St. Theophane was born in France in 1829. He entered the Foreign Mission of Paris. He was ordained a priest in 1852 and became a missionary. He worked for 15 months at Hong Kong before going to West Tonkin which is now Vietnam.
In Vietnam, he taught sevinary and ministered to the people of Tonkin for four years. He was arrested on Nov. 30, 1860 and tried for being a Christian.
During his trial he refused to renounce his faith. St. Theophane was caged for several months before he was beheaded in 1861. While being caged he was allowed to write many letters. Some of them survived. In a letter to his father he wrote,
“We are all flowers planted on this earth, which God plucks in His own good time; some a little sooner, some a little later…Father and son may we meet in Paradise. I, poor little moth, go first. Adieu.”
He was an inspiration to St. Thérèse of Lisieux who is known as the Little Flower. ]
On June 19, 1988 St. Theophane Venard was canonized by Pope St. John Paul II. He is considered one of the martyrs of Vietnam.
Guide your ship well.
Let prudence take the helm,
let humility be the rudder,
God your compass,
Mary, your anchor of hope.
Quote of St. Theophane Venard
November is the Month of the Holy Souls