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CNA - Daily Saint

Saints:     St. Junipero Serra

St. Junipero Serra

Feast date: Jul 01

St. Junípero Serra was born on November 24, 1713 on the island of Majorca, Spain. He joined the Franciscans in 1730, and became so accomplished as a student that he was appointed a lector of philosophy before his ordination.
 
As an academic, he was promising. After earning his PhD, he began teaching eventually earning the Duns Scotus chair of philosophy. However, at 36, he gave up this career, desiring instead to be a missionary in the New World. 
 
Padre Serra began his missionary work in Mexico. While working among the Pame Indians, he learned their language and translated the catechism for their understanding. Working in Mexico, he gained a reputation as a preacher deeply devoted to penance and mortification. He would pound his breast with a stone and even hold a lighted torch to his bare chest. He was also known for doing the work of young boys in cleaning the convent of San Fernando, where he was first assigned. Soon after his arrival in the New World, he sustained a spider bite to his leg that would leave him permanently injured. However, he was still known to walk everywhere whenever possible.
 
In 1767, Serra  was assigned to preach in what was then called Upper California, encompassing much of the modern-day state. Here, he established several missions, for which he became famous. These missions remain today, and stretch from San Diego to San Francisco.
 
Padre Serra died in 1784. Many native peoples whom he had worked with wept openly at his funeral. He is at San Carlos Borromeo Mission in Carmel by the Sea. He is credited with bringing the faith to the California region.

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Saints:     St. Arnulf of Metz
St. Arnulf of Metz

Feast date: Jul 01

A statesman and bishop under the Merovingians, St. Arnulf was born in 580 and died in 640. His parents belonged to a distinguished Frankish family, and lived in Austrasia in the eastern section of the kingdom founded by Clovis.

In the school where Arnulf was placed as a boy, he excelled through his talent and his good behaviour. According to the custom of the age, he was sent in due time to the court of Theodebert II, King of Austrasia (595-612), to be initiated in the various branches of the government. Under the guidance of Gundulf, the Mayor of the Palace, he soon became so proficient that he was placed on the regular list of royal officers, and among the first of the kings ministers. He distinguished himself both as a military commander as well as in the civil administration, and at one time he had six distinct provinces under his care.

In due course, Arnulf was married to a Frankish woman of noble lineage, by whom he had two sons; Anseghisel and Clodulf. While Arnulf was enjoying worldly emoluments and honours, he did not forget higher and spiritual things. His thoughts often dwelt on monasteries, and with his friend Romaricus, also an officer of the court, he planned to make a pilgrimage to the Abbey of Lérins, evidently for the purpose of devoting his life to God.

However, in the meantime the Episcopal See of Metz became vacant. Arnulf was universally designated as a worthy candidate for the office, and he was consecrated bishop of that see around 611. In his new position he set the example of a virtuous life to his subjects, and attended to matters of ecclesiastical government. In 625 he took part in a council held by the Frankish bishops at Reims. With all these different activities, Arnulf still retained his station at the court of the king, and played a prominent role in the national life of his people.

In 613, after the death of Theodebert, he, with Pepin of Landen and other nobles, called to Austrasia Clothaire II, King of Neustria. When, in 625, the realm of Austrasia was entrusted to the kings son Dagobert, Arnulf became not only the tutor, but also the chief minister, of the young king. At the time of the estrangement between the two kings in 625 Arnulf, with other bishops and nobles, tried to bring about a reconciliation, but Arnulf dreaded the responsibilities of the episcopal office, and grew weary of court life.

About the year 626 he obtained the appointment of a successor to the Episcopal See of Metz, and he and his friend Romaricus withdrew to a solitary place in the mountains of the Vosges. There he lived in communion with God until his death. His remains, interred by Romaricus, were transferred about a year afterwards, by Bishop Goeric, to the basilica of the Holy Apostles in Metz.


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