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Father Andrea Santoro

Fr. Andrea Santoro a 60-year-old Italian priest who was part of the Vatican's "Fidei Donum" program, which sends priests to help in the missions for a fixed period of time. In the afternoon of Feb. 5, the Italian priest was shot twice while he was praying in his parish, St. Mary Church, in the Black Sea coastal city of Trebizond.

Father Santoro, from the Diocese of Rome, had been serving in Turkey for about 10 years,

Murdered Priest's Letter to Benedict XVI

"A Visit of Yours Would Be a Consolation"

Here is a translation of a letter dated Jan. 31 and written to the Pope by Father Andrea Santoro, the Italian missionary who was shot and killed last Sunday in his parish church in Trabzon, Turkey.
Benedict XVI directed that the letter be published in the Italian edition of L'Osservatore Romano. According to the Pontiff, the letter "reflects the zeal, faith and love that beat in the Don Andrea Santoro's heart."

Content of Fr. Santoro’s letter to
Pope Benedict XVI
Rome, January 31, 2006


I am writing to you in the name of some Georgian ladies of my parish, St. Mary's in Trabzon (Trebisonda) on the Black Sea, Turkey. They dictated it to me in Turkish, I have translated it for you exactly as it came from their lips and I give it to you on the occasion of my visit to Rome. I am don Andrea Santoro, a Fidei Donum priest of the Church of Rome in Turkey, in the Diocese of Anatolia, resident here for the past 5 years. My flock is made up of 8/9 Catholics, many Orthodox of the city, and Muslims, who make up 99% of the population. You, Holiness, are both the Bishop of my native diocese (Rome) as well as Bishop of my diocese of destination, as it is an "Apostolic Vicariate." In virtue of this double title, I give you the letter of the three Georgian women.

* * *
Dear Pope:

We greet you in the name of all Georgians.

We ask God to give you health in the name of Jesus.

We are very happy that God chose you as Pope. Pray for us, for the poor, for the miserable all over the world, for children. We believe your prayer reaches God directly. Georgians are very poor, they have debts, they have no homes or work. We are without strength.

At present we live in Trabzon and work. Pray that God will bless us and create in us a new and pure heart. We do not forget the Christian life and we try to be a good example for Turks in the name of God so that through us they will see and glorify God.

We have many things to say and recount, but, "Inshala" [God willing], if you come to Trabzon, we will be able to speak face to face. Your coming will be a joyful celebration. We pray and hope that God will give you health, peace and a Christian life. We kiss your hands. We will be happy if you reply and send us a photo with your signature.

You, as an ordinary father, pray for don Andrea and Loredana [an Italian volunteer who works in the parish], that God will give them strength and that through them the Church will grow and multiply in Trabzon.

[Signed:] Maria, Marina and Maria

In the name of the other Georgian Christians, we invite you to Trabzon on the occasion of your coming visit to Turkey in November.

* * *

I join these three women to truly invite you to visit us. It is a small flock, as Jesus said, which tries to be salt, leaven and light on this earth. A visit of yours, even if brief, would be a consolation and encouragement. If God wills … nothing is impossible for God.

I greet you and thank you for everything. Your books served me as nourishment during my theology studies. Bless me. And may God bless and assist you.

Don Andrea Santoro
Fidei Donum priest of the Diocese of Rome in Turkey,
Diocese of Anatolia, city of Trabzon on the Black Sea,
St. Mary's Church



St. Felix II
St Felix II, the pope is an ancestor of the future Pope St. Gregory the Great who lived from 540 to 604.

Blessed Charles the Good
Count Charles of Flanders, was called "the good" by the people of his kingdom. They named him for what they found him to truly be.

Blessed Katharine Drexel
Blessed Katharine was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on November 26, 1858. Katharine's mother died when she was a baby.

St. Casimir
St. Casimir was born in 1458, son of Casimir IV, king of Poland. Casimir was one of thirteen children.

St. John Joseph of the Cross

St. John Joseph of the Cross was born in southern Italy on the feast of the Assumption, 1654. He was a young noble, but he dressed like a poor man.

St. Colette
St. Nicolette was named in honor of St. Nicholas of Myra. She was born in 1380. Her loving parents nicknamed her Colette from the time she was a baby.

St. Perpetua and St. Felicity

St. Perpetua and St. Felicity lived in Carthage, North Africa, in the third century. It was the time of the fierce persecution of Christians by Emperor Septimus Severus.

St. John of God

St. John was born in Portugal on March 8, 1495. His parents were poor, but deeply Christian. John was a restless boy.

St. Frances of Rome

St. Frances was born in 1384. Her parents were wealthy, but they taught Frances to be concerned about people and to live a good Christian life.

St. Simplicius

St. Simplicius became pope in 468. Sometimes it seemed to him that he was all alone in trying to correct evils that were everywhere.

St. Eulogius of Spain

St. Eulogius lived in the ninth century. His family was well-known and he received an excellent education. While he learned his lessons, he also learned from the good example of his teachers.

St. Fina (Seraphina)

St. Fina was born in a little Italian town called San Geminiano. Her parents had once been well off, but misfortune had left them poor.

St. Euphrasia

St. Euphrasia was born in the fifth century to deeply Christian parents. Her father, a relative of the emperor, died when she was a year old.

St. Matilda

St. Matilda was born about 895, the daughter of a German count. When she was still quite young, her parents arranged her marriage to a nobleman named Henry.

St. Zachary

St. Zachary was a Benedictine monk from Greece who lived in the eighth century. He became a cardinal and then pope.

Blessed Torello

Blessed Torello was born in 1202, in Poppi, Italy. His life as a child in the village was ordinary and uneventful. But after his father's death.

St. Patrick

St. Patrick was believed born in fifth-century Britain to Roman parents. When he was sixteen, he was captured by pirates and taken to Ireland.

St. Cyril of Jerusalem

St. Cyril was born around 315 when a new phase was beginning for Christians. Before that date, the Church was persecuted by the emperors.

St. Joseph

St. Joseph is a great saint. He was Jesus' foster-father and Mary's husband.

St. Cuthbert

St. Cuthbert lived in England in the seventh century. He was a poor shepherd boy who loved to play games with his friends.

St. Serapion

St. Serapion lived in Egypt in the fourth century. Those were exciting times for the Church and for St. Serapion.

St. Deogratias

St. Deogratias was ordained bishop of the City of Carthage when it was taken over by barbarian armies in 439.

St. Turibius of Mongrovejo

St. Turibius was born in 1538 in Leon, Spain. He became a university professor and then a famous judge.

Blessed Didacus

Blessed Didacus Joseph was born on March 29, 1743, in Cadiz, Spain. He was baptized Joseph Francis.


The time arrived for Jesus to come down from heaven. God sent the Archangel Gabriel to the town of Nazareth where Mary lived.

St. Ludger

St. Ludger was born in northern Europe in the eighth century. After he had studied hard for many years, he was ordained a priest.

St. John of Egypt

St. John was man who desired to be alone with God was to become one of the most famous hermits of his time.

St. Tutilo

St. Tutilo lived in the late ninth and early tenth centuries. He was educated at the Benedictine monastery of Saint-Gall.

St. Jonas and St. Barachisius

King Sapor of Persia reigned in the fourth century. He hated Christians and persecuted them cruelly. He destroyed their churches and monasteries.

St. John Climacus

St. John was believed born in Palestine in the seventh century. He seems to have been a disciple of St. Gregory Nazianzen.

Blessed Joan of Toulouse

In 1240, some Carmelite brothers from Palestine started a monastery in Toulouse, France.

St. Michael the Archangel Story
History of St. Michael the Archangel Prayer
St. Michael the Archangel Prayers
St. Michael the Archangel Apparitions
The Chaplet of St. Michael Archangel
Novena to St Micheal the Archangel
Litany of St. Michael the Archangel


St. Gabriel Prayer


St. Raphael Prayer

Tour of the Relics of the Passion
(International Center for Holy Relics)


“Jesus’ Baptism”

Why did Jesus, the sinless one sent from the Father in heaven, submit himself to John’s baptism? John preached a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke 3:3). In this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of the “baptism” of Jesus bloody death upon the cross. Jesus’ baptism is the acceptance and the beginning of his mission as God’s suffering Servant (Isaiah 52:13-15; 53:1-12). He allowed himself to be numbered among sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father’s will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust and submission to God?


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