St. Gregory Barbarigo (1625-1697)
A life-long scholar. Gregory was born in Venice, Italy. His education and upbringing was largely the responsibility of his father, as his mother passed away when he was but seven. Gregory studied many subjects, including mathematics, astronomy, law, theology, and ecclesiastical history. In 1655, Gregory was ordained a priest at Padua. Gregory then went to Rome, bringing with him his library, to continue studying there. During the plague, the Pope entrusted the relief work in the district of Trastevere to Gregory. He was appointed Bishop of Bergamo in 1657, a cardinal in 1660, and Bishop of Padua in 1664. As bishop, Gregory sought to implement the reforms of the Council of Trent in his diocese. A particular focus of reform for Gregory was the clergy. However, he also strove to increase the lay faithful’s understanding of Christian doctrine. Gregory also invested in libraries, so that others could advance their learning. He died at the age of seventy one.
O God, You were pleased to have blessed Gregory, Your Confessor and Bishop, renowned as one who cherished his flock and loved the poor, in Your mercy see that we extol his merits and imitate his charity.