top of page

St. Peter Claver

Pietro Claver was born in Verdù (Spain) on June 26, 1580. In 1596 he enrolled at the University of Barcelona for classical studies. In 1602 he was admitted to the Novitiate of the Society of Jesus.

During his philosophical studies he met with Sant'Alfonso Rodriguez, then porter of the College of Montesion in Mallorca, who inspired him the desire to leave as a missionary and thus devote himself more directly to evangelization. He left for Colombia where he completed his theological studies and was ordained a priest in Santa Fe of Bogotà, in 1616.


In Cartagena of Colombia, Father Alonso de Sandoval initiated him into the apostolate among the slaves from Africa. For a period of 40 years, Pietro Claver devoted himself entirely to instructing, baptizing and accompanying these brothers, who were so despised at the time. His heroic self-denial led him to serve slaves to the point of considering himself the slave of slaves.

Pope Leo XIII canonized him in 1888 and in 1896 declared him special patron of the African missions.



Maria Teresa Ledóchowska chose him as Patron of her missionary work founded in 1894 under the name Sodality of St. Peter Claver.


Our Lady of Good Counsel

Mary, the Mother of Jesus, is invoked with various titles in the Litany of Loreto. Some have been accredited by saints who have had a special veneration for the Madonna, others have imposed themselves following the extraordinary events that have occurred in the history of the Church. Devotion to Mary, Mother of Good Counsel, derives in part from the Word of God and from the Magisterium of the Church, in part from the sensational discovery of the image of Mary in Skutari, Albania.   Thus Mary, invoked as the wise Virgin and Seat of Wisdom, is also venerated as the Mother of Good Counsel.

The miraculous effigy of the Mother of Good Counsel has been kept since 1467 in the Sanctuary of Genazzano, in the province of Rome. Over the centuries, devotion to Our Lady of Good Counsel has grown more and more. Pope Leo XIII invoked Mary with this title and during the pontificate of his successor, Pius X, the invocation was included in the Litany of Loreto:  Mater Boni Consilli,  ora pro nobis.

Maria Teresa Ledóchowska, founding the Sodality of St. Peter Claver, chose a field of activity that would last as long as evangelization and the stabilization of the missions: a truly great and difficult undertaking.  


She soon understood that she would need special assistance from the Holy Spirit and the Most Holy Virgin. Spontaneously he turned his gaze to Mary, the Mother of Good Counsel. He chose her as the famous Patroness and Councilor, to implore her advice and help at the beginning of each work.

bottom of page