18150 - 1888

John Bosco was born on the 16th of August 1815, in Becchi, a hamlet belonging to the municipality of Castelnuovo d'Asti (today Castelnuovo Don Bosco) in Thrin, Italy. He came from a family of poor farmers. He lost his father, Francesco, at the age of two but he drew strength from his mother Margherita's deep faith in God. At the age nine, he had a prophetic dream in which a number of unruly young boys were uttering words of blasphemy. Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary appeared to John in the dream, saying he would bring such youths to God through the virtues of humility and charity.

 Later on, this dream would help John to discern his calling as a priest. John’s older brother Anthony opposed his plan to be a priest, and antagonized him so much that he left home to become a farm worker at age 12. After moving back home three years later.

John worked in various trades and finished school in order to attend seminary
In 1841, John Bosco was ordained a priest. From that time, John was known as “Don” Bosco, a traditional Italian title of honor for priests. In the city of Thrin, he began ministering to boys and young men who lived on the streets, many of whom were without work or education. He was determined to save as many young people as he could from a life of degradation. He established a group known as the Oratory of St. Francis de Sales, and became a spiritual father to boys in need. His aging mother helped and supported the project in its early years. He became a spiritual guide and provider along with his fellow Salesian priests and brothers, giving boys religious instruction, lodging, education, and work opportunities. He also helped Saint Mary Dominic Mazzarello to form a similar group for girls.
St. John Bosco died in the early hours of January 31,1888, after conveying a message: “Tell the boys that I shall be waiting for them all in Paradise.” He was canonized on Easter Sunday of 1934, and was declared the patron saint of young people, apprentices, and catholic publishers and editors.