“When we pray, we speak to God, but when we read, God speaks to us.” St. Jerome.
He lived from: 1481- 1537 A.D.
Feast Day: 8th February
Related Article : St Brigid
Jerome was born in Venice to an affluent family. As a young man he ran away from home and joined the army. Whilst defending a fortress at Treviso, he was captured and thrown into a dungeon. Despite having no faith, he began to pray to Our Lady and became a Christian.
At the age of 37, he trained to become a Priest. During that year, an outbreak of the plague occurred in Venice and left hundreds of people destitute. Jerome rented a house in order to nurse the sick and to accommodate the many children who had been left orphaned and who, otherwise, would have starved. He also helped women who were pregnant, ill or homeless.
At night, he would travel the city and buried those who had died during the day. During this time, he became ill, but eventually recovered. He then decided to use his inheritance to set up orphanages in 6 towns and a hospital in Verona. In 1532 he established the Congregation of Somaschi (Lombardy) in order to educate children. In time, there were 119 such houses in Italy and France. The Congregation of Somaschi still exists today.
Saint Jerome was canonised in 1767. In 1928, Pius Xl named him the patron of orphans and abandoned children. His Liturgical Feast Day is February 8th.
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Thanks for reading and God bless,