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in Mexico this week
Saint Anthony of Padua Holding Baby
Bernardo Strozzi, oil on canvas
Also known as Saint
Anthony of Lisbon.
Feast day: June 13 on
the anniversary of his death in 1231.
Patron Saint for lost
articles; credited with many miracles involving lost people,
lost things and even lost spiritual goods. He is also the patron
saint for lonely spinsters, the poor, trees, fishermen, boatmen,
sailors, shipwrecks, harvests, fish, mules, other animals,
"Saint Anthony, Saint
Anthony, please come around.
Something is lost and needs to be found."
de Bulhom, the only son of a wealthy and influential astounded
his family and friends by becoming an Augustine monk. He was
expected to join his father at the court of King Alfonso II in
Lisbon. He then moved farther from his family to Coimbra to
study from the masters and escape detraction from family and
friends and was eventually ordained.
Inspired by the
Franciscan's first five martyrs that were beheaded by the King
of Morocco, Ferdinand transferred to the evangelizing Franciscan
order with a promise to evangelize in Morocco as had his friends
had tried. He changed his name to Anthony.
became sick on the voyage and was immediately put on another
ship to return home. That ship hit a storm and was shipwrecked.
His poor luck continued and because of his poor health he was
rejected by many monasteries eventually finding a poor rural
hospice outside Bologna. He became a hermit in a nearby cave
working only with uneducated brothers in the kitchen.
He rose to the status
of Superstar through his power of oration. A group of Dominicans
were visiting and Antonio – the most educated – was asked to
speak. He apparently amazed the crowd and St. Francis reassigned
him to travel preaching and teaching theology. Indeed he made
over 400 trips from Italy to France and back; preaching and
teaching to crowds sometimes more than 30,000 strong.
known as the “Hammer of the Heretics” and bodyguards were hired
to keep the crowd away from tearing him apart. Churches and
courtyards were overflowing with people; work and schools were
Statue of St. Anthony with the
book and Christ Child, Church of San Pablo Mitla, Oaxaca
The ritual is not
consistent. One version is to take 13 coins of the same denomination and
line them up on the base of a St Anthony statue. Walk around the
statue 13 times and pray to St. Anthony.
guarantees that if a girl begs 13 centavos from 13 men, burns 13
candles and prays to St. Anthony on his day, she will get her