May 30                                                                                                       Patroness of:
                                                                                                                          France and Soldiers

JOAN was born in France in 1412. She helped her brothers on the farm and often went to a nearby chapel to pray to Jesus. When she was seventeen, Joan heard the voice of God calling her to drive the enemies of France from the land. Going to the king, whose army had been defeated, she asked for a small army. The king, believing that God had sent her to save France, gave her a band of brave soldiers. Joan had a great love for Jesus whom she often received in Holy Communion. She also had a devotion to the angels, especially St. Michael.
Joan went before the soldiers carrying her banner with the words:
"Jesus, Mary." The soldiers became filled with courage and drove the British army into retreat. Charles VII was crowned king of France.
Later, Joan fell into the hands of the British and remained in chains for nine months. Then she was taken to the marketplace of Rouen and burned to death. With her eyes on a crucifix, she cried "Jesus, Jesus," through the flames.
O Lord, You raised up in a wondrous manner St. Joan, Your Virgin, to defend the Faith and her country. Grant that through her prayers Your Church may enjoy lasting peace.

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