Wednesday, June 21, 2006

St. Aloysius, Pray for us!

Today is the feast of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, patron saint of Catholic youth. He was the son of a nobleman who entered the Jesuits. He worked with people who had the plague and eventually died from the disease in his early twenties. He died June 21 in 1591.

I went to Mass at the Carmelite monastery near my house this morning and I knew it was going to be good when the priest intoned "In nomine Patris et Filliis et Spiritus Sanctis..." With the exception of the Sanctus and Agnus Dei, that was the only (audible) latin for the whole Mass, however. He also sang the offeratory prayer, the preface, and the final blessing. He also used Eucharistic Prayer I. The sisters also chanted the Kyrie in Greek and sang the "Soul of my Savior" hymn that the Sisters of Mercy always sing.....anyway, the homily was amazing. At one point the priest said something to the effect of "St. Aloysius didn't do anything that wasn't common among saints. He didn't do anything new." He fasted, prayed, kept vigils, and other things, but his story proves that we don't necessarily need to reinvent the wheel to become saints. He did what the saints have always done...and he changed the world in his own unique way.

St. Aloysius Gonzaga, pray for us!

As a side note, my patron saint, Dominic Savio was frequently compared to St. Aloysius in his biography written by St. John Bosco.


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