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Lives of the Saints:

How They Changed the World

Saint Pedro Calungsod (1654–1672)

Saint Pedro Calungsod (1654–1672)

Patron saint of Filipino youth, catechumens, altar boys, and the Philippines

Feast day: April 2

Pedro Calungsod was only fourteen years old when he joined a group of Spanish missionaries that was traveling from the Philippines to the Marianas Islands to teach the native people about God. Pedro was a devout young man who served as a sacristan in the Church. The missionaries were sure he would be a good example for the young people on the islands. Pedro was eager to share his deep faith in Jesus with others, and many of the natives were baptized as a result of his efforts. However, some people on the islands were wary of the newcomers. Unfortunately, Pedro fell victim to a group of people who feared that the missionaries were poisoning children with holy water. When Pedro and a priest came to a village to baptize the chief’s daughter, they were killed by assassins. He was just seventeen years old. Saint Pedro was canonized in 2012. [Image CC-BY-SA-3.0]