This virgin martyr is traditionally known as the ‘demon slayer’
Years ago, not long after I graduated from college, my mother gifted me an assortment of patron saint medals that had belonged to my grandmother. As I fingered through the darkening silver disks, each the size of my pinky nail, the saints’ names were familiar—Christopher, Joseph, Teresa—except for one. “Saint Dymphna, pray for us,” read the print above a tiny figure, crowned and brandishing a sword.
it’s time to start celebrating St. Patrick’s Day by rejecting Irish caricatures.
The kids in the Catholic seventh grade classroom—Hispanics, Filipinos, African Americans, and my own Irish American offspring—took on a project to highlight three aspects of their cultural heritage. As the teacher listened to the kids brainstorming, he turned to my child and said, “Three cultural traits of the Irish? That’s easy: drinking, drinking, and more drinking.”
The next day we met with the principal, who turned pale as she listened. The teacher apologized to my husband and me. There were no fisticuffs.
With this 1983 article Claretian Publications began a grassroots effort to promote the official declaration of Dorothy Day as a saint.
Linus, Cletus, Clement, Sixtus, Cornelius, Cypnan, Lawrence, Chrysogonus, John and Paul, Cosmos and Damian—remember them? For centuries they were listed in the canon of the Mass. They are still part of the canon (eucharistic prayer) Number 1, but their names may be omitted. Although the names were repeated millions of times, I doubt that they meant much to the worshipers.