On Sunday, Pope Francis will canonize seven blessed from five different countries. There are many similarities between them, even though they lived in very different periods and societies.
Frenchman Salomone Leclerq and Mexican José Sánchez del Río were martyrs. The former was decapitated during the French Revolution, and the latter was killed at age 14 in the midst of the Cristero War in Mexico in 1928.
The Italian priests Lodovico Pavoni and Alfonso Maria Fusco were famous for their unconditional service to children, orphans, and the poor in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Elizabeth of the Trinity was a Carmelite nun and a French mystic who died at age 26 around the same period.
José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, known as "the Gaucho priest,” was famous for traveling around rural Argentina riding a mule, helping the the sick and the destitute.
The most recent saint of the group is the Spaniard Manuel González García. This pious priest breathed new air into the devotion to the Eucharist in mid-twentieth century Spain.