St. Joseph Calasanctius (1556-1648) was born in Aragon, Spain. He went to Rome after his ordination to the priesthood, and in the Eternal City he was dismayed by the vice and ignorance of the children of the poor. In order to provide for the religious education of these neglected youngsters, he founded the Order of Clerks Regular of the Pious Schools, also called Piarists. In the latter years of his long life, he had much to suffer in persecutions by members of his own order. Yet he died full of hope and peace, saying, "My work was done solely for the love of God."
O God, in the person of Your blessed confessor Joseph You provided the Church with new help to train the young in wisdom and holiness. Grant that we may be led by his example and prayer so to work and teach that we may gain an everlasting reward. Through our Lord . . .