Pacifico of San Severino, St.

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Franciscan administrator and mystic; b. San Severino in the Marches of Ancona, Italy, March 1, 1653;d. there, Sept. 24, 1721. A member of the distinguished family of the Divini, he was orphaned at an early age and brought up by an uncle who treated him very harshly. He entered the Observant Franciscans at Forano when he was 17 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1678. He taught philosophy for two years before beginning his preaching career. For eight years he worked with marked success among the poor inhabitants of the Apennine villages. When he was 35, he contracted an illness that left him deaf, blind, and crippled. These infirmities, which he bore with resignation for more than 30 years, did not prevent him from ably performing the duties of vicar and guardian at the Friary of Our Lady of Grace in San Severino where he resided continuously after 1705. He frequently experienced prolonged ecstasies while celebrating Mass, on several occasions displayed the gift of prophecy, and many times miraculously cured the sick. He was beatified by pius vi in 1786 and canonized by gregory xvi in 1839.

Feast: Sept. 24.

Bibliography: lÉon de clary, Lives of the Saints and Blessed of the Three Orders of St. Francis, 4 v. (Taunton, Eng. 188587) 3:224229. s. melchiorri, Vita di San Pacifico da San Severino (Rome 1839), c. ortolani, San Pacificio da San Severino (Rome 1929).

[c. j. lynch]