Giuseppe Benedetto Cottolengo

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Saint Joseph Benedict Cottolengo
Giuseppe Benedetto Cottolengo.jpg
Born (1786-05-03)3 May 1786
Bra, Province of Cuneo, Piedmont, Kingdom of Sardinia
Died 30 April 1842(1842-04-30) (aged 55)
Chieri, Province of Turin, Piedmont, Kingdom of Sardinia (now Italy)
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Beatified 1917 by Pope Benedict XV
Canonized 1934, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Feast 30 April

Saint Giuseppe Benedetto Cottolengo or Saint Joseph Benedict Cottolengo (3 May 1786 – 30 April 1842) was the founder of the Little House of Divine Providence and is a saint of the Roman Catholic Church.

He was born in Bra, then in the Kingdom of Sardinia, and became a canon in Turin. Don Cottolengo founded the "Little House of the Divine Providence" in Valdocco, wherein he housed all kinds of poor people. He also founded monasteries, convents, communities of priests, communities of brothers, and organised groups of lay volunteers. His colossal of charity stands today at the heart of Turin city as sign of what it means to love and serve others in evangelical way.

Today Cottolengo Fathers, Sisters, and Brothers still work together in activities primarily geared at communicating God's love for the poorest. They are spread out all over the world: Ecuador, India, Italy, Kenya, Switzerland, Tanzania and United States.

Don Cottolengo died in Chieri, Piedmont on 30 April 1842. He was canonized by Pope Pius XI in 1934, and his feast day is celebrated on 30 April.

Joseph Benedict Cottolengo was recently enlisted among the saints of charity by Pope Benedict XVI in his encyclical Deus caritas est.

In Fiction[edit]

St. Joseph is a "character" in Bruce Marshall's book The Divided Lady. James Childers, an accountant with a large London firm is sent to Rome to investigate a business deal. The Sisters of Ramoth-Gilead have invested a considerable sum with Morobito, a famous film producer, to make a movie about Cottolengo. The Sisters suspect they have been swindled.[1]


  1. ^ Marshall, B: The Divided Lady Popular Library New York 1960.