Patrons and Patronesses
Patrons and Patronesses
(ca. 1170-1211) Founder of the Order of Preachers
Feast Day: August 8
Belonging to a noble family, Dominic de Guzmán was born in Caleruega, Spain around 1170. When he was studying in Palencia, a great famine took place. He distinguished himself for his interest in the study of Sacred Scriptures and for his love of the poor to the point of selling his precious books to support the famine victims. Speaking always with God or about God, beginning all his actions in contemplation, Dominic advanced in wisdom. After his presbyteral ordination, he was elected canon of the Cathedral Chapter in Osma. Diego de Acebedo, the Bishop of Osma soon recognized his spiritual qualities. Together, they went to Northern Europe, on a diplomatic mission entrusted by the King of Castile. On their way, Dominic became aware of two enormous challenges facing the Church of his time: the existence of unevangelized people in Northern Europe, and the heresy that undermined Christianity in Southern France.
The Pope Innocent III asked Dominic to devote himself to preaching to the Albigensians, a heretical group which upheld a dualistic principle of good and evil, despising matter as coming from the principle of evil. They even refused marriage, and denied the Incarnation of Christ, the Sacraments, and the Resurrection of bodies. However, the heretics lived an austere life, criticizing the riches of the clergy. So Dominic accepted the mission and carried it out in poverty. Attracted by the same aspiration, many joined the Order of Preachers, which was confirmed in 1216 by Pope Honorius III. They preached as they travelled from one place to another, underscoring prayer, community life and study in order “to praise, to bless, and to preach.”
Dominic wanted his followers to acquire a sound theological training. In 1217, he dispersed his small band throughout the Universities of Europe, and from such beginnings the Order grew. He wanted his friars to devote themselves to study without reserve, with diligence and with piety; a study based on the Sacred Scriptures, and respectful of the questions asked by reason. The motto “contemplata aliis tradere” reveals the pastoral yearning in the contemplative study of the truth (Veritas) because of the need to communicate to others the fruits of one's own contemplation. Moreover, the Order continues Dominic’s vision of preaching the Good News, missio ad gentes. When Dominic died in 1221 in Bologna, the Order had spread to many countries in Europe. Dominic was canonized in 1234.
- Benedict XVI, General Audience, 3 February 2010.
- Dominican Missal and Lectionary for the Order of Preachers in the Philippines, 2011, p. 127-129.
(1225-1274), priest and doctor of the Church
Patron of the University of Santo Tomás
Patron of the UST Faculty of Sacred Theology
Feast Day: January 28
Born in 1225, Thomas of Aquino was the youngest son of Landulph and Theodora who both belonged to noble families. With the ambition of nominating him as abbot one day, his parents entrusted him to the Benedictine monks of the Abbey of Monte Cassino in 1231. When he finished his basic education, he was taught natural philosophy and most probably the metaphysics of Aristotle. Impressed with the Dominicans’ zeal for soul and evangelical poverty, he entered the Order of Preachers in 1243. But before that, he was seized by his soldier brothers who brought him back to their castle of San Giovanni, where he was held a captive for a year or two. He was besieged with threats, and even sensual temptation to make him relinquish his purpose. Finally, the family yielded and the Order sent Thomas to Paris to study under Albertus Magnus.
In 1256, Thomas earned the title ‘magister in sacra pagina’, which is roughly equivalent to a professor in Theology. After completing his education, he devoted himself to a life of traveling, writing, teaching, public speaking and preaching. Religious institutions and universities alike yearned to benefit from his God-given wisdom. He devoted his life to reconcile the relationship between theology (faith) and philosophy (reason), which was quite impossible at that time. Combining traditional principles of theology with modern philosophical thought, he touched upon the questions and struggles of medieval intellectuals, church authorities and peoples from all walks of life. He died on 7 March 1274, and was canonized in 1323.
The Faculties of Sacred Theology and Philosophy are as old as the University of Santo Tomas itself, which was founded in 1611. The Ecclesiastical Faculties have always been considered as integral components of the University, which Pope Leo XII proclaimed as Pontifical University in 1902 through the Constitution Quae Mari Sinico. Pope Pius XII, meanwhile, declared UST as ‘the Catholic University of the Philippines’ in 1947. As a theologian, Thomas wrote the Summa Theologiae and the Summa contra Gentiles for the classical systematization of Theology. He also wrote some of the most beautiful Eucharistic hymns such as Pange Lingua and Panis Angelicus. In 1880, St. Thomas Aquinas was declared patron of all Catholic educational establishments.
- O’Meara OP, Franklin Thomas, Thomas Aquinas Theologian, University of Notre Dame Press, Notre Dame, 1997.Healy, Nicholas, Thomas Aquinas Theologian of the Christian Life, Ashgate Publishing Ltd, Hants, England, 2003.
(4th Century AD), virgin and martyr
Secondary Patroness of the University of Santo Tomás
Patroness of the UST Faculty of Philosophy
Feast Day: November 25
Though the veneration of St. Catherine has been widespread since the 10th century, there is only a limited credible information concerning her life. According to popular tradition, she was born in Alexandria, the intellectual and cultural center of the ancient Mediterranean world, and had devoted herself to study since childhood. Through her reading, she had learned about Christianity and was converted. When the persecution of Christians escalated, she went to the Emperor to rebuke him boldly for his cruelty. Since the Emperor cannot answer her arguments against his pagan gods, he summoned fifty philosophers, who succumbed to her reasoning. Consequently, they were all burned to death. He then tried to offer her the consort's crown, but she indignantly refused him, so she was beaten and imprisoned. The Emperor soon discovered that even his queen and his soldiers were converted to the true faith by Catherine, and were also put to death.
Catherine was then sentenced to die on a spiked wheel. When she was fastened to the wheel, her bonds were miraculously loosened and the wheel itself broke, its spikes flew off and killed some of the onlookers. She was then beheaded. According to legend, her body was carried by angels to Mount Sinai, where a church and monastery were built in her honor.
St. Catherine’s practice of Philosophy became an occasion for conversion, the motive for martyrdom, and represents the depths of charity and wisdom of God. According to tradition, she triumphed by closing the mouths of sophists, and her intercession was implored by theologians, apologists, pulpit orators, and philosophers. Before studying, writing, or preaching, they besought her to illumine their minds, guide their pens, and impart eloquence to their speech. St. Catherine of Alexandria is the patroness of the UST Faculty of Philosophy and the secondary patroness of the University of Santo Tomas.
- Voragine, Jacobus (1275), and Caxton, William (1483; trans.), Legenda Aurea, Ch. 172.
- Clugnet, Léon. "St. Catherine of Alexandria." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 3. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. 19 Apr. 2021.
(ca. 1175-1275), priest
Patron of the UST Faculty of Canon Law and the UST Faculty of Civil Law
Feast Day: January 7
Belonging to a noble family of Peñafort, Raymond was born in Barcelona, Spain around 1175. He became a distinguished theologian and professor of Canon Law at the University of Bologna; and while there, he joined the Order of Preachers in 1222. Eventually, he was ordained to the priesthood and became a celebrated Master of Canon Law. When Pope Gregory IX appointed him papal chaplain and penitentiary, he compiled and revised the papal Decretals, which was the basis of the Code of Canon Law of the Church until 1917. He had to rewrite and condense the decrees that had been multiplying for centuries. In 1235, he was named Archbishop of Tarragona but he was able to persuade the Pope to recall his appointment due to health reasons.
At the request of his brethren, he composed the famous Summa Casuum, a manual for confessors and preachers concerning the correct and fruitful administration of the Sacrament of Penance. In 1238, he was elected as the third Master of the Order and revised the Dominican Constitution (which was to remain in effect until 1924), but he resigned two years later also due to health reasons. Retiring to Barcelona, he spent the next thirty-five years preaching, hearing confessions and working for the conversion of Jews. He studied the Koran to dialogue with Moslems, and introduced the study of Arabic and Hebrew into several Dominicans convents. Furthermore, it was at his request that St. Thomas Aquinas wrote the Summa Contra Gentiles to aid missionaries in explaining the Christian religion to, and defending it against, dissenting points of doctrine in Islam and Judaism. He died a centenarian in 1275 and was canonized by Pope Clement VIII in 1601.
The reputation of St. Raymond in juridical science and his immense contribution to the codification of the Canon Law underscore the virtues to be imitated by the UST Faculty of Canon Law and the UST Faculty of Civil Law. Established in 1681, the UST Faculty of Canon Law undertakes the work of evangelization to understand, defend and proclaim the faith within the context of culture and human society, collaborating effectively in its pastoral, doctrinal, ecumenical and missionary undertakings. Moreover, the UST Faculty of Civil Law, the oldest lay faculty in the Philippines (1734), continues to impart solid formation, imbued with Christian virtues and principles, and to serve the best interests of the profession, the nation and the Church.
- O'Kane, Michael, "St. Raymond of Peñafort," The Catholic Encyclopedia, Vol. 12, New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911.
- John Paul II, Sapientia Christiana, On Ecclesiastical Universities and Faculties, 1979.
(3rd Century AD), holy persons
Patron of the UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery
Feast Day: September 26
Cosmas and Damian were Arabian-born twin brothers who embraced Christianity and practiced medicine and surgery without a fee. They reputedly cured blindness, fever, paralysis and reportedly expelled a breast serpent. According to the Legenda Aurea, their most famous posthumous miracle happened in a dream when they transplanted the black leg of a recently-deceased Ethiopian onto the white body of a devout Church official with a gangrenous leg. When the man woke up, he reached for his leg and realized that he now had two healthy legs although one was not his! When he recovered, he leapt out from his bed and announce the good news.
In his attempt to wipe out Christianity, Emperor Diocletian (243/245-311) ordered the arrest of the brothers through Lysias, governor of Cilicia, because of their faith and fame as healers. The twins and their three brothers were sentenced to death. The family were thrown into the sea but were saved. The authorities then tried burning them at the stake but they remained unharmed. They were then stoned, crucified and shot with arrows but to no effect. They were finally beheaded and their bodies carried to the ancient Syrian city of Cyrrhus. Having been cured of a dangerous illness through their intercession, Emperor Justinian (482-565) rebuilt and adorned their church at Constantinople in gratitude for their aid, and it became a celebrated place of pilgrimage. Pope Felix IV (526-530) built a church in Rome in their honor.
Through the inspiration and prayers of Sts. Cosmas and Damian, patrons of physicians and surgeons, whose charity and Christian witness won many converts to the faith and earned them a place of prominence in the Christian communities of Asia Minor, the UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery is committed to the pursuit of excellence in medical education, health science research and community services, guided by Christian ethics and values. Furthermore, it is their task to develop and form competent, compassionate, and committed Thomasian physicians in the delivery of healthcare services of global standards and in accord with the needs of the nation.
- The Pharmaceutical Journal, September 2016; Online: DOI:10.1211/PJ.2016.20201708.
- Meier, Gabriel. "Sts. Cosmas and Damian." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 4. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. 19 Apr. 2021.
- Voragine, Jacobus (1275), and Caxton, William (1483; trans.), Legenda Aurea, Ch. 82.
Patron of the UST Faculty of Pharmacy
Feast Day: December 8
The Virgin Mary was enriched by God with gifts to fulfill her mission as the mother of God (cf. LG 56). When the angel Gabriel at the moment of the annunciation salutes her as "full of grace" (Lk 1:28), she faithfully responded: "Let it be [done] to me according to your word" (Lk 1:28-38).. In fact, in order to give the free assent of her faith, it was necessary that she be wholly borne by God's grace. On December 8, 1854, the Church proclaimed: “The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin” (Pius IX, Ineffabilis Deus). Embracing the divine will, she gave herself entirely to the person and to the work of her Son to serve the mystery of redemption with Him and dependent on Him, by God's grace (cf. LG 56).
Since the 15th century, the Universities in Europe had a special influence in the promotion of the Immaculate Conception which was not only an intensely debated topic, but also had a clear impact on the early graduates of Pharmacy, who considered her as their patroness. During the reign of Reina Isabel II from 1833 until 1868, the pharmacists in Spain were obliged to take an oath to the Immaculate Mother upon finishing their degree and receiving the title. In such a solemn act, white gloves were used to symbolize the cleanliness and purity of the medicines they were to prepare, and their commitment to Science as their profession.
In 1871, UST is the first to offer Pharmacy in the Philippines. Based on his research, Fr. Lorenzo Rodriguez, OP, the Dean from 1946 to 1968, declared that the Faculty did not have a patron ever since. Since the Immaculate Conception has been generally regarded as the Patroness of Pharmacy, the UST Faculty of Pharmacy adopted her as their patroness on November 9, 1948. The first celebration was held on December 7, 1948, which coincided with the inauguration of the second UST Botanical Garden. An image of the Immaculate Conception was blessed in the Office of the Dean on February 26, 1949, and remains to be enthroned there until the present. On October 11, 2015, the Council of Regents confirmed the Immaculate Conception as the Patroness of Pharmacy. Subsequently, the first ‘White Coat Ceremony’ was held on December 7, 2015.
- The Catechism of the Catholic Church, nn. 484-494.
- Rodriguez, OP, Lorenzo, “A Century Progress of the First One Hundred Years of the Faculty [of Pharmacy] of the University of Santo Tomas,” Acta Manilana, February 1972, Series B, No. 2 (14), p. 73.
- Pablo, Carol Geraldine, “Lorenzo Rodriguez, OP: Trailblazing Pharmacy Education, Research, Practice and Services in the Philippines,” Philippiniana Sacra, Vol. LI, No. 152 ( January-April 2016), pp. 98-99.
- Ramos Carrillo, A and Moreno Torrel, E, The Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary, Patron of Pharmacists in Spain: A Theory to Explain this Patronage, Sevilla, Spain.
Patron of the UST Faculty of Arts and Letters
Feast Day: June 22
Born in 1478, Thomas More (1477-1535) received a well-rounded college education at Oxford. He knew several ancient and modern languages, and was well-versed in mathematics, music and literature. Eventually, he became a lawyer. Despite his legal and political orientation, he seriously considered joining either the Carthusians or the Franciscans, and observed asceticism. Since he was elected to the Parliament in 1504, he gave up his religious ambition, though not his disciplined spiritual life, and married Jane Colt, who tragically died in childbirth. He then married a widow named Alice Middleton, a devoted wife and mother.
King Henry VIII (1491-1547) showed fondness for Thomas, who eventually became the Lord Chancellor of England. The king wanted an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon. The king then tried desperately to win his chancellor to his side considering his unquestionable integrity. But when Thomas resigned, he was charged with high treason because of his refusal to take the Oath of Supremacy, declaring the King as spiritual head of the Church in England, and affirming the validity of his new marriage to Anne Boleyn. Before he was beheaded in 1535, he said: “I die as the king's good servant… but God's first.” He was beatified by Pope Leo XIII in 1886 and canonized in 1935 by Pope Pius XI.
The Faculty of Arts and Letters is UST’s most diverse tertiary academic unit, offering thirteen (13) bachelor’s degree programs, housed in nine (9) departments. As the Faculty continues to produce national artists, outstanding media practitioners, noted philosophers, linguists, sociologists, historians, and political experts among other professionals, they follow the lead of their patron, St. Thomas More, who did not compromise his own moral values in order to please the king, knowing that true allegiance to authority is not blind acceptance of everything that authority wants. In the year 2000, Pope St. John Paul II named St. Thomas More as patron of political leaders.
- Hardon SJ, John (ed.), The Treasury of Catholic Wisdom, Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 1995. catholicnewsagency.com
Patron of the UST Faculty of Engineering
Feast Day: February 13
Born in 1190, Jordan belonged to a noble German family. He was a brilliant and devout student of the University of Paris when he met St. Dominic (ca. 1170-1221) himself and heard the preaching of Bl. Reginald of Orleans (1183-1220). One time, thinking that he was late for the Matin service in Notre Dame, he rushed to the church just to find out that it was still very early. Then, a beggar approached him asking for alms. Realizing that he left his money, he gave his silver belt instead. As he entered the church and knelt before the crucifix, he saw the same belt hanging round the neck of the image. Eventually, he received the Dominican habit in 1220, and was appointed Prior Provincial of Lombardy the following year.
When St. Dominic died, Jordan succeeded him as the Master of the Order. In time, the Order developed rapidly under his leadership, growing both in membership and influence throughout Europe. He gained teaching positions for the friars at the University of Paris, and established the first General House of Studies of the Order. He had received more than a thousand novices including masters in theology, doctors in law, bachelors and masters of arts among others. Furthermore, he also served as spiritual director and wrote a number of books, including the life of St. Dominic, whom he knew personally and loved deeply. He initiated the custom of singing the Salve Regina in procession after Compline. He met an untimely death at age 47, drowning on his return trip from the Holy Land in 1237. He was beatified by Pope Leo XII in 1825.
Under the patronage of Bl. Jordan of Saxony, who opened many opportunities for the growth of the Order by bridging scientific knowledge of established professionals and preaching for the salvation of souls, the UST College of Engineering links scientific discoveries and the commercial applications, bridging science and industry, committing itself in pursuit of truth and the formation of competent engineers imbued with Christian values essential for the development of the community, the country, the Church and the world.
- Drane, Augusta Theodosia, Life of St. Dominic, Tan Books: North Carolina, 2011.
Patron of the UST College of Education and the UST Education High School
Feast Day: August 25
Born in 1556, Joseph grew up in a wealthy family from Aragon. He earned degrees in canon law and theology, and was ordained priest in 1583. When he went to Rome, his heart was moved by the vice and ignorance of the children of the poor. He put aside his career because of his deep concern for their education. He and his companions personally provided a free school for them. The response was overwhelming that there was a constant need for larger facilities to house their effort. Soon, the institute received Papal support. The men who volunteered in this ministry was recognized in 1621 as the Order of Poor Clerics Regular of the Mother of God of the Pious Schools (Piarists). Not long after, Joseph was appointed superior for life.
Prejudices and political ambition caused the institute much turmoil. Joseph’s pedagogical idea of educating every child, his schools for the poor, his support of the heliocentric sciences of Galileo Galilei and his service towards the youth all aroused the opposition of many among the governing classes in society and the ecclesiastical hierarchy. Repeatedly investigated by papal commissions, the Piarists were suppressed. But he never lost hope that one day his religious order would be restored and the poor would be served again through it. Joseph died in 1648 and the Piarists were restored years after. He was beatified by Pope Benedict XIV in 1748, and was canonized by Pope Clement XIII in 1767. Pope Pius XII declared him “Heavenly Patron of all Christian popular schools” in 1948.
Responding to the challenges of the time, St. Joseph Calasanz underscored the importance of the education of the youth. Inspired by their patron, the UST College of Education is engaged in the formation of authentic and mature Christian educators, food technologists, nutritionist-dietitians, and library and information professionals endowed with a sense of social responsibility and a desire for leadership in the spirit of service. Likewise, the Education High School commits itself to the task of participating in the evangelizing work of the Church by providing students with quality Catholic Education and by imbuing them with the virtues of truth and love.
- Mershman, Francis. "St. Joseph Calasanctius." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 8. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 19 Apr. 2021.
(ca. 1200-1280), bishop and doctor of the Church
Patron of the UST College of Science
Feast Day: November 15
Born in 13th century Germany, Albert studied in Padua, Italy, where he manifested a characteristic interest in the natural sciences. Eventually, he entered the Order of Preachers inspired by the holiness and preaching of the Dominican friars which helped him overcome every doubt, and even surmount his family's resistance to his vocation. After his priestly ordination, he taught at various theological centers. He accompanied an exceptional student from the University of Paris, St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), and a relationship of mutual esteem and friendship developed between these two great theologians.
Albert was later elected as the Provincial of the Teutonic Province, where he distinguished himself for the zeal in his ministry, visiting the communities and constantly reminding his brothers to be faithful to the teachings and examples of St. Dominic (ca. 1170-1221). Eventually, he was appointed Bishop of Regensburg, where he restored peace and harmony, reorganized parishes and convents, and provided an impetus to charitable activities. After four years, he returned to teaching, researching, and writing. He played an important role in the Council of Lyons (1274), and he endeavored to clarify and defend the teaching of his dear student Thomas Aquinas who passed away ahead of him. In 1280, he died in his room in Cologne, Germany. He was beatified in 1622 and was canonized in 1931 when he was also proclaimed as a Doctor of the Church. The title ‘Great’ indicates the vastness and depth of his teaching, which he combined with holiness of life.
Apart from Philosophy and Theology, St. Albert also excelled in every known discipline of his time, from Physics to Chemistry, from Astronomy to Minerology, from Mathematics to Psychology, and from Botany to Zoology. For this reason, Pope Pius XII (1876-1958) named him Patron of the Natural Sciences in 1941, and also called him "Doctor Universalis". Furthermore, St. Albert the Great is the patron of the UST College of Science.
- Weisheipl, James A., "The Life and Works of St. Albert the Great", in Albertus Magnus and the Sciences: Commemorative Essays, Studies and Texts, 49, Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies, 1980.
- Pope Benedict XVI, General Audience: St. Albert the Great, Vatican City, 24 March 2010.
(ca. 1170-1235), priest
Patron of the UST Junior High School
Feast Day: August 18
The household of Don Felix de Guzmán and Bl. Jane of Aza was so remarkable on account of the religious character of its members to the extent that it is said to resemble a monastery rather than a knightly castle. Three of their children lived in the service of the Church: Anthony, Bl. Mannes and St. Dominic, who founded the Order of Preachers in 1216. Mannes was “a man of great contemplation, zealous for souls, and illustrious for sanctity.” He humbly placed himself under the guidance of his younger brother Dominic from the foundation of the Order, and perhaps even much earlier. He became one of the original sixteen brethren of St. Dominic, of which he is only one to receive the solemn beatification of the Church. He knelt before St. Dominic and made his solemn vows in his hands, binding himself in obedience.
Amidst the uncertainty of dispersing such a small band of preachers, Mannes wholeheartedly obeyed Dominic and remained faithful to God. Dominic’s plan was to establish centers of sacred preaching near the world’s great universities, communities whose members would be devoted to study, teaching, and preaching, as well as prayer. Mannes was assigned to establish the Order in Paris with Matthew of France, Bertrand, Oderic, Michel Fabra, John of Navarre, and Lawrence. In 1217, he helped establish the Priory of St. Jacques in Paris. Two years later, he was entrusted with the care of the Dominican nuns in Madrid. After his death, many miracles were attributed to his intercession. He died at the Cistercian monastery near Caleruega, Spain, his hometown, about the year 1235.
Since its inauguration in 1928, the UST Junior High School has been shaping young men and women to be competent, compassionate, and committed members of the society and the church. With the inspiration of Bl. Mannes, the UST JHS is committed to Truth, enkindled by charity. It is geared toward the integral formation; the cultivation of Christian values; the nurturing of the passion for knowledge; the appreciation, preservation, enrichment, and propagation of Filipino cultural heritage; and the recognition of the one’s important role in the University, local community, country, and the environment.
- Dominican Missal and Lectionary for the Order of Preachers in the Philippines, 2011, p. 136.
(1st Century AD), apostle
Patron of the UST College of Architecture
Feast Day: July 3
The name Thomas is derived from a Hebrew root, ta'am, which means ‘paired’ or ‘twin’. Though unclear, he was also called “Dydimus” (cf. Jn 11:16; 20:24; 21:2). When Our Lord went to Bethany to raise Lazarus, thus coming dangerously close to Jerusalem (Mk 10: 32), he said: “Let us also go, that we may die with Him” (Jn 11:16), revealing his total readiness to stand by Jesus. At the Last Supper, Jesus announced: “Where I am going you know the way” (Jn 14:4). Then Thomas intervened: “Lord, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” (Jn 14:5). Like him, we express our meager capacity to understand yet we remain faithful as the Lord said: "I am the Way, and the Truth and the Life" (Jn 14:6).
The proverbial scene of the ‘doubting Thomas’ occurred eight days after Easter. At first, Thomas did not believe that Jesus had appeared in his absence and said: “Unless I see in His hands, the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in His side, I will not believe” (Jn 20:25). Jesus reappeared among His disciples eight days later, and this time Thomas was present. Jesus summons him: “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing” (Jn 20:27). He reacted with the most splendid profession of faith: “My Lord and my God!” (Jn 20:28). Jesus said: “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe” (Jn 20:29). Ancient tradition claims that Thomas first evangelized Syria and Persia, then he went to Western India, and finally reached Southern India where he was martyred.
In our weakness, we share the doubt of Thomas. However, he was honest enough to declare his unbelief, and did not totally close himself to the Truth. St. Thomas the Apostle builds up his faith by gradually transforming such weakness into the image of Christ who loves us. Witnessing His wounds, Thomas builds up his faith. Inspired by their patron, the UST College of Architecture is committed to build up the Thomasian ideals of competence, commitment, and compassion by forming architects endowed with intellectual discipline and integrity.
- Benedict XVI, General Audience, 27 September 2006.
- Eusebius of Caesarea, Ecclesiastical History, 3, 1.
- Acts of Thomas, 1-2 and 17ff.
(1st Century AD), apostle
Patron of the UST College of Commerce and Business Administration
Feast Day: September 21
Matthew (Hebrew for ‘gift of God’) is presented in the list of the twelve apostles as “the tax collector” (Mt 10:3). He was also referred as “Levi’ (cf. Mk 2:13-17; Lk 5: 27-30). At that time, tax collectors were generally hated as traitors by their fellow Jews. They were associated with “sinners” (cf. Mt 9:10; Lk 15:1), and even with “prostitutes” (cf. Mt 21:31). Popular opinion regarded them as “extortioners, the unjust, adulterers" (Lk 18:11), and as egocentric persons (cf. Mt 5:46). So it was shocking for many that Jesus called Matthew to be one of His intimate followers: “As Jesus passed on from there, He saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax office; and He said to him: ‘Follow me’. And he rose and followed Him” (Mt 9:9).
Jesus does not exclude anyone from His friendship. When the Lord was at table in the home of Matthew, He said: “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I came not to call the righteous, but sinners" (Mk 2:17). Those who seem to be the farthest from holiness can even become a model of the acceptance of God's mercy and offer a glimpse of its marvelous effects in their own lives. The Gospel of Matthew, written in Hebrew or Aramaic, is no longer extant, but the Greek Gospel, that we still possess today, resounds the persuasive voice of a tax collector who continues to preach God's saving mercy.
Engaged in commerce and business, which guaranteed him a reliable source of income regardless of its nature, Matthew left everything to promptly and readily follow the Lord. He was honest to admit that he was one of the sinners Jesus came to call. The Lord sanctified his ministry, so that from then on, Matthew did not anymore follow the ways of the world but ‘negotiated’ for the Lord. He was sent forth in a mission to engage in the ‘business’ of proclaiming His Word. St. Matthew is the patron of the UST College of Commerce and Business Administration.
- Benedict XVI, General Audience, 30 August 2006.
Patron of the UST Graduate School
Feast Day: May 10
Belonging to a high-standing Florentine family, Antoninus applied for admission to the Dominican Order at age 15. However, it was not until a year later that he was accepted, after having memorized the entire Decretals to prove his ability and commitment. Eventually, he assumed the responsibility as the Prior of the convents in Cortona, Fiesole, Siena, Naples and Rome. In these convents, he strived with great wisdom and firmness to raise the standard of regular observances. While he was Prior in Rome, he had the incorrupt remains of St. Catherine of Siena enshrined in a golden sarcophagus. Returning to Florence, he founded the Priory of San Marco, where he made its library accessible to scholars, thus making it a center of Renaissance spirituality and culture and the first public library in Europe. In 1436, he participated in the Council of Florence.
Although reluctant, Antoninus was compelled by Pope Eugene IV to become the Archbishop of Florence in 1446. In his archdiocese, he was noted for his mercy to the poor, his prudence and good counsel. He devoted himself to pastoral visitations, the remedy of abuses, the strengthening of discipline, the preaching of the Gospel, the amelioration of the condition of the poor, and the writing of books for the clergy and laity. Having received the anointing of the sick and having embraced the crucifix, he passed away in 1459, and was canonized by Pope Adrian VI in 1523.
As the ‘father of the poor’, he showed compassion for the needy. As the ‘innovative superior’, he served with commitment to his subjects. As a Dominican scholar imbued with holy competence, he engaged in writing books on moral and ascetical theology, and he has been widely acclaimed as a preacher, reformer, economist, sociologist and historian. Providentially, Antoninus is the patron of the UST Graduate School, which promotes excellence and innovation through quality research, and commits itself to advance the frontiers of knowledge in the theoretical and applied fields through quality education that is comprehensive and responsive to the needs of society.
- Maccarani, Domenico, Vita di San Antonino, Florence, 1708.
- Bartoli, Giovanni Gugielo, Istoria dell' Arcivescovo San Antonino e de suoi più illustri discepoli, Florence, 1782.
(3rd Century AD), virgin and martyr
Patron of the UST Conservatory of Music
Feast Day: November 22
Apart from the fact of her martyrdom, Cecilia’s life is practically undetermined. However, according to a long-standing tradition, she was a young Christian girl of pagan parents who lived during the persecution of Marcus Aurelius. According to custom, her parents arranged her marriage with a young patrician named Valerian. On her wedding night, she resolutely explained her vow of virginity to Valerian, whose initial anger and confusion were transformed into faith. She bequeathed her possessions to the poor and her home to the Church to be used as a house of worship.
Upon Cecilia’s arrest, the Roman prefect attempted to persuade her to renounce her faith, but she refused. After a failed attempt to suffocate her in an extremely heated bath in her own home, an executioner was sent to behead her. Three blows mortally wounded Cecilia leaving her almost decapitated, yet she persisted for three days, offering the witness of vibrant faith, hope and charity that can never die.
Though there are some literary inaccuracies, Cecilia has been honored as patroness of Music since the 14th and 15th centuries. Arguably, on her wedding day (or on the day of her martyrdom), she heard the ‘organ’ making melody (or the instruments of torture, not the musical instrument), and she sang in her heart, only to God, saying: “O Lord, I beseech You that my heart and body may be cleansed so that I may not be confounded.” When the Academy of Music was founded in Rome (1584), she was made patroness of the institute, whereupon her veneration as patroness of Church music became more universal. Cecilia’s music is the eternal heavenly call, which resonates in the soul despite the noise and pressures of the world, inspiring the faithful to an enduring vow of love even unto death. Cecilia joins the angels and saints in heaven, “singing a new hymn before the throne” of God (Rev 14:3). She is the patroness of the UST Conservatory of Music.
- Voragine, Jacobus (1275), and Caxton, William (1483; trans.), Legenda Aurea, Ch. 169.
- Baring-Gould, Sabine, The Lives of the Saints, Edinburgh, 1914.
(ca. 1207-1231), holy woman
Patron of the UST College of Nursing
Feast Day: November 17
Elizabeth was the daughter of King Andrew II of Hungary. At age four (b. 1207), she was brought to the court of her future husband, Ludwig, landgrave of Thuringia. After her marriage in 1221, she conscientiously fulfilled her duties both toward her husband and to God. During the night, she would rise from bed and spend long periods in prayer. She performed zealously all types of charitable acts at the service of widows, orphans, the sick, and the needy. During a famine, she generously distributed all the grain from her stocks, cared for lepers, and kissed their hands and feet. She even provided suitable lodging for indigents. According to a legend, the gentry was telling the king that she was stealing treasures from the castle. When her husband was out hunting, she went secretly on an errand of mercy. Unexpectedly, she met her husband, who asked her to reveal what was hidden under her cloak, and the bread that she was concealing turned into roses.
After the early death of her husband, Elizabeth laid aside all royal dignities to serve God more freely. She put on simple clothing, and showed great patience and humility. She was not spared from intense suffering: the goods belonging to her as a widow were withheld, and she was forced to leave the castle. She wandered in the winter's cold. In Eisenach, no one dared receive her out of fear of her enemies. Upon much pleading, a shepherd permitted her to use an abandoned pig sty. In 1228, she took the veil of the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis at Marburg, and there built a hospital with some property still belonging to her. She retained for herself only a small mud house. All her strength and care were now devoted to the poor and the sick, while she obtained the few things she needed by spinning. She died in 1231 at age 24, and was canonized in 1235 by Pope Gregory IX.
Under the patronage of St. Elizabeth of Hungary, who selflessly cared for the sick and the needy, the UST College of Nursing commits itself to provide a Catholic Nursing Education geared toward excellent health care delivery reflected in teaching, research, and community services to respond to national and global needs.
- Bihl, Michael. "St. Elizabeth of Hungary." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 5. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1909. 19 Apr. 2021.
Patron of the UST College of Rehabilitation Sciences
Feast Day: November 3
Born in Lima, Peru in 1579, Martin was the illegitimate son of Juan de Porres, a Spanish nobleman and Anna, a freed Panamanian slave. At first, the father abandoned his family, and they lived in dire poverty. Later, the father’s conscience smote him, and provided basic education to his children. At age 15, Martin presented himself to the Dominican Priory in Lima, and was received as a ‘donado’ (tertiary servant). In this capacity, he gave himself to the lowliest duties in the house. After several years, seeing his evident goodwill and sanctity, his superiors invited him to make a solemn profession as a cooperator brother. He served in various offices in the convent: porter, barber, infirmarian and wardrobe keeper. As infirmarian, he gained the reputation for the ability to perform miraculous cures.
Martin tirelessly work for the poor, establishing an orphanage and a foundling hospital. He served as an almoner, who was in charge of the convent’s food distribution to the poor, and he ministered to African slaves brought to Peru. He was a friend and collaborator with his fellow saints, John Macias and Rose of Lima. Among the many miracles attributed to him were levitation, bilocation (being in two places at one time), miraculous knowledge, instantaneous cures, the ability to communicate with animals and pass through locked doors. Ministering to the sick, he is said to have often effected their healing with only a simple glass of water. One day, he took an aged beggar, covered with ulcers, to his own bed. A brother reproved him but Martin replied: “Compassion, my dear brother, is preferable to cleanliness. Reflect that with a little soap I can easily clean my bed covers, but even with a torrent of tears I would never wash from my soul the stain that my harshness toward the unfortunate would create.” He was beatified in 1837 by Pope Gregory XVI, and was canonized in 1962 by Pope John XXIII.
Renowned for his compassion, St. Martin de Porres provided therapy, both physical and spiritual, for the poor and needy. Under his patronage the UST College of Rehabilitation Sciences endeavors to show continuing competence in their field of practice; commitment in the service of the church, the nation, and the global community; and compassion towards others.
- Galduf, Vicente and Joaquin, Nick (trans.), Martin de Porres: A Colored Saint, 2018.
Patron of the UST Institute of Physical Education and Athletics
Feast Day: October 22
Karol Józef Wojtyła was born in Wadowice, Poland on 18 May 1920. He lost his mother Emilia at age 9; his brother Edmund at 12; and his father Karol at 21. After high school, he enrolled in the Jagellonian University of Krakow (1938). When the Nazi forces closed the University in 1939, he worked (1940-1944) in a quarry and then in a chemical factory to earn a living and to avoid deportation to Germany. Heeding the call of the priesthood, he studied in the clandestine major seminary of Krakow (1942). After the war, he attained a doctorate in Philosophy (1948) at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome (Angelicum). Eventually, he was appointed auxiliary bishop of Krakow (1958), then Archbishop of Krakow (1964), and he was created a Cardinal (1967). He also took part in the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).
In 1978, Karol was elected Pope, and made pastoral visits including 104 international apostolic journeys. On 13 May 1981, an attempt was made on his life in St. Peter's Square. Saved by the maternal hand of the Mother of God, he forgave the attempted assassin and, aware of having received a great gift, intensified his pastoral commitments with heroic generosity. He died in 2005, on Divine Mercy Sunday, which he had instituted. He was beatified in 2011 by Pope Benedict XVI, and was canonized in 2014 by Pope Francis.
The sportsman pope, John Paul II, elevated sports to a level that was never before considered by the Church. He credits sports with a value of important significance in the promotion of the person and opened the door to subsequent reflection in the relationship between sports and spirituality: “In recent years, [sports] has continued to grow even more as one of the characteristic phenomena of the modern era, almost a ‘sign of the times’ capable of interpreting humanity’s new needs and new expectations.” He urged those involved in this activity “to make sports an opportunity for meeting and dialogue, over and above every barrier of language, race or culture.” He underscored that “sports can make an effective contribution to peaceful understanding between peoples and to establishing the new civilization of love.” St. John Paul II is the patron the UST Institute of Physical Education and Athletics.
- Booklet for the Canonization of Blesseds John XXIII and John Paul II, 27 April 2014, pp. 31-34.
- John Paul II, Homily at the Jubilee for the World of Sports: Even the Greatest Champions need Christ, 29 October 2000; “L’Osservatore Romano” Weekly English Edition, n. 44, 1 November 2000, 1.
(ca. 1387-1455), priest
Patron of the UST College of Fine Arts and Designs
Feast Day: February 18
Guido di Pietro was born near Fiesole in 1387. He entered a Dominican convent in Fiesole in 1418 and adopted the religious name ‘Fra Giovanni da Fiesole’. In 1436, he moved to the newly built convent of San Marco in Florence, which he decorated with frescoes for the cloister, chapter house, and entrances to the 20 cells on the upper corridors. The most impressive of these are the Crucifixion, the Transfiguration, and the Annunciation at the top of the stairs to the cells. In 1439, he completed one of his most famous works: the San Marco altarpiece: images of the enthroned Madonna and Child, with the saints standing within the same spatial setting, in a natural way as if they appear to be conversing with one another (sacra conversazione) about the shared experience of witnessing the Virgin in glory, which is atypical of its time. Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574) expressed that such work were so ethereal, and that the whole coloring of the work was so beautiful, that it appeared to be created by the hand of a saint or an angel, it was with good reason he was called Fra Angelico.
“A man of great simplicity, and most holy in his ways,” Fra Angelico painted only holy subjects. It was averred that he never handled a brush without a prayer, and wept when painting a crucifix. In Italy, he had long been called “il Beato Angelico” (the Blessed Angelico) for led a holy and self-denying life. He shunned advancement and was a brother to the poor. It was said that no man ever saw him angered. In 1455, Fra Angelico died in Rome at 48 y/o and was buried by his fellow friars in the church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, where his marble tombstone still exists. He was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1984.
Inspired by Beato Angelico, the UST College of Fine Arts and Design endeavors to generate, advance, and transmit knowledge to form competent and compassionate visual arts and design professionals, committed to the service of the Church, the nation, and the global community. Furthermore, the College undertakes the task of inculcating creativity as a God-given gift, faithfulness to what is good, beautiful and true; the ardent desire for excellence; and the dedication to the development of art and design.
- Vasari, Giorgio, trans. George Bull. Lives of the Artists. New York: Penguin Books, 1965.
- Rosetti, William Michael. "Angelico, Fra," Encyclopedia Britannica (11th edition). Encyclopaedia Britannica Inc., 1911.
- Van Cleef, Augustus. "Fra Angelico." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 19 Apr. 2021.
(1st Century AD), husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Patron of the UST-AMV College of Accountancy
Feast Day: March 19
St. Joseph, the spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the foster-father of Jesus, was probably born in Bethlehem and probably died in Nazareth. In the plan of salvation, God assigned to Joseph, “the just man” (cf. Mt 1:19), and spouse of the Virgin Mary (cf. ibid; Lk 1:27), a particularly important mission: legally to insert Jesus Christ into the line of David from whom, according to the prophets, the Messiah would be born, and to act as his father and guardian.
In virtue of this mission, God revealed to Joseph that Jesus had been conceived by the Holy Spirit; (cf. Mt 1:20-21); he witnessed the birth of Christ in Bethlehem (cf. Lk 2:6-7), the adoration of the shepherds (cf. Lk 2:15-16), the adoration of the Magi (cf. Mt 2:11); he fulfilled his mission religiously with regard to the rearing of Christ, having had him circumcised according to the discipline of the Covenant of Abraham (Lk 2:21) and in giving him the name of Jesus (Mt 1:21); in accordance with the Law of the Lord, he presented Christ in the Temple and made the offering prescribed for the poor (cf. Lk 2:22-24; Ex 13:2,12-13), and listened in wonder to the prophecy of Simeon (cf. Lk 2:25-33); he protected the Mother of Christ and her Son from the persecution of Herod by taking them to Egypt (cf. Mt 2:13-23); together with Mary and Jesus, he went every year to Jerusalem for the Passover, and was distraught at having lost the twelve year old Jesus in the Temple (Lk 2:43-50); he lived in Nazareth and exercised paternal authority over Jesus who was submissive to him (Lk 2:51); he instructed Jesus in the law and in the craft of carpentry.
St. Joseph was the provider of the holy family; he was accountable for Jesus as His foster-father, and the Blessed Virgin Mary as her husband. He died before the beginning of Christ's public life. His was the most beautiful death that one could have, in the arms of Jesus and Mary. Humbly and unknown, he passed his years at Nazareth in silence. He is the patron of the Universal Church. He is the patron of the dying. He is the patron of the UST-AMV College of Accountancy.
- John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos: On the Person and Mission of St. Joseph in the Life of Christ and of the Church, 15 August 1989.
- Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy, 2001, no. 218-223.
(ca. 1183-1257), priest
Patron of the UST College of Tourism and Hospitality Management
Feast Day: August 17
Born near Wroclaw (Breslau), Poland around 1183, Hyacinth came from the noble family of Odrowatz. He was ordained to the priesthood, becoming canon of the Cathedral at Krakow. In the course of his journey to Rome in 1221, he was attracted to the Order of Preachers by the holiness and preaching of St. Dominic (ca. 1170-1221), and received the habit from his very hands. That same year, the General Chapter held at Bologna commissioned him, along with his kinsman Bl. Ceslaus (ca. 1184-1242) and two other companions, to return to Poland. Thus, beginning the Dominican evangelization of Eastern Europe. He is known to have preached and founded priories in Bohemia, Moravia, Russia and Prussia at the height of the Tartar invasions. Through it all, he maintained a reputation for gentleness, humility, hospitality and courtesy.
Hyacinth also had, in common with many other saints of the Order, a tender devotion to Our Lady. According to a legend, the friars were about to flee from the invading forces during the Mongol attack on Kiev, and Hyacinth went to save the Blessed Sacrament in the chapel. Suddenly, he heard the voice of the Blessed Mother, asking him to take her, too. He then lifted the large, stone Marian image, as well as the ciborium. He was able to carry both despite the fact that the image weighed far more than he could normally lift. Thus, he saved them both. On every occasion of his life, the Virgin Mary was to lighten the load for him. Venerated as an Apostle of Poland and credited with numerous miracles, he had a vision of the Mother of God who revealed to him that he would die on the Solemnity of the Assumption, August 15, 1257. Pope Clement VIII canonized him in 1594.
St. Hyacinth’s generous reception of the Most Holy Eucharist and his loving accommodation for the Blessed Virgin Mary had been indispensable in his life and ministry. Inspired by their patron, the UST College of Tourism and Hospitality Management commit themselves in the formation of top-notch competent, committed, and compassionate Thomasian Tourism and Hospitality professionals for the service of the Church, the nation, and the global community.
- Mershman, Francis. "St. Hyacinth." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 7. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 19 Apr. 2021 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07591b.htm>.
- Dominican Missal and Lectionary for the Order of Preachers in the Philippines, 2011, p. 135.
Patron of the UST College of Information and Computing Sciences
Feast Day: May 5
In 1350, Vincent was born in Valencia, Spain to William Ferrer and Constancia Miguel, both nobles. He was educated in Valencia and at the age of 17 received the habit of the Order of Preachers, and was sent to Barcelona for further studies. Later, he taught philosophy at Lérida and in three years returned once more to Barcelona. He proceeded to continue his studies at Toulouse, where, in his own words, "study followed prayer, and prayer succeeded study".
In 1398, Vincent was recovering from a serious illness when he had a vision of Christ accompanied by St. Dominic and St. Francis directing him to teach penance. In the troubled times in which he lived, he was an ‘angel of peace’, a messenger of penance sent to prepare men and women for the judgment. For twenty years, he traversed Spain, France, and Italy, preaching penance and awakening the dormant consciences of sinners by his wondrous eloquence. His austere life was but the living expression of his preaching. Although he preached in his own native tongue to people who spoke different languages, he was clearly understood by all because of his extraordinary ‘gift of tongues’. He was also outstanding for the ‘gift of prophecy’, worked astonishing miracles and brought back thousands, including Jews and Moors, to the faith. His authority helped to bring the Great Schism to an end. He spent the last three years of his life in France and died in 1419. Pope Calixtus III canonized him in 1455.
St. Vincent Ferrer endeavored to inform the people of his time about penance to prepare them for judgment, which he simply yet extraordinarily carried out through spiritual algorithms so to speak: the ‘gift of tongues’ and the ‘gift of prophecy’. Under the inspiration of its patron, the UST Institute of Information and Computing Sciences declares its commitment to the pursuit of truth and the formation of technically competent Information Technology Education professionals endowed with a strong commitment to lifelong learning, social responsibility and a desire for leadership in the spirit of service.
- Reinhart, Albert. "St. Vincent Ferrer." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 15. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1912. 19 Apr. 2021.
(1901-1925), holy man
Patron of the UST Senior High School
Feast Day: July 4
Pier Giorgio Frassati was born in Turin, Italy in 1901. At an early age, he obtained permission to receive daily Communion (which was rare at that time). The Holy Eucharist and the Blessed Virgin were the two poles of his world of prayer. At age 17, he joined the St. Vincent de Paul Society, serving the sick and the needy, caring for orphans, and assisting the demobilized servicemen returning from World War I. Although he considered his studies his first duty, they did not keep him from social and political activism. Whatever he had, he would give to the poor, even using his bus fare for charity and then running home to be on time for meals. In 1921, he organized the first convention of the Pax Romana.
Mountain climbing was one of his favorite sports. He never lost the chance to lead his friends to Mass, to the reading of Scriptures, and to praying the rosary. He often went to theaters, operas, and museums. He loved art and music. He admired the epistles of St. Paul, the sermons of Savonarola, and the writings of St. Catherine of Siena, which impelled him to join the Lay Dominicans in 1922. Just before receiving his university degree, he contracted poliomyelitis, which he might have caught from the sick whom he tended. On the eve of his death, he scribbled a message to a friend with a paralyzed hand, asking him to take the medicine needed for injections to be given to Converso, a poor sick man he had been visiting. He died at age 24 in 1925. He was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1990.
Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati is a significant patron of World Youth Day. A “man of the beatitudes” and patron of young adults, Frassati is the patron saint of the UST Senior High School, which is committed to form learners to become creative problem-solvers, catalysts of change, productive citizens of the country, and zealous witnesses of the Catholic faith.