All in the (Catholic) Family

Throughout Church history, holy people have sought each other out, married and shared their moral and spiritual example with their children.

Recently, Vatican officials announced that Léonie Martin, St. Thérèse of Lisieux’s sister and fellow nun, was to join her illustrious sister and parents in attaining sainthood.

Her canonization cause is under way as her beloved parents, Louis and Zélie Guérin, are to be canonized Oct. 18. Is this unprecedented?

No. Throughout Church history, holy people have sought each other out, married and shared their moral and spiritual example with their children. Among them are:

 

Blessed Luigi Beltrame Quattrocchi

A lay lawyer, he was deputy attorney general of Italy. Married to Blessed Maria Corsini, he was the father of four, three of whom entered religious life. He sheltered refugees during World War II.

 

Blessed Thomas Guengoro

Married to Blessed Mary Guengoro, he was the father of Blessed James Guengoro. He was martyred along with his family for helping Blessed Simon Kiota.

 

St. Adalbald of Ostrevant

Born to the nobility of Flanders, he was the son of St. Gertrude the Elder. Married to St. Rictrude of Marchiennes, he was the father of Sts. Maurontius of Douai, Clotsindis of Marchiennes, Eusebia of Hamage and Adalsindis.

 

St. Andrew of Arezzo

A married layman, he was martyred in the Valentian Persecutions, along with his wife and children and 50 companions, whose names are known only to God.

 

St. Artemius of Rome

Martyr, convert and jailer, he was married to St. Candida of Rome and was the father of St. Paulina of Rome. He was proselytized by St. Peter the Exorcist and baptized by St. Marcellinus.

 

St. Basil the Elder

The son of St. Macrina the Elder, he was married to St. Emmelia and the father of Sts. Basil the Great, Gregory Nyssen, Peter of Sebaste and Macrina the Younger.

 

St. Boniface of Hadrumetum

A martyr, he was married to St. Thecla of Hadrumetum. Father of the “Twelve Holy Brothers.”

 

St. Claudius the Martyr

A martyr and Roman military tribune, he was married to St. Hilaria and the father of Sts. Jason and Maurus. He converted to Christianity after hearing St. Chrysanthus’ testimony. All were martyred during the Numerian Persecution.

 

St. Sigebert III of Austrasia

A nobleman, he was the son of King Dagobert I, father of St. Dagobert II and grandfather of Sts. Irmina of Oehren and Adela of Pfalzel. He built hospitals, churches, homes for the poor and monasteries, including Stavelot and Malmédy.

 

St. Edgar the Peaceful

A prince, he was the son of St. Elgiva of Shaftesbury. He was the king of the Mercians and Northumbrians in 957. He was the father of St. Edward the Martyr.

 

St. Sadwen of Wales

Prince, soldier and hermit, he was the brother of St. Illtyd. Married to St. Canna Lang Anna, he was a missionary to the Britons.

 

St. Solomon I

This martyr was married to St. Gwen and was the father of St. Cuby.

 

St. Stephen of Hungary

King of Hungary, he was married to Blessed Gisella of Ungarn, the sister of Emperor St. Henry II, and the father of St. Emeric.

 

St. Vincent Madelgaire

Married to St. Waltrud, he was the son-in-law of St. Bertille and the father of Sts. Madalberta, Landericus, Dentlin of Soignies and Aldetrudis.

 

St. Vitalis of Milan

Soldier and convert, he was married to St. Valeria of Milan. He was the father of Sts. Gervase and Protase. He encouraged St. Ursicinus of Ravenna in his faith as he was being led to his martyrdom.

 

St. Vladimir I of Kiev

Grandson of St. Olga of Kiev, he was grand prince of Kiev.

 

St. Walbert of Hainault

Nobleman who was married to St. Bertilia of Thuringia, he was the father of Sts. Waltrude and Aldegundis.

 

Just as holiness can permeate our souls by the grace of God, so, too, can that action of the Holy Spirit work upon the souls of those who come into contact with us.

The example of the above saints and blesseds should serve well all who doubt their influence upon the world.

Angelo Stagnaro

writes from New York.

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