Saints and Saintly Dominicans – 10 January

photograph of a devotional statuette of Saint Gonçalo, sculptor unknown; swiped off the Wikipedia web siteBlessed Gonsalvo of Amaranthe, Confessor, O.P.

Blessed Gonsalvo sanctified himself first as a secular priest, in charge of the Church of Saint Pelagia. Afterwards he made a pilgrimage to Rome and also to Jerusalem, where he remained more than thirteen years, being never tired of spending whole nights on Calvary. On his return to Portugal, his nephew, whom he had chosen to fill his office in the Church, refused even to allow him to enter it and went so far as to seize his pilgrim’s staff and to beat him with it. Blessed Gonsalvo, enlightened as to the nothingness of this world, retired into a hermitage, where he resolved, in accordance with instructions received from the Blessed Virgin, to enter among those religious whom he should hear beginning and ending the Office with the “Hail Mary.” After long search and many journeys he found what he sought in a convent of Friars Preachers and received the habit there. He obtained leave to return to his former hermitage and labored so fruitfully for the conversion of souls that by degrees the solitude became transformed into a town, called at the present time Amaranthe. By the help of God, he built a bridge at a spot where such an erection seemed quite impossible. In order to provide for the workmen employed on the building, he caused water to flow from the rock by striking it with his staff, and the fishes in the river came and allowed themselves to be caught when Blessed Gonsalvo put out his hand, offering themselves as food for the laborers.


O Blessed Gonsalvo, enlighten all those who are undecided as to their vocation and teach them to use the time of waiting as a special means of preparation.


Try to inspire those about you with devotion to Mary, and if you have pupils, teach them often to say the “Hail Mary.”