St. Ignatius of Loyola

1491 - 1556
Loiola, Spain
Patron Saint Of:
soldiers, Educators and Education
Feast day:
July 31

Saint Ignatius of Loyola was the youngest of 13 children. While his mother died when he was young (7), he was raised as part of the local aristocracy. In his early years, he studied much and was ambitious in his learning and in his desire to become a great leader. He became at soldier at age 20 and showed great talent in fighting numerous battles and duels. He was injured in one and neared death, but was saved by amputation of his leg. He became more devout after this, reading as much as he could, ultimately creating a set of spiritual exercises that tens of thousands of people would follow. He would later serve as leader of a new group in 1540 called the Jesuits, which focused on education and continues to this day.

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