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St. Francis of Paula


Feast Day - April 2

Francis of Paula, born in Calabria, even as a young man burned with love of God and withdrew to a hermitage where, for six years, he lived a life hard in its austerity but sweetened by meditating on heavenly things. When the fame of his virtues spread abroad, many came to him to be trained in the love of God; and, emerging from his solitude for the sake of charity, he built a church near Paula, and there laid the first foundations of his Order. He preserved his virginity all his life; and so cultivated humility that he called himself the least of all men and wished his followers to be named Minims.

Clad in poor garments, he went about barefoot and slept on the ground. He cherished charity so greatly that he made it the motto of his Order. God witnessed to the holiness of His servant by many miracles, one of which is particularly famous: when he was refused passage on a ship by the sailors, he spread out his cloak on the waves and so crossed the straits of Sicily with his companion. He also predicted many things in the spirit of prophecy. At Tours, he went to the Lord, in the year of salvation 1507, in the ninety-first year of his age.

Taken from The Hours of the Divine Office in English and Latin, Vol. II: Passion Sunday to August (Collegeville, Minnesota: The Liturgical Press, 1963), pp. 1729-1730.