Marello, Giuseppe (Joseph), Bl.

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Bishop of Asti, Piedmont, Italy, founder of the oblates of saint joseph; b. Dec. 26, 1844, Turin, Italy; d. May 30, 1895, of a cerebral hemorrhage in the bishop's residence at Savona, Italy. While still a child, Giuseppe (Joseph) moved from Turin to Santi Martino Alfieri with his father, Vincenzo, after the death of his mother, Anna Maria. He entered the minor seminary at age 12 and was ordained priest in 1868. While in the seminary he was miraculously cured of typhus by the Blessed Virgin. In his capacity as secretary to Bishop Carlo Savio of Asti for 13 years, Father Marello attended Vatican Council I from 1869 to 1870. During this time he also assumed responsibility for a retirement home, served as spiritual director, and taught catechism. He founded the Oblates of St. Joseph in 1878 to be "hermits at home" in order to be "effective apostles away from home." Marello wanted his followers to be humble servants of the Church, ready to serve the bishops in whatever tasks were assigned them. The congregation was approved in 1909 by the Vatican after Marello's death. They opened their first mission in the United States in 1929. Following his episcopal consecration Feb. 17, 1889, Bishop Marello dedicated his work especially to youth and the abandoned. His remains were enshrined at Asti. He decisively opposed "materialism, Masonry, and anti-clericalism, which prevailed at the time" (decree of canonization, Dec. 18, 2000). Marello was beatified by John Paul II, Sept. 26, 1993, in the Campo del Palio at Asti, Italy. He was canonized on Nov. 25, 2001.

Bibliography: g. marello, Los escritos y las enseñanzas del bienaventurado José Marello, ed. m. pasetti (Santa Cruz, Calif.1993). j. b. cortona, Brief Memories of the Life of Joseph Marello, Bishop of Acqui, and of the Congregation He Founded (Santa Cruz, Calif. 1993). g. sisto, I, the Undersigned Poor Sinner: The Life of Blessed Joseph Marello (Santa Cruz, Calif. 1993). l. m. toschi, Holiness in the Ordinary: Three Essays on the Spirituality of Blessed Joseph Marello (Santa Cruz, Calif. 1993).

[k. i. rabenstein]