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St. Raymond of Penafort: Born in 1175 to a relative of the King of Aragon at Catalonia, Spain, St. Raymond Of Penafort is patron of canon law experts and lawyers. He attended a Barcelona cathedral school before becoming a philosophy instructor in 1195. This was followed by law school in Bologna and membership with the Domincans in 1218.

Pope Gregory IX brought Raymond to Rome in 1230 where he was asked to collect official papal letters filed since 1150. These were published in five volumes as he helped create new Church law. He was named Dominicans master general in 1238. For the next two years he worked on the order’s rules.

Raymond resigned in 1240 from the Dominicans, turned down offers to become a bishop and returned to parish work. Along with St. Thomas Aquinas, he wrote the book of faith used in missionary work. He died in 1275. His feast day is Jan. 7

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