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Saint Paul, the Apostle

Born c AD 8, named Saul, from Tarsus in Cilicia (south-central Turkey); Martyred c AD 67 in Rome
Major shrine - Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls, Rome
Feast of the Conversion of Paul - 25 January
(end of the week of Prayer for the Unity of Christians)
Feast of Saint Paul's Shipwreck in Malta - 20 February
Feast of Saints Peter and Paul - 29 June
Feast of the Dedication of the Basilicas of Ss Peter and Paul - 18 November

3 2us on the Conversion of St Paul by Fr John Edwards SJ: "Now what is important about his conversion? Well this, that he is so vital for the Church. It's very mysterious, Our Lord had chosen 12 apostles to whom he gave authority to teach all nations and guaranteed that they would teach the truth. We look on them as the first bishops; 1 of them was Judas, he had to be replaced, but these people had all known Our Lord in his earthly life. He chose out 12, St Mark says, to be with him. But St Paul was not with him. St Paul, a learned man, learned in Jewish religion, highly intelligent .. persecuted the Church and did it zealously for a long time. Now it was this man who met Jesus in a different way."       

3 2us on St Paul by Fr Francis Selman: "When we consider how much of the world has received civilization from Europe and how much European civilization owes to Christianity, which transformed its Greco-Roman inheritance then, after Jesus, perhaps no-one has influenced history more than Saint Paul, who took the new Christian faith around the greater part of the Mediterranean. ... St Paul's whole life and work can be summed up in a single phrase: the desire to know Christ and to make him known. As St Thomas Aquinas comments on the Letters of St Paul, 'It is not enough just to be illumined but also to bring light to others.'"    

Our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, gave 4 catecheses on Saint Paul in 2006, after having spoken about the Twelve Apostles in his series on the saints of the Church:
1) Paul of Tarsus
2) Paul: the Centrality of Jesus Christ
3) Paul: the Spirit in our hearts
4) Paul: the life in the Church

Then in the Year dedicated to St Paul in celebration of 2000 years since his birth, Papa Benedetto gave 20 more beautiful catecheses on St Paul:
1) The Religious-Cultural Environment
2) The Life of St Paul before and after Damascus
3) The "Conversion" of St Paul
4) The Pauline Concept of Apostolate
5) Paul, the Twelve and the pre-Pauline Church
6) The Council of Jerusalem and the Incident in Antioch
7) The Relationship with the historical Jesus
8) The Ecclesiological Dimension of Paul's thought
9) The Importance of Christology - pre-existence and incarnation
10) The Importance of Christology - the Theology of the Cross
11) The Importance of Christology - the Decisiveness of the Resurrection
12) Eschatology - the Expectation of the Parusia
13 & 14) The Doctrine of Justification - from works to faith
15) Adam and Christ: from (original) sin to freedom
16) The Role of the Sacraments
17) Spiritual Worship
18) The Theological Vision of the Letters to the Colossians and to the Ephesians
19) The Theological Vision of the Pastoral Letters
20) The Martyrdom and Heritage of St Paul