Saint Pedro Calungsod was the second Filipino saint to be canonized by the Catholic Church, and he remains one of the Philippines’ most beloved and important religious figures. He’s known as both a martyr and an apostle, but what exactly does that mean? Let’s learn more about Saint Pedro Calungsod, who he was, and why he matters today.
A Brief History
Blessed Pedro Calungsod was born in July 1654 in Ginatilan, Philippines. He was born to a poor family and it is said that he started school by jumping over a fence and pulling himself through an open window. After finishing his schooling, he joined missionaries going to Guam. He and his companion, Diego Luis de San Vitores, were sent by Padre Diego Luis de San Vitores to preach about Christianity. He had accompanied Father Diego Luis de San Vitores as his servant and interpreter St. Pedro Calungsod was a boy native to Cebu (Philippines) who was martyred in Guam during their quest for evangelization.
San Pedro Calungsod was a young Filipino saint who gave his life to save others. He was tortured and killed, but still remained loyal to God and refused to deny his faith. He died at age 17. He’s one of only 3 Filipinos recognized as saints by Pope John Paul II. His feast day is 2 April.
Why Was He Canonized?
After his martyrdom, St. Pedro’s remains were removed to Cebu, where many miracles occurred, and his body was found incorrupt even after so many years. The bishops of Manila and Cebu took up a joint petition for his canonization to Pope John Paul II. He was beatified in 2000 by Pope John Paul II and canonized on October 21, 2012, by Pope Benedict XVI.