Saint Spotlight Saint Gerard Majella
1725 - 1755
Feast Day 16 October
First week of our four part series - The birth of a Saint
Blessed are the poor in spirit
Saint Gerard was the youngest of five children, born almost 300 years ago to parents, Benedetta Galella and Domenco Majella. His family lived in a picturesque town called Muro Lucano near Naples, Italy. He was frail when he was born and wasn’t expected to live so his parents immediately had him baptised at the local church. However, despite the dire predictions he survived.
At the relatively young age of 12, St Gerard tragically lost his father. This was devastating for the family as his father, through his business as a tailor provided for his mother and three sisters. With his father’s passing the family were thrown into poverty. However, as fortune would have it, his father’s death meant that St Gerard, with his mother’s support, did a tailor’s apprenticeship and eventually took over his father’s business. He set up his own shop out of the family home.
Because of his new role and the people he met, St Gerard formed a deep and meaningful connection with his local community. St Gerard, whose striking angular face and delicate pale skin made him instantly recognisable, forged a reputation for his generosity and charitable works as he shared his earnings between the family and the local poor.
Spiritually speaking, St Gerard had a deep devotion to Mary, the Mother of God. From a young age his mother told him how amazing and overwhelming God’s love was for all. Therefore, Gerard grew up confident in God’s love.
It was his love of God that made him yearn for something more.
(continued next week)
Annual St Gerard feast day blessing of families will be live streamed again.
Families can watch on Facebook and Youtube live on Sunday 16 October from 1:00 pm Eastern Sandard Time.
You can send in your family prayer intentions and they will be included in the liturgy.