Born: 1204 in Portell, County of Segarra, County of Barcelona, Crown of Aragon, Spain
Died: August 31, 1240 in Castle of Cardona, County of Cardona, County of Barcelona, Crown of Aragon, Spain
Venerated: Roman Catholic Church
Canonized: 1657 by Pope Alexander VII
Feast Day: August 31
Patronages: Childbirth; Expectant Mothers; Pregnant Women; Newborn Babies; Infants; Children; Obstetricians; Midwives; Fever; The Falsely Accused; Confidentiality of Confession
PLACES: Baitoa, Dominican Republic
Raymond Nonnatus was born at Portella, Spain, in 1204, delivered by cesarean section after his mother died. Thus, he was called Nonnatus (non-natus, or not born). As a youth, Raymond joined the Mercedarians, an order formed to effect the release of Christian captives from the Moors.
While in Algeria ransoming slaves, Raymond was captured and enslaved for several years. He was sentenced to be impaled but was spared because of the large ransom he would bring. Nevertheless, he was forced to run the gauntlet and suffer other tortures before being rescued by Saint Peter Nolasco.
In 1239, after returning to Barcelona, Raymond was made a cardinal by Pope Gregory IX at the age of thirty-five. The following year, on his way to Rome, he died at Cardona. He was canonized in 1657 by Pope Alexander VII and is the Patron of midwives.
PRAYER: O God, You honor Your people with the example of Your Priest Saint Raymond Nonnatus. May we, like him, be willing to give ourselves completely to others for Your honor and glory. This we ask through Christ our Lord. Amen.