Born to a farm family on Italy’s Ligurian coast, Giovanni Croese first entered the Conventual Franciscans but in 1825 switched to the Capuchins in Genoa for a more austere lifestyle. He took the name Francis Mary. For many years he was the Capuchins’ questor, begging food for the community by going door to door. He developed a reputation as a seer and miracle-worker, and offered himself to God to end a cholera epidemic ravaging Genoa. He died while ministering to cholera victims, and after his death the epidemic abated. This lay brother, who said he “came to the convent to be its beast of burden,” was canonized in 1962.