Famous for his confessions, charities and his painful stigmata. A true witness of the power of suffering that led him to a path of sanctity.
His original name was Francesco Forgione, born of a family of farmers from the south of Italy. His father made many sacrifices working in Jamaica, New York twice in order to provide support for his family.
Very fervent prayer since childhood, at age of 15, Francesco join the order of Friars Minor Capuchin taking the name of Pio and later ordained in 1910. Eventually was assigned to the Friary in San Giovanni, Rotondo.
On September 20, 1918, after mass he had a vision of Jesus and when the vision ended he received stigmata on his hands, his feet and side. Because of them, he when through a great deal of controversy, persecution, and penance as he accepted all, out of obedience throughout the rest of his life from medical doctors, many curious looking to discredit and church authorities.
His daily Mass lasted about 3 hours, many came to confess to Padre Pio, he would be confessing for at least 10 hours daily, take morning breaks to bless the sick and the poor. He saw Jesus in all the sick suffering, which prompted him to build "House for the Alleviation of Suffering" (hospital with 360 beds) that broke ground on 1946.
There are many recorded prophecies, reported cures, intersession, many have mentioned that Padre Pio knew details of many of the people confessing to him that have never told anyone and much more. He was a fervent prayer for the souls of purgatory, many of these souls came to visit him seeking for his intersection.
Here are some of the word he said:
"I see so many souls from Purgatory that they don't frighten me anymore"
"More souls of the dead than of the living climb this mountain to attend my Masses and seek my prayers."
"Do as I have done. Pray, pray always for the souls of the dear departed."
Padre Pio offered all his pain, prayers and suffering for the release of the souls in a of purification and those souls never cease to thank him for what he did.
He died on September 23, 1968, and he was beatified in 1999.
Two of my Padre Pio's favorite movies that have touch me and I recommend to watch are:
St Padre Pio love Jesus and the Madonna dearly, he prayed to her without ceasing, he's always interceding for us and the souls of purgatory. Pray the Rosary today in his honor and ask for his intersection.