He gained the attention of St. John Bosco, who numbered him among his favorite pupils. Since the age of thirteen, Luigi suffered from health problems. However, three years later, at age the age of sixteen, he was present at Don Bosco's death in Turin in 1888. Immediately upon his death, Luigi's ailments were miraculously cured.
Starting in 1899, Don Orione started to gather a group of priests and clerics that were to become "Piccola Opera della Divina Provvidenza," or the "Little Work of the Divine Providence." In 1903 the group received the full imprimatur of the bishop, and it became what is still called to this day the "Sons of Divine Providence."
One of the priests who was in his inner circle was Lorenzo Perosi, who later became Perpetual Director of the Sistine Choir and one of the most famous composers of sacred music. Perosi was born in the same year and the same province (Tortona) as Orione; they remained lifelong friends.
In 1908, Don Orione went to Messina, Sicily and Reggio Calabria, Calabria, both of which were devastated by respective earthquakes. He dedicated three years to help those in need, most especially the caring of orphans. In 1915 he went to Marsica when that region had a similarly devastating earthquake. That same year he founded the Congregation of the Little Missionary Sisters of Charity.
At the end of World War I, Don Orione began to expand his work. He founded schools, farming colonies, and charity organizations—always with a special emphasis on helping orphans and the poor. Over the next two decades, he started foundations throughout Italy and the Americas.
In 1931, he founded the Shrine of the Madonna della Guardia in Tortona, which to this day is the principal church in the world for the Orionine order. It is also a center for annual music festivals in honor of Orione's friend, the hitherto mentioned Perosi.
In the winter of 1940, Don Orione started to suffer serious cardiac and pulmonary ailments. He went to Sanremo to recuperate, but not without a tinge of regret. On March 8, 1940, on the eve of his departure for Sanremo, Don Orione is recorded as saying, "It is not among the palm trees that I would like to die," he said, "but amongst the poor who are Jesus Christ." Four days later, surrounded by fellow priests of his Orionine order, Luigi Orione died. His last words were, "Jesus, Jesus! Jesus! I am going..."
Don Orione's mortal remains have resided in the Crypt of the "Shrine of La Madonna della Guardia" as of their interment on March 19 1940, the sanctuary in Tortona which he himself founded. His body was later exhumed in 1965 for examination. On October 26 1980, Don Luigi Orione was beatified by Pope John Paul II. Nearly twenty-four years later, Blessed Luigi Orione was canonized by Pope John Paul II on May 16 2004.
Today, the charitable organizations begun by Saint Luigi Orione are still operating in abundance throughout the world. In America, the national shrine and headquarters of the Orionine order is located on a well-known hill in East Boston, Massachusetts, known as Orient Heights.
MADE YOU LOOK! YEAH, THERE'S THE TOP OF THE PRU, BUT THERE ARE OTHER AMAZING VIEWS - IF YOU KNOW WHERE TO FIND THEM
Jul 16, 2006; Not long ago, it wasn't hard to find a perch, high above the blasting horns and human frenzy, to behold this city: a view of...