Perhaps the world’s first-known advocate for the working woman, Arcangelo Tadini, who was Canonized on April 26, 2009 by Pope Benedict XVI, established a religious order called the Worker Sisters of the Holy House of Nazareth that sought to implement the church’s teachings regarding workers’ rights and to lead working women into Christian faith by setting a strong example.
Tadini was born in Brescia, Italy on October 12, 1846 and joined the seminary when he was 18. An accident left him with a limp and an unfortunate illness forced him to spend his first year of the priesthood at home with his family. Once he regained his health, he moved from parish to parish and was known for the warm, attentive way he nurtured his community.
As the Industrial Revolution spread, he administered aid to the workers, founded the Worker’s Mutual Aid Association and used his own inheritance to build a spinning factory for women and used the proceeds to build them housing. His religious order of sisters worked in the factories alongside other women, sharing their fears and frustrations and teaching them by example.
His feast day is May 20.
Happy Love Thursday!