The month of October still remains within Ordinary Time. October is a month dedicated to Mary, the Mother of God.
MAJOR SAINTS AND FEAST DAYS
|Oct. 1||Theresa of the Child Jesus, Virgin,||Memorial|
|Oct. 2||Guardian Angels,||Memorial|
|Oct. 4||Francis of Assisi,||Memorial|
|Oct. 11||Pope St. John XXIII|
|Oct. 15||Teresa of Avila, Virgin and Doctor,||Memorial|
|Oct. 17||Ignatius of Antioch, Bishop and Martyr,||Memorial|
|Oct. 18||Luke the Evangelist,||Feast|
|Oct. 19||John de Brebeuf, Isaac Jogues, and Companions, Martyrs,||Memorial|
|Oct. 22||Pope St. John Paul II|
|Oct. 28||Simon and Jude, Apostles,||Feast|
IRISH SAINTS OF OCTOBER
Oct. 11 – Canice, Abbot (c. 515-99)
According to some sources, Canice, also known as Kenneth, was born at Glengiven, and became a monk and priest in Wales under St. Cadoc, at Llancarfan. He traveled to Rome, studied under St. Finian at Clonard, and evangelized in Ireland and Scotland. He was a close friend of Columba, whom he accompanied on a mission to the Picts. Canice may be the founder of monasteries at Aghaboe and Kilkenny in Ireland, and he also left a number of traces in place-names in Scotland.
Oct. 13 – Comgan, Abbot (8th century)
Son of a prince of Leinster, he succeeded his father, but was forced to flee to Scotland, where he settled near Skye, built a monastery, and lived an austere life there. He was buried on Iona by his nephew, St. Fillan.
Oct. 16 – Gall (d. c. 635)
Gall distinguished himself as a scholar of grammar, poetry, and Holy Scripture under Saints Comgall and Columban at Bangor and was ordained a priest. He was one of twelve disciples who accompanied Columban to the Continent, first evangelizing in France and later in what is now Switzerland. Gall did not accompany Columban when the latter departed for Italy. Some legends have it that this resulted in a falling out between the two that was only healed at the death of Columban, but this may simply be a story to explain their separation. Gall became a hermit, and eventually the famous monastery of St. Gall came to occupy the site of his hermitage. Several stories would seem to indicate that the saint was an avid fisherman. He turned down offers of bishoprics and abbacies to remain a hermit. St. Gall is considered the apostle of Switzerland.
Oct. 21 – Fintan, Abbot (d.c.635)
Also known as Munnu, Fintan was a monk of Cluain Inis, spent some time at Iona, and upon returning to Ireland founded a monastery at Taghmon, Wexford, serving as its abbot. He was a firm supporter of the Celtic liturgical practices. He reportedly contracted leprosy late in life.
Oct. 27 – Otteran, Abbot (d. 563)
Also known as Odhran, this saint may have been a Briton. He was an abbot in Meath before he left Ireland among the twelve companions who accompanied Columba to Iona.
Oct. 29 – Colman of Kilmacduagh, Bishop (d.c. 632)
Son of a chieftain, reportedly consecrated a bishop unwillingly, he lived as a hermit in the Burren. He built a monastery at Kilmacduagh and is considered the first bishop of that see. Like many Irish saints, there are many fanciful stories about him. Colman is said to have been aided in his devotions by a rooster, a mouse, and a fly: the first woke him up for the night office, the second kept him from falling asleep again, while the third served as a bookmark.
Oct. 31 – Foillan, Abbot (d.c. 655)
With his two sainted brothers, Fursey and Ultan, he left Ireland for England c. 630, built a monastery at Burgh Castle, near Yarmouth, and evangelized the East Anglians. When his monastery was destroyed by the pagan Mercians under Penda, Foillan and his brother Ultan decided to follow their brother Fursey to Gaul, where they were welcomed by the Neustrian king, Clovis II. Foillan was founder and first abbot of a monastery at Fosses and converted many of the locals. He was murdered by outlaws.
–The World Meeting of Families is a tradition begun by Pope John Paul II in 1994 and held every three years. This year’s celebration was held in Ireland, August 21-24. Meant to give a boost to an Irish Church suffering demoralization and also represent the Church’s teaching on marriage and family life in a positive light, the conference was largely overshadowed by the growing crisis over clerical misbehavior. Unbelievable as it may seem, the image of the Church has sunk so low in Ireland among many that, in the recent debates over the legalization of abortion, some Irish pro-life activists urged their bishops and priests to maintain a low profile.
–Under pressure from pro-life members of the House and Senate, the Department of Health and Human Services has cancelled a contract between the Food and Drug Administration and a medical research firm for human fetal tissue for research purposes. The Department is also reviewing other contracts and guidelines to ensure that all are in compliance with current laws and regulations. The primary source of fetal tissue for research is elective abortions.
–Several faith-based adoption agencies in the state of Michigan, including St. Vincent Catholic Charities in Lansing, suffered a legal setback when a federal district court judge denied their motion for dismissal of a lawsuit brought by the ACLU on behalf of two lesbian couples who were turned down as adoptive parents by a faith-based agency. This means that the efforts of the ACLU in Michigan to bar faith-based adoption services in Michigan can continue.
—-We are approaching a general election in November. As Catholics, we need to make our decisions in the light of Catholic teaching. Two good sources of information on the national level are www.priestsforlife.org and the website of National Right to Life, www.nrlc.org.
–Many faithful Catholics are finding it difficult to get full and reliable information about the emerging reports of misconduct by certain members of the hierarchy. Two websites which are covering the news well are www.ewtn.com and www.catholicnewsagency.com.
[Sources consulted for this report include: Butler’s Lives of the Saints, complete edition, ed. and rev. by Herbert Thurston and Donald Attwater; 4 vols. (New York, 1956); The Liturgy of the Hours According to the Roman Rite (New York, 1975); The National Catholic Register; ewtn.com; catholic.org; priestsforlife.org; catholicnewsagency.com.]
Patrick J. Lally