St Francis Xavier: a saint worth celebrating

This Saint and Patron of Xavier College Preparatory loved to share his love of Christ to people all over the world.

Chloe Ann Porter, Writer

St. Francis Xavier was a holy man who lived from 1506 to 1552. He spent his life in Navarre, present day Spain, after he was born in Xavier Castle to a prominent family.

According to Catholic Online, Francis went to the University of Paris and his roommate Peter Favre, influenced by St. Ignatius of Loyola, inspired Francis to become a priest in 1537. Although he was apprehensive at first, Francis and some other friends began to plan their own order of priests. The goal of their order was to travel to the Holy Land and convert non-believers. According to biography.com, Pope Paul III approved this order, coined the the Society of Jesus, or the Jesuits, in 1540.

St. Francis built churches and converted thousands to Christianity all throughout the world. His work touched the lives of many, like a man he met in the Maluku Islands, Anjiro. He was a murderer who had lived in Japan and was wanted for his crimes. After confessing to Francis, Anjiro converted to Christianity, making him the first Japanese convert to Christianity.

St. Francis felt it was his calling to visit people so he traveled the world, especially places where Jesus’ work was unknown. This shows his love for the people regardless if they are Christian or not. He thought every person was a child of God.

The date of his death, Dec. 3, 1552, is also his feast day. We celebrate St. Francis for all the work he did in Asia and how he devoted his life to helping others see the beauty of Jesus Christ. He is the patron saint of Catholic Missionaries. He was canonized by Pope Gregory XV, the same day as his partner St. Ignatius of Loyola, on Mar. 12, 1622.