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St Polycarp was killed by the sword after refusing to deny Christ

St Polycarp, a martyr at the age of 86

St Polycarp (February 23), instructed by the Apostles, served as Bishop of Smyrna for 50 years and died during persecution

Daily readings: February 20 – 26

Scripture readings in the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms

St Claude de La Colombière (February 15) had the misfortune of being in London at the time of the alleged Popish Plot

Daily readings: February 13 – 19

Scripture readings in the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms

The Abbey Church of St Andrew, Sempringham

Gilbert of Sempringham (c 1083-1189) founded the only distinctively English medieval religious order

St Joseph Freinademetz: ‘I want to be Chinese in heaven’

St Joseph Freinademetz (January 28) fell in love with China despite working in dangerous and hostile conditions

Daily readings: January 30 – February 5

Scripture readings in the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms

St François de Sales, the patron saint of journalists

St François de Sales (January 24) said he did not necessarily disapprove of ‘games, balls and pageants’

Daily readings: January 23 – 29

Scripture readings in the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms

St Anthony, painted by Fra Angelico in 1436

The hermit who lived for 15 years in a tomb

St Anthony of Egypt (January 17) inspired a new ideal by seeking spiritual growth in the desert