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Catalogue of Franciscan Saints (PDF)
compiled by Mary Lou Coffman, OFS

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image: St Ferdinand, King

Saint Ferdinand III

Another Saint of the Day for May 30


Saint Ferdinand III’s Story

Saint Ferdinand III of Castile was born near Salamanca and was the son of Alfonso IX, King of Leon, and Berengaria, daughter of Alfonso III, King of Castile. He married a princess, Beatrice the daughter of Philip, the King of Germany, who bore him seven sons and three daughters. Queen Beatrice died in 1236. He then married married Joan of Ponthieu. He died after a prolonged illness, and was buried in the Cathedral of Seville. He was canonized by Pope Clement X in 1671.

Saint Ferdinand was known as a great administrator, a man of faith, and a just ruler who often pardoned offenders. During his reign the Cathedral of Burgos was rebuilt and the mosque in Seville was converted into a Cathedral. He also oversaw the establishing of many churches and monasteries.

A good politician, he wrote a law code that endured into the modern era.


Being a politician or military personnel can be the context of a holy life as Saint Ferdinand shows. Actually, any reputable profession can be a source of holiness. It all depends on the person’s faith and attitude toward life.

Saint Ferdinand III is the Patron Saint of: