The year was 1564, and someone was needed for an important but dangerous mission. Who was brave enough to do it? St. Peter Canisius!
by Christine Henderson
The year was 1564 and an important mission had to be accomplished. But who could do it? “We need a secret agent!” declared the church leaders. But who was brave enough to attempt it? The mission already had failed once before.
What was the mission? To bring documents from the Council of Trent (an important meeting that the church leaders had in Italy) to the bishops scattered throughout Europe. This was a dangerous mission because whoever they chose must travel through hostile Protestant territory. It had been tried before and all the documents disappeared! STOLEN!
Who could travel through Europe as a priest and not be suspected of carrying these documents? Each document was 250 pages long! Cell phones, computers and texting had not been invented yet. It wasn’t like these documents could be stuffed under a priest’s cassock!
Father Peter Canisius was chosen. Did he wear a trench coat and dark glasses? Nope! He wore his priestly cassock. So why could he sneak through Europe and not be suspected?
Well, Father Canisius started many universities throughout Europe and he was a Jesuit monk. His disguise? To pretend to be checking up on the universities and monasteries in Europe.
“If I am going to travel all that way, I might as well bring some books to my universities,” declared Father Canisius. He packed THREE large sacks full of books! Then he had to add all the documents from the Council of Trent. He must have had countless sacks of stuff by the time he packed!
Did Father Peter Canisius deliver all the documents without being caught? Yes, he did.
Feast day: Dec. 21
St. Peter Canisius, pray for us!
Activity: Let’s Play DETECTIVE!
This is a great game to play with a brother or sister.
Choose one room that you will use for the game. Both players need to look around this room and notice where everything is placed.
Player 1: Leave the room and go to another room in the house. Make sure that you can’t see the room Player 2 is in.
Player 2: While the other player is gone, move ONE thing to a different spot. For example, move the kleenex box onto the couch or a toy to the other side of the table. After you have moved the item, call the other player back in.
Player 1: Guess which item was moved.
*If needed Player 2 can give hits about the item that was moved. For example, “If you had the flu you would use this.” (the kleenex box)
Now Player 1 and 2 switch places.
Who was the better detective?