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Where

St. Anthony of Padua, Priest and Doctor (memorial) Anthony was

born in Lisbon, Portugal about the year 1195 to a very wealthy

family, the son of Martin Vincente de Bulhao and Teresa Pais

Taveira, who wanted him to become a noble.  However, 

Anthony had other ambitions.

The Gospel’s call to leave everything and follow Christ was the

rule of Anthony’s life. Over and over again God called him to

something new in his plan. Every time Anthony responded with

renewed zeal and self-sacrificing love to serve his Lord Jesus more completely. 

His journey as the servant of God began as a very young man when he decided to join the Augustinians in Lisbon, giving up a future of wealth and power to be a servant of God. 

The Canons Regular of St. Augustine, of whom he was now a member, were known for their dedication to scholarly studies.  Anthony studied Scripture and the Latin classics. It was then in 1219, that he came in contact with five Franciscans who were going to Morocco to preach the word of God.  Anthony found the simple lifestyle of the Franciscans highly attractive.  In February of the following year, it was learned that the five Franciscans had been martyred in Morocco.  Anthony was deeply struck by their heroism and felt called by God to leave everything and follow Jesus.  

Later, when the bodies of the first Franciscan martyrs went through the Portuguese city where he was stationed, he was again filled with an intense longing to be one of those closest to Jesus himself: those who die for the Good News. He got permission from his superiors to transfer him to the Franciscans. 

In the summer of 1220, he received the Franciscan habit and began to study the teachings of the Founder, Francis of Assisi.  Thus Anthony entered the Franciscan Order and set out to preach to the Moors. But an illness prevented him from achieving that goal. He went to Italy and was stationed in a small hermitage where he spent most of his time praying, reading the Scriptures and doing menial tasks. The call of God came again at an ordination where no one was prepared to speak. It was then that Brother Gratian, the minister provincial, sent Anthony to preach the Gospel all over Lombardy, a region of northern Italy.  The years of searching for Jesus in prayer, of reading sacred Scripture and of serving him in poverty, chastity and obedience had prepared Anthony to allow the Spirit to use his talents. Anthony’s sermon was astounding. His skills were now widely recognized and, in addition to preaching, he taught at the Universities of Montpellier and Toulouse in southern France.  But it was as a preacher that he was most admired. 

He died on 12 June 1231 at the Poor Clare convent at Arcella on his way back to Padua at the early age of 36.  When he died, it is said that children cried in the streets, all the bells of the churches rang of their own accord and angels came down to ring 

the bells for the death of a saint.

Anthony should be the patron of those who completely uprooted and set in a new and unexpected direction. find their lives 

Like all saints, he is a perfect example of turning one’s life completely over to Christ. God did with Anthony as God pleased—and what God pleased was a life of spiritual power and brilliance that still attracts admiration today. He, whom popular devotion has nominated as the finder of lost objects, found himself by losing himself totally to the providence of God.

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June, 2022

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August 26,2019

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