St. Paul of the Cross (photo from wikipedia)

January 3, 1694, Paulo Francesco Daneii was born near Genoa in Italy. Throughout his childhood, he led a normal life. At the age of 19, he began to live more prayerfully and love God more closely through Christ’s Passion.

St. Paul continued to help his father with the family business until 1715, when he decided to join in a crusade against the Turks. This experience helped him realize that God was not calling him to be a soldier and so he returned home to his father.

When he was 26 years old, Paul experienced a vision which revealed to him his vocation.

Paul had a series of prayer-experiences which made it clear to him that God was inviting him to form a community who would live an evangelical life and promote the love of God revealed in the Passion of Jesus. A legend tells that in a vision, he saw himself clothed in the habit he and his companions would wear. (wikipedia)

Encouraged by his bishop, St. Paul of the Cross wrote the rule for his community, which grew over the years.

On October 18, 1775, however, St. Paul died at the age of 81 years old. He was canonized by Pope Pius IX on June 29, 1867. And the feast of St. Paul of the Cross is celebrated on October 20th.