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Friday, September 23, 2005
St. Pio of Pietrelcina
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Memorial (1969 Calendar): September 23

Biography
Today is the Church remembers the life of one of my favorite saints, St. Pio of Pietrelcina - also called St. Padre Pio - (1887-1968), who was canonized recently in 2002 by Pope John Paul ll. St. Padre Pio is the only priest to ever have the visible wounds of Christ, the Stigmata, and he lived a life dedicated to prayer and God.

On May 25, 1887, St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina was born to a southern Italian farm family, the son of Grazio, a shepherd. At the young age of 15, St. Pio entered the novitiate of the Capuchin friars in Morcone, and joined the order at age 19. Suffered several health problems, and at one point his family thought he had tuberculosis. However, through God's will, he was ordained at the age 22 on August 10, 1910.

On September 20, 1918, while praying before a crucifix, St. Pio received the stigmata. Following World War II, he became a point of pilgrimage. St. Pio would hear confessions by the hour and have the ability to read the consciences of those who held back sins. He could bilocate, levitate, and heal by touch. In 1956, St. Pio founded the House for the Relief of Suffering, a hospital that serves 60,000 a year. In the 1920's he started a series of prayer groups that continue today with over 400,000 members worldwide. He died on September 23, 1968. Throughout his life, even after Vatican II, he was given permission to continue to exclusively celebrate the Tridentine Latin Mass.

Saint Padre Pio
His canonization miracle of the healing of a sick child, Matteo Pio Colella, age 7, the son of a doctor of the House for the Relief of Suffering. Matteo was admitted with meningitis on June 20, 2000, and by morning doctors feared that he was gone - his organs were shutting down. That night, following a prayer vigil attended by friars of St. Padre Pio's monastery and Matteo's mother, his condition suddenly improved. Matteo said that he had seen an elderly man with a white beard and a long, brown habit, who said to him: "Don´t worry, you will soon be cured." However, St. Padre Pio has worked countless miracles not only after his death but during his life. Read my post entitled: The Miracles of St. Padre Pio.

Video: His Last Mass



Prayers

For prayers to St. Padre Pio and ones he loved to say, please visit this site. I especially love the first prayer on that site.

Chaplet of St. Padre Pio
The Novena to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

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