Posted by: fvbcdm | June 22, 2012

Feast of Saint Aloysius Gonzaga (21 June 2012)

Today, the first full day of summer this year, we celebrate a young Jesuit seminarian by the name of Aloysius Gonzaga, one of the several young saints who have been made patrons of all the young people of the world. He was an Italian of the 16th century who entered the newly-founded Jesuit Order and lived only to the age of 23. During my sabbatical in Rome, I went often to two Jesuit churches located very near our Dominican university of the Angelicum. One of them is called Saint Ignatius and houses the bodies of three Jesuit saints. These are Saints Robert Bellarmine, Aloysius Gonzaga whom we celebrate today, and John Berchmans. Two Italians and one Dutchman. Then, not far away, is the lovely little church designed by Bernini, considered by many to be the greatest of the Renaissance architects. That church, called Saint Andrew at the Quirinale, is the church which serves the Polish colony of Rome, and houses the tomb of the young Polish Jesuit, Stanislaus Kostka. Very close to the heart of the city is the Jesuit church of the Gesu which proudly houses the tomb of the founder of the Order, Saint Ignatius Loyola himself.

Within the last few years, Popes John Paul II and now Benedict XVI have done all they can to promote deep faith and, holiness of life, and a strong devotion to the Church and Our Lord Jesus its founder among the young people of the world. We have lived through the sad days of the Woodstock phenomenon, with all its drugs, illicit sex, and repulsive behavior on the part of many young people who seem to want to be as ugly, in appearance and in behavior, as possible. Now, the pendulum seems to be swinging back to a certain amount of dignity, self-respect, and virtue among the young people of our world. Let us pray through the intercession of our saint of today, Aloysius Gonzaga, that this tendency will continue to grow and to produce sanctity and the attraction of goodness among many young people, the future of the human race and of the Church, the mystical Body of Christ. Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.

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