Tuesday, October 9, 2007

SAINT PADRE PIO DE PIETRELCINA (1888-1968)



A Capuchin, Blessed Padre Pio, had one of the most extraordinary lives in Church history. A stigmatist for fifty years, he had an over abundance of charisms: visions, gift of healing, bilocation and prophecy, discernment of spirits, etc. . . . He was also one of the greatest confessors of our time, people coming from the world over to receive also his blessing and, more especially, guidance for decisive life orientations.

It is highly significant that this out-of-the-ordinary son of St. Francis, so devoted to the Blessed Virgin, who worked so zealously in the Lord's vineyard, was indubitably involved in Garabandal. Considerable study has already been undertaken to establish the connection between Padre Pio and that very great Marian Apparition, thanks, among others, to the testimonies of Conchita, Joey Lomangino, Fathers Pel, Laffineur and Marcelino Andreu, who all met the Padre of Pietrelcina about Garabandal. As to the Capuchin Fathers of San Giovanni Rotondo, they have kept confidential, up to this day, numerous documents, in particular the many pictures taken, January 1966, when Conchita met with Blessed Padre Pio, and which were to be forwarded to her after the "beatification of Padre Pio." That "long- awaited ecclesial event" (Pope John Paul II) at last occurred (May 2, 1999), being hailed as one of the most celebrated events of its kind in Church history, more than 300,000 persons (pilgrims - Holy Year 2000) attended it at the Vatican's St. Peter's Basilica in Rome!
[From 'Garabandal' Book, page 222.]

Pope John Paul II canonized Padre Pio of Pietrelcina a Saint on June 16, 2002 in one of the largest attended liturgies ever in the Vatican's history. The Pope remarked that Padre Pio's spirituality and suffering are a valuable model for modern times. The Pope reemphasized his message at the end of the canonization liturgy by announcing Padre Pio's feast day, September 23rd, is an "obligatory memorial" in the Church's general liturgical calendar.

The ranking of obligatory memorial accorded to Padre Pio means the celebration must be observed in Masses and the Liturgy of the Hours on the day it occurs unless an observance that takes precedence - a solemnity or feast - falls on the same day. St. Maximillian Kolbe, also in the Franciscan tradition, is the only other 20th century saint whose memorial is obligatory.

I wish I was there for that canonization cause I prayed everyday for that intention. I really look forward to meeting the Padre in Heaven, where he can give me his blessing personally . . .

As a matter of fact, I can't wait to see all my Saintly friends, my guardian angel, and my dear loved ones who have gone before me. How about you?

I just received a new book on St. Pio titled 'Padre Pio and America' by Frank M. Rega! We can never stop learning new things about God's Saints! I am blessed to get this gift!
Roman Deacon