St. Pius X
(1834-1914)
 
         
   
Feast Day – August 21  
Patron Saint of: First Communicants
 
  Pilgrims  
     
     
Pope Pius X is perhaps best remembered for his encouragement of the frequent reception of Holy Communion, especially by children.  
     
 
         
 
Prayer to Saint Pius X
   
 


Glorious Pope of the Eucharist, Saint Pius X, you sought "to restore all things in Christ." Obtain for me a true love of Jesus so that I may live only for Him. Help me to acquire a lively fervor and a sincere will to strive for sanctity of life, and that I may avail myself of the riches of the Holy Eucharist in sacrifice and sacrament. By your love for Mary, mother and queen of all, inflame my heart with tender devotion to her.

Blessed model of the priesthood, obtain for us holy, dedicated priests, and increase vocations to the religious life. Dispel confusion and hatred and anxiety, and incline our hearts to peace and concord. so that all nations will place themselves under the sweet reign of Christ. Amen. Saint Pius X, pray for me.

 

 

 

     
 
About Saint Pius X
 
 

The second of 10 children in a poor Italian family, Joseph Sarto became Pius X at 68, one of the twentieth century’s greatest popes.

Pius X has been called the Pope of the Eucharist, and he more than any other person was responsible for changing the Eucharistic practices of Catholics.  By lowering the age of First Communion to seven years, instead of thirteen as had bee the previous custom, Pius X sought to inculcate a devotion to the Eucharist and foster the practice of frequent communion.  Eucharistic congresses, starting with the one held in Rome in 1905, became an important means of spreading the new Eucharistic piety.  As a result practicing Catholics began to receive the Eucharist weekly or even daily. 

Ever mindful of his humble origin, he stated, “I was born poor, I lived poor, I will die poor.” He was embarrassed by some of the pomp of the papal court. “Look how they have dressed me up,” he said in tears to an old friend. To another, “It is a penance to be forced to accept all these practices. They lead me around surrounded by soldiers like Jesus when he was seized in Gethsemane.”

Interested in politics, he encouraged Italian Catholics to become more politically involved. One of his first papal acts was to end the supposed right of governments to interfere by veto in papal elections—a practice that reduced the freedom of the conclave which had elected him.

In 1905, when France renounced its agreement with the Holy See and threatened confiscation of Church property if governmental control of Church affairs were not granted, Pius X courageously rejected the demand.

While he did not author a famous social encyclical as his predecessor had done, he denounced the ill treatment of indigenous peoples on the plantations of Peru, sent a relief commission to Messina after an earthquake and sheltered refugees at his own expense.

On the eleventh anniversary of his election as pope, Europe was plunged into World War I. Pius had foreseen it, but it killed him. “This is the last affliction the Lord will visit on me. I would gladly give my life to save my poor children from this ghastly scourge.” He died a few weeks after the war began. He was canonized in 1954.

     
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Our Relic of St. Pius X is certified by S.R.E. Card. Micara, Vicarius Generalis. It is a small amount of muscle tissue, numbered and dated March 10th, 1958.