Saint John Leonardi (1541-1609)
for October 8
Saint John Leonardi was ordained a priest and became very passionate about ministering to prisoners and the sick. His commitment and devotion attracted other young men to assist him, and they later become priests themselves. John and his fellow assistants and priests formed the Clerks Regular of the Mother of God of Lucca. However, this group spurred political opposition, with many believing that John had founded the group for his personal glorification. John was exiled from Lucca for most of the remainder of his life. While in exile, he was encouraged and looked after by Saint Philip Neri. John created the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, and put out a collection of Christian doctrine that was continually used until the 19th century. He died at the age of 68 from a disease caught while ministering to plague victims. Saint John Leonardi was canonized in 1938.
Read more about Saint John Leonardi (1541-1609)
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Popularity can be a blessing. Saint John Leonardi used his popularity to bring more young men into the priesthood and share the Good News of Christ. However, popularity can also be a bad thing if it is used to spread hurtful gossip or encourage people to do dangerous and sinful things. Do you set a good Christian example when you are with your friends, or do you encourage them to partake in hurtful or dangerous behaviors?
Dear Jesus, you know how important friends are in helping us live as your disciples. Thank you for my friends, and help me to be a positive influence on my friends in return. (Taken from "Take Ten: Daily Bible Reflections for Teens.")