Today is the Memorial of St. Anthony of Padua, Priest and Doctor of the Church
Saint Anthony was canonized (declared a saint) less than one year after his death
So simple and resounding was his teaching of the Catholic Faith, so that the most unlearned might understand it, that he was made a Doctor of the Church by Pope Pius XII in 1946. Saint Anthony was only 36 years old when he died, having served as a Franciscan for only 10 years. He is called the “Hammer of the Heretics”. His great protection against their lies and deceits in the matter of Christian doctrine was to utter, simply and innocently, the Holy Name of Mary.
When St. Anthony of Padua found he was preaching the true Gospel of the Catholic Church to heretics who would not listen to him, he then went out and preached it to the fishes. This was not for the instruction of the fishes, but rather for the glory of God, the delight of the angels, and the easing of his own heart. St. Anthony wanted to profess the Catholic Faith with his mind and his heart, at every moment.
He is typically depicted with a book and the Infant Child Jesus, to whom He miraculously appeared, and is commonly referred to today as the “finder of lost articles.” Upon exhumation, some 336 years after his death, his body was found to be corrupted, yet his tongue was totally incorrupt, so perfect were the teachings that had been formed upon it.
Saint Anthony, great wonder-worker, intercede for us that God may grant us our request if it be for the good of our soul.
Saint Anthony, be our patron, our protector, and our advocate in life and in death.
Saint Anthony, attentive to those who invoke thee, grant us the aid of thy powerful intercession for the grace of holy purity, meekness, humility, obedience, the spirit of poverty, and perfect abandonment to the will of God.
Saint Anthony, servant of Mary, obtain for us greater devotion to the blessed Mother of God.