St. Francis Xavier – the Lowell Connection

 St. Francis Xavier, S.J. (1506-1552)

With all the Lowell connections, it’s important to note that today December 3 is the Feast Day of St. Francis Xavier. Francis Xavier was a pioneering Roman Catholic missionary, born in  Navarre – one of the seven founders of the Society of Jesus along with teacher and mentor Saint Ignatius of Loyola. Known as the “Apostle of the Indies” – he brought the Gopsel of Christianity to India, Goa, Japan and elsewhere – perhaps even the Phillipines. His conversions in Asia are legendary.

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia ” St. Francis Xavier  is considered the greatest missionary since the time of the Apostles and the zeal he displayed, the wonderful miracles he performed, and the great number of souls he brought to the light of true Faith, entitle him to this distinction.” Unsurprisingly then, he is the Patron of all foreign missions.

Happy Feast Day to the men of Lowell’s Keith Academy-  taught for over 40 years by the Xaverian Brothers, and to the students at Lowell Catholic High School (the legacy) now affliliated as a Xaverian Brothers Sponsored School;  the St. Francis Xavier University, Antaconish, Nova Scotia, Canada alums-  many from the Lowell and Massachusetts environs and all those who honor their Xaverian connections. And of course to all those Boston College, St. Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Holy Cross, Georgetown, Marquette, Fairfield,  etc.  alums who honor the Jesuit tradition in education and spirituality and St. Francis Xavier who helped found the tradition.

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