The Holiness and Sufferings of Padre Pio (Plus a Rare Peek Into His Life!)

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Born May 25, 1887, in Pietrelcina, Italy, Padre Pio has been and continues to be one of the most fascinating and sought-after saints of our times.

Deeply pious as a child, at age 15, he took the Habit of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin on January 22, 1903. He took the name of Pio in honor of Saint Pius V, the patron saint of Pietrelcina.


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What most struck people about him was his love of prayer and his many extraordinary gifts and charism including the gift of healing, bilocation, prophecy, miracles, discernment of spirits, the ability to read hearts, the gifts of tongues, amongst others.

And it was his prayer and his intense love of and devotion to the Lord that allowed up to endure a long list of sufferings, both physical and spiritual. “I am fully convinced that my illness is due to a special permission of God,” he said.


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Rare Footage of Padre Pio

One of the wonderful benefits of our time is that we can witness modern day saints in person. In addition to the hagiographies which sometimes seem to depict more an angel than a man or a woman, we are offered a few windows into their daily lives and expressions. More than for the mere sake of curiosity, this must lead us to the firm conviction that holiness is a very concrete reality. Cultivated in the depths of the person, certainly; still,  it grows and flowers in the daily life of a human being that ate, slept, and spoke like we continue to do so today.


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In honor of Saint Padre Pio, we would like to post this video that offers rare footage of a man who, in dedicating his life to prayer, changed everything around him.

Padre Pio Reacts to Humanae Vitae

Also, it’s worth noting Padre Pio’s acts regarding the well-known encyclical, “Humanae Vitae”, especially considering the fact that contemporary society (including many Catholics) continues to reject the ideas behind this Church teaching.

(EWTN) A short time before his death, Padre Pio, having in mind the Audience which the Chapter Members of his Order would have in the course of their General Chapter, wrote a letter to Pope Paul. In the letter he expressed his firm adherence to the Magisterium and its teachings, particularly mentioning the recent encyclical, “Humanae Vitae” (1968). Padre Pio also expressed his obedience, devotedness and filial sharing in the anxieties of His Holiness. The full text is as follows: 

Your Holiness:

Availing myself of Your Holiness’ meeting with the Capitular Fathers, I unite myself in spirit with my Brothers, and in a spirit of faith, love and obedience to the greatness of Him whom you represent on earth, offer my respectful homage to Your August Person, humbly kneeling at Your feet.

The Capuchin Order has always been among the first in their love, fidelity and reverence for the Holy See. I pray the Lord that its members remain ever thus, continuing their tradition of seriousness and religious asceticism evangelical poverty, faithful observance of the Rule and Constitutions, renewing themselves in vigorous living and deep interior spirit—always ready, at the least gesture from Your Holiness, to go forward at once to assist the Church in her needs.

I know that Your heart suffers much these days on account of the happenings in the Church: for peace in the world, for the great needs of its peoples; but above all, for the lack of obedience of some, even Catholics, to the lofty teachings which You, assisted by the Holy Spirit and in the name of God, have given us. I offer Your Holiness my daily prayers and sufferings, the insignificant but sincere offering of the least of your sons, asking the Lord to comfort you with His grace to continue along the direct yet often burdensome way—in defense of those eternal truths which can never change with the times.

In the name of my spiritual sons and of the “Praying Groups” I thank Your Holiness for the clear and decisive words You have spoken in the recent encyclical, “Humanae Vitae”, and I reaffirm my own faith and my unconditional obedience to Your inspired directives.

May God grant truth to triumph, and, may peace be given to His Church, tranquility to the people of the earth, and health and prosperity to Your Holiness, so that when these disturbing clouds pass over, the Reign of God may triumph in all hearts, through the Apostolic Works of the Supreme Shepherd of all Christians.
Prostrate at Your feet, I beg you to bless me, my Brothers in religion, my spiritual sons, the “Praying Groups”, all the sick—that we may faithfully fulfill the good works done in the Name of Jesus and under your protection.

Your Holiness’ most humble servant,
PADRE PIO, Capuchin

San Giovanni Rotondo, 12th September, 1968.


Don’t miss out on Padre Pio in this great post:

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About Garrett Johnson

Garrett Johnson has written 371 post in this blog.

Born in Texas, I fell in love with evangelization when I was 18. A former NET member and a Franciscan University of Steubenville Alumnus, I am now living in Rome and studying for the priesthood.

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