Saint of the Week:
St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina

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“Jesus is with you even when you don't feel His Presence. He is never so close to you as He is during your spiritual battles. He is always there close to you, encouraging you to fight your battle courageously. He is there to ward off the enemy's blows so that you may not be hurt.”

FEAST DAY: September 23
FUN FACTS: Born as Francesco Forgione and later received the name Brother Pio when he entered a Capuchin monastery at the age of 16 

Though he is well-known for the many miracles and mystical phenomena that have been attributed to him, Padre Pio is loved and remembered by many for his charity, tenderness, and humour. In 1918, he had a series of visions that shaped his life. In August, he saw an angel pierce him with a steel blade that was spewing out fire; this left him with “a wound that is always open and that causes [him] continual agony.” Then after celebrating Mass in September, he received the stigmata after having a vision of Jesus. For 50 years, Padre Pio embraced these wounds on his hands, feet and side as a personal share in the suffering of Christ, and many were blessed through them. 

Floods of people came to see Padre Pio. His confessional ministry would take 10 hours a day, and many said that he knew details of their lives that they had never mentioned. Many came to him asking and hoping for healing, but Padre Pio knew that only some of them would receive a miraculous cure. This prompted him to help in the establishment of a world-class hospital named “House for the Relief of Suffering” that opened in 1956. To this day, this hospital still stands and is a thriving and expanding complex resembling a little city.

PRAYER TO JESUS
Lord, God of my heart, You alone know and see all my troubles. You alone are aware that all my distress springs from my fear of losing You, of offending You, from my fear of not loving You as much as I should love and desire to love You. If You, to whom everything is present and who alone can see the future, know that it is for Your greater glory and for my salvation that I should remain in this state, then let it be so. I don’t want to escape from it. Give me the strength to fight and to obtain the prize due to strong souls.