Saints of the Day – Blessed Conradin of Brescia

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Born at Bornato (near Brescia), Italy; died 1429. During the time of the Western Schism, Conradin was born to staunch Catholics of nobility and wealth. His parents provided their children with a thoroughly Catholic education and upbringing, which paid dividends in the lives of their offspring. Conradin studied civil and canon law at the University of Padua, where he became acquainted with the Dominicans. He was professed a Dominican in 1413, finished his studies, was ordained, and became a model friar just as he was formerly a model student of purity and charity.

After being chosen prior of his friary in Brescia at a young age, he was appointed prior of the larger house at Bologna, sent there to restore primitive observance of the Rule of Saint Dominic. It was a difficult task because plague and schism had infected the order, the country, and the Church. Few were entering religious life, so even the most idealistic felt it might be good to rewrite the rule to relax the discipline and shorten the training period to keep the novitiate alive. Conradin held the line and continued to enforce the primitive form of the rule.

Twice Conradin was imprisoned for defending the pope. Plague had stricken Bologna forcefully during Conradin’s abbacy. The situation was especially bleak for Bologna, which was under a published papal interdict because the populace had rebelled against papal authority. The interdict was ignored by most. Conradin tried to sway the people to repentance before it was too late, hoping that the interdict might be lifted. The Bolognese refused to listen, even as they were dying of the plague. Tired of his hounding, Conradin was captured, badly beaten, and imprisoned. Later, the prior prevailed and the city submitted to the pope.

In recognition of his work as mediator, Pope Martin V intended to name Conradin a cardinal, but the prior refused. In 1429, when a fresh outbreak of the plague called all the friars once more to the streets to assist the dying, Conradin also fell victim to the disease (Benedictines, Dorcy).

MLA Citation

  • Katherine I Rabenstein. Saints of the Day, 1998. CatholicSaints.Info. 7 August 2020. Web. 27 November 2020. <>