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Rome Reports

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24-year-old Pier Giorgio Frassati continues to inspire nearly 100 years after his death

Pier Giorgio Frassati was an ordinary young man living in Italy in the early 1900s. He enjoyed sports, nature and hanging out with friends. 

Little did he know that his life would become a source of inspiration for many, including Pope John Paul II, who celebrated his beatification Mass in 1990 and called him the “Man of the Beatitudes.”

Founder & Executive Director of Frassati USA
“By just taking little steps, little strides, sooner or later you find yourself 'verso l'alto,' at the top. That's why I think he's the 'Man of the Beatitudes,' why he's so relatable and so attractive. Because he testifies that holiness is possible. We can do it. He did it. And the tools that he used are the tools that we can use.”

Simplicity, a spirit of service and deep devotion to the Eucharist and the Blessed Mother. Those were the tools that Frassati used until his unexpected death when he was just 24 years old.

Founder & Executive Director of Frassati USA
“His death, it was swift and sudden and unexpected, in the sense that he was such a strong, robust, young, healthy, athletic guy, and within one week, he died from the effects of polio, which they believe he caught from visiting the poor. He would go to the sickest of the sick there in Turin, at a hospital called Cottolengo.”

Although Pier Giorgio was from a small town in northern Italy, he has become a role model for people all over the world, including the United States.

Founder & Executive Director of Frassati USA
“He's inspired many vocations over here. He's got schools named for him over here. And in a way, even though he hasn't been formally canonized by the Church, it's almost like he's been canonized by the people. And you can see that by the incredible devotion, not just in the United States, but almost on every continent.”

To help others follow in Blessed Frassati's footsteps, Christine Wohar chose to write “Finding Frassati.” Every chapter of the book contains a reflection about some aspect of Frassati's life; a prayer; and an action step, something a person can do to grow in holiness, as Blessed Pier Giorgio did.