Saint of the Day – 12 June – Blessed Lorenzo Maria of Saint Francis Xavier Salvi CP (1782-1856) (also known as Lorenzo Salvi), Priest of the Passionist Congregation – born as Lorenzo Gaetano Maria Salvi on 30 October 1782 in Rome, Italy and died on 12 June 1856 in Capranica, Viterbo, Italy of natural causes.
Lorenzo was greatly impressed by the preaching and zeal of Saint Vincent Strambi (1745-1824) (here: https://anastpaul.com/2018/09/25/saint-of-the-day-25-september-st-vincent-strambi-c-p-1745-1824/) and soon followed him into the Passionist Congregation. He became a novice at Monte Argentario in 1801, the first monastery of the Passionists. He received the religious name Lorenzo Maria of Saint Francis Xavier and professed his vows on 20 November 1802. He studied for the Priesthood at Jesuit-run the Collegio Romano in Rome, his classmates included the future Pope Gregory XVI and was Ordained a Priest on 29 December 1805. He followed closely in the footsteps of the Founder of the Passionists, St Paul of the Cross.
The anti-clerical laws of Napoleon saw the Passionist house suppressed and its members dispersed. When at last Lorenzo was able to return to Passionist life he preached missions and encouraged devotion to the Passion of Christ, these two things are the hallmarks of the Passionist life. But he also gained the reputation of a most wise and admired Superior for his ability to ably lead communities.
He had great devotion to the Infant Jesus and was steadfast in promoting, in every circumstance, prayerful devotion to the holy childhood of Jesus, not only through his untiring work but also, through his constant example and his proliferation of writings. He often wrote about and preached on the wonders of the Incarnation. Because of this great devotion, he is usually depicted in religious art with a picture of the Child Jesus.
Lorenzo was made Rector of the Passionist Motherhouse in Rome, Sts John and Paul but spent much of his time preaching missions, his Vice-Rector was Blessed Dominic Barberi (1792-1849) (here: https://anastpaul.com/2018/08/27/saint-of-the-day-27-august-blessed-dominic-barberi-of-the-mother-of-god-c-p-1792-1849-apostle-to-england/ ) the great Passionist Saint who laboured in England.
Blessed Lorenzo died 12 June 1856 at Capranica, Viterbo, Italy. He is buried in the Passionist Church of St Angelo, Vetralla (Viterbo).
On 1 October 1989 Lorenzo Maria of St Francis Xavier was Beatified by St Pope John Paul II.
Blessed are Thou, O God our Father,
for Thy gift of Blessed Lorenzo Maria of St Francis Xavier,
for his life, his witness
and for the love Thou didst give him for the mystery of the Nativity and Infancy of Thy Son Jesus.
We ask Thee to reawaken in Thy Church,
the awareness of the great gift of the Incarnation
and the desire to imitate Jesus with simplicity of heart
and total trust in Thy Love and Thy Providence.
We thank Thee for the deep compassion
for the suffering Thou didst grant Blessed Lorenzo
and for the strength of his prayer to the Infant Jesus.
We believe that he still intercedes for us.
We confide to Thee our good desires,
for ourselves and for our neighbours,
secure to obtain Thy Grace
and the protection of Blessed Lorenzo.