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Hoy es fiesta de San Antonio de Padua

El 13 de junio la Iglesia celebra la fiesta de uno de los santos más conocidos y venerados en el mundo, San Antonio de Padua, a quien según la tradición, se le invoca para hallar objetos perdidos.

La tradición se habría originado en un problema que tuvo con un novicio.

San Antonio nació en Portugal en 1195 en una familia de la nobleza. Desde niño se consagró a la Santísima Virgen. En su juventud fue atacado por las pasiones sensuales pero con ayuda de Dios las dominó, encontrando su fortaleza en las visitas al Santísimo.

Fue admitido en los franciscanos a inicios de 1221, participó en Asís del capítulo general de la orden de ese año y más adelante fue enviado a predicar en diversas ciudades, obteniendo un gran éxito en la conversión de los herejes.

Como la gente buscaba estar cerca de él y algunos le arrancaban pedazos de su hábito, se le asignó un grupo de hombres para protegerlo después de los sermones. En ocasiones predicaba en plazas y mercados. Bastaba su presencia para que los pecadores cayesen de rodillas a sus pies.

Se trasladó a Padua, donde ya había trabajado anteriormente. Denunció y combatió el vicio de la usura pero poco a poco la salud de San Antonio se fue deteriorando y se retiró a descansar a los bosques. Al sentir que su vida llegaba a su término, pidió regresar a Padua, pero solo llegó hasta los límites de la ciudad.

El 13 de junio de 1231 recibió los últimos sacramentos, entonó un canto a la Virgen y antes de partir a la Casa del Padre, dijo sonriente: «Veo venir a Nuestro Señor». Fue canonizado sin que haya transcurrido un año de su muerte por el Papa Gregorio IX  y declarado Doctor de la Iglesia por el Papa Pío XII.

Un hombre retó a San Antonio a probar que Jesús estaba en la Eucaristía y dejó sin comer tres días a su mula. Llevó al animal al templo y le mostró pasto fresco, pero la mula prefirió ir con el Santo, que se encontraba al lado con una hostia consagrada, y se arrodilló.

Los objetos perdidos

A San Antonio se le invoca para encontrar objetos perdidos tal vez porque cierto día un novicio huyó del convento con un salterio que usaba el Santo. San Antonio oró para recuperar su libro y el novicio se vio ante una aparición terrible y amenazante que lo obligó a regresar y devolver lo robado.

Se dice que en una ocasión, mientras oraba, se le apareció el niño Jesús y lo sostuvo en sus brazos. Muchos fieles acuden a San Antonio para que interceda para hallar un buen esposo o esposa. Es patrono de mujeres estériles, pobres, viajeros, albañiles, panaderos y papeleros.

Por: Aciprensa

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