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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Voboril

Seven saints to turn to on Fathers’ Day

We understand that Fathers’ Day can be difficult for couples experiencing infertility, loss, or any hard road to growing their family. Here is a collection of saints whose intercession husbands, along with their wives, may wish to seek on their journey.

For the one who longs for a child…

St. Zechariah and his wife, St. Elizabeth, longed for a child into old age. During his time of service in the temple, an angel announced Zechariah’s wife’s pregnancy… then muted Zechariah when he questioned the possibility that it could really happen. May you be strengthened by St. Zechariah’s zeal.

“In the tender compassion of our Lord, the dawn from on high shall break upon us, to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, and to guide our feet into the way of peace.” (St. Zechariah, Luke 1:78-79)

For the one who longs for more children…

Bl. Edmund Rice’s young wife was in an accident, probably involving being thrown from a horse, while pregnant. His wife died but the doctor was able to save the infant, who was born with disabilities resulting from the accident. Bl. Edmund went on to devote his life to prayer and charitable work. May you be emboldened by Bl. Edmund’s compassion.

“Cast all your cares into the arms of Divine Providence.” (Bl. Edmund Rice)

For the one who has lost a child…

Besides having five daughters who lived to adulthood and who all entered religious life, most notably St. Thérèse of Lisieux, St. Louis Martin and his wife St. Zélie lost four little ones, three of whom died in their first few months. St. Louis cared dearly for his children and continued to guide his surviving children after the death of his wife. May you be touched by St. Louis’ loving perseverance.

“Soon we’ll have the intimate happiness of the family, and it’s this beauty that brings us closer to him.” (St. Louis Martin)

For the foster father…

St. Joseph holds the title of “foster father of Jesus” and in every way raised and guided the young savior of the world, in everything from His career to a good, simple life, to caring for the poor and marginalized. May you embrace fatherhood as did St. Joseph.

“St. Joseph did not do extraordinary things, but rather by the constant practice of ordinary and common virtues, he attained that sanctity which elevates him above all the other saints.” (St. Joseph Marello)

For the adoptive father…

St. Jerome Emiliani served some time in the military and in government, but after a prison experience had a major conversion. He began to pour his energy into works of charity, especially into forming orphanages after a severe plague and famine. His life’s work then became the formation of a religious congregation who continued in those good works. May you be inspired by St. Jerome’s outreach.

“God wishes to test you like gold in the furnace.” (St. Jerome Emiliani)

For the godfathers and spiritual fathers…

St. Maximilian Kolbe laid an impressive groundwork of evangelization and communication for the Church in his lifetime. His ultimate sacrifice was laying down his life for another prisoner, a father, in a Nazi concentration camp. St. Maximilian continued to minister to the prisoners in the two weeks he suffered starvation. May you be uplifted by St. Maximilian’s bravery.

“Let us not forget that Jesus not only suffered, but also rose in glory; so, too, we go to the glory of the Resurrection by way of suffering and the Cross.” (St. Maximilian Kolbe)

For the expectant father…

Bl. Benedict Daswa was a South African school teacher and principal exposed to Catholicism as a young adult. He and his wife had eight children, whom he tenderly cared for and helped his wife in all kinds of household chores, which was quite unusual in their culture at that time. After he refused to help fund a witch hunt, he was attacked by a mob and killed. May you be encouraged by Bl. Benedict’s attentiveness.

“God, into Your Hands receive my spirit.” (Bl. Benedict Daswa)

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