Born in Italy and named for St. Nicholas of Bari, the saint to whom his childless parents had prayed, Nicholas made his Augustinian vows while still a teen. An early job was distributing food to the poor at the friary gate. At his ordination in 1269, he already was reputed to be a healer and miracle-worker. About 1274, after several assignments, he was sent to Tolentino, where he spent the rest of his life. A successful street preacher, he often spent entire days hearing confessions. Nicholas truly befriended the poor and sick. During his sainthood process, the Vatican accepted about 30 miracles attributed to his intercession. He is the patron of poor souls and mariners.