The Church calls Anthony the father of monks. Before his time, many men and women went out into the desert to pray and do penance. These hermits lived alone, far apart from other people. Anthony of Egypt formed a community—or monastery—of hermits. The monks spent most of their time alone, but they met each day to worship and to eat together.

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When we talk about St. Athanasius, we use two important words–“orthodoxy” and “heresy.” Orthodoxy means right belief. Heresy means false belief.

Athanasius was born in about 297 AD in Alexandria, Egypt. When he grew up, he became the bishop there. Then he spent the rest of his life defending one true belief of the Church–the divinity of Christ Jesus.

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At a time when most children did not go to school, Catherine was privately tutored because she came from a wealthy family; her parents were said to be the pagan king and queen of Alexandria, in Egypt. She was a gifted student and especially loved science and debating. Tradition tells us that she learned about Jesus through her studies and that she made the decision to become a Christian because of everything she learned.

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