Maximilian Kolbe

1894 – 1941 FEAST August 14 Raimund Kolbe, born in Russian Poland, was ordained a Franciscan, Maximilian Mary, in Rome. In the 1920s, he reopened a ruined Polish friary, started a Marian press and was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Despite his illness, he had successful Marian missions to Japan and India before returning to Poland in […]

Mary Helen MacKillop

1842 – 1909 FEAST August 8 Mother MacKillop is Australia’s first native-born saint and its patron. The oldest of eight children of Scottish immigrants, Mary began working with children as a governess. With encouragement from a priest-adviser, Mary founded the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Sacred Heart, the continent’s first religious order, to open […]


604-642 FEAST August 5 St. Oswald won control of Northumbria at battle against a pagan army in 634. The night before the conflict he had constructed a huge wooden cross on the field and had his largely pagan army pray to God for victory. Then Oswald, a Christian who was converted by monks at Iona, […]


First century FEAST August 3 Lydia’s name is taken from her place of origin, Thyatira in the province of Lydia (now Turkey). Paul’s first convert in Philippi, Lydia is mentioned once in the Bible: Acts 16:13-15. Luke calls her “a dealer in purple cloth” and “a worshipper of God.” After listening to Paul, she and […]

Ignatius of Loyola

1491-1556 FEAST July 31 Born in his family’s ancestral Basque castle, Inigo Lopez de Loyola was a page in Castile and a soldier wounded in battle before he experienced a personal conversion that has had profound consequences for the church ever since. While convalescing, he read about Christ and the saints, made a long retreat […]