John Bosco was born on a farm near Turin, Italy in 1850. He came from a very poor family. He walked four miles every day to school and was only able to attend for half the year. The rest of the year he worked the fields as a farmer. As he grew older he also worked as a tailor, a baker, a shoemaker, and a carpenter. He was able to work himself through school, college, and seminary until he became a priest.
Father John worked to help boys have a place to meet, play, and pray. He rented a barn in a field which he called “The Oratory”. It was a home boys who needed a home. Fr. Bosco started many oratories. He believed that prayer, Mass, Communion, and confession were the best ways of creating good boys.
Fr. Bosco was called Don Bosco and he founded the Salesians, a group of priests would help him in his work for boys around the world. The Salesians taught boys many trades and encouraged priestly vocations. St. John Bosco is know as the Apostle of Youth.
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