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St. Joseph Mary Tommasi

Facts

Feastday: January 1
Patron: of Catholic liturgy
Birth: 1649
Death: 1713
Canonized: Pope John Paul II

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Cardinal confessor of Pope Clement XI. Born the son of the duke of Palermo, he became a member of the Theatine Order. Sent to Rome, he became the confessor of Cardinal Giovanni Francesco Albani, proving instrumental in convincing the cardinal to accept elevation as pope in 1700 under pain of mortal sin. In return, the newly elected pontiff forced Joseph to accept appointment as a cardinal. While he served capably as a cardinal, his first preoccupation was as a brilliant liturgical scholar who published some of his works under the pseudonym J. M. Carus.Among his most notable contributions were: Codices Sacramentorunz Nongentis Annis Vetustiores (1680), including the Missale Gothicurn and the Missale Francorum; Responsalia etA ntiphonaria Ronzanae Ecclesiae a Sancto Gregorio Magno Disposita (1686); and the Antiqua Libri Missaruni Romanae Ecclesiae (1691). Beatified in 1803, he was canonized in 1986 by Pope John Paul II.

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