Educational - Saint Hyacinth of Poland, O.P. (1185-1257)

Saint Hyacinth was born in 1185. He was born into nobility as his father was of the noble family of Odrowacz. His birth took place in the castle of Lanka at Karim, which is in Silesia. Almost from the cradle, Hyacinth seemed predisposed to virtue. His parents not only fostered his happy disposition, but also used great care in selecting the teachers that would protect this innocence. In this way, he was so well grounded in his religious duties that he passed through his higher studies at Cracow, Prague, and Bologna, without tarnish to his pure soul. Upon completion of his studies at Bologna, Saint Hyacinth earned the title of Doctor of Canon Law and Divinity. Doubtless his model life had much to do in helping him to win the admiration of both his professors and fellow-students.

When he returned to return to Poland he was given a prebend at Sandomir. In 1220 he accompanied his uncle Ivo Konski, the Bishop of Cracow, to Rome. Here they met ·with Saint Dominic. At this time, Saint Hyacinth was one of the first to receive the habit of the newly established Order of Friars Preachers from Saint Dominic, Because of his spirit for prayer and his zeal for the salvation of souls, he was sent to preach and establish the Dominican Order in his native land, Poland. On the way he was able to establish a convent of his order at Friesach in Carinthia. In Poland the new preachers were favorably received and their sermons were productive of much good. Hyacinth founded communities at Sandomir, Cracow, and at Plocko on the Vistula in Moravia. He extended his missionary work through Prussia, Pomerania, and Lithuania; then crossing the Baltic Sea he preached in Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. It was these apostolic travels that earned Hyacinth the title 'The Apostle of the North".

His travels and missions did not end here. He came into Lower or Red Russia, establishing a community at Lemberg and at Haletz on the Mester; proceeded into Muscovy, and founded a convent at Dieff, and came as far as the shores of the Black Sea. Because of his evangelizing, multitudes were converted, and churches and convents were built. 

However manifold were his duties, the future Friar Preacher did not permit them to interfere with his good works, dampen his spirit of prayer, or to lessen his practice of recollection. None were more punctual or exact in their recitation of the divine office by the canons. He regularly visited hospital,; were the sick found him a sympathetic comforter. A friend to the poor, he distributed his income among them. He felt that money received through the Church could not be devoted to a better or more advantageous use.

Saint Hyacinth is known to have performed numerous miracles. The one miracle that has been most associated with him was the result of the Tartars siege of the city of Kiev. Hyacinth gained a child-like and tender devotion to the Mother of God from Saint Dominic. To her he attributed his success, and to her aid he looked for his salvation. When Hyacinth was at Kiev, the fierce Tartars sacked the town Hyacinth was celebrating the Mass and did not know of the onslaught and danger until the Mass ended. Without waiting to unvest, he took the ciborium in his hands and was fleeing the church. It is recorded that as he passed by an statue of Mary he heard a voice say, "Hyacinth, my son, why dost thou leave me behind? Take me with thee and leave me not to mine enemies." Although the statue was made of heavy alabaster, Hyacinth took it in his arms and carried it away along with the ciborium with the Holy Eucharist. It is for this miraculous moment that Saint Hyacinth is most often depicted. The story continues that Hyacinth and the community that accompanied him came to the river Dnieper. There he urged them to follow him across the river. He led the way, and they all walked dry shod across the waters of the deep river, which then protected them from the fury of the Tartars. Polish historians are in agreement on this marvelous fact, although some of the writers confuse it with a similar crossing of the Vistula which happened earlier. A circumstance, which is recorded in connection with this miracle, renders it all the more remarkable. It is said that the footprints of the saint remained on the water, even after he had crossed the river; and that, when the stream was calm, they could be seen for centuries afterwards.

Worn out by his constant labors and vast journeys, Hyacinth spent the last few months of his life in a convent he had founded at Cracow, There on the Feast of Saint Dominic in 1257, he fell sick with a fever that was to lead to his death. On the eve of the feast of the Assumption, he was warned of his coming death. In spite of his condition, he attended Mass on the Feast of the Assumption. He was anointed at the altar, and died the same day in 1257. He was canonized in 1594 by Pope Clement VIIl. The feast day of St. Hyacinth is celebrated on August 17th.

-taken from: sainthyacinth.com

Educational - Holy Father Dominic, O.P. (1170-1221)

Domingo de Guzman was born in Castile, possibly a year or two later than 1170, the traditional date. His father was lord of the manor in the village, and his mother was also from the local nobility. He studied at Palencia and then joined the canons regular (a religious community attached to the cathedral of a diocese) of Osma about 1196, and he became subprior, or assistant to the superior, a few years later. b1 1203, Diego, bishop of Osma, was sent on a royal mission abroad and took Dominic with him.

This journey first made Dominic aware of the threat posed to the church in the south of France by the Albigensian heretics, or Cathari, who were reviving and developing the Manichaean teaching that two supreme beings, Good and Evil, dominate spirit and matter respectively; so that whatever concerns the body-such as eating, drinking, procreation, and the possession of worldly goods-is essentially evil, and the ideal is the renunciation of these things and even of life itself. Thus, there arose among them a caste of the "perfect," who led a life of great austerity, while ordinary people were regarded as reprobates. A regularized Albigensian hierarchy had come into existence, and local feudal lords, especially the count of Toulouse, supported the Albigenses. Pope Innocent Ill had launched a mission to preach against the heresy.

On a second journey Dominic and the bishop visited the pope, who refused their request to preach to the pagans, so they returned to France. In 1206 the papal legates and preachers, depressed at the failure of their mission, consulted the bishop and Dominic, who reasoned that the heretics would be regained only by an austerity equal to their own; the preachers must tramp the roads barefoot and in poverty. This was the birth of Dominic's "evangelical preaching." An important part of his campaign was the establishment of a convent of nuns at Prouille, formed in 1206 from a group of women converted from the heresy.

In 1208 the papal legate, Peter de Castelnau, was murdered by an emissary of the Count of Toulouse. The pope called upon the Ou-istian princes to take up arms. The leader on the papal side was Simon de Montfort, a subject of the king of France. The Albigensian leader was Raymond VI, count of Toulouse, an opponent of the king of France and brother-in-law of King John of England, lord of neighboring Aquitaine. Dominic's work, though confined to the Prouille area, continued, and six others eventually joined him. Meanwhile, the civil war dragged on until Simon's victory at Muret in 1213. The Catholic party entered Toulouse, and Dominic and his friends were welcomed by the bishop, Foulques, and established as "diocesan preachers" in 1215.

From Foulques's charter in that year, Dominic's design for an order devoted to preaching developed rapidly. A characteristic concern was for the theological formation of his men, whom he therefore took to lectures given at Toulouse by an Englishman, Alexander Stavensby. Still in 1215, he went to Rome with Foulques (bound for the Fourth Lateran Council) to lay his plans before the pope, who, however, recommended adoption of the rule of one of the existing orders. It was, perhaps, at this time that Dominic met Francis of Assisi (though the meeting may not have taken place until 1221), and the friendship of the two saints is a strong tradition in both the Franciscan and the Dominican orders. In the summer of 1216 Dominic was back at Toulouse conferring with his companions, now 16 in number. This meeting has been called the capitulum fundationis ("chapter, or meeting, of foundation"). The rule of St. Augustine was adopted, as well as a set of consuetudines ("customs"), partly based on those of the canons regular, concerning the divine office, monastic life, and religious poverty; these are still the core of Dominican legislation. In July, Innocent Ill died, and it was from his successor, Honorius III, that Dominic, once more in Rome, finally received on Dec. 22, 1216, formal sanction of his order.

The order was now an established body within the church, and Dominic returned to Toulouse. On Aug. 15, 1217, he sent his men to Paris and to Spain, leaving two each at Toulouse and Prouille, while he and another went to Bologna and Rome. He placed his two principal houses near the universities of Paris and Bologna and decided that each of his houses should form a school of theology. This at once determined the capital role tl,at the Dominicans would play in university studies. In setting up his houses in the larger cities, especially in those that were teaching centres, he involved his order in the destiny of the medieval urban movement.

The rest of Dominic's life was spent either in Rome, where he was given the Church of San Sisto, or traveling. In 1218-19 he made a great tour (3,380 miles entirely on foot) from Rome to Toulouse and Spain and back, via Paris and Milan, and in 1220 a tour of Lombardy. Everywhere his communities were growing, and he planned many new foundations covering the key points of France and northern Italy. In Rome the pope gave him the delicate task of reforming various groups of nuns, whom he finally gathered at San Sisto in 1221, when the men moved to Santa Sabina, which is still the residence of the master general of the order.

At the second general chapter, held on Pentecost in 1221, also at Bologna, the order was divided geographically into provinces. After a visit to Venice the same year, Dominic died at Bologna.

-taken from: britannica.com/biography/Saint-Dominic

Educational - Blessed Ceslaus of Poland (1180-1242)

Blessed Ceslaus, 0.P, (Polish: Czeslaw) was born in approximately 1180 in Kamien Slciski in Silesia, Poland, of the noble family of Odrowctz, and was a relative, possibly the brother, of Saint Hyacinth. Having studied philosophy at Prague, he pursued his theological and juridical studies at the University of Bologna, after which he returned to Cracow, where he held the office of canon and custodian of the church of Sandomierz. 

About 1218 he accompanied his uncle Ivo, Bishop of Cracow, to Rome. Hearing of the great sanctity of Saint Dominic, who had recently been attributed the miracle of resuscitating the nephew of Cardinal Stefano di Fossa Nova who had been killed in a fall from his horse, Ceslaus, together with St. Hyacinth, sought admission into the Order of Friars Preachers.

In 1219 Pope Honorius ill invited Saint Dominic and his companions to take up residence at the ancient Roman basilica of Santa Sabina, which they did by early 1220. Hyacinth and Ceslaus along with their companions Herman and Henry were among the first to enter the studium of the Dominican Order at Rome out of which would grow the 16th-century College of Saint Thomas at Santa Maria sopra Minerva and the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, Angelicum in the 20th century. After an abbreviated novitiate Ceslaus, Hyacinth and their companions received the religious habit of the Order from St. Dominic himself in 1220.

Their novitiate completed, St. Dominic sent the young friars back as missionaries to their own country. Establishing a friary at Friesach in Austria, they proceeded to Cracow whence Ceslaus was sent by St. Hyacinth to Prague, the metropolis of Bohemia. 

Labouring with much fruit throughout the Diocese of Prague, Ceslaus went to Wroclaw, where he founded a large priory, and then extended his apostolic labours over a vast territory, embracing Bohemia, Poland, Pomerania, and Saxony. 

Sometime after the death of St. Hyacinth he was chosen the Provincial Superior for Poland. Whilst he was superior of the convent of Wroclaw all Poland was threatened by the Mongols. The city of Wroclaw being besieged, the people sought the aid of Blessed Ceslaus, who by his prayers miraculously averted the impending calamity. Four persons are said to have been raised to life by him. He died at Wroclaw on JuJy 15, 1242. In 1963, Pope Paul VI recognized Bl. Ceslaus - next to St. John the Baptist - as the main patron saint of the city of Wroclaw. 

-taken from revolvy.com

New Pastor of Holy Rosary has been announced!

HOLY ROSARY CHURCH
THE DOMINICAN FRIARS


Fr. Chris is announcing that our new Pastor will begin his pastor ship at Holy
Rosary Parish as of the first of September, 2017. He has been approved by His
Eminence Daniel Cardinal DiNardo and the Southern Dominican Provincial Fr.Tom Condon, O.P.


The new Pastor's name is Fr. Jorge Rativa, O.P. Fr. Chris has known him many
years and he has been serving as the Vicar Provincial for the last three years.


Fr. Chris will end his term as Pastor July 31, 2017, and Fr. Alberto Rodriguez,
O.P., will become the Administrator of Holy Rosary Parish until the arrival of our
new Pastor. It is with the greatest joy that Fr. Chris makes this announcement.


May God bless Fr. Jorge Rativa, O.P., and please pray for him as he shepherds our
wonderful community here at Holy Rosary in our great Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.


Mother Mary the Immaculate Conception pray for us.


Fr. Christopher T. Eggleton, O.P.
Pastor
3617 MILAM STREET • HOUSTON TX 77002-9535 • 713.529.4854 • HOLYROSARYPARISH.ORG

Educational - Saint Benedict (480-543)

St. Benedict is believed to have been born around 480, as the son to a Roman noble of Norcia and the twin to his sister, Scholastica. Tn the fifth century, the young Benedict was sent to Rome to finish his education with a nurse/housekeeper. 

The subject that dominated a young man's study then was rhetoric - the art of persuasive speaking. A successful speaker was not one who had the best argument or conveyed the truth, but one who used rhythm, eloquence, and technique to convince. The power of the voice without foundation in the heart was the goal of the student's education. And that philosophy was reflected in the lives of the students as well. They had everything - education, wealth, youth - and they spent all of it in the pursuit of pleasure, not truth. Benedict watched in horror as vice unraveled the lives and ethics of his companions.

Afraid for his soul, Benedict fled Rome, gave up his inheritance and lived in a small village with his nurse. When God called him beyond this quiet life to an even deeper solitude, he went to the mountains of Subiaco. Although becoming a hermit was not his purpose in leaving, there he lived as a hermit under the direction of another hermit, Romanus. 

One day, during his time living in a cave above a lake as a hermit, the Devil presented Benedict's imagination with a beautiful, tempting woman. Benedict resisted by rolling his body into a thorn bush until it was covered in scrapes. it is said through these body wounds, he cured the wounds of his soul. After years of prayer, word of his holiness brought nearby monks to ask for his leadership. He warned them he would be too strict for them, but they insisted - then tried to poison him when his warning proved true. The story goes, the monks attempted to poison Benedict's drink, but when he prayed a blessing over the cup - it shattered. 

So Benedict was on his own again - but not for long. The next set of followers were more sincere and he set up twelve monasteries in Subiaco where monks lived in separate communities of twelve. He left these monasteries abruptly when the envious attacks of another hermit made it impossible to continue the spiritual leadership he had taken. But it was in Monte Cassino he founded the monastery that became the roots of the Church's monastic system. Instead of founding small separate communities he gathered his disciples into one whole community. His own sister, Saint Scholastica, settled nearby to live a religious life. 

Benedict was an innovator. No one had ever set up communities like his before or directed them with a rule. What is part of history to us now was a bold, risky step into the future. Benedict had the holiness and the ability to take this step. His beliefs and instructions on religious life were collected in what is now known as the Rule of Saint Benedict - still directing religious life after 15 centuries. In this tiny but powerful Rule, Benedict put what he had learned about the power of speaking and oratorical rhythms at the service of the Gospel. He did not drop out of school because he did not understand the subject. Scholars have told us that his Rule reflects an understanding of and skill with the rhetorical rules of the time. Despite his experience at school, he understood rhetoric was as much a tool as a hammer was.  A hammer could be used to build a house or hit someone over the head. Rhetoric could be used to promote vice or promote God. Benedict did not shun rhetoric because it had been used to seduce people to vice; he reformed it. He reminded us "Let us consider our place in sight of God and of his angels. Let us rise h, chanting that our hearts and voices harmonize." There was always a voice reading aloud in his communities at meals, to receive guests, to educate novices. Hearing words one time was not enough - "We wish this Rule to be read frequently to the community." 

Benedict realized the strongest and truest foundation for the power of words was the Word of God itself: "For what page or word of the Bible is not a perfect rule for temporal life?" He had experienced the power of God's word as expressed in Scripture: "For just as from the heavens the rain and snow come down and do not return there till they have watered the earth, making it fertile and fruitful, giving seed to liim who sows and bread to him who eats, so shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; it s/ia/1 not return to me void, but shall do my will, achieving the end for which 1 sent it" - Isaiah 55:10-11. 

For prayer, Benedict turned to the psalms, the very songs and poems from the Jewish liturgy that Jesus himself had prayed. To join our voices with Jesus in praise of God during the day was so important that Benedict called it the Work of God. And nothing was to be put before the work of God.  "Immediately upon hearing the signal for the Divine Office all work will cease." Benedict believed with Jesus that "One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes forth, from the mouth of God' " - Matthew 4:4. But it wasn't enough to just speak the words. Benedict instructed his followers to practice sacred reading - the study of the very Scriptures they would be praying in the Work of God. In this Lectio Divina, he and his monks memorized the Scripture, studied it, and contemplated it until it became part of their being. Four to six hours were set aside each day for this sacred reading. If monks had free time it "should be used by the brothers to practice psalms." Lessons from Scripture were to be spoken from memory not read from a book. On Benedict's list of "Instruments of Good Works" is "to enjoy holy readings." 

Benedict died on March 21, 543, not long after his sister. It is said he died with high fever on the very day God told him he would. He is the patron saint of Europe and students. 

-taken from: catholic.org

Educational - Saint Maria Goretti (1890-1902)

Born on October 16 1890 in Corinaldo, in the Ancona Province in Italy, her farmworker father moved his family to Ferrier di Conca, near Anzio. When he died of malaria, Maria's mother had to struggle to feed her children. Maria's mother, brothers, and sisters worked in the fields while she cooked, sewed, kept the house clean, and watched her youngest sister Teresa. Though the family's circumstances were extremely difficult, they were very close and loved God. 

On July 5, 1902, Maria was sitting outside the steps of her home sewing her 18-year-old brother or neighbor -it is unclear which - Alessandro's shirt while he threshed beans in the barnyard. As she concentrated on her sewing, Alessandro surprised her and grabbed her from her steps. When he tried to rape her, Maria cried that it was a mortal sin and warned he would go to hell. 

When Alessandro persisted, she fought him and screamed, "No! It is a sin! God does not want it!" At her words, Alessandro began to choke her and she said she would rather die than submit. Upon hearing her words, Alessandro pulled out a knife and stabbed her eleven times. When she attempted to reach the door, he stabbed her three more times then fled. 

Teresa woke to the sounds of her sister's cries and began to cry. Maria's family returned home and found her bleeding on the floor. They quickly took her to the nearest hospital in Nettuno, where she underwent surgery without anesthesia.

Unfortunately, her wounds were beyond the surgeon's ability to help. Halfway through the surgery, the man asked her, "Maria, think of me in Paradise." As she lay on the table, she looked up at him and said, "Well, who knows which of us is going to be there first?" She did not realize how terrible her situation was, and the surgeon replied, "You, Maria." She said, "Then I will think gladly of you." She also mentioned concerns for her mother. The next day, Maria forgave Alessandro and said she wanted to see him in Heaven with her. She died that day while looking upon an image of the Virgin Mary and holding a cross to her chest.

Shortly after Maria's family discovered her, Alexander was captured and questioned. He admitted Maria was a physical virgin as he was unable to assault her and he was sentenced to thirty years. One night he had a dream or vision of Maria gathering flowers and offering them to him. His life changed. When he was released after 27 years, his first act was to go to beg the forgiveness of Maria's mother. 

Devotion to the young martyr grew, miracles were worked, and in less than half a century she was canonized. At her beatification in 1947, her 82-year-old mother, two sisters and a brother, appeared with Pope Pius XII on the balcony of St. Peter's. Three years later at Maria's canonization, a 66-year-old Alessandro Serenelli knelt among the quarter-million people and cried tears of joy.

-taken from: catholic.org & franciscanmedia.org

Educational: Saint Cyril of Alexandria (376-444)

St. Cyril of Alexandria, Bishop and Doctor of the Church was born at Alexandria, Egypt in 376. He was nephew of the patriarch of that city, Theophilus. Cyril received a classical and theological education at Alexandria and was ordained by his uncle. He accompanied Theophilus to Constantinople in 403 and was present at the Synod of the Oak that deposed John Chrysostom, whom he believed guilty of the charges against him.

He succeeded his uncle Theophilus as patriarch of Alexandria on Theophilus' death in 412, but only after a riot between Cyril's supporters and the followers of his rival Timotheus. Cyril at
once began a series of attacks against the Novatians, whose churches he closed; 
the Jews, whom he drove from the city; and governor Orestes, with whom he disagreed about some of his actions. 

In 430 Cyril became embroiled with Nestorius, patriarch of Constantinople, who was preaching that Mary was not the Mother of God since Christ was Divine and not human, and consequently she should not have the word theotokos (God-bearer) applied to her. He persuaded Pope Celestine I to convoke a synod at Rome, which condemned Nestorius, and then did the same at his own synod in Alexandria. Celestine directed Cyril to depose Nestorius, and in 431, Cyril presided over the third General Council at Ephesus, attended by some two hundred bishops, which condemned all the tenets of Nestorius and his followers before the arrival of Archbishop John of Antioch and forty-two followers who believed Nestorius was innocent. When they found what had been done, they held a council of their own and deposed Cyril. 

Emperor Theodosius II arrested both Cyril and Nestorius but released Cyril on the arrival of Papal Legates who confirmed the council's actions against Nestorius and declared Cyril innocent of all charges. Two years later, Archbishop John, representing the moderate Antiochene bishops, and Cyril reached an agreement and joined in the condemnation, and Nestorius was forced into exile. 

During the rest of his life, Cyril wrote treatises that clarified the doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation and that helped prevent Nestorianism and Pelagianism from taking long-term deep root in the Christian community. He was the most brilliant theologian of the Alexandrian tradition. His writings are characterized by accurate thinking, precise exposition, and great reasoning skills. Among his writings are commentaries on John, Luke, and the Pentateuch, treatises on dogmatic theology, and Apologia against Julian the Apostate, and letters and sermons. He was declared a doctor of the Church by Pope Leo XIII in 1882. His feast day is June 27th.

-taken from: catholic.org

Capital Campaign

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I feel honored and blessed by the opportunity to serve as the Archbishop of this great local Church of Galveston-Houston. In so many ways this really is the Mother Church of Texas since it was from the shores of Galveston that our Catholic faith was proclaimed by missionaries over 175 years ago. Over my years of service to the faithful of our Archdiocese, I have witnessed the growth and expansion of our Catholic Church in our parishes. I have had the opportunity to baptize infants into the family of God. Together we have celebrated the coming of the Holy Spirit in confirmations. I have been privileged to ordain new permanent deacons to serve our diverse parish communities and to lay hands on those men who responded to God’s call to serve as His priests. Indeed the life of the Church is one of great promise and potential and I will continue to do my part, where the Lord guides me, to help continue this legacy of love and faith among our people.

As I look forward, I realize that more must be done today in order to preserve and protect our future. I am concerned about four key areas in our Archdiocese: St. Mary’s Seminary, Faith Formation, Catholic School Education and the specific needs of our local parishes.

Over the next few pages, I invite you to review the goals of the Campaign, to join me in embracing this wonderful challenge, and to do our part toward ensuring its success. St. Paul reminds us in the Second Letter to the Corinthians how, even in their extreme poverty, the Macedonians begged for the privilege to support the work of the Gospel in their time. These were a people of great faith in God’s Providence.

In the same way, I am trusting in God’s Providence that His saving work will continue through all of us in our IGNITE: Our Faith, Our Mission Campaign. I ask all of you to consider a sacrificial gift, over four years, that will have historic impact on the Church of Galveston-Houston for generations to come.

Finally, I ask each family to make this campaign a priority, offering your time and talents in your parish, and to include it in your personal intentions and prayers.

Thank you for your generosity and your faithfulness. May the grace of God the Father, the peace of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, fill you and always be with you.

 

Sincerely in Christ,

Daniel Cardinal DiNardo

Archbishop of Galveston-Houston

2017 Dominican Friars' Gala

You are cordially invited to the

DOMINICAN FRIARS' GALA

presenting
the 2017 St. Martin de Porres Award to

Raye Gillis White, LGCHSJ

and to the late

Edward Patrick White, KGCHSJ

The Houstonian - 111 North Post Oak Lane

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Cocktails and Silent Auction at 6:00pm Dinner to Follow

If unable to attend, please consider making a donation. All proceeds benefit the formation of young friars and the care of elderly ones. For tables/seats or to make a donation, contact us via our webpage or click button below

 

Educational: Saint Athanasius of Alexandria (296/298-373)

Saint Athanasius of Alexandria (Greek: θανάσιος Ἀλεξανδρείας, Athanásios Alexandrías), also called Athanasius the Great, Athanasius the Confessor or, primarily in the Coptic Orthodox Church, Athanasius the Apostolic, was the twentieth bishop of Alexandria (as Athanasius I). His episcopate lasted 45 years (c. June 8, 328 - May 2, 373), of which over 17 were spent in five exiles ordered by four different Roman emperors. Athanasius was a Christian theologian, a Church Father, the chief defender of Trinitarianism against Arianism, and a noted Egyptian leader of the fourth century.

Conflict with Arius and Arianism as well as successive Roman emperors shaped Athanasius' career. In 325, at the age of 27, Athanasius began his leading role against the Arians as a deacon and assistant to Bishop Alexander of Alexandria during the First Council of Nie.ea. Roman emperor Constantine the Great had convened the council in May-August 325 to address the Arian position that the Son of God, Jesus of Nazareth, is of a distinct substance from the Father. Three years after that council, Athanasius succeeded his mentor as archbishop of Alexandria. In addition to the conflict with the Arians (including powerful and influential Arian churchmen led by Eusebius of Nicomedia), he struggled against the Emperors Constantine, Constantius II, Julian the Apostate and Valens. He was known as "Athanasius Contra Mundum" (Latin for Athanasius Against the World).

Nonetheless, within a few years after his death, Gregory of Nazianzus called him the "Pillar of the Church". His writings were well regarded by all Church fathers who followed, in both the West and the East, who noted their rich devotion to the Word-become-man, great pastoral concern, and profound interest in monasticism. Athanasius is counted as one of the four great Eastern Doctors of the Church in the Roman Catholic Church. In the Eastern Orthodox Church, he is labeled as the "Father of Orthodoxy". Some Protestants label him as "Father of the Canon". St. Athanasius is often shown as a bishop arguing with a pagan, a bishop holding an open book or a bishop standing over a defeated heretic. He is a patron saint of theologians, and faithful Orthodox and Roman Catholic Christians and hailed to this day as a great Defender of the Faith. His feast day is celebrated on May 2.

- taken from: wikipedia & catholic.org