St. Padre Pio was born, Francesco, in 1887 in Pietrelcina, Italy to a poor, devout, family family. He was a pious boy and declared at age 5 that he would dedicate his life to God. Always a sickly child (and adult) Francesco had special gifts from when he was young, such as seeing guardian angels and speaking to Jesus and Mary in visions. These special gifts carried over to adulthood, as he was known to levitate during prayer, perform miracles, and he also suffered from the
. His condition was confirmed by the Church to be authentic and many people traveled to visit hi to witness his miracles and holiness. He died on September 23rd, 1968 and was declared a Saint of the Church by Pope St. John Paul II on June 16, 2002.