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Per Giorgio Grassati was born in Turin, Italy, on April 6, 1901 to Alfredo and wife Adelaida.  He developed a deep spiritual life while still young.  In 1918, he joined the St. Vincent de Paul Society and spent his time helping the sick and needy. 


In 1919, he joined the Catholic Student Federation and the Popular Party, a political organization which promoted Church teachings in politics. 


Although the Frassati family was well to do , the father was frugal and never gave his children much spending money.  What little he had, Pier gave to the poor. . .including his bus fare.  Thus, he had to run home to be on time for meals in a house where punctuality and frugality were the law. 


Pier went to daily Holy Communion, and while mountain climbing with friends, discussed religious topics with them. 

In 1922, he joined the Dominican Tertiaries and chose the name Girolamo after the fiery Dominican reformer Savonarola.  He joined demonstrations against the Fascist government and experienced police brutality. 


In 1925, after tending the sick, he himself caught polio myelitis. Not minding his own illness, he cared for his dying grandmother.  By the time Pier's illness was discovered, he was too sick and too weak.  He died on July 4, 1925.  He was 24. 


L' Osservatore Romano, May 1990 








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