February 11

St. Paschal

St. Paschal

Paschal Baylon was born at Torrehermosa in the Kingdom of Aragon inSpain on the 16th of May 1540. It was the day of the Feast of Pentecost,and for this reason, his parents named him Paschal. His parents MartinBaylon and Elizabeth Jubera were not particularly wealthy individuals.

Early Childhood

He worked as a shepherd from the age of 7 till the age of 24. His lifeof mortification began when he was a shepherd. He prayed while on dutyand he was attentive to the church bell that rang at the Elevationduring Mass. He was an extremely honest and responsible young man. Whenhis animals damaged crops in the fields, he took full responsibility andoffered to pay the owners damages.

To fight illiteracy, he carried a book when he went to the fields wherehe looked after sheep. He asked people that he met to teach him how toread the letters in the book. Due to this dedication, Paschal was ableto read at a very tender age.

Despite being poor himself, Paschal always helped other poor peoplewherever he could. At some point, he would give away part of his dinnerto the poor. His pious nature influenced people to adore and respecthim. He was also an individual with high levels of respect for those hecame across.

In 1564, Paschal joined the Friars Minor and went into a life of penancewholeheartedly. He turned down the opportunity to study for thepriesthood because he felt that it was not his path. He chose to be abrother instead.

He did not like comfort and as a result, he wore a coat with steelspikes or tunic lined with rough pig hair designed to cause discomfort.He walked barefoot in the snow and on the roughest roads. He also sleptoutside in the cold, occasionally. He adapted to all places and seasons.He was always content and cheerful.


He was a cook, porter, gardener and official beggar who went aroundasking for alms. He lived his life in contemplation and meditation allthe time, even at work. He never wasted food. He preferred eatingleftovers from the kitchen. At the end of each week, he ate a few boiledvegetables soaked in water with wormwood.

He was a devoted Christian who spent nights at the altar to commune withGod through meditation on faith. In 1576 he was sent to France to defendthe Real Presence against the opinions of Calvinist preachers. As he waspreaching, he was despised and the Huguenot mob wanted to kill him. Theychased him away throwing stones and dirt at him. He suffered a brokenshoulder and bruises.

Date of Death

Paschal fell ill and died on the 17th of May 1592 at the age of 52. Hewas buried in Villarreal where his tomb became a place of pilgrimagewhere miracles were performed. In 1730 an indigenous Guatemalan claimedto have seen Saint Paschal appearing as a skeleton in robes. This eventbecame the basis of the heterodox tradition of San Pascualito.

Pope Paul V beatified Paschal on 29 October 1618 and Pope Alexander VIIIcanonized Paschal as a saint on 16 October 1690. Today, he is celebratedannually by Catholics


Pope Leo XIII proclaimed the Saint as the seraph of the Eucharist andpatron of Eucharistic Congresses and affiliated associations. Pope JohnXXIII named the Saint as the patron for the Sergobe diocese on 12 May1961.

5 Interesting Facts About St. Paschal

  1. His tomb at Villareal was a source of many miracles and it became a
    place of pilgrimage.
    3.Art often depicts him wearing the Franciscan habit and bearing a
    monstrance to signify his devotion to the Holy Eucharist.
  2. St Paschal’s grave was desecrated, and anti-clerical leftists had
    his relics burned during the Red Terror at the time of the Spanish Civil
    5.In 1730 an indigenous Guatemalan claimed to have seen Saint Paschal
    appearing as a skeleton in robes. That was the beginning of the
    heterodox tradition of San Pascualito.

Prayer to St. Paschal

I desire to love you, my Lord, my Light,my Strength, my Deliverer,my God and my All.What have I in heaven, O Lord,and what do I want besides your love and grace?You are the God of my heart, you are my portion,my inheritance for eternity. Amen. (A Prayer of St Paschal)St Paschal, you were filled by the Holy Spiritwith a wondrous lovefor the sacred mysteries of Christ’s Body and Blood.Intercede for us now that we may obtain the grace ofa profound faith and tender devotionfor Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament.May we draw from the Eucharistthe same spiritual riches you received with great joy,and may our lives revealthe enduring fruit of love, generosity and goodnessto the glory of God our Father.St Paschal Baylon, lover of the Eucharist, pray for us. Amen.