St. Joan of Arc – Feast day May 30

The following article is an excerpt from the chapter on St. Joan of Arc in our book, “Saints Maligned, Misunderstood and Mistreated.”

The Angels and Saints Speak to St. Joan
Her years of joy were short-lived. At age twelve, her famous voices began speaking to her. They were always accompanied by a brilliant flash of light, and came at the precise time the sexton[1] rang the church bells. At first, there was only one voice. When he spoke to her the third time, she realized he was St. Michael the Archangel. At this time, she also had an apparition of St. Michael, accompanied by other Angels. When it happened, she thought her heart would burst. Here, in front of her was the Prince of the Angels, he who defeated Lucifer and his rebellious angels, throwing them down to the pits of hell. During this time in history, the Middle Ages, St. Michael was one of the most revered Saints, held in high esteem, especially by royalty, nobility and the military. For Joan, this was a great honor.
At first, the Angel just gave her instructions on how to live a good Christian life, go to Church often, and obey her parents. These were good instructions, but to be honest, she was already practicing these virtues. However, a time came when St. Michael advised her she would be visited by St. Margaret of Antioch, and St. Catherine of Alexandria, part of an elite group of Martyrs, called the Fourteen Holy Helpers, known for their powerful intercession during the Middle Ages. When they came, they were beautiful. They were majestic. They wore crowns on their heads. Joan became very comfortable with her holy visitors, especially St. Michael, to whom she and much of the world of the Middle Ages had a great devotion.
Joan was bewildered when the messages took on a different tone. She was told “Daughter of God, you must leave your village and go to France.”[2] She was told to save France from the English. She replied that she was only a young girl, who knew nothing about fighting. She was very confused. This was all beyond her. Think about it, though. We’re talking about a teenager here. Granted, she was much more spiritual than most adults of her time. But she was being told things that most adults would have a major problem accepting. Given the same set of circumstances, I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t be completely bowled over by the proposition set before this young girl by the Angel, St. Margaret of Antioch and St. Catherine of Alexandria.
She knew they were sincere. She trusted, especially in St. Michael. She knew he would not allow the evil one to deceive her. But she was very disconcerted. As the years progressed, the messages became more specific, more demanding. She would save France from defeat at the hands of the English. This continued until she was sixteen years old. Her voices would give her no peace. Then, one day in May, 1428, she was given a direct command by St. Michael to go to Vaucouleurs to a Robert de Baudricourt and tell him he should give her troops so that she could go to the Dauphin, who was the legitimate heir to the throne of France.
[1]one who takes care of church property
[2]At that time, Domremy may have been part of Lorraine, the Holy Roman Empire, or Burgundy.
For more information on St. Joan of Arc and our Book “Saints Maligned Misunderstood and Mistreated” click here

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