Saint Jerome Emiliani was born in Italy in the year 1481. As a young man, Jerome was imprisoned after attempting to defend the town of Castelnuovo. While in prison, Jerome converted and became a man of God. After being released, in 1518, Jerome was ordained as a priest. His focus was primarily on educating orphans and building orphanages to shelter them. These efforts eventually led to the formation of the Clerks Regular of Somasca, which helps build hospitals and shelters, as well as provide for orphans. Saint Jerome is the patron saint of the abandoned. His feast day is February 8.
Questions for Reflection:
- In your daily life, who do you encounter who is “abandoned”? It could be the orphaned or homeless, or it could be an elderly neighbor who barely receives any visitors.
- What can you do for the “abandoned” in your community, in order to let them know they are not alone?