Clemente Marchisio

Make the community one heart and one soul.

...He made of his life a gift for others, engaging in the care of souls and in preaching ...

Clemente Marchisio was born in Racconigi, on the first of March 1833, the first of five children. His was a family like many. His father was a shoemaker.
Racconigi is full of churches. In every corner there is a chapel or a bell tower. He grows in this setting and we can easily imagine him attracted by this sacred atmosphere that will lead him to attend the church of the Dominicans as an altar boy.
There are no shoemaking tools belonging to his father in his future but rather the seminary where he will become a priest.

He has to be helped financially, to face his studies, but he can leave for Bra where he starts the journey that will lead him to continue in Turin.  There, he will be under the guidance of Saint Joseph Cafasso, the rector of the Consolata Sanctuary and the soul of the Ecclesiastical boarding school, where priests, who will leave a mark in the history of the universal church, are formed.

We are in the middle of the nineteenth century and these are the extraordinary years of the so-called Piedmontese Social Saints, of which Marchisio is a full member.

He goes to Cambiano for a short period as assistant to the parish priest, but he has to leave because of his sincerity with the parishioners, cause of many problems. There is a short stop in Vigone and then he arrives at the village where he will live for forty-three years: Rivalba.

This is his promised land, the place where he can take walks, meet people, preach and found our Institute.

He builds a kindergarten, he conseives the idea of a textile workshop for the local girls who are no longer forced to go to Turin to work as house maids.He plans a real social action, in line with the many Piedmontese priests who want to respond to the emergencies of poverty in their communities.

In 1875 he establishes the family of the Daughters of Saint Joseph of Rivalba. At his side, from the very beginning, is a woman from Turin who follows her own dream of starting a new institution. Her name is Rosalia Sismonda.
He also decides to renovate a thousand-year-old castle. It will become the cradle of the Congregation, the symbol of all that has developed over time.

Then a sudden intuition mixes the cards of the initial charismatic indication: Don Clemente wants the nuns to take care of everything that happens on the altar, making it worthy.

Work begins in the making of hosts and the wine that will become the Body and Blood of Christ.
In addition to this, the focus is entirely on what concerns the moment of the Eucharistic celebration, to give the right importance and beauty to the central moment of the Christian faith.
This is why they start calling the women who consecrate themselves to Father Marchisio’s religious family, “the host sisters“.

In 1883 Don Clemente Marchisio takes his congregation to Rome, making Pope Leo XIII say: “The Lord has finally given himself a thought!”.

This tireless man never ceases to preach, travel, feed the spirit of his daughters and will do so up to the very end, on the sixteenth of December 1903.

That very same day, Rosalia Sismonda went to heaven with him, a sign of perfect harmony and total sharing.

Don Clemente Marchisio often repeated: Mass is my life

His life was a Mass, lived without respite in every moment.

Beatification of Clemente Marchisio

30th September 1984

When you are troubled, go to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.

Everything is there!