Blessed Giles Mary

His complete name as a religious was Brother Giles Mary-of-St.-Joseph. Brother Giles Mary was born near Taranto, Italy, in 1729. As a child he learned rope-making and was good at his trade.

When he was twenty-five, Giles became aware of a call from the Lord to enter a religious order and give his life to God. Giles entered the Friars of St. Peter Alcantara in Naples. And what extraordinary things did he do to be proclaimed "blessed"? He was singled out for such an honor because of two virtues that guided his whole religious life. The virtues were simplicity and humility.

Brother Giles Mary tried to approach each day with an attitude of wanting to serve God. He was grateful for his calling and it showed. Brother Giles walked up and down the halls where he lived. He was the porter. He opened the door promptly and with a smile every time a visitor pulled the rope that rang the bell. He took gentle care of the poor, the homeless, the ill who came to that door. He was given the responsibility of distributing the food and alms that his community could spare. Brother Giles Mary loved to do that. No matter how much he gave to needy people, so much remained for others. He knew it was St. Joseph who did this. After all, St. Joseph had once taken such good care of Jesus and Mary. Brother Giles Mary spread devotion to St. Joseph throughout his whole religious life.

After a life of faithfulness to God and his chosen vocation, Brother Giles Mary-of-St.-Joseph died on February 7, 1812. He was declared "blessed" by Pope Pius IX in 1888.

Reflection: How does my life reflect a spirit of generosity and trust in God’s providence for me?


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