SAINT STANISLAUS KOSTKA
Jesuit, Patron of Youth (1550-1568)
Saint Stanislaus Kostka was born in Poland in 1550 of a noble Polish family. At the age of fourteen, he was sent with his older brother, Paul, to study at the Jesuit College in Vienna where he was known for his religious piety and fervor. After making a vow to enter the Society of Jesus, he became ill. A demon appeared in the sick room of the young saint under the form of a black dog which Saint Stanislaus drove away with the Sign of the Cross. His illness worsened; he was lodged in the residence of someone who would not allow the Blessed Sacrament to be brought to him. Saint Stanislaus had read that those who invoked Saint Barbara never died without the Sacraments and so he begged her for aid, which he received. Soon, he was restored to complete health. Saint Stanislaus was sent to Rome, where he continued his novitiate, during which he was a model of religious perfection according to the master of novices. Unfortunately, his delicate constitution led to an illness with a high fever. Saint Stanislaus wrote a letter to the Blessed Virgin begging Her to take him to heaven on the anniversary of Her Assumption. His wish was granted on August 15, 1568. He was only eighteen years old. In his short life, he was the model of youthful devotion. We often see him with the infant Jesus in his arms because when Our Lady came o cure him, she placed the infant Savior on his bed. The feast day of the patron saint of our parish is November 13th.