September 18, 2018: St. Joseph of Cupertino

Giuseppe Maria Desa was born in 1603 in a stable,his family having been reduced to poverty as a result of the debt left behind by his father, who died prematurely before his birth. He experienced ecstatic visions in his childhood, but had to battle his temper greatly. Rejected by the Conventual Franciscans at 17 due to his lack of education, he was accepted by the Capuchin Friars as a lay brother. His ecstasies prohibited him from executing his duties, and he was released, only to return to the Conventual Franciscans again to work in the stables. Impressed with his devotion and simplicity of life, they admitted him to the order in 1625 and he was ordained in 1628. His ecstasies only increased and he began levitating during Mass and the Divine Office. This resulted in his being viewed as disruptive and he was confined to his cell, forbidden from participating in communal prayer. Joseph was sent to different communities for observation over the next 18 years, and he spent the last six years of his life back home with the Conventual Franciscans before his death in 1663. Heis the patron of astronauts, aviation, those with mental handicaps, students and test takers. St. Joseph of Cupertino, pray for us!

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