Saint of the week:

A Saint is often an ordinary person who has lived an extraordinary life of virtue and faith. As Catholics we should use these exemplars to inspire us in our daily lives.

St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

St. Thomas Aquinas was born in the castle of Roccasecca in the Kingdom of Sicily. His father was Count Landulf and his mother Countess of Theate. She was related to the Holy Roman emperors. His education began at the Benedictine Monastery in Monte Cassino. He world move on to attend university in Naples. There he studied under the influence of John of St. Julian, a Dominican teacher and preacher. Innovation was important at this time and he was introduced to the study of Aristotle and other philosophers. He was inspired to join the Dominicans so he could commit his life to study and teaching. He studied in Paris and Cologne where he studied with St Albert the Great. Here he was prepared to teach scripture. He was licensed to teach in 1256 and was made Professor of Theology the next year. St Thomas wrote extensively on Christian Doctrine, Philosophy, The Bible and Aristotle. His most famous works are Summa Contra Gentiles and Summa Theologica. The Summa Theologica is noted for its systematic approach, clarity and intellectual depth. He also wrote about the importance of dreams and angels. He ordered the angels into a hierarchy and described them as incorporeal intellectual beings. St Thomas is a Doctor of the Church, the preeminent Catholic spokesman and also known as Doctor Angelicus.

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