Who were some of the faithful Catholics (especially any who are now saints) who were working for valid reform in the Church during the time of Martin Luther (or a little before him?).
Religious Orders were involved in quite a bit of Church reform during the time of Luther, and even before. In fact, the Benedictines were busily engaged in cleaning up their monasteries when it came to spirituality. In fact, the Church was in the process of reformation a full hundred or so years before Luther. Luther either wasn’t aware of it, or he just didn’t care. He was too busy competing with Augustine.
New religious orders were a fundamental part of this trend. Orders such as the Capuchins, Ursulines, Theatines, Discalced Carmelites, the Barnabites, and especially the Jesuits strengthened rural parishes, improved popular piety, helped to curb corruption within the church, and set examples that would be a strong impetus for Catholic renewal.
Some major reformers at the time were Ignatius Loyola, Teresa d’Avila, St. John of the Cross, Francis de Sales, Philip Neri, Francis Suarez, Lawrence of Brindisi, Robert Bellermine, Charles Boromeo, Sigismund of Poland, and then you have the reformist popes: Pius II (1503), Paul III (1534-1549), Julius III (1550-1555), Paul IV (1555-59), Pius IV (1559-65), Pius V (1566-72), Gregory XIII (1572-85), and Sixtus V (1585-90).
Philip II of Spain, and Mary I of England were known as reformist monarchs.
In addition to those listed above, I’d include Erasmus of Rotterdam, the noted bible scholar and humanist. More on him at:
You may also want to check out the information on the Catholic Reformation (or so-called Counterreformation) at: