St. Gabriel Possenti’s urn is found in the Sanctuary of San Gabriele dell’Addolorata in Isola del Gran Sasso. (Public Domain/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)
“Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows” depicts the saint wearing the Passionist habit. The Passionist Sign, part of the habit, is on his chest. The painting, taken from the French Passionists’ Archives, was painted by Gabriel de l’Addolorata in 1899. (Public Domain/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

Feb. 27

The 11th of 13 children of a distinguished Italian lawyer who served the Papal States, Francesco Possenti was a bright, joyful youth, despite losing his mother when he was 4.

Educated at the Jesuit college in Spoleto, he was seriously ill twice and vowed to become a religious if he recovered. 

He entered the Passionist novitiate in 1856, taking the name Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows.

He served dutifully, with great piety and cheerfulness, dying from tuberculosis at the age of 24.