Day 21 is St. Bernadette Soubirous, of Lourdes, 12×12 oil on wood panel. St. Bernadette was very ill for most of her life. When she was 14 the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her from a grotto in Lourdes, France. Mary appeared to her 17 times. A healing Spring emerged from the cave and became a source to healing of the sick and the lame.
Day 23 is St. Maria Goretti, 12×12 oil on wood panel. Maria Goretti died a martyr before her twelfth birthday. Young as she was, she made a choice of pruity based on her faith. She forgave the man that stabbed her before she died and appeared to him in a dream. She a patroness of all youth and a model of Christian purity.
Day 25 is St. Francis of Assisi, 12×12 oil on wood panel. There is so much I can say about St. Francis, being the saint that has had the most influence on me next to St. Maximillian Kolbe. He is the founder of the Franciscan Order, had many mystical experiences including the stigmata (wounds of Christ), Jesus spoke to him to re-build his church and he started by rebuilding the churches that were in ruin and he really re-built the the body of Christ (the Church) through his example and rule. He lived true poverty and help the lepers and the people that were forgoten outside the walls of Assisi.
Here is a little more about his life:
Saint Francis of Assisi (Italian: San Francesco d’Assisi); born Giovanni di Pietro di Bernardone, but nicknamed Francesco; 1181/1182 – October 3, 1226) was an Italian Catholic friar and preacher. He founded the men’s Order of Friars Minor, the women’s Order of St. Clare, and the Third Order of Saint Francis for men and women not able to live the lives of itinerant preachers, followed by the early members of the Order of Friars Minor, or the monastic lives of the Poor Clares. Francis is one of the most venerated religious figures in history.
Francis’ father was Pietro di Bernardone, a prosperous silk merchant. Francis lived the high-spirited life typical of a wealthy young man, even fighting as a soldier for Assisi. While going off to war in 1204, Francis had a vision that directed him back to Assisi, where he lost his taste for his worldly life. On a pilgrimage to Rome, he joined the poor in begging at St. Peter’s Basilica. The experience moved him to live in poverty. Francis returned home, began preaching on the streets, and soon gathered followers. His Order was authorized by Pope Innocent III in 1210. He then founded the Order of Poor Clares, which became an enclosed religious order for women, as well as the Order of Brothers and Sisters of Penance (commonly called the Third Order).
In 1219, he went to Egypt in an attempt to convert the Sultan to put an end to the conflict of the Crusades. By this point, the Franciscan Order had grown to such an extent that its primitive organizational structure was no longer sufficient. He returned to Italy to organize the Order. Once his community was authorized by the Pope, he withdrew increasingly from external affairs. In 1223, Francis arranged for the first Christmas nativity scene. In 1224, he received the stigmata, making him the first recorded person to bear the wounds of Christ’s Passion. He died during the evening hours of October 3, 1226, while listening to a reading he had requested of Psalm 142 (141).
On July 16, 1228, he was proclaimed a saint by Pope Gregory IX. He is known as the patron saint of animals and the environment, and is one of the two patron saints of Italy (with Catherine of Siena). It is customary for Catholic and Anglican churches to hold ceremonies blessing animals on his feast day of October 4. He is also known for his love of the Eucharist, his sorrow during the Stations of the Cross, and for the creation of the Christmas crèche or Nativity Scene.
To read more about his life click Here.
Day 26 is St. Catherine of Sienna, 12×12 oil on wood panel. Along with St. Francis, she is the patron saint of Italy. She was a mystic from the age of 6 and had several visions through out her life. She received the Stigmata, but the wounds were only visible after her death. She is a Doctor of the Church and Her body was found incoruptible in 1430. My favorite quote “Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.”
Here is a short bio from Catholic.org
The 24th child of a wool dyer in northern Italy, St. Catherine started having mystical experiences when she was only 6, seeing guardian angels as clearly as the people they protected. She became a Dominican tertiary when she was 16, and continued to have visions of Christ, Mary, and the saints. St. Catherine was one of the most brilliant theological minds of her day, although she never had any formal education. She persuaded the Pope to go back to Rome from Avignon, in 1377, and when she died she was endeavoring to heal the Great Western Schism. In 1375 Our Lord give her the Stigmata, which was visible only after her death. Her spiritual director was Blessed Raymond of Capua. St, Catherine’s letters, and a treatise called “a dialogue” are considered among the most brilliant writings in the history of the Catholic Church. She died when she was only 33, and her body was found incorrupt in 1430.
Click here to learn more.
Day 27 is Venerable Solanus Casey, 12×12 oil on wood panel. Fr. Solanus Casey was a simple priest in the Franciscan (Capuchin) who lived a life of humility. One of the keynotes of Fr. Solanus’ spirituality was of Gratitude, the prayer of “Thanks be to God” poured continually from his lips. “Love for God and neighbor” is another recurring theme of his writings along with obedience, trust, humility, and patience.
Here is a little bio from Catholic.org
Bernard (Barney) Casey was born in a three room log cabin, near Oak Grove, Wisconsin on November 25, 1875. As a young boy, though he was physically weak, he was strong spiritually. As a teenager, he saved a man from drowning, believing that the help of Our Lady made it possible. As a young man several difficult incidents brought him even closer to God: the ending of a relationship with a girl whom he loved, and being a witness to a murder. Barney decided that he wanted to devote his life to God, as a priest. The next eight years represented a difficult journey towards priesthood. In 1892, Bernard was admitted to a German seminary, but the diocesan officials at the seminary believed he did not have what it takes to be a priest. Due to a language barrier, he did poorly in his classes. Barney went to a Capuchin seminary in 1896, adopting the name of Solanus. At the age of thirty-three, Father Solanus was ordained as a simplex priest, which meant that he could not hear confessions or preach homilies. People waited in lines in order to speak to Father Solanus. They noticed the power of his prayers, a man with great faith in God. Many people contributed to Father Solanus, as the cause of many miracles. Reports of healings and conversions became everyday occurances in the Capuchin house. Even with the pain and suffering he experienced before his death, he thanked God. His last words before dying were: “I give my soul to Jesus”. On July 31, 1957, Father Solanus died. As a result of his faith, he was a man who submitted his will to God’s will.
Day 28 is St. Faustina Kowalska, 12×12 oil on wood panel. Jesus apeared many times to this holy nun in the 1930’s and taught her about his Divine Mercy. He asked her to have a painting made of His image, and now this is one of the biggest devotions in the church. He told her to write down all her notes in a diary where Jesus closely told her the details of His mercy on souls. Pope John Paul II declared the first Sunday after Easter “Divine Mercy Sunday” and by saying the chaplet of Divine Mercy and going to Mass on that day, Jesus promised to poor out his Mercy on mankind. We so despirately need the mercy of God in our world today and this is the answer.
A short bio taken from the Marians iof the Immaculate Conception:
The Humble Instrument
Sister Faustina was a young, uneducated nun in a convent of the Congregation of Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Poland during the 1930s. She came from a poor family that struggled during the years of World War I. She had only three years of simple education, so hers were the humblest tasks in the convent, usually in the kitchen or garden. However, she received extraordinary revelations — or messages — from our Lord Jesus. Jesus asked Sr. Faustina to record these experiences, which she compiled into notebooks. These notebooks are known today as the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, and the words contained within are God’s loving message of Divine Mercy.
Though the Divine Mercy message is not new to the teachings of the Church, Sr. Faustina’s Diary sparked a great movement, and a strong and significant focus on the mercy of Christ. Saint John Paul II canonized Sr. Faustina in 2000 making her the “first saint of the new millennium.” Speaking of Sr. Faustina and the importance of the message contained in her Diary, the Pope call her “the great apostle of Divine Mercy in our time.”
This is my final day of the challenge. This is Martha Butz my mom. Martha passed away in 2004 after a life long Lung condition. Breathing for her was a struggle her whole life and the last 20 years were especially hard. My mom was an over acheiver and she approached life with full force. For me she was one one of the most influential people in my life. She was an artist, and I always thought that I have the best traits of both my Mom and Dad. She was the one that at a young age saw some tallent in me and sent me to art class at the age of 8. We have always shared this interest and when I was at Art Center we shared the same studio. I have always felt that part of her was always living in me. When I graduated from College in 1994, my quote was “As an empty canvas waits before the painter, it thinks about the beauty that someday it will become… I am simply an empty Canvas and Jesus is the master painter and the Holy Spirit is the brush in which he paints.” This is from “the Empty Canvas” by John Michael Talbot. I later discover after she died that this too was her life song. I wasn’t able to make her funeral because I was in emergency surgery, and my grieving process was cut short. I moved her art studio to Wisconsin, and the easel and desk that I use is her’s. I feel like she has handed me the torch, and that she is the closest to me when I paint. There are so many ways that the people in heaven can reach us and show us they love us and for me this my painting. I really owe her everything, because without her I probably would not have been an artist. She is the person I dedicate my art too and my art is her legacy.
Day 29 is Carl Dossett, 12×12 oil on wood panel. This is my Grandpa Carl, as we we call nim to out kids. When I was born to about the age of three, we lived accross the street from this wonderful couple. They kindof adopted us as grandparents, so we called then Grandma and Grandpa Dossett. They met us for the first time just after I was born. We used to go over to their house often, especially every Christmas morning. They had two wonderful daughters Julie and Phyllis. They became Aunts to us and their children cousins. My Grandpa G and Eleanore (Carl’s wife) passed away around the same time. Shorly after, Carl married my Grandmother Ruth and they were married for 19 years. They had a wonderful life together, spending equal time at both parishes. He was a living saint to me, so gentle, humble and faithfull. He always had a smile on his face and was happy all the time. I never saw him angry or upset. We shared a lot in common, he was very tallented in so many areas, but he was an artist, and we both shared this interest together. He was taught by some of the legendary Illustrators like Andrew Loomis, that we studied in school.
Here is more about Carl’s life.
Carl Jacob Dossett was born on August 18, 1920 to Elmer McKinley and Sarah Christena Dossett in Great Falls, Montana. He was the second of their four sons. When he was fairly young the family moved to Twin Falls, Idaho where his folks purchased a farm and that is where he and his brothers were raised.
Carl enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served from 1942 through 1946. It was in August 1943 (on a blind date) that he met the first love of his life – Eleanor Cohen, who was a U.S. Navy, Wave Yoeman, from Brooklyn. For almost two years they were together whenever Carl could get to Washington, DC (where she was stationed). In-between their dates, Carl would write letters and on each envelope he would include cartoon picture from a previous date or something showing her something that had taken place where he was. His letters would sometimes take twice the time to get to Eleanor because they would get passed around the barracks and Post Office before they were delivered. After the war Carl was discharged from the Navy and he and Eleanor were married in New York on February 23, 1946. They lived in Twin Falls for 3 years before moving to California so Carl could attend art school at Woodbury College in Los Angeles. He worked for Tech-Color Craft and Avery Label before opening his own silk screen printing business in 1963 (C-K Products), with Kay McClure. Eleanor passed away in February 1980 after 34 years of marriage leaving Carl with 2 daughters and lots of wonderful memories.
In 1981, Carl and his partner decided to sell the business, though Carl did stay on to assist the new owners.
Something unexpected happened in 1981, Carl found Love again! He and Ruth Gutzwiller were married on June 14, 1981. Ruth was a very close family friend who had also lost her spouse. Carl and Ruth were quite the busy couple. They were both very active in their respective churches, which they each supported each other in the activities. Their families use to comment that they stayed busier than the younger people in the family. They signed up for Adoration at St. Dorothy’s on Friday evening at 11:00 pm because they figured they probably wouldn’t have a conflict at that time. They never missed Friday unless they were traveling and then they would arrange for a substitute. Carl and Ruth celebrated 19 years of marriage before Ruth passed away. Carl felt very blessed to have found two great Loves.
Carl passed away on September 06, 2006 at the age of 86.