St Pio: The Padre of “Pray, Hope, and Don’t Worry!”

Pray, hope, and don’t worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer.” 

St. Padre Pio

I can’t tell you exactly how I heard or read this quote for the first time, but I remember my initial thought was, Don’t worry? It’s useless?! How?! I need to worry! Then I realized how useless worry actually is. 

I know that worry is useless, I’ve known it’s useless, but I still feel it regardless. I don’t want to feel worry, but I still do. I realized this is a symptom of anxiety. I never knew I had anxiety, and never defined myself as having this “disorder.” The symptoms of anxiety, like being in a constant state of worry or having restless sleep cycles, were never symptoms to me–just life. 

In today’s day and age, I think everyone has some form of anxiety. If not now from the pandemic, then from how we interact and respond to societal pressures. I hated admitting I experience anxiety, because admitting it means I’m broken. Well, duh, of course I’m a little broken. I’M HUMAN. We are flawed. But we can’t let it stop there.

We are broken and flawed but can be restored. I first remembered this hope when Padre Pio entered my life. At least once a day I hear his name mentioned or come across a post about him on social media, and I’m reminded of these famous words of encouragement. 

Padre Pio was a humble man who reminds me greatly of my abuelo (grandpa). I knew very little about Padre Pio until after I heard this quote and adopted it into my life, and as I learn more about him I am genuinely shocked about how connected I feel to him. 

He was born Francesco Forgione and became a Capuchin at the age of 15. Given that St. Francis of Assisi is my confirmation saint, I was in awe when I found out he not only shared his name, but was a part of his order…no wonder why I like St. Pio!

Padre Pio is most known for his mystical gifts from God. These included the discernment of souls, the ability to read consciences, miraculous healings, bilocation, levitation, the gift of tears, the odor of sanctity, and above all, the wounds of the stigmata that he suffered for 50 years.

But the gift that stood out to me the most was his prayerful union with God that made him an effective “apostle of the confessional.” The saint used to sit and listen to people’s confessions for about 10 hours a day, as many lined up from all around the world to meet with him. 

“Pray, hope, and don’t worry” is probably Padre Pio’s most famous saying. However, we cannot forget about the second part, which is: “Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer.” We can be certain God knows what we need even before we ask him.

I feel Padre Pio’s peacefulness as he listens to my worry, as he listened to many during his life, and he reassures me daily that all my worry is in God’s hands. 

padre pio
About Author

Alyssa is a 23-year-old master’s student studying communications. She lives at home in sunny Florida, enjoys watching movies and binging tv shows, hoping to one day produce films of her own in which to act. Creatively she enjoys writing in any medium, fashion, doing makeup and dressing up in costumes. She loves to travel by plane, train, car and especially cruises, and hopes to see the world. Caring, kind and loving, she tends to see the good in all people. Alyssa’s calling is to make people smile through her creativity, sharing God’s message of love through how she lives. Her motto is to live every day with a spirit of gratitude.

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