Franciscan Saints


 

 

 

17th May

 

 

St. Pashcal Baylon, (1540-1592)

 

Confessor, First Order

 

Patron Saint of:Shepherds

 

In Paschal’s lifetime the Spanish empire in the New World was at the height of its power, though France and England were soon to reduce its influence. The 16th century has been called the Golden Age of the Church in Spain, for it gave birth to Ignatius of Loyola, Francis Xavier, Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Peter of Alcantara, Francis Solano and Salvator of Horta.

Paschal’s Spanish parents were poor and pious. Between the ages of seven and 24 he worked as a shepherd and began a life of mortification. He was able to pray on the job and was especially attentive to the church bell which rang at the Elevation during Mass. Paschal had a very honest streak in him. He once offered to pay owners of crops for any damage his animals caused!

In 1564, Paschal joined the Friars Minor and gave himself wholeheartedly to a life of penance. Though he was urged to study for the priesthood, he chose to be a brother. At various times he served as porter, cook, gardener and official beggar.

Paschal was careful to observe the vow of poverty. He would never waste any food or anything given for the use of the friars. When he was porter and took care of the poor coming to the door, he developed a reputation for great generosity. The friars sometimes tried to moderate his liberality!

Paschal spent his spare moments praying before the Blessed Sacrament. In time many people sought his wise counsel. People flocked to his tomb immediately after his burial; miracles were reported promptly. Paschal was canonized in 1690 and was named patron of eucharistic congresses and societies in 1897.

 

Reflection. One day, as young Paschal was watching his sheep on the mountainside, he heard the consecration bell ring out from a church in the valley below, where the villagers were assembled for Mass. The Saint fell on his knees, when suddenly there stood before him an Angel of God, bearing in his hands the Sacred Host, offering it for his adoration. How pleasing to Jesus Christ are those who honor Him in this great mystery of His love; to them especially this promise is fulfilled: “I will not leave you orphans, I will come to you.” (John 14:18)”

(Sources: Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints, a compilation based on Butler’s Lives of the Saints and other sources by John Gilmary Shea (Benziger Brothers: New York, 1894); Heavenly Friends: a Saint for each Day, by Rosalie Marie Levy (Saint Paul Editions: Boston, 1958).)

 

Comment:

Prayer before the Blessed Sacrament occupied much of St. Francis’ energy. Most of his letters were to promote devotion to the Eucharist. Paschal shared that concern. An hour in prayer before our Lord in the Eucharist could teach all of us a great deal. Some holy and busy Catholics today find that their work is enriched by those minutes regularly spent in prayer and meditation.

Quote:

"Meditate well on this: Seek God above all things. It is right for you to seek God before and above everything else, because the majesty of God wishes you to receive what you ask for. This will also make you more ready to serve God and will enable you to love him more perfectly" (St. Paschal).

 

 

Prayer of the Church

 

O God, Who didst adorn the Blessed Paschal, Thy confessor,

with a wonderful love for the mysteries of Thy Body and Blood,

mercifully grant, that  we may draw from the Divine Banquet

the same fullness of spirit that  he did.

Who liveth  and reigneth

with Thee and the Holy Spirit,

 One God, now and forever.  Amen

 

Source: Foley, Leonard Fr, OFM.,ed., revised by Pat McCloskey, O.F.M.,2009,Saint of the Day, Lives, Lessons and Feast, St. Anthony’s messenger Press, Cincinnati, OH

  APA citation. Staniforth, O. (1911). St. Pascal Baylon. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Retrieved April 18, 2013 from New Advent: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11512a.htm

Prayer Habig: Marion A., O.F.M., 1959, ed., The Franciscan book of Saints, Franciscan Herald press, Chicago, Illinois

 

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Last edited 13/09/2017 10:05 
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