Church Teaching

Joan of Arc

Saint Joan of Arc

An illiterate but intelligent French peasant girl, Joan was thrust into the Hundred Years' War by her "voices," inner promptings urging her to save France from England and Burgundy. After meeting the French dauphin and being examined by theologians, she led the army to victories at Orleans and Patay. Captured later by the Burgundians, she was abandoned by the dauphin and sold to the English, who burned her at the stake for witchcraft and heresy. Joan was rehabilitated by a papal commission in 1456. 

St. Luke, Evangelist

St. Luke, Evangelist

Early historians said this author of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles was born to a pagan family in Antioch (Turkey) and converted to Christianity. According to Paul's letters and Acts, he was a doctor and Paul's companion during his later journeys and imprisonment in Rome. Luke's New Testament writings in Greek were for gentiles, extending to them the salvation promised to Israel. He is the patron of physicians and surgeons and, because of a legend that he painted a Marian icon, of painters. 

Feast Day: Oct. 18

Ignatius of Antioch, Bishop and Martyr

St Ignatius

This Syrian-born martyr, who gave himself the nickname "God-bearer" because of his certainty of God's presence within him and who may have been a disciple of St. John the Evangelist, became bishop of Antioch about 69. Eventually he was arrested and sent to Rome, where his strong desire for martyrdom was fulfilled when he was thrown to the lions in the Colosseum. In seven letters written to Christians in Asia Minor and Rome, he stressed the need to heal church conflicts, the authority of local bishops and the Eucharist as a source of unity.

Feast Day: Oct. 17

Alternative beneficiary urged for popular ice-bucket challenge

Father Chuck Bartel, pastor of Christ Prince of Peace Parish in West St. Louis County, takes the "ice bucket challenge" with donations going to the John Paul II Medical Research Institute in Iowa City, Iowa.

Not one to pour cold water on a fun fundraising idea, the Respect Life Office of the Archdiocese of St. Louis is asking people who are taking a popular "ice-bucket challenge" to direct donations to an alternative source that funds morally acceptable research for a cure of Amyotrophic lateral Sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as Lou Gehrig's Disease.
ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.

POPE'S MESSAGE | Confession renews grace of baptism

Pope Francis greeted a disabled person during a meeting with UNITALSI, an Italian Catholic association for the transportation of sick people to Lourdes and other Marian shrines, in Paul VI hall at the Vatican Nov. 9.

VATICAN CITY -- With baptism, Christians are cleansed of sin, but the sacrament doesn't wash away human weakness nor the obligation to ask forgiveness when they make mistakes, Pope Francis said.

Baptism is "God's powerful intervention in our lives to save us. This saving intervention of God doesn't remove our human nature and weakness; we are all weak and we are all sinners. And baptism doesn't remove our responsibility to ask forgiveness every time we err," the pope said Nov. 13 during his weekly general audience.

I THOUGHT YOU SHOULD KNOW | Let the Holy Spirit guide you through Scripture

Pentecost belongs to sinners only! Pentecost is neither for the angels nor for the saints. They do not need it; we sinners do. Every day every sinner is confronted with an inner rebellion. There are no exceptions! We all have a choice to follow our human spirit, the Evil Spirit or the Holy Spirit; all too often we follow the human spirit and sometimes the Evil Spirit.

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