Blessed Anthony Pavonius

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Antony grew up to diately was engaged in combatting the heresies of the Lombards. be a pious, intelligent youth. At 15, he was received into the monastery of Savigliano, was ordained in 1351.

Pope Urban V, in 1360, appointed him inquisitor-general of Lombardy and Genoa, making him one of the youngest men ever to hold that office. It was a difficult and dangerous job for a young priest of 34. Besides being practically a death sentence to any man who held the office, it carried with it the necessity of arguing with the men most learned in a twisted and subtle heresy.

Antony worked untiringly in his native city, and his apostolate lasted 14 years. During this time, he accomplished a great deal by his preaching, and even more by his example of Christian virtue. He was elected prior of Savigliano, in 1368, and given the task of building a new abbey. This he accomplished without any criticism of its luxury–a charge that heretics were always anxious to make against any Catholic builders.

The consistent poverty of Antony’s life was a reproach to the heretics, who had always been able to gain ground with the poor by pointing out the wealth of religious houses. He went among the poor and let them see that he was one of them. This so discomfited the heretics that they decided they must kill him. He was preaching in a little village near Turin when they caught him.

The martyrdom occurred in the Easter octave. On the Saturday after Easter, he asked the barber to do a good job on his tonsure because he was going to a wedding. Puzzled, the barber complied. On the Sunday after Easter, as he finished preaching a vigorous sermon against heresy at Brichera, seven heretics fell upon him with their daggers, and he hurried off to the promised “wedding.” He was buried in the Dominican church at Savigliano, where his tomb was a place of pilgrimage until 1827. At that time the relics were transferred to the Dominican church of Racconigi.

Oddly enough, this Dominican Antony takes after his Franciscan namesake. He is also invoked to find lost articles.

Born: 1326 at Savigliano, Italy

Died: Martyred in 1374 at Turino, Italy

Beatified: 1868

Patronage: Lost Articles

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