St. Peter of Alcantara ~ October 19




click title below to study his treatise on prayer

by St. Peter of Alcantara







The Franciscan Reformer: His thirst for penance was unappeased, and in 1539, being then forty years old, he founded the Congregation of Saint Joseph of the “Strict Observance,” the Alcantarine reforms, to conserve the letter of the Rule of Saint Francis. He suffered great tribulations to conserve that Rule in its integrity. Eventually Saint Peter himself, the year before his death, raised it to the status of a province under obedience to the Minister General of the entire Seraphic Order. The Reform he instituted has since been extended even to the farthest Orient and the Indies; it is believed God ordained that it repair the ravages to the faith of the sixteenth century. Friend and confessor of Saint Teresa of Avila, the Carmelite Reformer, assisted her in 1559 during her work to reform her own Order. St. Teresa is one among those whom he guided to perfection, who fully appreciated this remarkable director. He read her soul, approved her spirit of prayer, and strengthened her to carry out her reforms.

Reflection: If men do not go about barefoot now, nor undergo sharp penances as Saint Peter did, there remain many ways of trampling on the spirit of the world; and Our Lord teaches them, when He finds in souls the necessary courage.

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