Saint Romanus of Condat (c. 390-463) was born at the end of the 4th century, when monasticism, already widespread in the East, had also taken hold in the West. His parents sent him to study at the monastery of Ainay, in Lyon, where he was a pupil of Abbot Sabinus, who gave him a Life of the Desert Fathers.
When these two Salesians in love with Christ first met in 1921, Monsignor Aloysius Versiglia (1873-1930) was passing through Turin. He already had a 15-years' mission in China behind him, while Callistus Caravario (1903-1930) was an 18-year old burning with the desire to become a priest and devote himself to the missionary life.
"'Who do you say I am?' Simon Peter replied: 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God'". Jesus' question to the disciples and the answer of his vicar on earth recall the reason for the liturgical feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, which is based precisely on the mission of shepherd of the universal Church entrusted by Our Lord to the Prince of the Apostles.
The life of this great monk, theologian and bishop, a protagonist of the 11th century who significantly contributed to the renewal of the Church, enjoying the trust of the various popes who employed him as a collaborator, did not have an easy beginning. Saint Peter Damian (1007-1072), the last of six children and a native of Ravenna, soon lost both parents and lived his childhood in hardship.
"If I could only put into the hearts of all, the fire that is burning in my own breast, and that makes me love the Hearts of Jesus and Mary so very much!" So said Jacinta Marto, the little warrior who went up to Heaven on February 20th, 1920 at almost ten years old, thus joining her brother Francisco, who had died on April 4th, 1919, when he was not yet eleven.
This exemplary Chinese catechist, who suffered martyrdom at the age of 47, had demonstrated virtuousness from childhood. Saint Lucy Yi Zhenmei (1815-1862), the last of five children, was born in Mianyang to a family that had recently become Christian through the father‘s conversion, previously a Buddhist.