Thought for the Day – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

Thought for the Day – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

There can be no doubt that Padre Pio dedicated his life to prayer and suffering.   Every breath he took was a prayer—never for himself, always for others.   From the beginning of his life, he was able to easily travel from this world to the next, through deep prayer. He used this connection with God to recommend to him the prayers of his spiritual children.   This ability to make contact with the powerful presence of God through prayer enabled him to bless and pray with those in most need, wherever they were in the world. Padre Pio in prayer visited South America, the United States and parts of Europe.   Those he visited would know that Padre Pio was present by the unmistakable aroma of violets and roses.   Those who got closest to him noticed an odour of flowers emanating from the stigmata.   To this day, forty-six years after his death, people will still insist that they have caught the scent of roses after praying for someone through the intercession of Padre Pio.

Padre Pio’s priority was to be simply “a friar who prays.”   His intense prayer was offered up day and night for all his spiritual children and his religious community.   He had a filial love for our Blessed Lady and spent much of his day praying the rosary.   But Padre Pio was first and foremost a brother to the Capuchin Franciscan community of Our Lady of Graces friary.   Like the others, he daily lived the rule and life of the Order of Friars Minor.   The first chapter of the rule of Saint Francis outlines that the rule is simply to observe the Gospel of Jesus Christ, living in obedience and in chastity, without property. As a Capuchin Franciscan, he promised obedience and reverence to the pope and to his superiors in the Capuchin order.   No doubt it pained him greatly when the cult of sanctity built up around him, causing difficulties for the order with Church authorities.

Shortly before he died, the stigmata began to heal.   When his body was examined by the doctors, they found that fresh, white skin had grown over the healed wounds.   His life on earth was over, his earthly sufferings endured.   He was journeying to the house of the Father where he prays for us all today in the presence of God.

Referring to that day’s Gospel (Matthew 11:25-30) at Padre Pio’s canonisation Mass in 2002, Saint John Paul II said:  “The Gospel image of ‘yoke’ evokes the many trials that the humble Capuchin of San Giovanni Rotondo endured.   Today we contemplate in him how sweet is the ‘yoke’ of Christ and indeed how light the burdens are whenever someone carries these with faithful love.   The life and mission of Padre Pio testify that difficulties and sorrows, if accepted with love, transform themselves into a privileged journey of holiness, which opens the person toward a greater good, known only to the Lord.”

St Padre Pio pray for us!st pio pray for us - 2 - 23 sept 2017



Quote/s of the Day – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

Quote/s of the Day – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

“Do not be daunted by the cross.
The surest test of love consists in suffering for the loved one
and if God suffered so much for love,
the pain we suffer for Him becomes as lovable as love itself.”

“The greater your sufferings, the greater God’s love for you.”the greater your sufferings - st pio - 23 sept 2017

“Do not fear!   Jesus is more powerful than all hell.”do not fear

“In all the free time you have,
once you have finished your duties of state,
you should kneel down and pray the Rosary.
Pray the Rosary before the Blessed Sacrament
or before a crucifix.”in all the free time - st pio no 2 - 23 sept 2017

“Do you not see the Madonna always beside the tabernacle?”do you not see - st pio - 23 sept 2017

“When you gossip about a person it means
that you have removed the person from your heart.
But be aware, when you remove a man from your heart,
Jesus also goes away from your heart with that man.”

St Padre Pio (1887-1968)when you gossip - st pio 23 sept 2017


One Minute Reflection – 23 September – – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

One Minute Reflection – 23 September – – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

You need endurance to do the will of God and receive what he has promised….Hebrews 10:36

REFLECTION – “The life of a Christian is nothing but a perpetual struggle against self:
there is no flowering of the soul to the beauty of its perfection, except at the price of pain.”………St Pio of Pietrelcina (1887-1968)the life of a christian - st pio - 23 sept 2017

PRAYER – “And you, Blessed Padre Pio, look down from heaven upon us assembled in this square and upon all gathered in prayer before the Basilica of Saint John Lateran and in San Giovanni Rotondo. Intercede for all those who, in every part of the world, are spiritually united with this event and raise their prayers to you. Come to the help of everyone; give peace and consolation to every heart. Amen!” – from the homily of Pope John Paul II at the beatification of Padre PioST PADRE PIO - PRAY FOR US 23 sept 2017


Our Morning Offering – 23 September – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

Our Morning Offering – 23 September – The Memorial of St Padre Pio (1887-1968)

Stay With Me, O Lord
St Padre Pio

Stay with me, Lord, for You are my life
and without You I am without fervour.
Stay with me, Lord, for You are my light
and without You I am in darkness.
Stay with me, Lord, so that I hear Your voice and follow You.
Stay with me, Lord, for I desire to love You very much
and alway be in Your company.
Stay with me, Lord, if You wish me to be faithful to You.
Stay with me, Lord, as poor as my soul is,
I want it to be a place of consolation for You, a nest of Love.
Stay with me, Jesus, for it is getting late
and the day is coming to a close
and life passes, death, judgment and eternity approach.
It is necessary to renew my strength, so that I will not stop
along the way and for that, I need You.
It is getting late and death approaches, I fear the darkness,
the temptations, the dryness, the cross, the sorrows.
O how I need You, my Jesus, in this night of exile!
Stay with me tonight, Jesus, in life with all its dangers, I need You.
Let me recognise You as Your disciples did,
at the breaking of the bread,
so that the Eucharistic Communion be the Light
which disperses the darkness,
the force which sustains me,
the unique joy of my heart.
Stay with me, Lord, because at the hour of my death,
I want to remain united to You,
if not by Communion, at least by grace and love.
Stay with me, Lord, for it is You alone I look for,
Your Love, Your Grace, Your Will,
Your Heart, Your Spirit, because I love You
and ask no other reward but to love You more and more.
With a firm love, I will love You with all my heart while on earth
and continue to love You perfectly during all eternity.
Amenstay with me o lord - st pio - 23 sept 2017


Saint of the Day – 23 September – St Pio of Pietrelcina O.F.M.Cap.

Saint of the Day – 23 September – St Pio of Pietrelcina O.F.M.Cap. – Priest,Franciscan Capuchin Friar, Stigmatist, Mystic, Confessor.  Born Francesco Forgione, he was given the name of Pius (Italian: Pio) when he joined the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin.  (25 May 1887 at Pietrelcina, Benevento, Italy – 23 September 1968 in San Giovanni Rotondo, Foggia, Italy of natural causes).  Beatified 2 May 1999 and Canonised on 16 June 2002 by Pope John Paul II at Rome, Italy.   Patronages – Civil defense volunteers, Adolescents, Pietrelcina, Stress relief, Italy and Malta.   Attributes  – Stigmata, Capuchin habit.   His Incorrupt Relics lie at home in San Giovanni Rotondo.

HEADER ST PIO 2st pio header 1st pio info

pope francis and st pio

Francesco was born to Mamma Peppa and Grazio Forgione in the little town called Pietrelcina, in Southern Italy, during the month of flowers, 25 May 1887.   He was fifth of eight children.   His Mamma Peppa confided he was different from other boys:  “he was never impolite or misbehaved”.   He had celestial visions and diabolical oppressions from the age of five years and he saw and spoke with Jesus and Our Lady and with his Guardian Angel but unfortunately this heavenly life was interwoven with hell and with the devil.

In 1903, discipline and ill health had been woven together to crown the youth of Pio. Doctors diagnosed him as consumptive and were sure he would die.   Strong in spirit Pio received the Capuchin Franciscan garb initialling religious life and therefore;  Novitiate twith its intense study, prayer, austerity, penance and finally vows of Poverty, Chastity and Obedience.

In 1909, St Pio is back at home at Pietrelcina because of his illness, at his mother’s side.   Now another intense chapter of extraordinary life opens with mystical afflictions an invisible stigmata and terrible battles with devils that wanted to destroy him began.   Yet, “It all happened here”, he said, his whole future was prepared here.   On August 10, 1910, he was ordained a Priest in the Cathedral of pio young

In 1916 in the church of San Giovanni Rotondo, soon to become his Jerusalem, with the mystical and historical calvary of Gargano, where he was soon recognised as the “saintly friar” by the locals.   Here he became a “victim of love”, by the reparation for sin, of the many crowds who flocked to him, to venerate his bleeding wounds of his hands and feet. This very important event occurred in Father Pio’s life on 20 September 1918, while he was praying in front of a Crucifix located in the choir in the little old church, when a strange personage like an angel, gave him the stigmata.   Those stigmata have been remained opened and bleeding for fifty years.   This was one of the reasons for which doctors, scientists, journalists and common people have gone to San Giovanni Rotondo for years, in order to meet the “Saintly friar “.

In a letter dated 22 October 1918, Padre Pio told his experience of crucifixion:  “… What I can tell you about my crucifixion?   My God!   What a confusion and what humiliation I feel when I try to show somebody else what you have done in me your unworthy creature!   It was the morning of the 20th. (September) and I was in choir, after the celebration of the Holy Mass, when a rest, similar to a sweet sleep surprised me.   All the inside and external senses, as well as the same faculties of the soul were in an indescribable quiet.   There was a deep silence around me and inside me;  a peace overcame me and then it all happened in a flash I felt abandonment with the complete loss of all senses.   While all this was taking place, I saw before me a mysterious appearance, similar to the one I had seen on 5 August, differing only because His hands, feet and side were dripping blood.   The sight of Him frightened me:  what I felt at that moment is indescribable.   I thought I would die and would have died if the Lord hadn’t intervened and strengthened my heart, which was about to burst out of my chest!  The appearance disappeared and I became aware that my hands, feet and side were pierced and were dripping with blood.   You can imagine the torment that I experienced then and that I am almost experiencing every day.   The wound of the heart bleeds profusely, particularly from the evening of Thursday until Saturday.   My God, I die of pain, torment and confusion that I feel in the intimate depths of the soul.   I am afraid I’ll bleed to death!   I hope that God listens to my moans and withdraws this humiliation from me… “

He usually woke up in the early morning (we could say at night) in order to get himself ready for the Holy Mass.   In fact, every morning, at 4 a.m. there were always hundreds and sometimes even a thousand people waiting for the door of the church to open.   After the Mass he used to spend most time of his day in prayer and confessions.   After fifty years of stigmata he died 23 September 1968, thus he closed his mission of the Heart’s desire, with the real cross and the real crucifixion of his body.

From every part of the world, the believers went to this stigmatised priest, to get his powerful intercession from God.   Fifty years lived in the prayer, in the humility, in the suffering and in the sacrifice, he lived his love, the Cross of Christ.   Padre Pio had two initiatives in two directions:   the vertical one toward God, with the constitution of the “Groups of prayer”, the horizontal one toward his suffering community, with the construction of a modern hospital: “House for the Relief of the Suffering.”

In September 1968, thousands of devotees and Padre Pio’s spiritual children were assembled in conference at St Giovanni Rotondo to commemorate together the 50 anniversary of the stigmata and to celebrate the fourth international conference of the Prayer Groups.   Nobody would have imagined that at 2:30 a.m., 23 September, 1968 we the earthly life of Father Pio of Pietrelcina would end.

Focusing too much on Padre Pio’s marvels and mystical phenomena gives the false impression that he led an abnormal life, more angelic than human.   While he opened our eyes to heavenly realities, he kept his feet firmly planted on the earth, enduring and enjoying ordinary things, as other human beings did.   Today we mainly imagine him as a wonder-working stigmatic with miracles flowing from his wounded hands.   But the people who knew him, while they appreciated his marvels, loved him more for his earthiness, his compassion, his gentleness, his humour and his common sense.   For instance, when he was asked his opinion of a thief who had stolen valuable gems from a church’s painting of the Virgin, he responded, “What do you want me to say? That poor young man was probably hungry and went to Our Lady to say: ‘Of what use are these jewels to you?’   And probably Our Lady gave them to him.   Silly him to get caught with the goods in his pocket.”

Padre Pio embraced his own great suffering as his personal share in the suffering of Christ.   But he could not endure the suffering of others.   Hundreds came to Our Lady of Grace hoping for a healing and he knew that only some of them would receive a miraculous cure.   His compassion for the many who would not be healed led him to work for the establishment of a world-class hospital at San Giovanni Rotondo that would serve the poor.   From the outset he planned to name it “House for the Relief of Suffering.”

Padre Pio worked against all odds to achieve his goal of creating a medical center.  He faced obstacles that would have deflated the enthusiasm of lesser men.   How does a monk vowed to poverty build a hospital without any money in an impoverished town situated on an inaccessible mountain?   Padre Pio did it by faith and with a small army of friends.   His associates helped him raise money, design and construct the buildings and assemble a top-shelf medical staff.   When the House for the Relief of Suffering opened in 1956, many observers believed it could not survive because of its location on a desolate mountain.   However, Padre Pio believed otherwise.   When he inaugurated the first building, he said, “Now House for the Relief of Suffering is a small seed,but it will become a mighty oak, a hospital that is a small city and a center for clinical studies of international importance.”   That prophecy has come true. Today the hospital is a thriving centre whose expanding complex resembles a little city.


Padre Pio’s practical compassion and entrepreneurial genius defy those who might be tempted to dismiss him as a medieval weirdo.  Instead he stands for all as a modern icon of God’s inexhaustible love for human beings and his determination to rescue us at all costs.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 23 September

St Padre Pio/ Pius of Pietrelcina (Memorial) –

St Alfonso Burgos
St Adamnan of Iona
Bl Antonio of Tlaxcala
Bl Bernardina Maria Jablonska
St Cissa of Northumbria
St Constantius of Ancona
Bl Cristobal of Tlaxcala
Bl Emilie Tavernier Gamelin
Bl Francisco de Paula Victor
Bl Guy of Durnes
Bl Helen Duglioli
Bl Juan of Tlaxcala
St Pope Linus
St Peter Acontanto
St Polyxena
St Thecla of Iconium
Bl William Way
St Xantippa

Martyrs of Syracuse – (4 saints): Group of Christians deported from Syracuse, Sicily by invading Saracens and sent to North Africa where they were tortured and executed for their faith. Martyrs. The names that have survived are Andrew, Antony, John and Peter. c900

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War:
• Blessed Crispulo Moyano Linares
• Blessed María Josefa del Río Messa
• Blessed Norberto Cembranos de la Verdura
• Blessed Purificación Ximénez y Ximénez
• Blessed Sofía Ximénez y Ximénez del Río
• Blessed Vicente Ballester Far