bodyguard – Naming your Baby after a Saint

Naming your baby is one of the most important and challenging thing to do before the baby is born. According to the Catholic Church, if you name your baby after a saint, the saint will intercede and help his namesake throughout the baby’s life. In effect, the saint will be your baby’s patron saint for the rest of the baby’s lifetime. Here is a very brief list of possible saint names for your next treasured child.


Boys


Adrian. There are at least ten Saint Adrians throughout history. One of them was called Adrian of Nicomedia, who was a pagan and bodyguard in the royal court of Nicomedia. He was so impressed by the courage and faith of the Christians being executed, he converted and became a Christian. He was then arrested by the same court he worked for and executed. He is the patron saint of soldiers and prison guards and helps intercede against the plague. Here is a strong name to please any man, with several saints to choose from.


Benjamin. Saint Benjamin was a Persian who loved to preach to the people. He would preach anywhere to anyone who would listen. He suffered in jail, was released, and told not to preach again. But he did, and was killed for it by being impaled on a stake. Benjamin means ‘son of the right hand’. Benjamins can be Benjie when they are young, and Ben as they mature. It is a name to be be proud of.


Christopher. Most Catholics are familiar with the Saint Christopher medal; a picture of St. Christopher carrying Baby Jesus across flood waters to safety. Not much is know about the real man, however. He was a third century martyr who helped people cross a dangerous stream, including Jesus. He is the patron saint of many things including travelers, drivers, epileptics, Germany, Spain, cab drivers, gardeners, bachelors, and watermen. It will never go wrong to name your child after this saint.


Drogo. A masculine sounding name with a great story behind it. Saint Drogo was Flemish nobility, to gave up all his worldly possessions to become a shepherd and go on many pilgrimages to Rome. He ended his life as a hermit, living on water, barley, and the Eucharist. He is the patron saint of deaf people, orphans, shepherds (naturally), ill people, deformed people, and coffee houses.


Francis. You can’t go wrong naming your baby Francis. There are at least forty-five Saint Francis. My favorite is St. Francis of Assisi, a formerly rich and riotous man, who gave up all his possessions after he found God, and founded the Franciscans. He loved to live with the animals and birds and composed music for the glory of God. He worked with lepers and the sick, and sent food to thieves. He is the patron saint for all of nature; the birds, the animals, the environment and for peace.


Kevin. Saint Kevin was a bit of an odd duck. He preferred the company of animals to humans, and many tales are told of miracles to do with animals or birds and the saint. He lived as a hermit and ate nettles and wore skins. He prayed all day and founded a monastery. Saint Kevin is a saint worth looking up just to read about his adventures with animals. He is a patron saint of Ireland, and Dublin in particular.


Girls


Angela. Six Saint Angelas grace the Catholic Church. One who stands out is Angela of Foligno, an Italian wild child, who eventually saw the light and became a visionary and mystic for God. She was born of a wealthy family in the 1200’s, married young, had many children, and was known to be a wicked woman. In 1285 she had a revelation, and changed her life around, becoming a Christian woman. She was known for her mystic writing, her charity and humility; she is the patron saint of widows and against temptation.


Brigid. Saint Brigid of Ireland is one of the patron saints of the Emerald Isle. She was born to royalty, but refused to marry and instead started a group of convents in Ireland. She loved to travel and spread God’s word wherever she went. She is highly regarded in Ireland and has a colorful history to read about. She is the patron saint of Ireland, babies, dairy workers, mariners, milkmaids, sailors, midwives, blacksmiths, poets, travelers, and many other groups. Naming your baby Brigid is a great honor.


Clare. Saint Clare of Assisi is the patron saint of the church where I grew up. She was born of royalty, and had the opportunity to hear St. Francis of Assisi preach when she got her calling. She founded the Order of the Poor Clares and established them wherever St. Francis established the Franciscans were. They depended on charity completely. Her order still exists today. She is the patron saint of television, eyes, good weather, and telephones.


Elizabeth. There are at least twelve saints named Elizabeth. One of my favorites is Elizabeth Ann Seton, the founder of Catholic schools in Massachusetts and Maryland. She came from a strict Episcopalian family, and married a wealthy man. By the time her husband died, and his business had failed, she was living as a poor widow with five children to support. To make ends meet, she started the schools, and converted to Catholicism. She is the patron saint to help combat in-law problems, widowhood, and the Dioceses of Shreveport, Louisiana.


Hermione. A popular name with the Harry Potter set, this is actually the name of a saint, Saint Hermione, a daughter of Philip the deacon. She was a prophetess, and a martyr.


Julia. A beautiful name, there are several saints named Julia. One was Julia Billiart, the woman who started the organization called The Sisters of Notre Dame, which has a mission to educate Christian girls. She was born in a poor family and dedicated her life to learning about her religion and teaching it to other women. She is the patron saint of poor people.


If this list intrigues you, consult with a book about saints in your local library, or look on line for more information. There are hundreds of saints to learn about, and names to choose from for all people. Why name your baby after a soap opera actress or a favorite perfume? Name your child with a name that has some history, and a chance for a little extra help from up above!

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