|St. Thomas of Villanova, O.S.A.|
Old master print of St. Thomas in Portraits of Illustrious Spaniards (Madrid, 1791)
|Religious, bishop and confessor|
|Born|| Tomás García y Martínez|
in Villanueva de los Infantes,
Ciudad Real, Spain
|Died|| September 8, 1555|
in Valencia, Spain
|Venerated in|| Roman Catholic Church |
(Order of St. Augustine)
|Canonized||November 1, 1658 by Pope Alexander VII|
|Attributes||A bishop distributing alms to the poor|
|Patronage||Santolan, (Pasig City), Alimodian and Miag-ao (Iloilo), Villanova University|
St. Thomas of Villanova O.S.A. (1488 – 8 September 1555) was a Spanish friar of the Order of Saint Augustine who was a noted preacher, ascetic and religious writer of his day. He became an archbishop who was famous for the extent of his care for the poor of his see.
The Order of Saint Augustine, generally called Augustinians or Austin Friars, is a Catholic religious order. It was founded in 1254 by bringing together several eremetical orders in the Tuscany region who were following the Rule of St. Augustine, written by St. Augustine of Hippo in the 5th Century.
A friar is a brother member of one of the mendicant orders founded since the twelfth or thirteenth century; the term distinguishes the mendicants' itinerant apostolic character, exercised broadly under the jurisdiction of a superior general, from the older monastic orders' allegiance to a single monastery formalized by their vow of stability. The most significant orders of friars are the Dominicans, Franciscans, Augustinians and Carmelites.
Asceticism is a lifestyle characterized by abstinence from sensual pleasures, often for the purpose of pursuing spiritual goals. Ascetics may withdraw from the world for their practices or continue to be part of their society, but typically adopt a frugal lifestyle, characterised by the renunciation of material possessions and physical pleasures, and time spent fasting while concentrating on the practice of religion or reflection upon spiritual matters.
He was born Tomás García y Martínez in Fuenllana, Spain, in 1488.His father was a miller, who regularly distributed food and provisions to the poor, as did his mother. He grew up and was educated in Villanueva de los Infantes, in the Province of Ciudad Real, Spain, therefore the name Thomas of Villanueva. Part of the original house still stands, with a coat of arms in the corner, beside a family chapel. In spite of his family's wealth, as a young boy he often went about naked because he had given his clothing to the poor.
Fuenllana is a municipality in Ciudad Real, Castile-La Mancha, Spain. It has a population of 320.
Villanueva de los Infantes is a municipality in the province of Ciudad Real, Castile-La Mancha, Spain. It has a population of 5727 people.
The province of Ciudad Real is a province in the southwestern part of the autonomous community of Castile-La Mancha, Spain. It is bordered by the provinces of Cuenca, Albacete, Jaén, Córdoba, Badajoz, and Toledo. It is partly located in the old natural region of La Mancha. Its capital is Ciudad Real. It is the third largest province by area in all of Spain, after Cáceres and Badajoz. The historic comarca Campo de Calatrava is located in the center of the province.
At the age of sixteen years, Thomas entered the University of Alcalá de Henares to study Arts and Theology. He became a professor there, teaching arts, logic, and philosophy, despite a continuing absentmindedness and poor memory.In 1516, he decided to join the Augustinian friars in Salamanca and in 1518 was ordained a priest.
Salamanca is a city in western Spain that is the capital of the Province of Salamanca in the community of Castile and León. The city lies on several hills by the Tormes River. Its Old City was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1988. With a metropolitan population of 228,881 in 2012 according to the National Institute of Statistics (INE), Salamanca is the second most populated urban area in Castile and León, after Valladolid (414,000), and ahead of León (187,000) and Burgos (176,000).
He became renowned for his eloquent and effective preaching in the churches of Salamanca. [ citation needed ] Charles named Thomas one of his councilors of state and court preacher in Valladolid, the residence of the Emperor when on his visits to the Low Countries.Thomas composed beautiful sermons, among which stands out the Sermon on the Love of God, one of the great examples of sacred oratory of the 16th century. Charles V, upon hearing him preach, exclaimed, "This monsignor can move even the stones!".
Monsignor is an honorific form of address for some members of the clergy, usually of the Roman Catholic Church, including bishops, honorary prelates and canons. In some cases, these ecclesiastical honorific titles derive from the pope, but in other cases it is simply a customary or honorary style belonging to a prelate or honorary prelate. These are granted to individuals who have rendered valuable service to the church, or who provide some special function in church governance, or who are members of bodies such as certain chapters. Although in some languages the word is used as a form of address for bishops, which is indeed its primary use in those languages, this is not customary in English. Monsignor is the apocopic form of the Italian monsignore, from the French mon seigneur, meaning "my lord". It is abbreviated Mgr or Mons, Msgr, or Mons.
His scathing attacks on his fellow bishops earned him the title of reformer.Some of his sermons attacked the cruelty of bullfighting. He also had a great devotion to the Virgin Mary, whose heart he compared to the burning bush of Moses that is never consumed.
Within the Order, he successively held the positions of prior of his local monastery, Visitor General, and Prior Provincial for Andalusia and Castile. In 1533, Thomas sent out the first Augustinian friars to arrive in Mexico.Charles V offered him the post of Archbishop of Granada but he would not accept it.
Prior, derived from the Latin for "earlier, first", is an ecclesiastical title for a superior, usually lower in rank than an abbot or abbess. Its earlier generic usage referred to any monastic superior.
In the Catholic Church, an apostolic visitor is a papal representative with a transient mission to perform a canonical visitation of relatively short duration. The visitor is deputed to investigate a special circumstance in a diocese or country, and to submit a report to the Holy See at the conclusion of the investigation.
A provincial superior is a major superior of a religious institute acting under the institute's Superior General and exercising a general supervision over all the members of that institute in a territorial division of the order called a province—similar to but not to be confused with an ecclesiastical province made up of particular churches or dioceses under the supervision of a Metropolitan Bishop. The division of a religious institute into provinces is generally along geographical lines, and may consist of one or more countries, or of only a part of a country. There may be, however, one or more houses of one province situated within the physical territory of another since the jurisdiction over the individual religious is personal rather than territorial. The title of the office is often abbreviated to Provincial.
In 1544 he was nominated as Archbishop of Valencia and he continued to refuse the position until ordered to accept by his superior. Given a donation to decorate his residence, he sent the money to a hospital in need of repair.He began his episcopacy by visiting every parish in the Archdiocese to discover what were the needs of the people. Aided by his assistant bishop, Juan Segriá, he put in order an archdiocese that for a century had not had direct pastoral government. He organized a special college for Moorish converts, and in particular an effective plan for social assistance, welfare, and charity. In 1547 he ordained as a priest the future Saint Luis Beltrán, O.P., a noted missionary in South America. Thomas started Presentation Seminary in 1550.
He was well known for his great personal austerity (he sold the straw mattress on which he slept in order to give money to the poor) and wore the same habit that he had received in the novitiate, mending it himself.Thomas was known as “father of the poor.” His continual charitable efforts were untiring, especially towards orphans, poor women without a dowry, and the sick. He possessed, however, an intelligent notion of charity, so that while he was very charitable, he sought to obtain definitive and structural solutions to the problem of poverty; for example, giving work to the poor, thereby making his charity bear fruit. "Charity is not just giving, rather removing the need of those who receive charity and liberating them from it when possible," he wrote. He established boarding schools and high schools.
Thomas died in Valencia on September 8, 1555 of angina at the age of 67. His remains are preserved at the Cathedral there.
He was canonized by Pope Alexander VII on November 1, 1658.His feast day is celebrated on September 22.
Thomas is the author of various Tracts, among which is included the Soliloquy between God and the soul, on the topic of communion. Francisco de Quevedo wrote his biography. His complete writings were published in six volumes as Opera omnia, in Manila in 1881.
Thomas is the namesake and patron saint of Villanova University, near Philadelphia in the United States, which was founded and is administered by the friars of his Order; Universidad Católica de Santo Tomás de Villanueva in Havana, Cuba; St. Thomas University in Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; and Villanova College, a Catholic school for boys located in Brisbane, Australia. In the Philippines, some churches and towns are dedicated in honor of the saint with grand feast or fiesta celebrations with lots of food on the table for the guests and visitors. He is the patron saint of the towns of Alimodian and Miag-ao, both in Iloilo. He is also the patron saint of Barangay Santolan in Pasig City.
A congregation of sisters is also named after him.
The term Augustinians, named after Augustine of Hippo (354–430), applies to two distinct types of Catholic religious orders, dating back to the first millennium but formally created in the 13th century, and some Anglican religious orders, created in the 19th century, though technically there is no "Order of St. Augustine" in Anglicanism. Within Anglicanism the Rule of St. Augustine is followed only by women, who form several different communities of Augustinian nuns in the Anglican Communion.
Martin de Porres Velázquez, O.P., was a Peruvian lay brother of the Dominican Order who was beatified in 1837 by Pope Gregory XVI and canonized in 1962 by Pope John XXIII. He is the patron saint of mixed-race people, barbers, innkeepers, public health workers, and all those seeking racial harmony.
Villanova is a name of Latin origin, meaning new town. It is equivalent to Italian Villanuova, French Villeneuve, Spanish Villanueva, and Catalan, Galician, Occitan and Portuguese Vilanova. It may refer to:
John of Ávila was a Spanish priest, preacher, scholastic author, and religious mystic, who has been declared a saint and Doctor of the Church by the Catholic Church. He is called the "Apostle of Andalusia", for his extensive ministry in that region.
Vincent Ferrer, O.P. was a Valencian Dominican friar, who gained acclaim as a missionary and a logician. He is honored as a saint of the Roman Catholic Church.
Villanova Preparatory School is an Augustinian Catholic co-ed day and boarding school in the United States, located in the California town of Ojai. Sitting on more than 130 acres, Villanova's campus has many athletic facilities, two dormitories, sports fields and trails, a gym, and tennis courts. The school is located in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles, and is a member of the Augustinian Secondary Education Association.
Saint Lawrence of Brindisi, O.F.M. Cap., born Giulio Cesare Russo, was a Roman Catholic priest and a theologian as well as a member of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin.
Saint Peter of Alcantara, O.F.M., was a Spanish Franciscan friar canonized in 1669.
Villanova College is a high school and middle school in King City, Ontario, Canada. Established by lay educators Paul Paradiso and Grant Purdy with the blessing of the Archdiocese Toronto and in cooperation with the Order of Saint Augustine's friars of Toronto and Marylake Augustinian Monastery. The school campus is within the grounds of this Augustinian monastic foundation in King City. Villanova College offers grades four to twelve and is the first, and only, Canadian institution to become a member of the Augustinian Secondary Education Association. It is a privately operated independent school, officially sponsored by the Augustinian Order.
Jacob de Marchia, commonly known in English as St. James of the Marches, O.F.M., was an Italian Friar Minor, preacher and writer. He was a Papal legate and Inquisitor.
Independent Augustinian communities are Roman Catholic religious communities that follow the Augustinian Rule, but are not under the jurisdiction of the Prior General of the Augustinian hermits in Rome.
Augustinian nuns are the most ancient and continuous segment of the Roman Catholic Augustinian religious order under the canons of contemporary historical method. The Augustinian nuns, named after Saint Augustine of Hippo, are several Roman Catholic enclosed monastic orders of women living according to a guide to religious life known as the Rule of St. Augustine. Prominent Augustinian nuns include Italian composer Vittoria Aleotti, Italian mystic St. Clare of Montefalco, German mystic Anne Catherine Emmerich and St. Rita of Cascia.
St. Louis Bertrand, O.P. was a Spanish Dominican friar who preached in South America during the 16th century, and is known as the "Apostle to the Americas". He is venerated as a saint by the Catholic Church.
John of Sahagún, O.E.S.A., was a Spanish Augustinian friar and priest. He was a leading preacher regarding social behavior of his day. He has been declared a saint by the Catholic Church.
Alonso de Montúfar y Bravo de Lagunas, O.P., was a Spanish Dominican friar and prelate of the Catholic Church, who ruled as the second Archbishop of Mexico from 1551 to his death in 1572. He approved and promoted the devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe that arose during his reign.
Saint Ezequiél Moreno y Díaz, OAR was a member of the Order of Augustinian Recollects and now venerated as a Saint in the Roman Catholic Church. He was born on April 9, 1848 in Alfaro, La Rioja, Spain and later served as a missionary to the Philippines. He also became the Bishop of Pinara and later of Pasto, in Colombia.
Monsignor Bonner High School was an all-male Augustinian Catholic High School in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia. It is located in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania, United States. Bonner was created in 1953 as Archbishop Prendergast High School for Boys. In 1955, the current building was constructed and in 1957 entitled Monsignor Bonner High School. The previously occupied building became the all-female Archbishop Prendergast High School. In 2012, Bonner merged with the all-girls Archbishop Prendergast High School to form Monsignor Bonner and Archbishop Prendergast High School. The Order of St. Augustine is no longer associated with the combined institution.
Saint Alonso de Orozco Mena was a Spanish Roman Catholic priest from the Augustinian order. He was well known across Spain for his preaching abilities and for an austere and humble life.
Michael Hurley was an American Catholic priest and an Augustinian friar. He served as pastor of St. Augustine Church in Philadelphia for seventeen years, as vicar general of the American province of the Order of Saint Augustine, and as vicar general of the Diocese of Philadelphia.
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