Saints' Names for Boys

Feast Day

Name

Meaning

Saint & Patronage

 

Aaron

Lofty mountain

Brother of Moses, and High Priest of the Old Law

Dec. 20

Abraham
Abram

father of many

God set into motion the plan of salvation by testing Abraham’s faith. He was willing to sacrifice his son Isaac in obedience to God, but God provided a substitute—a ram—as a sign of the coming of the Messiah.

 

Adam
Adan

first of the Earth

First man and father of the human race

Jan. 9

Adrian

Brave

Saint Adrian of Canterbury was a highly successful missionary in pagan England, and a great teacher of Bible study.

 

Alan
Alain, Allan, Allen

Harmony

Our Lady told Blessed Alan de la Roche to revive the ancient Confraternity of the Most Holy Rosary. He was a Dominican Father in Brittany, a theologian famous for his sermons.


June 20

Alban

White

Saint Alban was converted by a priest whom he sheltered from persecutions and rescued by changing clothes with him. Patron saint of converts.




Nov. 15

Albert

illustrious

Saint Albert the Great was a bishop who introduced Greek and Arabic science to medieval Europe, raising understanding of botany, biology, physics, and other studies of nature. A scientist himself, he wrote many books on these subjects.

Oct. 11

Alexander
Alistair, Alec, Alex, Alejandro, Sacha, Sandor

helper of people

Saint Alexander Sauli became a bishop in a diocese where faith had died. Clergy and laity knew little about scripture and Church teachings. With the help of three friends, he inspired the people to new faith, corrected abuses, rebuilt broken down churches, and founded colleges and seminaries.

(July 17)

Alexis
Alex, Alexei, Alexius, Sasha

Helper

Saint Alexius grew up wealthy but enjoyed helping beggars. He wanted to devote himself to God, but his parents arranged a marriage for him. On his wedding day his fiancee agreed to let him follow his vocation. Our Lady spoke from a picture at church, pointing him out and calling him the "Man of God".


 

June 21

Aloysius
Louis, Alois, Lewis, Ludwig, Luigi, Luis

Famous warrior

Saint Aloysius Gonzaga, at age 16, gave up his right to be a prince to grow in sanctity through the Jesuit discipline. He died at age 23, because he contracted a disease from the sick people he had helped. Patron saint of youth.

Aug. 1

Alphonse

eager for battle

Saint Alphonsus Liguori was a civil and a canon lawyer who made it a point to always attend Mass before heading to court. His promised that he would never waste a moment of his life, and held fast to it for over 90 years, even when his rheumatism hurt so much that he could barely move.

Dec. 7

Ambrose

immortal

Saint Ambrose of Milan was called "the honey-tongued doctor" because of his gift of preaching and his reputation as an expert on Church doctrine. Words were very important to him and he said, "Let no word escape your lips in vain or be uttered without depth of meaning."

May 5

Angel
Angelo

Angel

Saint Angelus of Jerusalem was born to Jewish converts and learned to respect Jews as well as to help them accept Jesus as the Messiah. After assisting in the formation of the first Carmelite house, he was sent to Italy where he converted many Sicilian Jews.

Nov. 30

Andrew
Andre, Andreas, Andres, Drew

Manly

Saint Andrew was the first Apostle. He enthusiastically led other people to God, starting with his brother, Saint Peter.

April 21

Anselm

divine helmet

Saint Anselm of Canterbury actively fought against slavery in England, even getting politically involved and obtaining legislation that made it illegal to sell human beings.


 

June 13

 

 

Oct. 24

Anthony
Tony, Anton, Antonio, Antony

Priceless

Saint Anthony of Padua was always a ready helper in time of need. Living as a hermit, he left his cave only to attend Mass and sweep the nearby monastery. When he filled in for a scheduled speaker who failed to keep his commitment, his reputation as a great preacher spread widely. Patron saint for finding lost articles.

Saint Anthony Claret was convinced that the Church should use the power of the printed word to evangelize the world.

(July 8)

Arnold

Strength of an eagle

Saint Arnold was confessor in the court of Charlemagne who was noted for his charity to the poor.


 

Aug. 28

Augustine
August, Austin, Augustin

Majestic

When Saint Augustine was a young adult, he rejected his upbringing, converted to a false religion and lived immorally. It was a lifestyle he did not want to give up, but he finally realized that nothing truly satisfied him except friendship with God. He said, "Our hearts were made for You, O Lord, and are restless until they rest in You."

 

June 11

Barnabas
Barnaby

son of consolation

Saint Barnabas was converted shortly after Pentecost. He gave up all his possessions to detach from the world and follow the way of Christ. His helpful, compassionate and optimistic nature inspired other new Christians, including Saint Paul.

 

Aug. 24

Bartholomew
Bart, Bartel, Barry

son of Talmai

Saint Bartholomew was an Apostle whose greatest desire was to know the truth. His initial reaction to Jesus was, "How can anything good come from Nazareth?" But when he met Jesus, he wanted to become one a disciple. Jesus said of him, "Here is a man in whom there is no deception."

 

Jan. 2

Basil
Vasily, Vassily

Royal

Saint Basil the Great practiced law but decided to become a monk. He founded a monastery which he directed. He wrote a famous monastic rule that lasted longer than any others in the East. Patron of hospital administrators.

 

May 25

Bede

Life

Saint Bede the Venerable combined contemplative prayer with theological studies, always hungry to discover more of the riches of the Faith. He especially admired the spirituality of the Blessed Mother.

 

July 11

 

 

Jan. 12

Benedict
Benoit, Bennett, Benito

Blessing

Saint Benedict believed in excelling and doing his very best to honor God. When he founded twelve monasteries, the demand for spiritual excellence in his Monastic Rule was so frustrating to lazy monks, some of them tried to poison him, but he blessed the drink and consumed it with no ill effects.

After Saint Benedict Biscop made a pilgrimage to Rome, he added Roman elements of worship to English liturgies and thus became the patron saint of musicians and painters.

 

(Mar. 31)

Benjamin
Benson

son of the right hand

Saint Benjamin was a Deacon who was imprisoned for his faith. Released on condition that he never preach about Christ again, he refused to comply and neglected no opportunity to talk about Jesus. He was martyred.

 

Aug. 20

 


May 28

Bernard
Barnard,  Bernadine, Bernardo, Nardo, Bernhard

bold as a bear

Saint Bernard used to ask himself every morning, "Why have I come here?" and he answered, "To lead a holy life." He valued using all talents, resources, time, experiences, hurts, and spiritual growth for God so that no day would be wasted.

Saint Bernard of Menthon protected travelers from thieves in the Alpine Mountains and established hospices for people making pilgrimages to Rome. The big dogs that are trained to search for missing victims in the mountains were named after him.

 

Feb. 3

Blaise
Blase

Babbler

Saint Blaise was a physician who healed humans and animals. While imprisoned for his faith, he healed his fellow prisoners and saved a child who was choking on a fish bone. Thus he became the patron of throat ailments, colds and viruses.

 

July 15

Bonaventure

good attempt

Saint Bonaventure was one of the greatest thinkers of the Middle Ages. He was exceptionally gifted in his soul, mind, and personality.

 

June 5

Boniface

doer of good things

Saint Boniface left everything that was familiar to him to evangelize the German tribes and reorganize the Church in France. He traveled continuously, always willing to deal with change for the sake of the Lord.

 

(May 16)

Brendan
Brandon, Brennan

Sword

Saint Brendan and a crew of other Irish monks voyaged across the Atlantic to America in a ship made of oxhides -- 400 years before the Vikings and almost 1000 years before Columbus!

 

(Dec. 1)

Brian
Bryan, Bryant

Strong

Saint Alexander Briant was an English Jesuit whom people called "the beautiful youth" because of his handsome looks and purity of heart. When he was martyred, he felt no pain during the tortures. He said: "Whether this that I say be miraculous or no, God knows." He was 25 when he died.

 

(Nov. 13)

Brice
Bruce

Breach

Saint Brice was a self-centered, overly ambitious cleric who repented. But when he became a bishop, he reverted to his old ways and neglected his duties. When exiled, he repented again and completely changed his attitude. Resuming as Bishop, he served with such humility, holiness and ability that the people venerated him as a saint before he died.

 

Oct. 6

 

 

July 18

Bruno

Brown

Saint Bruno knew that cheerfulness comes from serving God with hard work, fasting, and continual prayers. He said, "Try and you will see how rewarding it is to serve God with all the love of your heart." He felt great concern for those who lived in Satan’s grip and is the patron of possessed people.

Saint Bruno of Segni was an avid defender of orthodox Christian teachings. One of the doctrines he strongly promoted was the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

 

July 14

Camillus
Camille, Camillo

Temple servant

Saint Camillus de Lellis repented from a wild-spent youth and gambling addiction to serve God, and although he was incurably diseased, he took care of others who were sick. He founded the Congregation of the Servants of the Sick, believing that the suffering people were living images of Jesus.

 

Nov. 4

Carl
Charles, Carlo, Carlos, Carroll, Cary, Karl, Karol

Strong

Saint Charles Borromeo served as a bishop in a diocese that was plagued by superstitions and other faulty religious practices, but he resolved the problems by issuing wise rulings, instituting them with kindness, and setting an example through his own holy life. He learned from having a severe speech impediment that "we are all weak, but if we want help, the Lord God has given us the means to find it easily."

 

Mar. 4

Casimir
Cass, Casper

Peaceful

Saint Casimir of Poland was the son of a king and held the high office of Grand Duke. He hated luxury and the temptations of the flesh. He secretly did many penances to keep himself focused on the growth of his spirit.

 

Mar. 3

Chad

martial

When Saint Chad became a bishop, he put tremendous effort into understanding ecclesiastical truth and maintaining purity of doctrine. He devoted much time to the activities of humility and self-sacrifice. When he traveled, he went by foot rather than by horseback, in imitation of the apostles. This spirituality made his preaching of the Gospel powerful and effective.

 

Nov. 4

Charles
Carl, Carlo, Carlos, Carroll, Cary, Karl, Karol

strong

Saint Charles Borromeo served as a bishop in a diocese that was plagued by superstitions and other faulty religious practices, but he resolved the problems by issuing wise rulings, instituting them with kindness, and setting an example through his own holy life. He learned from having a severe speech impediment that "we are all weak, but if we want help, the Lord God has given us the means to find it easily."

 

  

Christian

anointed, belonging to Christ

Jesus Christ is your patron! With this name and a heart that is devoted to Christ, you have the whole body of Christ -- the Communion of Saints -- as your prayer partners.

 

(July 25)

Christopher
Cristobal, Chris

Christ-
bearer

Saint Christopher died a martyr during the reign of Decius in the third century. However, he was quite possibly only a legend created by popular story-telling, so he is no longer on the official list of Saints. He is known for carrying travelers across a stream (which is why he is the patron of travelers), including a child who was surprisingly heavy. It turned out that the child was Jesus bearing the weight of the world.

(Nov. 4)

Clair
Clare, Clarus,
Clarence

clear

Saint Clarus was a priest who became a Benedictine monk and lived as a hermit. When he resisted the advances of a noblewoman, she had him killed.

(June 6)

Claude
Claudius

lame

Saint Claud was a holy priest who served as a Benedictine Abbot and later a bishop, though he preferred not to have such status. In the 12th century (400 years later), his body was discovered to be incorrupt. His burial place became a favorite place for pilgrimages, and miraculous cures occurred there.

Nov. 23

Clement

merciful

Saint Clement knew the Apostles personally before they were martyred. As pope, he challenged his people to follow their examples. He said, "We ought to put aside vain and useless concerns and should consider what is good, pleasing and acceptable in the sight of Him who made us."

(Nov. 23)

Colin
Columban, Colman, Colum, Cullen

dove

Saint Columban moved from place to place preaching the Gospel, forming a community who accompanied him, and being a witness of humility and love through his own life. He often took time out to be alone with God in the forrest, and the animals obeyed his voice.

Sept. 16

Cornelius
Connor, Conor, Cornel, Neal, Neil

horn

Saint Cornelius was pope during terrible persecutions, and he anguished over the sufferings of his people. Saint Cyprian was his friend and said to him, "Let us relieve burdens and afflictions by mutual love."

Oct. 25

Crispin

curly haired

Saints Crispin and Crispinian were brothers who promoted Your kingdom by day and supported their families by night as shoemakers.

June 27

 


Mar. 18

Cyril
Cyr, Kyril

lordly

Saint Cyril of Alexandria defended the Blessed Virgin Mary's title as Mother of God, at a time when there was much persecution against her. He called her "Hail, Mary, Mother of God, venerable treasure of the whole universe."

Saint Cyril of Jerusalem was the bishop of Jerusalem when the persecutions ended and great heresies began. This new enemy tried to force him to accept false teachings about the Church, but he stood firm. When anti-Christians tried to prove that Jesus were wrong in His prophecies, Cyril's confidence came from knowing that Jesus would prove Himself right.


 

Sept. 26

Damian
Damiano, Damien, Damon

tamer

Saints Cosmas and Damian were twins who became excellent doctors. They refused payment for their medical care because they believed that when they treated patients, they were also caring for Jesus. By conveying great love, they won the hearts of their patients as they taught them about the Faith.

(Feb. 16)

Daniel
Dan, Niel

the Lord is judge

Saint Daniel and four companions were Egyptians who visited Christians condemned to do hard labor in the mines during persecutions, to comfort them. They were arrested for this, tortured and beheaded.

Mar. 1

David

beloved

Saint David of Wales received a vision from Jesus that sent him to Jerusalem where anti-Christian sentiment was strong. By relying on God, he preached so powerfully that he converted many who had been attacking the Faith.

(Oct. 9)

Denis
Dennis, Dion, Sidney, Sydney

wild, frenzied

Saint Denis (also called Dionysius) was the first bishop of Paris and the Apostle of France.

Aug. 8

 

 

Mar. 10

Dominic
Domingo, Dominick

I belong to the Lord

Saint Dominic de Guzman, founder of the Dominican Order, worked hard against heresies. When people refused to accept the truth, he grew discouraged, but the Blessed Mother appeared and asked him to pray the Rosary daily and to teach it to others. Through the Rosary, the heresies were conquered.
Saint Dominic Savio was one of the children touched by Saint John Bosco’s ministry. An altar boy at age five, he started on the road to the priesthood at age twelve but died at fifteen. Yet, he accomplished much good in his short life because of his piety. His birthplace and childhood home are now retreat houses for youth.

(July 15)

Donald

dark stranger

Saint Donald had nine daughters, and when his wife died, the family formed a religious community, which he directed. In his native Scotland, natural features such as hills are called the "Nine Maidens" in memory of his daughters.

Nov. 20

Edmund

happy protection

Saint Edmund of East Anglia was a king who was captured by pagan invaders. The enemy wanted him to sign a treaty that would harm his country and Church, but he chose to die rather than to grieve God and hurt his people.

Oct. 13

Edward

prosperous guardian

Saint Edward the Confessor was one of the most popular English kings, because he trusted in God and greatly loved his people. By relying on God, he was able to rule wisely and maintain peace.

Oct. 12

Edwin

prosperous friend

Saint Edwin was a pagan king who listened to a Christian preacher publicly explain the Gospel. He accepted salvation, renounced his worship of the gods, and commanded his high priest to destroy their altars and temples.

(Feb. 16)

Elias
Elijah

the Lord is God

Saint Elias ministered with Saint Daniel to Christians condemned to do hard labor in the mines during persecutions, to comfort them. When they were arrested for their beliefs, Elias bravely shared his mystical insights, even though this led to his death.

(Dec. 24)

Emil
Emile, Emilian, Emilion, Emilius

excelling

Saint Gregory the Great had three aunts who led prayerful religious lives in their father's house, Tarsilla, Saint Emiliana, and Gordiana. They encouraged each another to growth in holiness.

(Dec. 25)

Emmanuel
Immanuel, Manuel

God with us

Jesus Christ is your patron! Having a name associated with the joy of Christmas is a reminder that you are called to bring Christ to all those around you.

(May 18)

Eric
Erick, Erich

ever-ruler

Saint Eric was a king of Sweden who codified Swedish law under Gospel principles. He used his power and authority to spread the Gospel through his kingdom.

(Nov. 7)

Ernest

serious

Saint Ernest was the abbot of a Benedictine Abbey in Germany. He went on the Crusades, preached in Arabia and Persia, and was captured by the Moors. He was tortured to death in Mecca.

(June 2)

Eugene
Gene

well born

Saint Eugene I was a priest who had served in several different positions in the Church and became pope. He was widely known for his charity and holiness.

(Sept. 7)

Eustace

fruitful

Saint Eustace served as a parish priest until he was elected abbot. He later became the apostolic legate to England for Pope Innocent III.

Jan. 20

Fabian

prosperous farmer

Saint Fabian was filled with zeal and wisdom. As a layman and farmer, he entered Rome on the day a new pope was being elected. By God's design, a dove flew into the proceedings and landed on his head, an obvious sign that God had anointed him to serve as pope. Surprised but obedient, Saint Fabian said yes.

(Jan. 14)

Felix
Felician, Felicio

happy

Saint Felix of Nola was a priest was was ordained by and worked with Saint Maximus of Nola. When Maximus was dying, Felix hid him from soldiers in a vacant building. God used a spider to spin a web over the door, fooling the soldiers into thinking no one had entered there.


 

May 30

Ferdinand
Fernando, Ferde, Fernand, Hernando

adventerous

Saint Ferdinand III of Castile was a great administrator who had very deep faith. His friendship with God inspired him to be a just ruler, and he pardoned those who attacked his throne.

(April 24)

Fidelis
Fidel

faithful

Saint Fidelis of Sigmaringen was a lawyer who grew disgusted by the greed, corruption, and lack of interest in justice by his colleagues. He changed careers to join the priesthood. He gave away his wordly wealth to poor seminarians and other needy people.

Oct. 4

 

 

Dec. 3

Francis
Frank, Franz, Francesco, Francisco, Franco, Francois

free

When Saint Francis of Assisi turned his life over to God, he gave away his possessions, including the clothes on his back. He discovered that this freed him to experience His love more fully, so he said, "Let us give alms because these cleanse our souls from the stains of sin."

Saint Francis Xavier was sent to evangelize the unexplored Far East. This was made difficult by sciatica, but he offered up his pain for the mission and he received many supernatural gifts, including prophecy, healing, calming storms, and raising people from the dead. He baptized more than 40,000 converts.

(July 18)

Frederick
Fred, Federico, Frederic, Friedrich

peace-ruler

Saint Frederick was a bishop who established order throughout his diocese. He sent eager, faith-filled and holy missionaries to the places where paganism still existed. He was good at caring for the spiritual growth of converts.

Sept. 29

Gabriel

God's strength

God had given us archangels to assist us during our pilgrimage on earth. Saint Gabriel is a messenger of the Good News; he can help us hear God's voice and to teach us the truth.

Nov. 8

Geoffrey
Godfrey, Jeffrey, Jeff, Gottfried, Goffredo

God's peace

Saint Godfrey was the abbot of a rundown abbey who restored it to good discipline and rebuilt it into a flourishing community.

April 23

George
Georges, Giorgio, Igor, Jorge, Jurgen

farmer

Saint George was nicknamed the "Victory Bringer" because he relied on God's power to defeat evil wherever he went. Starting as a soldier in the army, he converted and became a soldier for Christ. Laying down the world’s armor by giving his wealth to the poor, he forever after carried the shield of faith and won many victories for those who sought God's help.

(Oct. 13)

Gerald
Geraldo, Garcia, Jerold

spear rule

Saint Gerald of Aurillac was a Count who gave away his possessions and dedicated himself to God and ministry. Though he never joined an order, he lived in as if he did. He built a church and abbey on his property.

Oct. 3

Gerard
Gerhard, Gerado, Girado, Girard

strong spear

Saint Gerard of Brogne joined a monastery in order to find a quiet, peaceful place to spend his time in prayer, although he willingly left his solitude to help others become stronger in their faith. He believed that if people realized the joy that came from praying, they would pray more often.

(June 15)

Germain

kin

Saint Germaine Cousin was a severely abused and neglected child. She turned to God, who taught her how to forgive her family and grow in holiness. She entrusted the sheep she tended to God's care while she went to daily Mass, and they were never attacked by wolves. One day when the rains flooded the river, a villager saw the water part so she could get to Mass. She died from her mistreatments at age 22; forty years later her body was exhumed and found incorrupted.

(June 19)

Gervais
Gervas, Jarvis, Jervis

spear servant

Saint Gervasius was one of the first martyrs of Milan. He is the patron of haymakers and is invoked for the discovery of thieves. His relics were discovered by Saint Ambrose, who was guided to them by a vision.

(Feb. 4)

Gilbert

bright pledge

Saint Gilbert of Sempringham was exiled to Paris by his father to study the arts because he refused to become a soldier. When he returned home, he opened a school for poor children, giving them special training in religion. When his parents died, he spent his inheritance by founding monasteries and helping the poor.

Sept. 3

Gregory

watchman

Saint Gregory the Great was the first pope who referred to himself as "the servant of the servants of God," and all the popes since then have used the same title.

(Sept. 12)

Guy
Guido

guide

Saint Guy of Anderlecht was born in poverty, and he believed this was a holy condition that God wanted for him. Once, he invested in an sea expedition in the hopes of getting rich. The ship sank, and Guy took it as a sign. He walked to Rome in penance for his greed, then to Jerusalem where he worked for a while as a guide to pilgrims.

(June 17)

Harvey
Herve

warrior

Saint Harvey was blind, but this did not stop him from serving as a good abbot for his community. He was famous for miracles.


 

July 13

Henry
Hank, Harry, Emeric, Enrico, Heinrich, Henri, Rico

home ruler

Saint Henry II was one of the best rulers of the Christian Roman Empire. He reformed the Church, assisted the growth of new monasteries, and oversaw the building of many beautiful churches. Because he believed that the Creed was essential to understanding our faith, he convinced the Pope to institute its use every Sunday and major feast day.

(Mar. 20)

Herbert
Herve

shining warrior

Saint Herbert was the disciple and close friend of Saint Cuthbert. Herbert begged his spiritual father to pray that, as they had served God together on earth, they might be allowed to see God's glory at the same moment in heaven. Soon after, Herbert succumbed to a painful illness which lasted until they died simultaneously the following year.

(April 7)

Herman
Armand, Ernan, Germain, German, Hermann, Herme, Hernando

soldier

Saint Hermann Joseph was a monk and mystic who had a special devotion to the Blessed Mother. He consecrated the Eucharist with remarkable reverence. He was gentle, friendly and humble. He prayed for hours at Our Lady's altar and experienced ecstatic visions there. He composed wonderful prayers and hymns to Our Lady.

Jan. 13

Hilary
Hilarion, Hilaire

merry

Saint Hilary of Poitiers was an avid defender of Christ's divinity when many were claiming that He was only human.

(Nov. 3)

Hubert
Umberto

bright mind

Saint Hubert turned to the religious life after his wife died, reputedly after seeing a crucifix between the horns of a stag while he was hunting. Thus he is the patron of hunters. He became a bishop who ended idol worship in his diocese, made numerous conversions, and became known for his miracles.

(April 29)

Hugh
Hughes, Hugo, Ugo

thought

The father of Saint Hugh the Great wanted him to become a knight and secular leader, but his mother supported his interest in religious life, especially after a local priest had a vision about it. When he became a priest, he fought corruption in the Church and founded nearly 2000 houses for religious who shared his high standards.


 

July 31

 

 

Oct. 17

Ignatius
Ignace, Ignazio, Inigo, Nacho

fiery

Saint Ignatius of Loyola was wounded in battle and had to spend months in recovery. He wanted to pass the time reading adventure books about knights, but all he could find were biographies on the saints. Reading these, he felt challenged to do what the saints had done.

Saint Ignatius of Antioch was taken to Rome under military guard after he was condemned to die in the Roman amphitheater. On the way, he wrote inspiring letters to Christian communities. Nothing would stop him from carrying out his ministry of preaching the Gospel.

Dec. 20

Isaac

he laughs

God set into motion the plan of salvation by testing Abraham’s faith. He was willing to sacrifice his son Isaac in obedience to God, Who provided a substitute—a ram—as a sign of the coming of the Messiah. Isaac passed the promise onto his son Jacob, who was later renamed Israel.

April 4

Isidore
Dore, Dorian

strong gift

Saint Isidore of Seville was one of the most learned men of his day and has become the patron saint of computer users and the Internet.

(May 19)

Ives
Ivar, Iver, Ivo, Ivor, Yves

archer

Saint Ivo of Kermartin was a lawyer and a priest, often defending the poor for free. He fought the government over taxes and the rights of the Church. He was an incorruptible diocesan judge but eventually resigned from all law work to shepherd the people spiritually. He worked miracles, including feeding hundreds from one loaf of bread.

Dec. 20

Jacob
Jake, James

holding by the heel, or supplanter

Jacob was the son of Isaac and grandson of Abraham. His name comes from his birth, when he emerged grabbing onto his twin brother's heel as they fought for first place. He later stole from his brother (Esau) the first-born's rights. He was renamed Israel by God after he wrestled with a divine visitor and was finally broken of his pride.

July 25

James
Jacob, Diego, Jacques, Jaime, Santiago, Iago, Seamas, Shamus

supplanter

Saint James the Greater was one of the first Apostles, but he started out as a very impulsive, self-centered man. He dared to ask Jesus for a place of honor in His kingdom, and he wanted Jesus to destroy the villages that had rejected Him, but eventually he developed a true understanding of holiness.


 

(Feb. 16)

Jeremiah
Jeremy, Jeremias

exalted of the Lord

Saint Jeremy and four companions were Egyptians who visited Christians condemned to do hard labor in the mines during persecutions, to comfort them. They were arrested for this, tortured and beheaded.

The Old Testament writer Jeremiah (Jeremias) was called at a youthful age to become one of Israel's greatest prophets.

Sept. 30

Jerome
Geronimo

holy name

Saint Jerome said that ignorance of the scriptures is ignorance of Christ. As secretary to the Pope, he received the commission to translate the Bible from its original languages into Latin—the Vulgate.

July 26

Joachim
Joaquin

God prepares

The grandparents of Jesus, Saints Joachim and Ann dedicated their precious daughter Mary to the service of the Temple when she was three years old, preparing the way for her to become the Blessed Mother.

  

Joel

the coming down of God

In the Old Testament, Joel was the second in the list of the twelve Minor Prophets. He warned of the judgment of Jahweh in order to awaken the people from their moral lethargy, while rejoicing in Jahweh's work of salvation.

Dec. 27

 

 

Sept. 13

 


Aug. 4

John
Baptiste, Evan, Gian, Giovanni, Hans, Ian, Ivan, Jan, Johann, Johannes, Jon, Juan, Sean, Shane, Shaun

God has mercy

Saint John became one of Jesus' closest friends. He was the only one who stayed with Him until the end. On the cross, Jesus placed His Mother into his care. After Jesus rose, he ran ahead of the other Apostles to see the empty tomb and he was the first to recognize Him at the lakeside.

Saint John Chrysostom was very vocal in condemning the sinful customs of his society, earning the name "John of the Golden Tongue." With his powers of persuasion, he stopped immoral performances of plays.

Saint John Vianney is the patron saint of parish priests with a special concern for men who enter the priesthood late in life. He himself had a delayed vocation, and he managed to get through seminary only with great difficulty.


 

Mar. 19

 


Sept. 18

Joseph
Josef, Jose, Gisseppe

increase

God chose Saint Joseph to care for Mary and Jesus because his holiness and love for Him was great, his compassion for others was outstanding, and his desire to protect and provide for his family was honorable.

Saint Joseph of Cupertino endured much rejection—his mother disapproved of him and the religious orders he tried to join refused him—but rather than succumbing to self-pity, he turned to God for acceptance. He became a priest who worked miracles and conversed intimately with Christ in ecstasies.

Oct. 28

Jude

praised

Saint Jude was one of the first 12 Apostles. He was known for exorcising pagan idols, which crumbled as the demons fled. He is the patron of desperate situations and lost causes.

Feb. 12

Julian
Julius, Giles, Jules, Julio

soft beard

Saint Julian spent his life caring for the poor as a sacrifice for inadvertently killing his parents. He is the patron saint of circus workers, innkeepers, travelers, and murderers.

June 1

Justin

just

Saint Justin Martyr struggled with his intellect in order to find God. He had studied various philosophies, filling his mind with many ideas that were contrary to Christianity, and this made it difficult for him to accept the Faith. But once converted, he wrote strong defenses of Christian beliefs.

(Oct. 11)

Kenneth
Kent, Canice

handsome

Saint Kenneth was an Irish priest who was a close friend of Saint Columba. He was a very successful missionary and built a few monastaries.

(June 3)

Kevin

handsome, beautiful

Saint Kevin was born into royalty, but when he was ordained, he became a hermit for 7 years. Then he founded a monastery for the disciples he attracted. Many fantastic miracles were attributed to him, and he supposedly lived to the age of 120.

July 8

Kilian
Killian

church

Saint Kilian was a bishop who traveled throughout his diocese to reach all the parishes and minister to his flock. He realized that his calling to be a missionary meant going being the borders of his own country, so he took eleven companions and left home to evangelize Gaul.

(June 27)

Lance
Ladislaus, Lancelot, Lazlo

ruling well

Saint Ladislaus was a great king of Hungary who encouraged Christian missionaries, built many churches, and gave religious freedom to the Jews and Mohammedans in his country. He was known for his zeal, piety, and moral life.


 

Aug. 10

 

 

 

July 21

Lawrence
Lars, Lauren, Laurence, Laurenz, Loren, Lorenzo

laurel

Saint Lawrence protected the Church’s money from the Roman Empire by giving it to the poor. When the greedy prefect of Rome demanded the Church’s treasures, Lawrence presented to him the poor and the sick, announcing, "This is the Church's treasure!" When he was martyred, he was roasted on fire. Keeping God's joy and good humor to the end, he told his torturers: "Turn me over, I'm done on this side!"

Saint Lawrence of Brindisi served You as a military chaplain who preached effectively and taught the Faith in many languages.

Nov. 10

Leo
Lee, Leigh, Lon, Leov, Lionel

lion

Saint Leo the Great was pope during fearsome times. Heathen armies were attacking the faithful in many places and Christians were spreading errors about the Faith. Yet, he led the Church wisely and courageously, refusing to fear any threat, any difficulty, or any army.

(Oct. 9)

Louis
Alois, Aloysius, Lewis, Ludwig, Luigi, Luis

famous warrior

Saint Louis Bertrand was a Dominican priest who was so poor at preaching, it seemed he'd be ineffective, but his deep love for people produced great results. As a missionary in South America for 6 years, he baptized thousands. Though he knew only one language, God gave him the gift of tongues, so that when he preached, all the different Indian tribes understood him.

Oct. 18

 

Oct. 26

Luke
Lucian, Lucas, Luca, Luciano, Lucio, Lucius

light

Saint Luke the Evangelist was a physician who helped Saint Paul set up young faith communities. He is a patron saint of doctors.

Saint Lucian was a devil worshipper who converted to Christianity. He is the patron of possessed people

(Nov. 3)

Malachy
Malachi

messenger of the Lord

Saint Malachy was appointed archbishop, but because of political intrigues he was unable to serve at his flock for two years. Over the next three years, he restored order to the Church, and put the Roman Liturgy to use. Numerous miracles were attributed to him, and he was had the gift of prophecy.


 

April 25

 

 

(June 2)

Mark
Marc, Marcel, Marco, Marcus, Markus, Marcellus

of Mars

Saint Mark the Evangelist was one of those who ran away in fear when Jesus was arrested, but after the resurrection of Jesus and the descent of the Holy Spirit in the Upper Room, he became a writer of the Faith, and he helped Saints Paul, Barnabas, and Peter build the new Church.

Saint Marcellinus was a priest who was martyered for his faith. He thought of his imprisonment as just one more opportunity to evangelize. He converted his jailer and his family, and his executioner became a Christian after his death.

Nov. 3

 


Nov. 11

Martin
Martino

warlike

Saint Martin de Porres studied medicine to cure the sufferings of people. By entering the Dominican order and growing in holiness, he discovered that God often would heal people miraculously through his prayers.

Saint Martin of Tours was raised by pagan parents, but after joining the Roman army he began to study the Christian faith. When his desire to imitate You compelled him to help a beggar, You came to him in a vision and called him to receive baptism and enter religious life. Eventually he became a bishop and banished pagan worship from his diocese.

Sept. 21

 

 

May 14

Matthew
Matt, Matteo, Mattias, Matthias

the Lord's gift

Saint Matthew the Apostle was considered by his own people to be a traitor because he collected taxes for the enemy, but You, O Lord, did not label him as bad. You knew he was willing to hear the truth and learn from it, so You said, "Follow me," and immediately he left his money and his job to accept salvation.

Before the Holy Spirit descended on the disciples, He chose Saint Matthias to replace Judas as the twelfth apostle. This was the beginning of the apostolic succession and a reminder to us today that God is the One who calls men to the priesthood.

Sept. 22

Maurice
Maur, Morris, Moritz, Mauricio

dark

Saint Maurice was a Christian officer in charge of a legion of converts in an anti-Christian army. He had a very challenging and significant responsibility to help his men remain strong in the Faith despite persecutions. When he and his men refused to sacrifice to the gods, they were martyred.


 

Aug. 14

Maximilian
Max, Maxim

greatest

Saint Maximilian Kolbe was imprisoned in Auschwitz where he ministered to the captives and celebrated Mass by consecrating bread and wine that had been smuggled in. He was martyred after he voluntarily took the place of a young married prisoner condemned to die. He’s the patron of drug addicts and people in prison.

Jan. 21

Meinrad
Maynard

strong firmness

Saint Meinrad is the patron and in some part the founder of the still-functioning Benedictine abbey of Einsiedeln in Switzerland.
He lived as a hermit at Einsiedeln and was martyred in 861 when he gave hospitality to two criminals.

Feb. 6

Mel

honey

Saint Mel is the nephew of Saint Patrick. He went with his uncle to Ireland as a missionary and helped him evangelize that country. He supported himself by working hard, and any extra that he earned he gave to the poor.

May 8

Michael
Michel, Michele, Miguel, Mikhail, Mitchell

who is like God?

Saint Michael the Archangel led the army of angels that defeated Satan and the demons when they rebelled against God. Because his name means "Who is like God," Pope Saint Gregory the Great said, "Whenever some act of wondrous power must be performed, Michael is sent, so that his action and his name may make it clear that no one can do what God does by his superior power."

  

Moses

saved by water

Moses of the Old Testament was rescued from death during persecutions of the Jews in ancient Egypt, raised as one of the Pharoah's own family, and later returned to free the Hebrews from cruel slavery under the Pharoah's tyranny.

Saint Moses the Ethopian was an Abyssinian slave feared for his strength and ferocity. He led of a gang of thieves but converted to Christ. He had supernatural gifts, and his wisdom is included in the sayings of the Desert Fathers.

Aug. 24

Nathaniel
Nathan

gift of God

Saint Nathaniel is the same person as Saint Bartholomew, the Apostle whose greatest desire was to know the truth. His initial reaction to Jesus was, "How can anything good come from Nazareth?" But when he met Jesus, he wanted to become one a disciple. Jesus said of him, "Here is a man in whom there is no deception."

Sept. 16

Neil
Cornelius,
Connor, Conor, Cornel, Neal

horn

Saint Cornelius was pope during terrible persecutions, and he anguished over the sufferings of his people. Saint Cyprian was his friend and said to him, "Let us relieve burdens and afflictions by mutual love."

Dec. 6

Nicholas
Colin, Nicol, Niles, Nikolaus,
Claus, Klaus

people's victory

Saint Nicholas was an archbishop who dearly loved to help the poor, especially young children. He worked to protect the innocent and minister to those who were wronged. Eventually, the stories of his kindness evolved into the legend of Santa Claus.

(Dec. 26)

Noel

Christmas

Saint Neol Chabanel was a missionary priest killed with other North American martyrs by the Iroquois in a violent raid. He had not liked his assignment, so to put God above his personal desires, he had made a solemn vow, in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, to remain until death in this service. Soon after the massacre, many Iroquois converted.

June 6

Norbert

brightness

Saint Norbert chose the priesthood because it seemed to be a good career move, but God changed his heart. A dramatic escape from death convinced him to take his vows seriously, and he began a new life of penance. He devoted his time to teaching priests and increasing their holiness.

(July 11)

Oliver

peace

Saint Oliver Plunkett was an archbishop of Ireland during anti-Catholic persecutions. Though he had to go into hiding, he was determined to continue shepherding his people. Later, he chose to die rather than give false evidence against other bishops.

July 2

Otto

rich

Saint Otto of Bamberg was a priest who worked for the royal court, but when his emperor broke from Rome and then appointed him bishop, the saint refused the position, declaring his obedience to the Church. He became bishop only after the Pope consecrated him.

(Aug. 24)

Owen
Ouen

to possess

Though Saint Ouen was a chancellor to the king, he also served the Church. Later, he was ordained and became an archbishop who encouraged learning and the growth of monasteries. He was known for his spirituality and generosity, and he supported missionary activities.

(Feb. 11)

Pascal
Paschal, Pasquale

Passover

Saint Paschal was a pope who gave refuge to people escaping persecutions. He built and redecorated many churches in Rome and transferred many relics from the catacombs to churches in the city.

Mar. 17

Patrick

nobly born

Saint Patrick had been born in Scotland to Roman parents who were in charge of the British colonies. When he was about fourteen, he was kidnapped during a raid and taken to pagan Ireland to herd sheep. He learned the Druidic language and practices of the people, which later helped him to evangelize them when he returned as a bishop.

Jan. 25

Paul
Pablo, Paolo, Pawel

little

Saint Paul the Apostle was converted from persecuting the Christians by an encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascas, after which he poured his passionate enthusiasm into spreading the Gospel. His powerful leadership was marked by boldness and unwavering conviction.

Feb. 22

 


April 28

 

 


Sept. 9

Peter
Pierre, Pedro, Perrin, Pierce

rock

Jesus gave Saint Peter his name (changing it from Simon) to signify that he was the rock upon which He would build Your Church. After Jesus' resurrection, He ordained Peter as the first leader of the Church.

Saint Peter Chanel became a priest at a time when many had lost interest in the Faith. Assigned to a parish that was spiritually dead, he discovered that frequent prayer and daily Mass kept him from becoming discouraged. In just three years of working to inspire people to get excited about Jesus and His Church again, the parish came alive with spiritual fervor.

Saint Peter Claver was known as "the Slave of the Blacks" because during the arrival of slaves in America, he ministered to them physically and spiritually. He entered the smelly cargo holds of the ships to care for the dead and sick captives. He also baptized 300,000 slaves, and he worked to influence plantation owners to treat their slaves humanely.

May 3


May 26

Philip
Phelps, Filippo, Felipe, Philippe

lover of horses

Jesus chose Saint Philip to be one of His first disciples, because he so openly and obviously loved God.

Saint Philip Neri was a priest whom the people nicknamed the "Saint of Joy" because God had gifted him with a special sense of humor. His smile went with him when he visited the sick and the imprisoned, and when he served pilgrims who traveled to Rome.

April 30

 

 

Aug. 21

Pius
Pio

holy

Saint Pius V was the pope who reformed the Church after the Protestant division. To propagate improved standards, he published a new breviary and missal, he issued a new catechism to help people understand clearly the teachings of the Church, and he promoted the Rosary.

Saint Pius X was the pope who authorized children to receive Holy Communion and encouraged everyone to receive the Eucharist as often as possible. During his papacy, he had many heavy responsibilities that increased in difficulty, and he relied on God, saying, "His Power is infinite, and if I lean on him, it will be mine. His Wisdom is infinite, and if I look to Him for counsel, I shall not be deceived."


 

(Oct. 31)

Quentin
Quin, Quinn

fifth

Saint Quintinus was a Roman who went to Gaul as a missionary. He was so successful in preaching that he was imprisoned, tortured and beheaded.

Sept. 29

Raphael
Rafael

God's healer

Saint Raphael is one of seven Archangels who stand before the throne of the Lord. The angel of healing, he is the one who moved the waters of the healing sheep pool in Jerusalem. He is the patron of the blind, of happy meetings, of nurses, of physicians and of travelers.

Aug. 31

Raymond
Ramon, Redmund, Raimondo

wise protection

Saint Raymond Nonnatus spent his inheritance paying the ransom for Christians who had been enslaved and even traded himself to set others free. Because he miraculously survived his birth as his mother died, he is a patron saint for pregnancies.

(Oct. 19)

Rene
Renato, Renatus

reborn

Saint Rene Goupil was the first of those martyred by the Iroquois. He had tried to become a Jesuit priest, but his health prevented the completion of his novitiate. He then studied surgery and went to Canada, where he offered his services to the missionaries. He was tomahawked for making the Sign of the Cross on some children.

(Feb. 7)

Richard
Ricardo, Riccardo

firm ruler

Saint Richard was the father of Saints Willibald, Winnebald, and Walburga. He was on a pilgrimage to Rome with his two sons when he became ill and died. Miracles were reported at his tomb.

Sept. 17

Robert
Robin,
Rupert (see)

bright flame

Saint Robert Bellarmine is the patron saint of catechumens because he wrote two catechisms and devoted much of his time to teaching the Faith to children. He also wrote a revised version of the Bible.

(Mar. 13)

Roderic
Roderick, Rodrigo, Rory, Rurik

noble ruler

Saint Roderic, also known as Ruderic, was a priest during persecutions by the Moors. His own brothers, one a Mohammedan and the other a lax Catholic, beat him unconscious when he tried to stop an argument between them and refused to give up his Christian beliefs. He was also imprisoned for a long time and martyred for his faith.

(Jan. 5)

Roger
Hodge, Rogelio, Rudiger, Ruggero

famous spear

Saint Roger (Ruggiero da Todi) received the habit from Saint Francis of Assisi. The latter appointed him to serve as spiritual director at one of the communities he founded.


 

(Feb. 28)

Roman
Romanus, Romain, Romano, Romaric, Romeo

Roman

Saint Romanus of Condat was a monk who lived as a hermit with his brother and sister. His spiritual teachings attracted followers, and he healed two lepers by embracing them. He is patron of drowning victims and the mentally ill.

 

Rupert
Robert (see)

bright flame

Saint Rupert was a Benedictine abbot and an archbishop who evangelized southern Germany. The Duke of Bavaria gave him a ruined town to rebuild, which Rupert renamed as Salzburg.

(Mar. 18)

Salvatore
Salvador, Salvator

Savior

Saint Salvatore was a Franciscan Friar who developed great humility and service. He walked barefoot and kept long and rigorous fasts. His supernatural gifts healed the blind, the lame and the deaf. He was specially devoted to the Blessed Mother and to Saint Paul, both of whom visited him on several occasions.

July 28

Samson

Bright as the Sun

Saint Samson was a holy monk who exceeded those around him in spiritual maturity. When he met some Irish monks whose spiritual education was more advanced than his own, he went with them to Ireland so he could learn from them while he served at their side.

(Feb. 16)

Samuel

asked of the Lord

Saint Samuel and four companions were Egyptians who visited Christians condemned to do hard labor in the mines during persecutions, to comfort them. They were arrested for this, tortured and beheaded.

  

Sebastian

venerable

Saint Sebastian is patron of athletes because of his physical endurance and his energetic way of spreading Christianity. He is also patron of soldiers because he joined the Roman army to defend Christian believers and martyrs without drawing attention to himself.

Oct. 28

 

May 24

Simon
Simeon, Simone

obedient

Saint Simon was one of the 12 Apostles (not to be confused with Simon/Peter). He was zealous about preaching the Good News.

Because of the great holiness of the prayer life of Saint Simeon Stylites the Younger, and because of his growing reputation as a healer and miracle worker, the place where he lived as a hermit became a site for many pilgrimages.


 

April 11

Stanislaus
Stanley

military glory

Saint Stanislaus of Cracow dedicated himself to the formation of clergy, and he became popular as a spiritual adviser. As Bishop of Cracow, Poland, he successfully reformed the Church. He was murdered while saying Mass because he spoke against the king's cruelty and immorality.

Dec. 26

 

April 17

Stephen
Steven, Stefen, Stefano, Esteban, Stephan, Sven

crowned

Saint Stephen was one of the first deacons in the Church. His holiness was so evident that when he preached to his enemies, his face glowed brightly like an angel's. He became the first martyr.

Saint Stephen Harding found great joy in imitating Jesus through a life of poverty, praying, fasting, and working hard. When the other monks got tired of such a difficult life, Stephen formed a new community, the Cistercians.

Dec. 31

Sylvester

from the forest, woods

Saint Sylvester I lived through many good and bad events during his long years of service as Pope, from horrendous persecutions to the downfall of the persecutors.

(June 21)

Terence
Terrence, Terry

smooth

Saint Terence was one of the early bishops of the Church, serving the Christian community of Iconium. Some Bible scholars think that he might be the Tertius mentioned by St. Paul in his Epistle to the Romans.

 

Thaddeus

wise

(info to come)

April 22

 


Nov. 9

Theodore
Feodor, Tad, Theo, Teodoro

God's gift

Saint Theodore of Sykeon was a monk and a bishop who worked amazing miracles, including healings. He put an end to a plague of insects by praying, confidently putting the matter into God's hands.

Saint Theodore Tyro was a young soldier in the Roman army when he converted to Christianity. Though he was ordered to fight enemies of the empire, he believed that the devil was the only true enemy. Soon, he was killed for being a Christian, thus winning the battle against the demons who wanted to keep him out of Heaven.


 

July 3

 

 

 

Jan. 28

Thomas
Tomas, Tom, Tommaso

twin

Saint Thomas the Apostle doubted Jesus' resurrection until he touched His wounds. After Pentecost, God called him to become a missionary in India, but he doubted again and said no. He changed his mind only after being taken into slavery by a merchant who happened to be going to India. Once he was cured of his doubt, God freed him and he began the work he had called him to do. He is the patron saint against doubt.

Saint Thomas Aquinas’ family misunderstood his devotion to studying the Faith. Because of their disapproval, he had to join the Dominicans secretly. His family kidnapped him, intent on changing his mind, but his trust in God kept his hope alive. A year later, God freed him to rejoin the friars. He became a great theologian and Doctor of the Church.

Jan. 26

Timothy
Timotheus, Timoteo

God fearing

Saint Timothy was one of Paul's disciples, as well as his close personal friend and partner in evangelization.

Jan. 26

Titus
Tito

safe

With Timothy, Saint Titus was one of Paul's disciples, as well as his close personal friend and partner in evangelization.

 

Tobias
Tobia, Tobiah, Tobit

goodness of God

(info to come)

Feb. 19

Valerius
Valerian

valiant

Saint Valerius was a bishop who worked throughout southern France to evangelize the region and to increase monasticism.

 

Victor
Victorio, Vittorio

winner

(info to come)

Sept. 27

Vincent
Vincente, Vincenzo

conquering

Saint Vincent de Paul developed a special concern for the poor after giving the Sacraments to a dying peasant. He cared for slaves, prostitutes, war victims, and the destitute.

April 8

Walter
Walther, Gualthieri

strong warrior

Saint Walter of Pontnoise   was made an abbot against his will. He fled several times to escape the position, and finally went to Rome to give his resignation directly to the pope. However, the pope asked him to return to his monastery, accept his responsibilities as abbot, and never quit again. He obeyed.


 

April 6

William
Willis, Wilhelm, Guiliermo, Guillaume

strong helmet

Saint William of Eskilsoe worked so hard on his spiritual growth that he developed a widespread reputation for holiness and austerity.

Oct. 31

Wolfgang

path of a wolf

Saint Wolfgang was a monk and a bishop who had the gifts of teaching and healing. He evangelized the pagan empire of his country’s enemy in order to reduce the threat of attack. Legend says that he forced Satan to help him build a church.

 

Xavier

bright

(info to come)

 

Zachary
Zaccaria, Zacharias, Zecharian

remembered of God

(info to come)