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Saint John Leonardi

Saint John Leonardi
  • Century: 16th & 17th Century
  • Patronage: Pharmacists
  • Feast Day: October 9th

St. Leonardi was born John Giovanni Leonardi in the year 1541.  John Giovanni Leonardi was born at Diecimo, Italy.  He became a Pharmacist Assistant in Lucca.  He went on to study the faith, and was ordained a Priest in 1572.  Being newly Ordained, he dedicated himself to the Christian formation of Youth in his local parish of Lucca.  

Two years after his ordination, he went on and founded a community of the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God in Lucca.  His order was dedicated to the deepending of faith, and devotions.  They were founded as part of the movement known as the Counter Reformation.  St. Leonardi worked endlessly to spread devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary.  He also spread devotion to the Forty Hours, and frequent reception of the Holy Eucharist.  

His foundation received approval from Pope Paul V, in 1614.  St. Leonardi took his work to Rome where he became close friends with Philip Neri.  Philip held him in high regard for his qualities of firmness and judgement, and trusted him with work such as the reforming of the Benedictine Congregation.  St. Leonardi went on and founded with J. Vives, the Seminary of the Propogation of the Faith.  

He died in 1609, having sufferings from the influenza epidemic that was raging in Rome at that time.  The final Rule of his community was published in 1851.  Upon his death, two houses of the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God were opened, and three opened during the seventeenth century.  St. John Leonarid was beatified in 1861, and canonized in 1938, by Pope Pius XI.  His feast day is October 9th

Practical Take Away

St. John Leonardi was a pharmacist assistant in Lucca.  He went on to study the faith, and was ordained a Priest at the age of 31.  He founded the community of the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God in Lucca. He spent his time spreading devotion to Mary, frequent reception of the Holy Eucharist, and Forty Hours.  He was part of the Church that was fighting the reformation.  He was a close friend of St. Philip Neri, and was entrusted with great work from Philip. He was known as a holy Priest that was part of the counter reformation, and worked hard to bring the desire to practice the faith back in his time.  He had a strong charism to catechise the youth of his day.