Saints and Holy People

Find out about their lives and how they changed the world

Saint Dominic Savio (1842-1857)

Saint Dominic Savio (1842-1857)

Patron saint of choir boys, falsely accused people, and juvenile delinquents

Feast day: May 6

Dominic Savio was born April 2, 1842. Dominic was a student of Saint John Bosco, an Italian priest, educator, and writer who dedicated his life to the betterment and education of disadvantaged young boys.

Dominic was studying to be a priest when he fell ill and died at just 14 years of age. As a testament to Dominic’s holiness, faith, and devotion, Bosco wrote Dominic’s biography. Dominic petitioned to receive his First Communion early. He spent hours in prayer and reading in preparation for the sacrament. He took great pains to avoid any situation that might offend God. He was willing to endure any suffering because he truly felt that nothing was painful or tiresome if he was doing God’s work. He spent his brief life in ardent pursuit of holiness and sainthood.

Dominic’s superiors noticed that he was enduring physical penances. They insisted he put an end to these penances, as they were affecting his health. Dominic was determined to bear all suffering cheerfully. Not long afterward, his health began to fail. On March 9, 1857, he passed away after failed treatments by his local physician. The biography written by Bosco was the main source of information about Dominic’s life and pursuit of holiness.

Saint Dominic Savio was canonized in 1954.  

(Image © Vicki Shuck / Saint Mary’s Press)