Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati
Aug 17, 2016
We have begun a novena (nine days of prayer) to Blessed Pier Georgio Frassati for those suffering from cancer. These excerpts are taken from the FrassatiUSA website.
Pier Giorgio Michelangelo Frassati was a handsome, fun-loving, athletic, courageous and devout Catholic born into a prominent Italian family in Turin, Italy. He died at the young age of 24 and has since become the model for lay people all over the world. Beatified in 1990 by Saint Pope John Paul II and named "The Man of the Eight Beatitudes," Pier Giorgio teaches us that holiness is possible for everyone.
What little he did have, Pier Giorgio gave to help the poor, even using his bus fare for charity and then running home to be on time for meals. The poor and the suffering were his masters, and he was literally their servant, which he considered a privilege. His charity did not simply involve giving something to others, but giving completely of himself. This was fed by daily communion with Christ in the Holy Eucharist and by frequent nocturnal adoration, by meditation on St. Paul’s “Hymn of Charity” (I Corinthians 13), and by the writings of St. Catherine of Siena. He often sacrificed vacations at the Frassati summer home because, as he said, “If everybody leaves Turin, who will take care of the poor?”
He developed a deep spiritual life which he never hesitated to share with his friends. The Holy Eucharist and the Blessed Virgin were the two poles of his world of prayer. At the age of 17, he joined the St. Vincent de Paul Society and dedicated much of his spare time to serving the sick and the needy, caring for orphans, and assisting the demobilized servicemen returning from World War I.
Just before receiving his engineering degree, Pier Giorgio contracted poliomyelitis, which doctors later speculated he caught from the sick whom he tended. Neglecting his own health because his grandmother was dying, and after six days of terrible suffering, Pier Giorgio died on July 4, 1925.
Many pilgrims, especially students and the young, visit the tomb of Blessed Frassati to seek favors and the courage to follow his example.