Our Patron

"Every Saint to whom we pray is different. All Love God, but each carries that love into a life that takes its pattern from the character of the individual and the needs of the time. The child, Agnes; the old and widowed, Monical the soaring theologian, Augustine; the practical founder of monasticism in the West, Benedict; the philosophical thinker, Thomas Aquinas; the social reformer, Vincent de Paul -- all were saints. But one could not have been the other. The holiness of each was the result of God's transforming grace, which does not reduce all personalities to one level, but sanctifies each type. We admire all the saints; we try to make ourselves as receptive as they were to the graces God sends."
- The Catholic Prayer Book, 1954

St. Luke, an early convert of paganism to Christianity, was born a Greek and a Gentile in Antioch, Syria. He was a physician and it is believed that he may have also been a slave, as it was not uncommon in his day for slaves to be educated in medicine so the family would have a resident physician.

St. Luke became a close companion of Paul of Tarsus and accompanied him on his missionary journeys. It is very possible that St. Luke provided medical assistance to Paul when he had been beaten, stoned or nearly drowned while evangelizing to the Western Roman Empire.

St. Luke is the only Gentile to have written books in the Bible. He is the writer of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles and his writings have been proven to be historically accurate.

It is believed that St. Luke lived a long life and died of natural causes c. 74 in Greece. Recent scientific research has proven the relics in the Basilica of St. Justina in Padua, Italy are those of St. Luke. The research was conducted at the request of Archbishop Antonio Malttiazzo of Padua.

According to tradition, his body was taken to Constantinople in the fourth century during the Crusades and later transported to Padua. His headless skeleton has been kept in a lead box in the Basilica of St. Justina in Padua, Italy. St. Luke's cranium was brought to St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague in 1364 by the request of Emperor Charles IV.

There is debate as to when St. Luke's body was transported from Constantinople to Padua, as historical archives reveal that St. Luke's bones may have been in the city as early the eighth century, during the Iconoclastic Controversy.

Saint Luke is often depicted as painting portraits of Mary. According to tradition, Luke was believed to have painted portraits of both Mary and Jesus, which were to have been hung in the Basillica of Santa Maria Maggiore. Centuries later, it was proven that Luke did not paint such images but he is still considered the patron saint of artists because of this tradition.

Saint Luke is also portrayed with pen in hand because he is, of course, the writer of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles. He is often shown with an ox, which is a symbol of sacrifice – the sacrifice Jesus made for the world.

Saint Luke's feast day is celebrated on October 18th. It can be celebrated by reading the Acts of Apostles and praying the three canticles he preserved for us – the Benedictus, the Magnificat and the Nunc Dimittis.

Prayer to St. Luke for our parish

O heavenly patron, Saint Luke, in whose name we glory, pray ever to God for us: strengthen us in our faith; establish us in virtue; guard us in the conflict, that we may vanquish the foe malign and attain to glory everlasting. Amen.

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To love God is something greater than to know Him.

- St. Thomas Aquinas

He alone loves the Creator perfectly who manifests a pure love for his neighbor.

- St. Bede the Venerable