June 13 is the feast day of St. Anthony of Padua. He was born Fernando Martins de Bulhões to a wealthy and noble family in Lisbon, Portugal, and he was educated as a child. At age 15, he became a priest in the Augustinian order.
Shortly after his ordination, he became deeply inspired by Franciscan friars living nearby, and received permission to join the order founded by St. Francis of Assisi only 11 years prior. St. Francis was concerned about the place of theological studies in his order, but he saw a true love for a simple life in Fernando. Fernando took the name Anthony, inspired by the simple and holy life of St. Anthony the Great.
He was known for his great ability to preach. Even in the Vatican, his preaching was admired, and Pope Gregory IX described him as the “Ark of the Testament.”
Many Catholics pray to St. Anthony when they have lost something. Countless miracles of finding lost or stolen items (or even people!) have been attributed to his intercession. For this reason, he is considered the patron saint of lost items, lost people, and lost souls.
Anthony died on June 13, 1231, at the age of 35. He was canonized by Pope Gregory IX less than a year after his death. Although most of his body has turned to dust, St. Anthony’s tongue remains incorrupt — considered a sign of his gift of preaching. He is also the patron saint of fishermen, mail, oppressed people, travel hostesses, runts of litters, counter-revolutionaries, and more.
Get to know St. Anthony of Padua through this Spotify playlist inspired by his life and legacy — featuring artists Kings Kaleidoscope and Young Oceans and themes of truth and finding what was lost.