Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Carmelite Saint of the Day


St. Peter Thomas was born about 1305 at the hamlet of Sales in southern Perigord (Gascony) France, and entered the Carmelites when he was 21.  Not much is known about him until he was chosen as procurator general of the order to the Papal Court at Avignon in 1345.  This appointment led to his taking up residence in Avignon, then the residence of the popes.  It is believed that he delivered the funeral oration of Pope Clement VI in 1352.  His life was spent in difficult negotiations with Genoa, Milan and Venice as the representative of the Holy See.
 In 1354, he was consecrated bishop of Patti and Lipari and represented the pope at Milan when the Emperor Charles IV was crowned king of Italy.  He was charged with a mission to smooth the difficulties between Venice and Hungary and to promote peace and unity with the Eastern Churches.  In 1359 he was sent to Constantinople with a large contingent of troops and held the title of “Universal Legate to the Eastern Church’.  He was then appointed Archbishop of Crete in 1363, and Latin Patriarch of Constantinople in 1364.  He had a reputation as an apostle of church unity.  In 1365, during an attack on infidel Alexandria he sustained multiple arrow wounds and died a holy death in Farmagosta at Cyprus three months later on January 6, 1366.  He was never formally canonized but his feast was permitted to the Carmelites in 1608.

St. Peter Thomas, Pray for us!

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

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