Saint Francis Borgia was a Spanish saint born on October 28, 1510. He is remembered as the patron saint of the Order of the Jesuits, the Universal Church, and the persecuted.
He was born in Catalonia, Spain to the nobleman Juan Borgia and Joana of Aragon. He was the third Duke of Gandia and the Viceroy of Catalonia. He was also a high-ranking official in the court of Emperor Charles V.
Saint Francis Borgia was married to Eleanor de Castro, who was born in 1513. They had eight children together. When Eleanor died in 1546, Francis was deeply affected. He vowed to dedicate his life to God and the Catholic Church.
Francis decided to leave his luxurious lifestyle and enter the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), a religious order founded by Saint Ignatius of Loyola. He was ordained a priest and quickly rose through the ranks of the Jesuits, becoming the Superior General of the order in 1565. As Superior General, Francis played a key role in the expansion of the Jesuits, establishing new missions and colleges throughout Europe and the Americas.
Francis worked to improve the spiritual lives of the Jesuits, emphasizing the importance of humility, poverty, and devotion to God. He strengthened the order, while also leading a very spiritual life. He encouraged his fellow Jesuits to pursue missionary work in foreign lands, and he even went on a number of missions himself.
Francis was also a great reformer of the Catholic Church. He wrote numerous letters to Pope Pius V, advocating for reforms and improvements in the Church. He even wrote a book, “The Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius,” which was extremely influential in the teachings and practices of the Catholic Church.
Francis was also known for his charitable work, particularly his efforts to assist the poor and the sick. He founded hospitals and orphanages and was known for his kindness and compassion towards those in need.
Saint Francis Borgia Francis died in 1572, in Rome and was canonized by Pope Clement X in 1671. He was declared a saint for his exemplary spiritual life, his devotion to the Church, and his dedication to missionary work.
Saint Francis Borgia is remembered as a great reformer and missionary of the Catholic Church. He was also a devoted husband and father. His feast days are October 10th and October 3rd.