Faithful pay respects to relics of St Padre Pio

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CHICAGO -- The faithful stood in line on Chicago's North Side to pay their respects to the relics of a 20th century Saint:  Padre Pio.

Tuesday was the final day for the relics of St Padre Pio to be in Chicago at Saint Ita’s on the North Side. He was made a saint 15 years ago.

A foundation from his home in Italy brought the relics to the states because of his wide appeal to Catholics.

Father Bob Cook of St Ita’s is proud that his parish is one of two in Chicago selected to host the relics on their American tour.

“In his lifetime he was known as a miracle worker,” he said.  “These are things that were deeply personal to Padre Pio.”

Among them is a cape and gloves the Padre used in his life, a lock of his hair and a handkerchief used to wipe his brow as he lay dying in 1968.

The Italian padre is known for his miracles of healing and his own stigmata, the wounds of Christ.

“Padre Pio lived like we did.  He had temptation. He overcame temptation. Sometimes he didn’t and went to confession,” said Fr Cook. “He was a human being and this is a reminder that we’re all called to become Saint and that it is possible.”

There’s still time to see the relics at Saint Ita’s at Broadway and Catalpa. A mass will be held at 7 p.m. and viewing of the relics continues after that.

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