Religion: On the Spiritual Beam

A 17th-Century Italian Franciscan is rapidly becoming the patron saint for Allied airmen. He is St. Joseph of Cupertino, who from his eighth year was subject to ecstatic visions. "Frequently," says the Catholic Encyclopedia, "he would be raised from his feet and remain suspended in the air." Hence his designation as the protector of flyers, who now wear his medal on two continents.

Says the Rev. Bonaventure Fitzgerald of the medal: "In these days of mental fog we need a spiritual beam to guide our blind flying, and certainly St. Joseph is this." Not only Roman Catholics use the medal. Episcopal Bishop...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!