King (c. 1040-1095) [June 27]
As king of Hungary, Ladislas was a model of Christian chivalry, courageous in repeatedly defending his country on the battlefield. On one occasion after being wounded he even sped to the rescue of a “damsel in distress.” Having married Adelaide, the daughter of a Bavarian duke, Ladislas was a chaste man of impeccable morals who lived austerely and who recognized the religious and civil freedom of the Jews and Moslems under his rule. Dividing his time between acts of piety and his duties as king, Ladislas worked to reinstate the reforms of his illustrious predecessor on the Hungarian throne, Saint Stephen. The Blessed Pope Urban II enlisted him for the First Crusade to regain Jerusalem, and the kings of France, Spain, and England chose him as their commander–in-chief in this effort. But before he could embark for the Holy Land he suddenly died at the age of fifty-five.
Martyr († c.302) [May 27]
Jules was a veteran of the Roman army and a victim of the persecution of the Emperor Diocletian. His twenty-six years of military service did not save him from martyrdom by the sword in Dorostorus on the Danube, when he refused to deny his faith.
[Mission Capodanno note: This saint is also known as Saint Julius the Veteran]
His father having died and his mother forced from the family home by creditors, Joseph was born in a stable June 17, 1603. Having been the recipient of heavenly visions from the time he was eight, Joseph nonetheless had a fierce temper which his mother worked and encouraged Joseph to overcome.
Apprenticed as a lowly shoemaker, Joseph tried to be admitted to the Friars Minor Conventuals but was denied for his lack of education.
While a young boy, John of Capistrano suffered the loss of his father who had served as a German knight. As a young man, John studied law and became governor of Perugia. In 1416, when war broke out between the neighboring towns of Perugia and Malatesta, John’s effort at establishing peace resulted in his capture and detainment as a prisoner of war.
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Our Blessed Mother alone knows how to console those mothers whose sons are in battle, for her only Son died in the War of Calvary. As she looked up into the night sky, and saw a golden star, she became the first Gold Star Mother of Christian times.
--Fulton J. Sheen
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