The life and legacy of St. Aloysius Gonzaga

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A colorful image of St. Aloysius Gonzaga
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St. Aloysius Gonzaga

Feast day: June 21

Born into an Italian aristocratic family in 1568, Aloysius served as a page in Spain and Italy. His father planned a military career for his oldest son, but Aloysius chose religious life instead. He joined the Jesuits in Rome in 1585. His health was compromised by kidney disease, but he didn’t let that deter him from caring for the sick. When the plague struck Rome, Aloysius served in a Jesuit hospital caring for the victims. He contracted the plague and died on June 21, 1591, after receiving the last rites from St. Robert Bellarmine. Aloysius was canonized in 1726. He is the patron saint of youth.

Prayer

O God, giver of heavenly gifts,
who in Saint Aloysius Gonzaga
joined penitence to a wonderful innocence of life,
grant, through his merits and intercession,
that, though we have failed to follow him in innocence,
we may imitate him in penitence.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever.

Our Sunday Visitor Staff

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