Redemptorists logo
Our Mother of Perpetual Help Icon
Since 1732, the Redemptorists — a congregation of missionary priests and brothers — have followed in Jesus’ footsteps, preaching the Word and serving the poor and most abandoned.
Redemptorists logo


Celebrating St. John Neumann around the world

Many thanks to all who joined us in Baltimore and Philadelphia in recent days to celebrate the 200th birthday of St. John Neumann!

On Sunday, March 27, dozens of people gathered at St. Alphonsus Church in Baltimore, MD, for a special Mass celebrated by Baltimore Archbishop Edwin F. O’Brien. St. John Neumann was once pastor of St. Alphonsus, and he was ordained a bishop in that church on his 41st birthday in 1852.

In his homily, Redemptorist Father Patrick Woods commented on the holiness that was found in Neumann’s very ordinary life: (Click here for complete text.)

Like us, St. John Neumann faced biting mosquitoes, as a boy had to be bribed to go to Church devotions, failures, loneliness and even struggles in faith. He is our brother. When it was proposed that the process for canonization of John Neumann begin, there were those in the Church who wondered if his life was too ordinary. He did not seem to work great miracles, found a religious order, write great books, or die the death of martyr. The pope at the time, Pope Benedict XV wrote the following as he reflected on the life of John Neumann: “No one any longer should doubt that the simplicity of work performed by John Neumann did not prevent him from a marvelous example. His very simplicity moves to see a new hero and example of faith not difficult for us to imitate.

On Monday, March 28, the 200th anniversary of St. John Neumann’s birthday, hundreds of students from Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia gathered at the Neumann Shrine for a prayer service. (Click here to view video of the prayer service.) The Redemptorists also announced the winners of our Neumann Year Essay Contest.

And parishioners of Sacred Heart Parish in Griffith, New South Wales, Australia, threw a birthday party for St. John Neumann. Thanks to Fr. Peter Stojanovic for sharing some photos: