Happy Independence Day! More on our celebrations later but we wanted to share with you that in the Dominican Order this is the day when we celebrate the natale of Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati, a young man from Turin, Italy who died in 1925 when he was only 24 years old. When Bl. John Paul II beatified him in 1990 he called him "the man of the Eight Beatitudes".
Bl. Pier Giorgio has become much more widely known in the past 20 years. There are Frassati Societies all over in which young people gather for prayer, good meals, outings, etc. in the spirit of Bl. Pier Giorgio who was an enthusiastic mountain climber, practical joker, devoted to the poor in whom he saw Christ, and a great lover of Christ, especially in his devotion to the Holy Eucharist. Oh, yes, he even became a Dominican Tertiary taking the name Savonarola!
Below is a short video about his life from Catholic News Agency and following that is a clip from the Italian movie, "Se non avessi l'amore" in which Bl. Pier Giorgio becomes a Dominican Tertiary. (Notice they got the lay brother wrong with his black scapular and WHITE capuce. But we'll ignore that!) This movie makes Bl. Pier Giorgio just too serious...but we'll ignore that, too!
I urge you with all the strength of my soul to approach the Eucharistic Table as often as possible. Feed on this Bread of the Angels from which you will draw the strength to fight inner struggles, the struggles against passions and against all adversities, because Jesus Christ has promised to those who feed themselves with the most Holy Eucharist, eternal life and the necessary graces to obtain it.
And when you become totally consumed by this Eucharistic Fire, then you will be able to thank with greater awareness the Lord God who has called you to be part of his flock and you will enjoy that peace which those who are happy according to the world have never tasted. Because true happiness, young people, does not consist in the pleasures of the world and in earthly things, but in peace of conscience which we can have only if we are pure in heart and in mind.”