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Saint of the Day

St. Catherine of Alexandria

November 25
Beheaded, 305 in Alexandria, Egypt.

Apocryphal. Born to the nobility. Learned in science and oratory. Converted to Christianity after receiving a vision. When she was 18 years old, during the persecution of Maximinus, she offered to debate the pagan philosophers. Many were converted by her arguments, and immediately martyred. Maximinus had her scourged and imprisoned. The empress and the leader of the army of Maximinus were amazed by the stories, went to see Catherine in prison. They converted and were martyred. Maximinus ordered her broken on the wheel, but she touched it and the wheel was destroyed. She was beheaded.

Immensely popular during the Middle Ages, there were many chapels and churches devoted to her throughout western Europe, and she was reported as one of the divine advisors to Saint Joan of Arc. Her reputation for learning and wisdom led to her patronage of libaries, librarians, teachers, archivists, and anyone associated with wisdom or teaching. Her debating skill and persuasive language has led to her patronage of lawyers. And her torture on the wheel led to those who work with them asking for her intercession. One of the Fourteen Holy Helpers.

A Prayer for Students...
O glorious Saint Catherine, wise and prudent virgin, thou who didst set the knowledge of Jesus Christ above all other knowledge, obtain for us the grace to remain inviolably attached to the Catholic faith, and to seek in our studies and in our teaching only the extension of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ our Lord and of His Holy Church both in ourselves and in the souls of others. Amen.

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