St. Benedict of Nursia – 11th July. Saint Benedict the Patron Saint of Europeborn in Nursia in 480 ina wealthy family, his twin sisterSaint Scholastica. At the age of 20 he adopted the hermitic lifestyle and lived this way for several years .He founded a series of monasteries beginning at Subiaco, Italy and inhe founded the monastery at Monte- Cassino,where hehis highly acclaimed monastic rule , he is known as the”father of western monathism ” his rule is still used not only by his own religious (men and women known as Benedictines ) but also by some other religious orders. His famous rulefused prayer and labour with community life ,Benedictine monasteries with the famous motto ,Ora et Labora,”Pray and Work” exist in almost every nation in the world. Benedict died in prayerthe monastery of Monte- Cassino in 547, many miracles are attributed to him and he possessed the gift of prophesy and insight. when he was appointed abbot at the monastery in Vicovaro an attempt to poison the wine in his chalice was made as soon as Benedict made the sign of the crosshis cup shattered in to tiny fragments.Benedict is often invoked to protect us against the powers of darkness and by the dying, there is a special cross named after him the Benedictine Cross which consists of a crucified Christ on the front and aof Stinserted behind. He was named patron Saint of Europe by Pope Paul V11964.
The feast of our Lady of Mt Carmel – 16th July. The feast of Our Lady of My Carmel also known as the “Scapular feast”, was inserted in the universal calendar of the Latin Church in 1726 by Pope Benedict X111.Lady of Mount Carmel is the title attributed to the Virgin Mary in her role as patroness of the Carmelite order. The first Carmelites were Christian hermits living on Mt Carmel in the Holy Land near the fountain of Elijahthe 12th and early 13th century. They built in the midst of their hermitages a chapel which they dedicated to our Lady, in herher Assumption in to Heaven.They have a special devotion and consecration to the Virgin Mary, St Teresa of Avila called Carmel ” The order of the Virgin “. Their motto is “With zeal I have been zealous for the Lord , God of Hosts.” Since the 15th century popular devotion has been centred on the brown scapular of the Carmelites a sacramental associated with Mary´s special protection. According to tradition those who wear the scapular and remain devoted to the Virgin Mary until death, will be granted the grace of final perserverance and be delivered form purgatory early.1251 the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St Simon Stock an English general of thethe Carmelite order in Cambridge and presented him with the scapular as a spiritual shield. The name Carmel is a deriviation of the name Carmen.Virgin Carmen( Carmel )is also a Patron Saint of Marbella ,fishermen and the sea.
St. Charbel of the Lebanon – 17th July. Youssef Antoun Makhlufwas born in 1828 in Kafra in the north Lebanese mountains. He was raised in a pious home and worked as a shepherd in the fields. In 1851 he left his family village and headed to” Our Lady of Mayfouq” monastery to spend his first monastic year.Youssef then went on to the St Maron monastery in Annaya in the Jbeli district near Bierut.he entered the Maronite orderand took the name Charbel after one of the Antiochmartyrs. Completing his theological studies in Batroun he was ordained as a priest in Bkerke in 1859. Charbel then returned to the monastery atwhere he spent 16 years. In 1875 he was granted by the abbot of the monastery the privilege of living as a hermit at the hermitage of St Peter and St Paul, a chapel that belonged to the St Maron monastery. He lived an ascetic life in the hermitage for 23 years but in 1898on Christmas Eve while performing the Holy Mass he had a stroke and died. Charbel was buried in the monastery in Saint Maron,thatdazzling lights were seen around his tomb and that body refused for a long timedecompose, secreting blood and sweat. Many miracles are attributed to this wonderful Saint who is also referred to as the “Second Saint Anthony of the Desert “or “The Perfume of Lebanon”.