The Italian cities of Ravello and Rome both share links to Blessed Bonaventure of Potenza, whose liturgical feast day was celebrated throughout the Order on October 26, 2020. The body of the “Martyr of Obedience” has been enshrined at the San Francesco d’Assisi Church in Ravello since October 26, 1711. In Rome, Bonaventure was beatified as the “Pilgrim of the Coast” by Pope Pius VI on November 26 of the Holy Year of 1775.
This year in Ravello, the Most Reverend Orazio SORICELLI, Archbishop of Amalfi-Cava de’ Tirreni, Italy, presided over the feast day Mass at the Franciscan-Bonaventurian shrine. The Mass was attended by a significant number of faithful and devotees of Blessed Bonaventure. The same morning, Friar Cosimo ANTONINO, the Minister Provincial of the Province of the Seraphic Father St. Francis in Italy (Naples) celebrated the commemorative Mass at the Sant’Antonio di Padova Friary in Nocera Inferiore, Italy, accompanied by some young aspirants to the Franciscan life.
In Rome’s Santa Dorotea Church, the commemorative Mass was presided over by Friar Gianfranco GRIECO with the local Pastor, Friar Umberto FANFARILLO also attending. The church features a fresco dedicated to Blessed Bonaventure. At the foot of the altar, there is a small urn containing some relics of Blessed Bonaventure. They had been taken during his last recognition in 1962. The relics were later donated to Friar Gianfranco by the Postulator General at the time, Friar Ambrogio SANNA. The donation was made during the conclusion of the Kolbean festivities which were held at the Basilica of the Twelve Holy Apostles in Rome, in celebration of the canonization of St. Maximilian M. KOLBE on October 10, 1982.
The relics of Blessed Bonaventure and an eighteenth-century portrait of him, which Friar Gianfranco discovered and restored, will be brought to Ravello and displayed at the museum there which is dedicated to the friar “Saint of Our Land”.
Friar Paolo FIASCONARO, Director of the Missionario Francescano magazine