Ordinary Time: July 21st
Optional Memorial of St. Lawrence of Brindisi, priest and doctor
Old Calendar: St. Praxedes, virgin
St. Lawrence, the first Capuchin Franciscan to be honored as a Doctor, was born in 1559 at Brindisi, a town located on the Adriatic coast of the heel of Italy. Educated from his youth by the Conventual Franciscan Friars, he acquired great facility in languages and is considered the greatest linguist among the Doctors of the Church. His fields of labor were many: army chaplain, diplomat, leader of the Counter-Reformation in Austria and Bohemia, teacher of Sacred Scripture, exegete and mariologist. St. Lawrence offers priests a wonderful model for their studies and preaching. He was canonized in 1881 by Leo XIII.Before the reform of the General Roman Calendar today was the feast of St. Praxedes, whose history is rather obscure. A sixth century account makes her a sister of St. Pudentiana and a daughter of the senator Pudens, which would place her life around the origin of the Church in Rome.
St. Lawrence of Brindisi
His name was Julius Caesar, and he was born at Brindisi in the kingdom of Naples in 1559. Educated in Venice at the College of St. Mark, he entered the Capuchins and was given the name Lawrence. Finishing his studies at the University of Padua, he showed a flair for languages, mastering Hebrew, Greek, German, Bohemian, Spanish, and French, and showed an extraordinary knowledge of the text of the Bible.
- From the Catholic Culture library read 'The Woman Clothed with the Sun' According to St. Lawrence of Brindisi and The Thirtieth Doctor of the Church.
- Read more about the life of St. Lawrence from the Catholic Encyclopedia and also this account of Saint Lawrence of Brindisi.
- If you desire to learn more about St. Lawrence and the other Doctors of the Church, audios, videos and CD's are available from The Crossroads Initiative, a ministry of Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio. See Catholic Culture's review of this website.
- If you would like to read more about the Doctors of the Church, Fr. Christopher Rengers, O.F.M. Cap. has written an excellent book, The 33 Doctors Of The Church which may be purchased from Amazon.com.
A virgin saint from the earliest Christian times who placed her goods and her services at the disposal of the Church! The life of this saint, like that of most other early Christian saints, remains concealed in the obscurities of legend.
- No matter how high a standard of living may prevail, there always remain abundant opportunities for practicing the corporal works of mercy. It is not the Christian approach to leave the physical needs of others, whether in your own community or in a distant country, to state agencies. When did I last with my own hands "clothe the naked....feed the hungry....harbor the harborless"?