Ordinary Time: October 24th
Optional Memorial of St. Anthony Claret, bishop
Old Calendar: St. Raphael the Archangel
Today the Church celebrates the optional memorial of St. Anthony Claret, bishop, the founder of the Missionary Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Anthony Mary Claret died in the Cistercian monastery at Fontfroide in France on this date in 1870. He was canonized in 1950 and listed in the Roman Calendar in 1960.Before the reform of the Roman Calendar in 1969, this was the feast of St. Raphael, the Archangel. In the present calendar this feast is celebrated on September 29 with two other archangels, St. Michael and St. Gabriel.
St. Anthony Claret
Anthony was born at Salent in the Diocese of Vich in Catalonia, Spain, in the year in which Napoleon invaded Spain. He was trained for manual labor, since his father was a weaver, but in 1829 he entered the seminary at Vich. Ordained to the priesthood in 1835, he was assigned as pastor in his home parish. Later he went to Rome to work for the Propagation of the Faith. He also entered the novitiate of the Jesuits but had to leave because of ill health, so he returned to Spain and was assigned as pastor of a parish. His apostolate consisted of rural preaching, conferences for the clergy and publications (he wrote more than 150 books). Because of his successful apostolate he aroused the animosity of some of the clergy and as a result he left Catalonia for the Canary Islands (1848). After a year he returned to Catalonia and resumed his preaching apostolate.
- Read more about the life of St. Anthony Mary Claret, Autobiography of St. Anthony Mary Claret or order The Autobiography of St. Anthony Mary Claret: Priest, missionary, archbishop, and founder of the Congregation of Missionaries, Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and read his own words.
- St. Anthony was interested in the Catholic press, and the Claretians continue the publishing apostolate. Every Catholic home should have a healthy collection of good Catholic books, both for young and old, and these should be read and displayed prominently;
- St. Anthony spoke at Vatican Council I. Learn more about this Church council and its teaching on papal infallibility in particular.