This is one of my favorite saints and have been greatly influenced by him, his compassion for the poor, his sense of humor, and his piety and devotion to God. Pier Giorgio Frassati has shown me how all of us can be devoted to God, and have good old fun at the same time.
Pier Giorgio Frassati was born in Turin, Italy in 1901 to a well to do family. His family owned a newspaper called La Stampa, his father was an atheist but Pier dedicated his life to God. He belonged to the apostleship of prayer, Catholic action, and was a Third Order Dominican. He established a newspaper Momento. Pier was also part of the ST Vincent De Paul society.
Pier Giorgio Frassati gave most of his money to people he saw as more needy than he was. He would often give to the poor part of his cloth. Many times he came back home without his coat. Most of the time he would give his fare money to those who needed it, coming home late in the day. Pier Giorgio Frassati never took a vow of poverty, nor lived in a poor area. Yet he showed that you can have compassion for the poor, regardless of your social class, or where you live.
He once said "charity is not enough: we need social reform" It is something that he showed through his merits and deeds. At another time someone asked him why he rode third class he replied with a smile " because there is not a fourth class." Yet still another time during graduation, was given the choice of choosing between getting money or a car. He chose money and gave it to the poor.
There has not been many who I have met nor heard about that has done such great charities as he did. He did not only do these charities, but would often keep them to himself not telling anyone. Because of him I have learned the value of charity and social activism.
Sense of Humor
Pier Giorgio Frassati was known for having a good sense of humor, and evangelized with his constant laughing, as well as his pranks. Pier Giorgio once placed a donkey on a student who was being unstudius. He was giving him a sign that he was being an ass. Pier Giorgio was ordinary, he hanged out with ordinary people, went to school and hiked.
He taught me that you can be ordinary and be a saint. It is through devotion to the Rosary, to the holy Eucharist, by serving God, and helping thy neighbor that we become so. Doing so does not need to be impossible, but it does require wanting to. Pier Giorgio showed me that you can find joy and gladness in serving God.