St. Alphonsus Liguori

Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Feast day: August 1

In 1696, St. Alphonsus was born to noble parents near Naples. His spiritual formation was entrusted to the Fathers of the Oratory in that city, and Alphonsus was known as the most devout Brother of the Little Oratory since his childhood. He was appointed doctor of law at the age of sixteen, and he pursued it with zeal and success. He soon abandoned the practice of law in favor of apostolic activity. He became a priest and focused his pastoral efforts on popular parish missions, confessions, and the formation of Christian groups.

In 1732, he founded the Redemptorist congregation. It was a community of priests and brothers dedicated to Christ's imitation and working primarily in popular missions for peasants in rural areas. He was deserted after a while by all of his original companions except one lay brother, almost as an omen of what was to come later. But the congregation survived and was formally approved 17 years later, despite the fact that its problems were far from over.

Alphonsus was appointed and consecrated as a bishop in 1762. He concentrated his efforts on revitalizing the seminary and strengthening the spirituality of his diocese's clergy and lay members. Throughout his time as bishop, Alphonsus was seen working closely with those in need, serving the poor and even opening his home to them.

As his health deteriorated, Alphonsus resigned as bishop in 1775 and returned to his native village.

Alphonsus died on August 1st, 1787. He was canonized on May 26, 1839 and beatified on September 15, 1816. St. Alphonsus Liguori was named a doctor of the Church by Pius IX in 1871, and St. Alphonsus Liguori was named the patron of moralists and confessors by Pius XII in 1950.

St. Alphonsus Liguori's Night Prayer

Jesus Christ, my God, I adore you and I thank you for the many favours you have bestowed on me this day

I offer you my sleep and all the moments of this night, and I pray that you preserve me from sin. Therefore, I place myself in your most sacred side, and under the mantle of our Blessed Lady, my Mother. May the holy Angels assist me and keep me in peace, and may your blessing be upon me. Amen.

St. Alphonsus Liguori's Quotes

Mary obtains salvation for all who have recourse to her. Oh! If all sinners had recourse to Mary, who would ever be lost? ... He who is protected by her will be saved; he who is not will be lost.
Devil does not bring sinners to Hell with their eyes open: he first blinds them with the malice of their own sins. He thus leads them to eternal perdition. Before we fall into sin, the enemy labours to blind us, that we may not see the evil we do, and the ruin we bring upon ourselves by offending God. After we commit sin, he seeks to make us dumb, that, through shame, we may conceal our guilt in confession.

Your God is ever beside you - indeed, He is even within you.

Whoever prays is certainly saved. He who does not is certainly damned. All the blessed have been saved by prayer. All the damned have been lost through not praying. If they had prayed they would not have been lost. And this is, and will be their greatest torment in hell: to think how easily they might have been saved, just by asking God for His grace, but that now it is too late - their time of prayer is gone.

The past is no longer yours; the future is not yet in your power. You have only the present wherein to do good. 

There is nothing more pleasing to God, than to see a soul who patiently and serenely bears whatever crosses it is sent; this is how love is made, by putting lover and loved one on the same level. . . A soul who loves Jesus Christ desires to be treated the way Christ was treated-desires to be poor, despised and humiliated. 
There is no one, after God, who loves us as much as this most loving Mother does.

Woe to those who despise devotion to Mary! ... The soul cannot live without having recourse to Mary and recommending itself to her. He falls and is lost who does not have recourse to Mary.

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