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Peter Celestine

Pope St. Celestine V

Born: c.1215

Died: May 19, 1296

Canonized: 1313

Feast Day: May 19

Patron Saint of: bookbinders

Saint Peter Celestine brought his own special sparkle into the lives of those who knew him. He is affectionately remembered for his big-hearted innocence and elementary blunders in the practical affairs of daily life. He preferred a simple life and it was no surprise when he retired to Mount Majella with a few of his disciples.

During the three years he spent on the mountain his life was filled with miracles. The mysterious sound of celestial bells seemed to ring all day and frequently heavenly voices were heard singing in the air. A mysterious dove, whiter than snow, often lit on Peter's oratory and when his new church reached completion angels appeared, clothed in gowns of white, and were overheard to say, "Let us attend the dedication."

While celebrating the office, a beautiful seamless garment, like that worn by the angels, fell upon the shoulders of Saint Peter, apparently a sign of Heaven's approval of his sanctity. Forty-three years later at age eighty, Peter Celestine, though reluctant to accept, was elected Pope and brought the dignity of simplicity to his station. A few months later he voluntarily abdicated, because a simple life was all he ever wanted.