On the 2nd of April 1842, in the village of Riva (North Italy) there was born a little boy called Dominic Savio. Every evening little Dominic said the rosary with his father and mother. He learned quickly the prayers and began to serve mass. He would serve mass very sincerely.
Dominic wrote down in a small notebook some of his revelation. One of them was to go often to confession. Another of his resolution was, "My friends will be Jesus and Mary." The last resolution which he wrote in his notebook on that day reads: "Death rather than sin." This resolution became, henceforth, the motto of Dominic.
Dominic had a great desire to go to school. He wanted to study. But the school was very far away. Courageously Dominic walked the whole distance. He knew that his duty was to study well. He applied himself diligently to his studies. His behavior was exemplary. He was the first in class.
As in his own village, Dominic was a model in class. He studied well and was liked by the teacher and by his companions. He tried to make his companions happy during recreations. He told them some very nice stories or played with them joyfully. So his companions were very fond of him. One day a man entered the school and began to speak against religion. Dominic went near. As soon as he realized what it was all about, he courageously told the boys, "Come, let us go and leave this unfortunate man who wishes to rob us of our souls." All the boys left and the man went away ashamed. Dominic was always on the look-out to render service or to help others. He would try to cheer up the sick by some kind word or deed.
One day in September 1856, Dominic went to see Don Bosco: "Father, allow me to go home at once." Don Bosco was much surprised. "And why Dominic, do you want to go home?" "My mother is very sick." – "But how do you know it? You have not received any letter from your father." – "No, but I know it." He allowed Dominic to go home. Dominic ran home, whilst his father went to call the doctor. "Do not worry, mother; I have come to tell you that our Lady will cure you." He had scarcely left, when she felt well again. When the doctor came, he found her in excellent health.
A Little later Dominic himself felt very unwell but did not complain. Gradually the health of Dominic Savio grew worse. Don Bosco advised Dominic to go home to get cured. When taking leave, Dominic told Don Bosco – "I shall help you from Heaven. I shall pray for you and all my comrades."
Dominic's father took him home. He called a doctor who unfortunately prescribed the wrong treatment: to let out blood ten times. This treatment weakened Dominic and it became clear that he would die soon. He consoled his mother: "Mother, do not be anxious. In Heaven I shall be more useful than on earth." On 9th of March, 1857 in the evening, Dominic called his father – "It is time" – "Do you want anything my child?" – "Yes, take my prayer book and recite the prayer for the dying." His mother burst into tears. Dominic told her – "Do not weep Mother! I am going to Heaven." These were his last words and at the tender age of 15 years, he entered Eternity.
After his death many people prayed to him and obtained great favours. That is why Pope Pius XII on the 12th of June 1954 proclaimed him a Saint.
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