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Blessed Fr Thomas Maria Fusco

Blessed Fr Thomas Maria Fusco (1831- 1891) was born in Italy at Pagani (Salerno) on December 1, 1831 as son of Dr Antonio Fusco and Stella Giordano. From his tender years, he showed outstanding signs of piety. Almost from the beginning he had a deep devotion to Jesus crucified and our Lady of Sorrows. From childhood itself, he had an ardent desire to become a priest and on December 22,1855 he became a priest. A very zealous priest, he promoted the devotion to the most precious blood in local church. Understanding the needs of the time, he directed his apostolate to every form of need of the poor, especially the orphan, the sick, the children and the youth. With fiery zeal, he also stirred up many priestly and religious vocations to join him in his mission.

Fr Thomas Maria Fusco, attracted by the supreme love of the Father that is reflected in the incarnation of the word to the shedding of His Blood and His resurrection, wanted that his daughters engage themselves in “drawing and reflecting the most vivid image of the divine charity with which Jesus shed his Blood”. Later in life he was the victim of slander when a brother priest became jealous of Thommaso’s good works and consequent popularity. But Fr Thomas  prayed his way through the matter, continued his work and was vindicated in the end. He died on February 24,1891 at the age of 60, leaving behind as his heritage the Daughters of the Charity of the Most Precious Blood. His outstanding and heroic holiness of life caught attention of Msgr Fortunato Zoppus, Bishop of Nocera and Salerno, and inspired him to initiate the process of beatification and canonization. He became venerated on April 24, 2001 by Pope John Paul II. On October 7, 2001, St John Paul declared him blessed. Since his death, his ministry towards the needy continues untiringly from heaven through his protection and also through his apostolate of the institute founded by him.

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