Blessed Cherubino Testa from Avigliana - 16th December

In 1451 Cherubino was born into the noble Testa family of Avigliana (Turin). From his early life he was inclined towards a religious life and he joined the Hermits of St. Augustine at the convent established by Blessed Adrian Berzetta from Buronzo. There he led a life free of vanity but full of mortifications and holiness, always ready to obey and to be of help. He was known for his sereness and for his great devotion towards Christ’s Passion. Frequently he used to spend an entire day crying when contemplating the Crucified Jesus.

Cherubino died when he was only 28 years of age on 17 September 1479 in the same convent at Avigliana. It is said that, as his soul was leaving his body, the locality’s bells started ringing on their own as though they were announcing his entry into heaven. In a painting that used to hang near the entry of the old convent of Tolentino in the Marche, Blessed Cherubino was painted with a halo, with lilies emerging from his heart and, on a crucifix held in his right hand, were written the words Beatus Cherubinus de Aviliana, conventus S. Augustini Avilianae magnus splendor.

There are some Augustinian writers, including Torelli and Elsen, who said that the lilies emerging from his heart let out the same scent as that which could be smelt coming out of his grave. Also, whilst they would be on their way to their choir and when it was decided to take remove his remains so as to place these in a better place, by a miracle a lily flower emerged from his heart.

These miracles were studied after his death and were confirmed when Pope Pius IX declared him Blessed on 21 September 1868.

Niccolò del Re*


For a presentation of his painting

See page 85, together with B. John from Rieti


Sacra Rituum Congregatione. Confirmationis cultus ab immemorabili tempore praestit Servi Dei C. T. ad A., Romae 1865; IMPEROR, G.B. Cuor-giglio, ossia il B. C. della nobile famiglia Testa, Torino 1880; ID., Vita del Beato C. T. sacerdote agostiniano, Torino 1884; *HUMPFHER, W., OSA., Cherubin v. A., in Lexicon fúr Theologie und Kirche II (1958) 1045-46; AA. VV., Il Beato C. T., una presenza in A., Giaveno – Torino 1980.

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