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St Gregory Barbagio

Saint Gregory Barbargio was born in Venice on 16th of September 1625. He was of illustrious birth, and enjoyed the benefit of a learned and pious father who taught him much through his formative years.

Gregory studied the sciences with passion, and at eighteen he joined the Venician ambassador who labored on the Treaty of Westphalia, becoming friends of the papal nuncio -- Fabio Chigi. Afterwards, St. Gregory began to study law and in 1655 was ordained priest in Padua.

Fabio Cardinal Chigi had since become Pope Alexander VII. When the plague broke out in 1656, Gregory was put in charge of a district of Rome, and made himself a reputation as a man elligible for a Bishopric. This resulted in him being made Bishop of Bergamo in 1657.

As Bishop Gregory implemented the disciplinary reforms of Trent, and tempered the clergy, banning them from the theatre, drew up lists of all clergy with biographies, reformed the seminaries, and sent devotional books throughout the Diocese.

St. Gregory was made Cardinal in 1660, and given the Bishopric of Padua after a stint in Rome. There he wrote several books on how seminaries should be run, and implemented reforms similar to Bergamo. By his death in 1697, 42 schools operated in the Diocese, educating the children in faith and orthodoxy; and he improved the library for the Diocese, and encouraging catechetics for all faithful. In addition, St. Gregory participated in five Conclaves inwhich he himself was made Pope.

John XXIII canonized him in 1960, stating that Saint Gregory Barbagio had always been a model for him in his years as a priest.





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