Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Thursday 22 April |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Ndoc Suma
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

Padre Pio built a hospital for a profound spiritual reason

Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza

Norbachov | Shutterstock

Philip Kosloski - published on 02/09/21

His "Clinic for Souls" was designed to treat ailments of both body and soul.

While Padre Pio is widely known for his mystical life, one of the projects he was most invested in was building a hospital. He built Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza (Home for Relief of Suffering) in 1956 for a variety of reasons.

One of the main reasons was to address the connection between the physical and spiritual.

This is explained by Padre Pio as quoted in the biography Padre Pio: The True Story, published by Our Sunday Visitor.

Padre Pio emphasized that the hospital was created not only for the relief of sick bodies but for the benefit of the whole person. “The suffering patient,” he insisted, “must have in himself the love of God by a wise acceptance of his pains and a serene meditation on his destiny before God. Here the love of God must be strengthened in the spirit of every patient through his love of Jesus Crucified. Here patients, physicians, and priests shall be reservoirs of love which will communicate itself to others in proportion to the extent that it is found in them.” He sometimes referred to the Casa as a “Clinic for Souls,” contending that “the goal of the Work is … to care for the bodies to [assist] the souls.”

Padre Pio had a great appreciation for suffering and saw it as an instrument to drawing close to God. However, he also realized that many people need physical relief from that suffering in order to help them recognize God’s love in their lives.

The hospital was also seen by Padre Pio as a work of God, not something that he was trying to do for his own benefit.

Padre Pio announced plans for a medical and religious center that included nursing homes for both men and women, “where tired and exhausted bodies and souls can be with the Lord and obtain succor from him” and an “intercontinental study center” to “stimulate medical people to perfection in their professional culture and Christian studies.” Padre Pio also wanted a center for the Prayer Groups and retreats for priests and also for laity, where “men and women will … be able to care for their spiritual development and their ascent to God.”…”These are not simply my works,” Padre Pio declared, “They are God’s works, just as he shows me.

Casa Sollievo della Sofferenzastill exists today and is one of Europe’s leading medical centers.


Read more:
Padre Pio’s powerful words of advice when a pandemic hit Italy


Read more:
Couple praises Padre Pio’s recipe for a happy marriage

MedicinePadre Pio
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Cerith Gardiner
New study shows that these 2 childhood habits make you a happier ...
Philip Kosloski
5 Fascinating facts about Jesus in the Eucharist
Bret Thoman, OFS
What Padre Pio saw in the Spanish Flu of 1918
Bret Thoman, OFS
“Jesus, you take care of it”: Prayer of a priest Padr...
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
Cerith Gardiner
The lasting lesson from the late Prince Philip
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to the “Holy Mothe...
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.