic National Committee.  Our saint also attended the national Energy Summit at Camp David in 1979.  President Jimmy Carter invited her.  That year our saint also began to sit on the U.S. National Commission on the International Year of the Child.  Furthermore, Blackwell was a Fellow of the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, in 1991-1992.  She also ran in the primary election for U.S. House of Representatives in 1993, the year after she won one of the MacArthur Fellowships, or “genius grants.”

Blackwell also worked on the international front.  She, interested in U.S.-Chinese cultural exchanges, made sixteen trips to the People’s Republic of China, starting in 1973.  Furthermore, she served as the President of the U.S.-China Peoples Friendship Association (founded in 1974) for six years.  And, in 1995, our saint was a delegate to the Non-Government Organizations Forum, related to the International Conference on Women, in Beijing.

Sadly, dementia afflicted Blackwell during her final years.  It set in by 2007/2008.  Our saint, 86 years old, died in a nursing home in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, on May 13, 2019.









Holy and righteous God, you created us in your image.

Grant us grace to contend fearlessly against evil and to make no peace with oppression.

Help us, like your servant Unita Blackwell, to work for justice among people and nations,

to the glory of your name, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Hosea 2:18-23

Psalm 94:1-15

Romans 12:9-21

Luke 6:20-36

–Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), 60


Feast of Saint Glyceria of Heraclea (May 13)   Leave a comment

Above:  Thrace in the Roman Empire

Image in the Public Domain



Martyr, Circa 177

Also known as Saint Glyceria of Trajanopolis

St. Glyceria is a saint in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox traditions.  Given the antiquity of her hagiography, one may reasonable expect that hagiographers can and do consult a list of Roman Emperors, in her case, and correctly identify the emperor during whose reign she died.  Various accounts place her death from 171 to 177, but always in the 170s.  Nevertheless, some of these accounts identify the emperor at the time of St. Glyceria’s martyrdom as Antoninus Pius (reigned 138-161).  No, the emperor was Marcus Aurelius (reigned 161-180).

Offering to the gods on behalf of the Roman Empire was a patriotic and civic duty of Gentiles.  (The empire exempted the Jews.)  The rationale for the offering was that the gods would continue to bless and prosper the Roman Empire as long as its subjects honored the gods–a divine quid pro quo.  The growth of Christianity, therefore, constituted a perceived threat to the empire.

National and imperial security have long provided excuses for a host of sins.  To quote Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), the British linguist and “Great Moralist,”

Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

St. Glyceria (literally, “Sweetness”) came from a prominent family.  Her father, Macarius, was a governor, in modern political terms.  The family moved to Trajanopolis, Thrace, when our saint was quite young.  Her parents died when she was a minor.  The orphan met Christians and eventually converted.  St. Glyceria was a secret disciple until she had to risk her life to avoid betraying her faith.  St. Glyceria was at Heraclea (near Propontius, the modern-day Sea of Marmara) when she disobeyed the imperial order to sacrifice to the gods on behalf of the Roman Empire.  She died of torture.  Then wild animals consumed her corpse.

The last vestiges of the Roman Empire collapsed in 1453.









Almighty God, by whose grace and power your holy martyr Saint Glyceria of Heraclea

triumphed over suffering and was faithful even to death:

Grant us, who now remember her in thanksgiving,

to be so faithful in our witness to you in this world,

that we may receive with her the crown of life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, for ever, and ever.  Amen.

Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) 51:1-12

Psalm 116 or 116:1-8

Revelation 7:13-17

Luke 12:2-12

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 714


Feast of Blessed Gemma of Goriano Sicoli (May 13)   Leave a comment

Above:  Blessed Gemma of Goriano Sicoli

Image in the Public Domain



Italian Roman Catholic Anchoress

In Goriano Sicoli, Italy, is the Church of Santa Gemma, the destination of a pilgrimage from San Sebastiano dei Marsi every May 11-13.  The church is a place in a story from World War II.  That story tells us that, when a soldier was preparing to store ammunition in the building, he changed his mind after a young woman (the apparition of Blessed Gemma) appeared to him and said,

Go away; this is my house.

Regardless of the truth or fiction of that story, Blessed Gemma, born circa 1375, in San Sebastiano dei Marsi, was devout.  She raised Roman Catholic, came from an impoverished family on a farm.  That family eventually sought improved financial circumstances in the village of Goriano Sicoli, in the Diocese of Sulmona.  When Blessed Gemma was young her parents died during an epidemic.  Subsequently relatives raised our saint, who worked as a shepherdess and spent much time in prayer in the fields.

Blessed Gemma, a beauty, understood that she had a vocation to the religious life.  She attracted the attention of Count Ruggero of Celano, who eventually abandoned his pursuit of her and financed the construction of her cell next to the Church of San Giovanni, Goriano Sicoli.  The arrangement was such that our saint could see the high altar.  She, an anchoress for the remaining 42 years of her life, provided spiritual counseling to all who sought it from her.  Blessed Gemma died, aged about 64 years, died of natural causes on May 13, 1439.

Devotion to the memory of Blessed Gemma (beatified by Pope Leo XIII in 1890) grew over time.  The space beneath the high altar of the Church of Santa Gemma, built on the site of the former Church of San Giovanni, became her tomb in 1613.  A similar reburial occurred in 1818, on the occasion of the construction of the second Church of Santa Gemma.






O God, by whose grace your servant Blessed Gemma of Goriano Sicoli,

kindled with the flame of your love, became a burning and a shining light in your Church:

Grant that we may also be aflame with the spirit of love and discipline,

and walk before you as children of light;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Acts 2:42-47a

Psalm 133 or 34:1-8 or 119:161-168

2 Corinthians 6:1-10

Matthew 6:24-33

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 723


Feast of Henri Dominique Lacordaire (May 13)   Leave a comment

Above:  Lacordaire

Image in the Public Domain



French Roman Catholic Priest, Dominican, and Advocate for the Separation of Church and State


When I was in Rome in 1846 Gregory XVI used to bless and shoot down his subjects in turns.  Pius IX puts them in prison….I sincerely hope that Providence will put and end to this scandal.

–Lacordaire on the Papal States


Henri Dominique Lacordaire was a faithful yet unconventional (for his time and place) Roman Catholic.  He would have fit in better after Vatican II than he did during his lifetime.

Lacordaire, born near Dijon, France, on May 13, 1802, made an interesting journey of faith.  He, raised a Roman Catholic, became a Deist in college.  Later he returned to Holy Mother Church.  Our saint entered the seminary at Issy on May 12, 1824.  During his years in seminary Lacordaire’s relative heterodoxy became apparent.  He, ordained a priest on September 22, 1827, was a puzzle to his superiors, who did not know what to do with him.  They assigned him to work as a chaplain–first to a convent then at College Henri IV.  These tasks did not satisfy our saint, who volunteered to serve in New York City instead in 1829.

The Revolution of 1830 changed that plan.  Lacordaire was actually a revolutionary, not a liberal.  In the context of Roman Catholicism during his lifetime his leftist tendencies meant that he favored constitutional government, sought to reconcile the Church and forces of liberty, and considered the separation of church and state essential for the Church to fulfill its proper role in society.  Our saint considered the monarchical and reactionary leaders of French Roman Catholicism, nostalgic for l’Ancien Régime, misguided.  For thirteen months until 1832, Lacordaire, Father Felicité Lamennais, and layman Charles Montalembert operated the leftist L’Avenir (The Future), despite much opposition from French bishops.  After Pope Gregory XVI condemned leftist Catholics in Mirari Vos (1832) the journal ceased to exist.  Lamennais eventually left the Church.  Lacordaire, however, submitted to the Supreme Pontiff with a combination of grief and grace.

Our saint spent the rest of his life as a figure of widespread yet not universal suspicion within his Church.  He, in demand as an orator, delivered series of influential lectures at Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris, in 1835 and 1843-1852.  Along the way he joined the Order of Preachers (the Dominican Order) in 1840, thereby restoring that order to France after an absence of half a century.  The Revolution of 1848, according to Lacordaire, was an event the Church should have welcomed, not condemned.  That year, for eleven days, our saint served as a member of the new Constitutent Assembly.  He resigned because of conflicts between his political principles and the Pope’s temporal sovereignty in the Papal States, the existence of which our saint condemned.

Lacordaire, a man more than a century ahead of his time, died, aged 58 years, at Sorèze, France, on November 21, 1861.





Almighty God, we praise you for your servant Henri Dominique Lacordaire,

through whom you have called the church to its tasks and renewed its life.

Raise up in our own day teachers and prophets inspired by your Spirit,

whose voices will give strength to your church and proclaim the reality of your reign,

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Jeremiah 1:4-10

Psalm 46

1 Corinthians 3:11-23

Mark 10:35-45

–Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 60


Feast of Frances Perkins (May 13)   Leave a comment

Frances Perkins, 1932

Above:  Frances Perkins, 1932

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-USZ62-1132



United States Secretary of Labor

Frances Perkins read, marked, learned, and inwardly directed potent language from Matthew 25:

Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat:  I was thirsty, and ye gave my drink:  I was a stranger, and ye took me in:  Naked, and ye clothed me:  I was sick, and ye visited me:  I was in prison, and ye came unto me.

Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee, an hungred, and fed thee?  or thirsty, and gave thee drink?  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in?  or naked, and clothed thee?  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?

And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, In as much as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

Then shall he say unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat:  I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in:  naked, and ye clothed me not:  sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.

Then they shall also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?

Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.

And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

–Verses 34-46, Authorized Version

Fannie Coralie Perkins was a native of Boston, Massachusetts.  She grew up a Congregationalist in Worcester, Massachusetts.  Our saint, born on April 10, 1880, was daughter of Susan Bean Perkins (died in 1927) and Frederick W. Perkins (died in 1916), owner of a stationery business.  Both parents were from Maine.  Our saint, with encouragement from her parents, attended the mostly male Worcester Classical High School.  She went on to attend Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts, where she majored in physics and chemistry.  During her undergraduate program she read How the Other Half Lives (1889), by Jacob Riis (1849-1914), the famous muckraking journalist who wrote about, among other things, life in slums.  Perkins graduated in 1902.  For about the next two years she worked for the benefit of her community in Worcester.  Perkins taught part-time and volunteered with social service organizations in the city.

In 1904 our saint moved to Lake Forest, Illinois, to accept a teaching position.  She taught there until 1907 and spent free time in Hull House and similar institutions in Chicago.  On June 11, 1905, at the Church of the Holy Spirit, Lake Forest, she converted to The Episcopal Church.  She also changed her first name to Frances.  Perkins became an Anglo-Catholic mystic whose faith defined her policy positions.  She stood in the tradition of the finest social teaching of Angl0-Catholicism, for she had an active concern for the poor and the downtrodden.

From 1907 to 1909 Perkins studied economics and sociology at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.  That program led to her work in New York.  In 1909 our saint, having received a Russell Sage Foundation fellowship, started work on her M.A. degree in political science (Columbia University, 1910).  She surveyed living and working conditions in Hell’s Kitchen.


The people are what matter to government, and a government should aim to give all the people under its jurisdiction the best possible life.

–Frances Perkins


From 1910 to 1912 Perkins served as the executive secretary of the National Consumers League.  As she went about her work our saint witnessed the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire on March 25, 1911.  In that infamous and avoidable event employees faced a terrifying choice–to die in the flames or to jump from window ledges.  The incident added to Perkins’s catalog of motivating factors as she strove for social reform.

From 1912 to 1932 Perkins worked in the administrations of Al Smith and Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Governors of New York.  While serving on the Committee on Safety of the City of New York (1912-1917) our saint exposed hazardous practices in workplaces.  Starting in 1918 Perkins worked via the State Industrial Board, becoming its chair in 1926.  Then she served as the state’s Industrial Commissioner.

Perkins was a feminist.  Not only did she advocate for women’s suffrage, she decided to keep her last name when she married economist Paul Caldwell Wilson (1876-1952) in 1913.  She had to go to court to defend that.  Nevertheless, the name engraved on her headstone was “Frances Perkins Wilson,” her name on the records of the federal census of 1930.  (The census records of 1920 listed her as “Frances Perkins,” however.)

Our saint had to contend with the fact of her husband’s bipolar disorder.  In that time period the treatment was apparently institutionalization, for Paul was in and out of mental hospitals.  Perkins became the primary wage earner out of necessity while raising their daughter, Susanna Wilson (1916-2003).


I came to Washington to work for God, FDR, and the millions of forgotten, plain common workingmen.

–Frances Perkins


Perkins served as the U.S. Secretary of Labor from 1933 to 1945.  She made history, for she was the first female member of a presidential cabinet in the United States.  Our saint was also one of the architects of the New Deal.  Her numerous accomplishments included drafting the Social Security Act, helping to establish the federal minimum wage, being instrumental in fighting child labor, helping to create the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), expanding the roles of women in workplaces, extending the rights of labor unions and their members, and advocating for unemployment insurance.  Our saint’s unrealized goal was universal access to health care, which has been on the U.S. political landscape since at least 1912, when former President Theodore Roosevelt campaigned on the issue while seeking his old job as the nominee of the Progressive Party.  Perkins resigned as Secretary of Labor on July 1, 1945.  Later that year she joined the federal Civil Service Commission, serving until 1953.

Most of the sources I consulted regarding our saint’s life and labors ignored or barely mentioned the influence of her faith upon her public life.  Not surprisingly, religious-based sources provided that information, including the fact that, while serving as the Secretary of Labor, she made monthly retreats with the All Saints’ Sisters of the Poor at Cantonsville, Maryland.

Perkins wrote books, including the following:

  1. Women as Employees (1919),
  2. A Social Experiment Under the Workmen’s Compensation Jurisdiction (1921),
  3. People at Work (1934), and
  4. The Roosevelt I Knew (1946).

Our saint spent her final years teaching at the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Ithaca, New York, starting in 1957.  She died at New York, New York, on May, 14, 1965.  She was 85 years old.

Newcastle, Maine, where our saint spent summers with her grandmother, is the site of the Frances Perkins Center.

The Letter of James offers timeless wisdom:

As a body without a spirit is dead, so is faith without deeds.

–Chapter 2, Verse 26 (The New Jerusalem Bible, 1985)

The faith of Frances Perkins was vivacious.





Loving God, we bless your Name for Frances Perkins,

who lived out her belief that the special vocation of the laity is to conduct

the secular affairs of society that all may be maintained in health and decency.

Help us, following her example, to contend tirelessly for justice

and for the protection of all in need, that we may be faithful followers of Jesus Christ;

who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Deuteronomy 15:7-11

Psalm 37:27-31

Ephesians 4:25-5:2

Luke 9:10-17

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 369


Saints’ Days and Holy Days for May   Leave a comment

Rosa Chinensis

Image Source = Sakurai Midori


2 (Alexander of Alexandria, Patriarch; and Athanasius of Alexandria, Patriarch and “Father of Orthodoxy”)

  • Charles Silvester Horne, English Congregationalist Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Christian Friedrich Hasse, German-British Moravian Composer and Educator
  • Elias Boudinot, IV, U.S. Stateman, Philanthropist, and Witness for Social Justice
  • Julia Bulkley Cady Cory, U.S. Presbyterian Hymn Writer
  • Sigismund of Burgundy, King; Clotilda, Frankish Queen; and Clodoald, Frankish Prince and Abbot

3 (Caroline Chisholm, English Humanitarian and Social Reformer)

  • Marie-Léonie Paradis, Founder of the Little Sisters of the Holy Family
  • Maura and Timothy of Antinoe, Martyrs, 286
  • Tomasso Acerbis, Capuchin Friar

4 (Ceferino Jimenez Malla, Spanish Romani Martyr, 1936)

  • Angus Dun, Episcopal Bishop of Washington, and Ecumenist
  • Basil Martysz, Polish Orthodox Priest and Martyr, 1945
  • Jean-Martin Moyë, Roman Catholic Priest, Missionary in China, and Founder of the Sisters of Divine Providence and the Christian Virgins
  • John Houghton, Robert Lawrence, Augustine Webster, Humphrey Middlemore, William Exmew, and Sebastian Newdigate, Roman Catholic Martyrs, 1535

5 (Charles William Schaeffer, U.S. Lutheran Minister, Historian, Theologian, and Liturgist)

  • Caterina Cittadini, Founder of the Ursuline Sisters of Somasco
  • Edmund Ignatius Rice, Founder of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools of Ireland and the Congregation of Presentation Brothers
  • Friedrich von Hügel, Roman Catholic Independent Scholar and Philosopher
  • Honoratus of Arles and Hilary of Arles, Roman Catholic Bishops; and Venantius of Modon and Caprasius of Lerins, Roman Catholic Hermits

6 (Anna Rosa Gattorno, Founder of the Institute of the Daughters of Saint Anne, Mother of Mary Immaculate)

  • Clarence Dickinson, U.S. Presbyterian Organist and Composer
  • Maria Catalina Troiani, Founder of the Franciscan Missionaries of the Immaculate Heart of Mary
  • Willibald of Eichstatt and Lullus of Mainz, Roman Catholic Bishops; Walburga of Heidenhelm, Roman Catholic Abbess; Petronax of Monte Cassino, Winnebald of Heidenhelm, Wigbert of Fritzlar, and Sturmius of Fulda, Roman Catholic Abbots; and Sebaldus of Vincenza, Roman Catholic Hermit and Missionary

7 (Domitian of Huy, Roman Catholic Archbishop)

  • Alexis Toth, Russian Orthodox Priest and Defender of Orthodoxy in America
  • Harriet Starr Cannon, Founder of the Community of Saint Mary
  • Joseph Armitage Robinson, Anglican Dean, Scholar, and Hymn Writer
  • Rosa Venerini, Founder of the Venerini Sisters; and her protégé, of Lucia Filippini, Founder of the Religious Teachers Filippini
  • Tobias Clausnitzer, German Lutheran Minister and Hymn Writer

8 (Juliana of Norwich, Mystic and Spiritual Writer)

  • Acacius of Byzantium, Martyr, 303
  • Henri Dumont, Roman Catholic Composer and Organist
  • Magdalena of Canossa, Founder of the Daughters of Charity and the Sons of Charity
  • Peter of Tarentaise, Roman Catholic Archbishop

9 (Stefan Grelewski and his brother, Kazimierz Grelewski, Polish Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs, 1941 and 1942)

  • Dietrich Buxtehude, Lutheran Organist and Composer
  • Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin, Co-Founders of the Catholic Worker Movement
  • Maria del Carmen Rendiles Martinez, Founder of the Servants of Jesus of Caracas
  • Thomas Toke Lynch, English Congregationalist Minister and Hymn Writer

10 (Enrico Rebuschini, Roman Catholic Priest and Servant of the Sick; and his mentor, Luigi Guanella, Founder of the Daughters of Saint Mary of Providence, the Servants of Charity, and the Confraternity of Saint Joseph)

  • Anna Laetitia Waring, Humanitarian and Hymn Writer; and her uncle, Samuel Miller Waring, Hymn Writer
  • Ivan Merz, Croatian Roman Catholic Intellectual
  • John Goss, Anglican Church Composer and Organist; and William Mercer, Anglican Priest and Hymn Translator
  • Vasile Aftenie, Romanian Roman Catholic Bishop and Martyr, 1950

11 (Henry Knox Sherrill, Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church)

  • Barbara Andrews, First Female Minister in The American Lutheran Church, 1970
  • John James Moment, U.S. Presbyterian Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Matteo Ricci, Roman Catholic Missionary
  • Matthêô Lê Van Gam, Vietnamese Roman Catholic Martyr, 1847

12 (Germanus I of Constantinople, Patriarch of Constantinople, and Defender of Icons)

  • Gregory of Ostia, Roman Catholic Abbot, Cardinal, and Legate; and Dominic of the Causeway, Roman Catholic Hermit
  • Paul Mazakute, First Sioux Episcopal Priest
  • Roger Schütz, Founder of the Taizé Community
  • Sylvester II, Bishop of Rome

13 (Henri Dominique Lacordaire, French Roman Catholic Priest, Dominican, and Advocate for the Separation of Church and State)

  • Frances Perkins, United States Secretary of Labor
  • Gemma of Goriano Sicoli, Italian Roman Catholic Anchoress
  • Glyceria of Heraclea, Martyr, Circa 177
  • Unita Blackwell, African-American Civil Rights Activist, Rural Community Development Specialist, and Mayor of Mayersville, Mississippi

14 (Francis Makemie, Father of American Presbyterianism and Advocate for Religious Toleration)

  • Carthage the Younger, Irish Abbot-Bishop
  • Maria Dominica Mazzarello, Co-Founder of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians
  • Theodore I, Bishop of Rome
  • Victor the Martyr and Corona of Damascus, Martyrs in Syria, 165


16 (Andrew Fournet and Elizabeth Bichier, Co-Founders of the Daughters of the Cross; and Michael Garicoits, Founder of the Priests of the Sacred Heart of Betharram)

  • John Nepomucene, Bohemian Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1393
  • Martyrs of the Sudan, 1983-2005
  • Ubaldo Baldassini, Roman Catholic Bishop of Gubbio
  • Vladimir Ghika, Romanian Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1954

17 (Thomas Bradbury Chandler, Anglican Priest; his son-in-law, John Henry Hobart, Episcopal Bishop of New York; and his grandson, William Hobart Hare, Apostle to the Sioux and Episcopal Missionary Bishop of Niobrara then South Dakota)

  • Caterina Volpicelli, Founder of the Servants of the Sacred Heart; Ludovico da Casoria, Founder of the Gray Friars of Charity and Co-Founder of the Gray Sisters of Saint Elizabeth; and Giulia Salzano, Founder of the Congregation of the Catechetical Sisters of the Sacred Heart
  • Charles Hamilton Houston and Thurgood Marshall, Attorneys and Civil Rights Activists
  • Donald Coggan, Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Ivan Ziatyk, Polish Ukrainian Greek Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1952

18 (Maltbie Davenport Babcock, U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Humanitarian, and Hymn Writer)

  • Felix of Cantalice, Italian Roman Catholic Friar
  • John I, Bishop of Rome
  • Mary McLeod Bethune, African-American Educator and Social Activist
  • Stanislaw Kubski, Polish Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1945

19 (Jacques Ellul, French Reformed Theologian and Sociologist)

  • Celestine V, Bishop of Rome
  • Dunstan of Canterbury, Abbot of Glastonbury and Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Georg Gottfried Muller, German-American Moravian Minister and Composer
  • Ivo of Kermartin, Roman Catholic Attorney, Priest, and Advocate for the Poor

20 (Alcuin of York, Abbot of Tours)

  • Columba of Rieti and Osanna Andreasi, Dominican Mystics
  • John Eliot, “The Apostle to the Indians”
  • Mariá Angélica Pérez, Roman Catholic Nun
  • Rose Hawthorne Lathrop, Founder of the Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne

21 (Christian de Chergé and His Companions, Martyrs of Tibhirine, Algeria, 1996)

  • Eugene de Mazenod, Bishop of Marseilles, and Founder of the Congregation of the Missionaries, Oblates of Mary Immaculate
  • Franz Jägerstätter, Austrian Roman Catholic Conscientious Objector and Martyr, 1943
  • Joseph Addison and Alexander Pope, English Poets
  • Manuel Gómez González, Spanish-Brazilian Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1924; and Adilo Daronch, Brazilian Roman Catholic Altar Boy and Martyr, 1924

22 (Frederick Hermann Knubel, President of the United Lutheran Church in America)

  • Humility, Italian Roman Catholic Hermitess and Abbess
  • John Forest and Thomas Abel, English Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs, 1538 and 1540
  • Julia of Corsica, Martyr at Corsica, 620
  • Maria Rita Lópes Pontes de Souza Brito, Brazilian Roman Catholic Nun

23 (Ivo of Chartres, Roman Catholic Bishop)

  • Frederick Augustus Bennett, First Maori Anglican Bishop in Aotearoa/New Zealand
  • Józef Kurgawa and Wincenty Matuszewski, Polish Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs, 1940
  • William of Perth, English Roman Catholic Baker and Martyr, 1201

24 (Nicolaus Selnecker, German Lutheran Minister, Theologian, and Hymn Writer)

  • Benjamin Carr, Anglo-American Composer and Organist
  • Jackson Kemper, Episcopal Missionary Bishop
  • Edith Mary Mellish (a.k.a. Mother Edith), Founder of the Community of the Sacred Name
  • Maria Gargani, Founder of the Sisters Apostles of the Sacred Heart
  • Mary Madeleva Wolff, U.S. Roman Catholic Nun, Poet, Scholar, and President of Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, Indiana

25 (Bede of Jarrow, Roman Catholic Abbot and Father of English History)

  • Aldhelm of Sherborne, Poet, Literary Scholar, Abbot of Malmesbury, and Bishop of Sherborne
  • Cristobal Magollanes Jara and Agustin Caloca Cortés, Mexican Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs, 1927
  • Madeleine-Sophie Barat, Founder of the Society of the Sacred Heart; and Rose Philippine Duchesne, Roman Catholic Nun and Missionary
  • Mykola Tsehelskyi, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Priest and Martyr, 1951

26 (Augustine of Canterbury, Archbishop)

  • Lambert Péloguin of Vence, Roman Catholic Monk and Bishop
  • Philip Neri, the Apostle of Rome and the Founder of the Congregation of the Oratory
  • Quadratus the Apologist, Early Christian Apologist

27 (Paul Gerhardt, German Lutheran Minister and Hymn Writer)

  • Alfred Rooker, English Congregationalist Philanthropist and Hymn Writer; and his sister, Elizabeth Rooker Parson, English Congregationalist Hymn Writer
  • Amelia Bloomer, U.S. Suffragette
  • John Charles Roper, Anglican Archbishop of Ottawa
  • Lojze Grozde, Slovenian Roman Catholic Martyr, 1943

28 (John H. W. Stuckenberg, German-American Lutheran Minister and Academic)

  • Bernard of Menthon, Roman Catholic Priest and Archdeacon of Aosta
  • Edwin Pond Parker, U.S. Congregationalist Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Hardwicke Drummond Rawnsley, Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer
  • Jeremias Dencke, Silesian-American Moravian Composer and Organist; and Simon Peter and Johann Friedrich Peter, German-American Composers, Educators, Musicians, and Ministers
  • Robert McAfee Brown, U.S. Presbyterian Minister, Theologian, Activist, and Ecumenist

29 (Percy Dearmer, Anglican Canon and Translator and Author of Hymns)

  • Bona of Pisa, Roman Catholic Mystic and Pilgrim
  • Jiri Tranovsky, Luther of the Slavs and Father of Slovak Hymnody
  • Mary Theresa Ledóchowska, Founder of the Missionary Sisters of Saint Peter Claver, and “Mother of the African Missions;” and her sister, Ursula Ledóchowska, Founder of the Congregation of the Ursulines of the Agonizing Heart of Jesus (Gray Ursulines)
  • Ruby Middleton Forsythe, African-American Episcopal Educator

30 (Joan of Arc, Roman Catholic Visionary and Martyr, 1430)

  • Apolo Kivebulaya, Apostle to the Pygmies
  • Joachim Neander, German Reformed Minister and Hymn Writer
  • Josephine Butler, English Feminist and Social Reformer
  • Luke Kirby, Thomas Cottam, William Filby, and Laurence Richardson, Roman Catholic Priests and Martyrs, 1582




  • Ascension
  • First Book of Common Prayer, 1549


Lowercase boldface on a date with two or more commemorations indicates a primary feast.