Saints, Feast, Family
- Traditions passed down with Cooking, Crafting, & Caring -
Saint of the day:
Saint Camillus de Lellis
Patron Saint of Doctors
Saint Camillus de Lellis’ Story
Humanly speaking, Camillus was not a likely candidate for sainthood. His mother died when he was a child, his father neglected him, and he grew up with an excessive love for gambling. At 17, he was afflicted with a disease of his leg that remained with him for life. In Rome he entered the San Giacomo Hospital for Incurables as both patient and servant, but was dismissed for quarrelsomeness after nine months. He served in the Venetian army for three years.
Then in the winter of 1574, when he was 24, Camillus gambled away everything he had–savings, weapons, literally down to his shirt. He accepted work at the Capuchin friary at Manfredonia, and was one day so moved by a sermon of the superior that he began a conversion that changed his life. He entered the Capuchin novitiate, but was dismissed because of the apparently incurable sore on his leg. After another stint of service at San Giacomo, he came back to the Capuchins, only to be dismissed again, for the same reason.
Again, back at San Giacomo, his dedication was rewarded by his being made superintendent. Camillus devoted the rest of his life to the care of the sick. Along with Saint John of God he has been named patron of hospitals, nurses, and the sick. With the advice of his friend Saint Philip Neri, he studied for the priesthood and was ordained at the age of 34. Contrary to the advice of his friend, Camillus left San Giacomo and founded a congregation of his own. As superior, he devoted much of his own time to the care of the sick.
Charity was his first concern, but the physical aspects of the hospital also received his diligent attention. Camillus insisted on cleanliness and the technical competence of those who served the sick. The members of his community bound themselves to serve prisoners and persons infected by the plague as well as those dying in private homes. Some of his men were with troops fighting in Hungary and Croatia in 1595, forming the first recorded military field ambulance. In Naples, he and his men went onto the galleys that had plague and were not allowed to land. He discovered that there were people being buried alive, and ordered his brothers to continue the prayers for the dying 15 minutes after apparent death.
Camillus himself suffered the disease of his leg through his life. In his last illness, he left his own bed to see if other patients in the hospital needed help.
St Camillus de Lellis
(d. 1614, Rome, Italy) (Relics: Rome, Italy)
La Maddalena (The Magdalene)
Piazza della Maddalena 53
*This church is just north of the Pantheon.
*In the chapel in the right transept is a miraculous crucifix that is said to have spoken to St Camillus de Lellis.
*In the third chapel on the right side of the nave are the remains of St Camillus de Lellis. He lived in the adjacent monastery and died here in 1614.
His rooms can be visited by asking the sacristan. One of these rooms has been transformed into a chapel and contains the relic of his heart.
San Camillo de Lellis
(Saint Camillus de Lellis)
Via Sallustiana 24
*This church is north of Piazza della Repubblica.
*A small relic of St Camillus de Lellis is venerated on the left side of the nave.
San Giacomo degli Incurabili / San Giacomo in Augusta
(Saint James of the Incurables / Saint James in Augusta)
Via del Corso 499
*This church is near Piazza del Popolo.
*This was traditionally a hospital church. St Camillus de Lellis used to live and work at the hospital next to this church.
Church of S. Maria Maddalena - Rome
St Camillus’ signature and seal are on the bottom
The caprese salad originates from Capri but this simple dish is made everywhere in Italy and especially enjoyed from the Spring to the end of Summer. Simple, easy, fresh and deliciously Mediterranean, you can enjoy this Italian flag colored salad anytime. But especially with friends and family around a garden or terrace table during a lovely Italian summer's day. For something a little hardier than the traditional salad add eggplant and roast it.
Roasted Eggplant Caprese Salad
1 eggplant, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
3 large or steak tomatoes, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
Extra virgin olive oil
20 basil leaves, more for the dressing
16 Oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
Basil Vinaigrette (optional)
1 small garlic clove, chopped
1 cup packed basil leaves
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tbsp lime juice
Pinch crushed red pepper
Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Spread the eggplant slices on a large tray and sprinkle generously with salt. Leave for 30 minutes; the eggplant will “sweat out” it’s bitterness. When ready, pat the eggplant dry.
Place the eggplant slices and the tomato slices on a large baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Roast in the 425 F degree heated-oven for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven, but leave the oven on for step # 5.
When the eggplant and tomatoes are cool enough to handle, bring a small baking dish (about 6″x 9″) and begin to assemble the Caprese salad. Arrange the eggplant, tomato, cheese and basil in the baking dish forming a tight row. Repeat the pattern (as you see in the tutorial picture below) until you fill the baking dish side-to-side.
If you like, place the baking dish in the oven to heat for 7-10 minutes (just until the cheese melts slightly).
While the Caprese salad warms up, make the basil vinaigrette. In a small food processor, blend the chopped garlic with the basil leaves, olive oil, lime juice and spices.
When ready, remove the roasted eggplant Caprese salad from the oven and spoon some of the basil vinaigrette on top. Place the extra basil vinaigrette in a bowl to serve next to the salad. Slice a loaf of crusty bread to serve along. Enjoy!