Here is the saint’s calendar for January 13, 2019 and several versions, each focusing on individual saints, all wonderful.
From Butler’s Calendar of the Saints listing all of the saints of today, (so many). https://web.archive.org/web/20061019111620/http://www.catholic-forum.com/saints/day0113.htm
From Butler’s Lives of the Saints, highlighting one, http://www.sacred-texts.com/chr/lots/lots023.htm
From Franciscan Media https://www.franciscanmedia.org/saint-hilary/
From a most lovely site, really a daily devotional site offering much more than just saint of the day, Anastpaul https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/
And a great resource for further exploration of individual saints, The Catholic Encyclopedia, http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/index.html
Deaconate Good News
Nice to have good news about the Church, as this story from the Wanderer Newspaper certainly is.
With all the problems going on in the Catholic Church today — perceived and otherwise — it is perhaps useful to take stock of the things that are going well.
For instance, the permanent diaconate is a wonderful start. The diaconate a much older institution than the priesthood, coming from a time when bishops themselves were able to conduct the Holy Mass while deacons, subdeacons, “deaconesses” (which were really equivalent to a prioress of nuns and don’t let anyone tell you different), religious brothers and sisters, and a host of laity performed the charitable and at times sacramental work of the Church. This sacramental work was limited to deacons, of course, and limited to what in modern parlance was to “hatch, match, and dispatch” — or in other words, to confer the Sacraments of Baptism, Marriage, and Last Rites.
At no point in time in salvation history have we had more deacons than today.
Right now, despite the “vocations crisis” in the Western world, in places such as Africa and Asia, the vocations crisis takes on a different form: how to build the seminaries fast enough. Right now, there are over 415,000 priests in the world — more than at any other point in time in salvation history.
The same is true for our bishops. We have more active bishops — 5,304 to be exact — in active ministry right now than at any other point in time in salvation history.
This is critically important for any number of reasons, but most importantly because these bishops can create new priests — and in that respect, we have over 116,000 new seminarians actively exploring a priestly vocation. Over a five-year average? At no other point in salvation history have we seen this many vocations being explored.
Now we come to the fun part — the Church Militant. Right now, there are over 1.3 billion professed Catholics around the world. One in six, to be clear. Both as a percentage of the human race and as a raw number of human beings, at no other point in time in salvation history has the Catholic Church enjoyed so wide a membership.
Yet that’s not all! How do you become a Catholic nominally? Of course, one has to accept baptism, which is a mark that cannot be erased and is enjoyed by Protestant, Orthodox, and other varying Christian traditions. So the grand total of souls claimed for the Catholic Faith? 2.3 billion.
At no other time in salvation history have there been so many individual souls marked indelibly with the Sacrament of Baptism.
Right now, the Catholic Church has opened more hospitals, more colleges, more clinics, more schools, more parishes, more refugee camps, more shelters, feeds more indigent populations, visits more prisoners and advocates on behalf of the unspoken more today than at any other time in salvation history.
Full stop and pause for just a moment.
Set aside all of the scandal for just a moment and imagine the Catholic Church as she is, not as how the press and the world would want her to be perceived. Consider what we would imagine her to be in holiness, and reflect on how truly amazing all of these gifts — both spiritual and temporal — truly are.
Granted, in the Catholic West, it can seem as if Christendom is falling apart. Scandals, persecutions, and even calumnies from within seem to be waging war against the Body of Christ.
Yet in perspective, there is no small wonder why the Catholic Church is under such attack — we are growing, and not only are we growing, but more souls today than at any other point in time in salvation history are enjoying the protection, prayers, and charitable works of the Catholic Church.