Feast Days during this week

Monday 11th October: St. Canice, born in Co. Derry in 527 and died in 603. Studied in Clonard under St. Finnian and then in Glasnevin. He worked some time with st. Columba in Scotland, establishing a number of churches there before returning to Ireland where his principal foundation was in Aghaboe. Ossory. St. John XXIII Pope. Born in 1881 in Sotto il Monte, Diocese of Bergamo. After ordination he taught in the seminary, served as a military chaplain in World War 1. Apostolic delegate to Bulgaria, and later Turkey and Greece, his time in the diplomatic service ended with a period as Papal Nuncio to France, based in Paris. From Paris he went to Venice as Patriarch in 1953. He became Pope in October 1958 and on the 25th January (feast of the Conversion of St. Paul) 1959 he announced that he was calling the Second Vatican Council. He opened the Council on 11th October 1962 and he died on 34 June 1963. The work he began with a statement on January 25th saw the first council in the history of the Church that did not end with a list of laws but one that explained the key issues of the mid-20th Century and onwards producing 16 documents very relevant still to the present day.

Thursday 14 October: St. Callistus I: After a life of slavery and imprisonment for criminal offences, Callistus was freed and became a deacon in charge of catacombs that bear his name. he became pope in 21, opposed by Hippolytus. Died at the hands of a mob in 222.

Friday 15th October: St. Teresa of Avila 1515-1582. Established Carmelite convents under a reformed rule and wrote much on prayer and the spiritual life. She was the first woman to be declared a Doctor of the Church. Patron of lace-makers and headache sufferers. Saturday 16th October: St. Hedwig: 1174-1243. Wife of the Duke of Silesia, mother of seven children, some of whom caused her trouble, devoted herself to charitable works. St. Margaret Mary Alacoque: 1647-1690, visionary and ascetic, revived devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and was exemplary in her patience and trust. St. Gall: was a monk of Bangor. Went to the continent with St. Columbanus going to Switzerland when Columbanus was exiled from France. They set up at Bregenz on Lake Constance. When Columbanus headed to Italy, St. Gall stayed behind in Switzerland. He lived in a hermitage which later became the monastery of St. Gallen and he died in 630.