Saint Gaspare Luigi Bertoni

detail of the official canonization portrait of Saint Gaspar Bertoni, artist unknown, date unknown; swiped from the Vatican web siteAlso known as

  • Caspar Bertoni
  • Gaspar Bertoni
  • The Apostolic Missionary



Son of Francis, a wealthy lawyer and notary, and Brunora Ravelli Bertoni, he was raised in a pious family. His beloved sister died when Gaspare was quite young. He was educated at home, then by Jesuits and the Marian Congregation at Saint Sebastian’s School in Verona, Italy.

At his first Communion Gaspare received a vision and message that he was to become a priest, and he entered the seminary in 1796. On 1 June 1796, troops from Revolutionary France began a 20 year occupation of northern Italy. Gaspar joined the Gospel Fraternity for Hospitals, and worked to help those wounded, ill, displaced, or otherwise harmed by the occupation. Ordained on 20 September 1800.

Chaplain to the sisters of Saint Magdalen Canossa convent. Spiritual director to many including Venerable Leopoldina Naudet, Venerable Teodora Campestrini, and an entire seminary. Well known preacher. One of the leaders in a Europe-wide movement to offer prayers and support for Pope Pius VII when he was imprisoned by Napolean Bonaparte. Established the Marian Oratories. Organized free schools for the poor. Spread devotion to the Five Wounds of Christ.

Founded the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Stigmatines) on 4 November 1816. Their mission was to serve as “Apostolic Missionaries for the assistance of bishops”, and they were under the patronage of Mary and Joseph.

Beset by fevers and a continuing infection in his right leg during the last two decades of his life. Over 300 operations were performed on his leg in an effort to stem the infection. Continued to serve as counselor and spiritual director from his hospital bed.






MLA Citation

  • “Saint Gaspare Luigi Bertoni“. CatholicSaints.Info. 1 February 2019. Web. 10 May 2021. <>