ALPHONSUS was born near Naples in Italy, in 1696, of a noble Italian family. At nineteen he began to practice law and became one of the leading lawyers in Naples. He never went to the law courts without having first attended Mass. He then made up his mind to be a priest. He was almost thirty years of age when he wasPrayer
Alphonsus preached missions. Large crowds came to hear him. He often visited the sick. He wrote several books.
Alphonsus organized a community of priests in honor of the Most Holy Redeemer. Today the Redemptorists preach parish missions.
The Pope commanded Alphonsus to become a bishop. During the years that he was bishop, his health was never good. An attack of rheumatism left him a cripple for the rest of his life. His was so badly bent that his chin pressed against his chest. Alphonsus was permitted to leave his diocese. He continued to preach missions and to write books. He made a vow never to waste even a moment of his time, and kept it for his entire ninety-one years.
Alphonsus had a great love for the Blessed Sacrament and Our Lady. He was given the title of "Doctor of the Church."
O God, You constantly introduce new examples of virtue in Your Church. Walking in the footsteps of St. Alphonsus, Your Bishop, may we be consumed with zeal for souls and attain the rewards he won in heaven.
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