POSTCARDS 150TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DEATH OF ST. GABRIEL OF OUR LADY OF SORROWS

POSTCARDS 150TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DEATH OF ST. GABRIEL OF OUR LADY OF SORROWS  

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the death of St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, who was born in Assisi on March 1st, 1838. The death of his mother and three sisters profoundly marked his childhood, but the events had the effect of strengthening his desire to respond to a vocation to the priesthood. At the age of 18 he decided to enter the novitiate of the Passionist Congregation in Morrovalle, Italy. Taking the name for which he would become known, he vowed heart and soul to live as a religious. He wrote to his father "...My life is one of constant joy. I would not change a minute of it..." On 10 July 1859 he lived in the town of Isola del Gran Sasso (Teramo). He studied theology and later received his tonsure and minor orders, but towards the end of 1861, he became ill with tuberculosis. Efforts to treat the illness were ineffective, yet he faced his destiny peacefully accepting the will of the Lord, "As God wills, so I will also". He died at the young age of 24 on 27 February 1862. Up until 1892, the year his body was exhumed, the Saint appeared in the dreams of people who were sick during which miracles of healing took place attributed to his intercession. Some of these events are depicted on the postcards. The image chosen for the envelope for postal stationery shows an ideal perspective of the first Church and the new Shrine dedicated to him, placing them in a beautiful frame of the Gran Sasso. The two buildings are then depicted individually in the impressions of the postcard stamp. Popular devotion to the Saint continues today as witnessed by the constant pilgrimages to Isola del Gran Sasso where his remains rest.