Franciscan Saints


The Servant of God Matthew Rossi

Confessor, Third Order

“Matthew Rossi, of the renowned family of the Orsini, was a knight of extraordinary piety and virtue. Once St. Francis came to Rome and passed by his palace on the way to the home of Jacoba Settesoli. Matthew begged him to pay him a visit too and to teach him how to go about saving his soul. Francis promised to come soon. But a few days later when he visited Matthew’s home, the latter happened to be away. The servants, who did not know St. Francis, believed him to be one of the poor whom their pious master had undertaken to support. They directed him to the beggars in the courtyard and there gave him something to eat.

Francis cheerfully took his place among them, and gratefully partook of the food. It was there that Matthew found him upon his return. He promptly sat down next to him and ate at the table of the poor. Later on he often said that he had not tasted such delicious food as the time the holy Poor man of Assisi shared his bread with him.

After Francis said the prayer of thanksgiving, he conversed with his host so impressively on the vanity of the world that Matthew fell at his feet and humbly begged for admission into the Third Order, to work out his salvation in penance. Gladly the Saint acceded to his request, for it was revealed to him that this new novice would contribute much to spread the order by his future holy life. In reality, many noble men and women soon followed his example and became like him ornaments of the Third Order.

Later on when St. Francis again sojourned in Rome, Matthew brought his little son, John Cajetan, to him, to be blessed by him. The saint took the little one lovingly in his arms and began in forceful words to commend his order to him, to the great astonishment of the father. But this astonishment mounted to joyful amazement when the man of God solemnly declared: ‘”This boy will at some future time be a religious not in garb but in sentiment; he will be a mighty ruler and a great protector of our order.”

The prophecy was fulfilled. John Cajetan became a priest, cardinal protector of the Franciscan Order, and in the year 1277 he ascended the papal throne as Nicholas III.

After a long life rich in virtue and heavenly merits, Matthew died a blessed death about the year 1271.”  (Habig, 1959)


Prayer of the church (Friday in the first week in Lent)

Creator of my Life, renew me: bring me to new life in you.

Touch me and make me feel whole again.

Help me to see your love in the passion, death and resurrection of your son.

Help me to observe Lent in a way that allows me to celebrate that love.

Prepare me for these weeks of Lent as I feel both deep sorrow for my sins

and your undying love for me.

Through Christ Our Lord. Amen


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

Prayer: - c/o



January         Next

Last edited 13/09/2017 15:45 
(C) EFO 2013
Web administrator Wayne Benge