St. Aloysius Gonzaga would certainly have agreed with St. Paul that faith in Jesus changes the way we look at other people. “From now on, we regard no one according to the flesh,” Paul said, because “the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come.”
This Italian Jesuit grew up in a noble family, where wealth and privilege depended on bloodlines. Aloysius was among the few at the top; as eldest son of a ruler, he was to inherit great things. But he chose to follow the itinerant carpenter-turned-teacher by becoming a Jesuit. He saw the poor as his friends. Instead of court dances, he cared for plague victims whom others feared and shunned. He died after he caught the disease by helping others. Aloysius was named the patron saint of youth when he was canonized; more recently he is patron for those who care for people suffering from HIV-AIDS.
—Fr. Tom Rochford, S.J. is moving to Denver where he will serve as chaplain and artist-in-residence at Regis Jesuit High School. He is an artist (primarily oil painting), photographer and videographer.