The Catholic devotional practice of asking our departed brothers and sisters in Christ—the saints—for their intercession dates from the earliest days of Christianity, and is shared by Catholics, the Eastern Orthodox, other Eastern Christians, and some Anglican churches. As Scripture shows us, those already in heaven are aware of the prayers of those still on earth. We see this in Revelation 5:8 where John depicts the saints in heaven offering our prayers to God under the form of “golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.” So if the saints in heaven are offering our prayers to God, then they must be aware of our prayers.

We believe in both honouring and celebrating the communion of saints in heaven. Since they are united to Christ, their presence in heaven enables the whole Church on earth to follow in their holiness. Just as Christian communion and fellowship among our fellow pilgrims brings us closer to Christ, so our communion with the saints joins us to Christ both now and forever. We therefore, can and should ask them to intercede for us and for the world.

Do not weep, for I shall be more useful to you after my death and I shall help you more effectively than during my life. (Saint Dominic, dying, to his brothers.)

I want to spend my heaven in doing good on earth. (Saint Therese of Lisieux)

Introducing a Saint for each Month

In celebration of the communion of saints in heaven, we introduce a saint for each month of the year and their connection to Scripture.

Apostle to the Apostles: Reclaiming St Mary of Magdala

St Mary Magdalene's Feast Day is 22nd July and so we invite you to celebrate her in a new light, and in honour of the Pope's recent elevation of her role and feast day as the 'Apostle to the Apostles'.

St Mary Magdalene in Art

Fleur Dorrell looks at the many different ways Mary Magdalene has been depicted in art.