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Saint of the Day—available on the iPhone!

Saint of the Day
Catholic saints are holy people and human people who lived extraordinary lives. Each saint the Church honors responded to God's invitation to use his or her unique gifts. God calls each one of us to be a saint. Click here to receive Saint of the Day in your email.

August 6
Venerable Anthony Margil
(1657-1726)


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Anthony was born in Valencia, Spain. After he joined the Franciscans and was ordained, he decided to become a missionary. When the missionary college of Santa Cruz in Querétaro, Mexico, was organized, Anthony volunteered and was accepted. In 1683 he arrived in Vera Cruz and found that city had been devastated by a pirate attack. Life in the New World would not be easy.

Anthony covered a wide territory in his 43 years in New Spain. He worked in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico and Texas. After serving as superior in Querétaro for 13 years, he established missionary colleges in Guatemala City and in Zacatecas, Mexico.

Although Anthony was used to self-denial, missionary life provided plenty of mortification. He walked thousands of miles and showed great courage among hostile Indians.

In 1716 missionaries from the Zacatecas college founded Misión Guadalupe in eastern Texas. Anthony himself established the missions of Dolores and San Miguel in that state. When war with Spain caused the French to invade east Texas in 1719, Anthony and his confreres withdrew to Misión San Antonio (later known as the Alamo), which had been set up the previous year. In 1720, he began Misión San José in San Antonio.

Anthony died in Mexico City on August 6, 1726. In 1836 he was declared venerable.



Comment:

Missionaries like Anthony have difficult lives. Their work is often hard, and its fruit not often apparent. Like missionaries before him and since then, Anthony trusted that God would ultimately bring some good out of all these sacrifices.

Quote:

“But before all this occurs, they will arrest you and persecute you; they will hand you over to synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors because of my name.... So make up your minds not to prepare your defense in advance; for I will give you words and a wisdom which none of your opponents will be able to withstand or contradict” (Luke 21:12, 14-15).


Saint of the Day
Lives, Lessons and Feast
By Leonard Foley, O.F.M.; revised by Pat McCloskey, O.F.M.



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John Bosco: John Bosco’s theory of education could well be used in today’s schools. It was a preventive system, rejecting corporal punishment and placing students in surroundings removed from the likelihood of committing sin. He advocated frequent reception of the sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion. He combined catechetical training and fatherly guidance, seeking to unite the spiritual life with one’s work, study and play. 
<p>Encouraged during his youth to become a priest so he could work with young boys, John was ordained in 1841. His service to young people started when he met a poor orphan and instructed him in preparation for receiving Holy Communion. He then gathered young apprentices and taught them catechism. </p><p>After serving as chaplain in a hospice for working girls, John opened the Oratory of St. Francis de Sales for boys. Several wealthy and powerful patrons contributed money, enabling him to provide two workshops for the boys, shoemaking and tailoring. </p><p>By 1856, the institution had grown to 150 boys and had added a printing press for publication of religious and catechetical pamphlets. His interest in vocational education and publishing justify him as patron of young apprentices and Catholic publishers. </p><p>John’s preaching fame spread and by 1850 he had trained his own helpers because of difficulties in retaining young priests. In 1854 he and his followers informally banded together, inspired by St. Francis de Sales [January 24]. </p><p>With Pope Pius IX’s encouragement, John gathered 17 men and founded the Salesians in 1859. Their activity concentrated on education and mission work. Later, he organized a group of Salesian Sisters to assist girls.</p> American Catholic Blog How do you expect to reach your own perfection by leading someone else’s life? His sanctity will never be yours; you must have the humility to work out your own salvation in a darkness where you are absolutely alone.

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