"The apostle is a temple of the most holy Trinity, within whom God is supremely active. The apostle exudes God from every pore: with words, works, prayers, actions, and attitudes, in public and in private, with one's entire being. Live God! Give God!" ~Blessed James Alberione
James Alberione (1884-1971) was born in a peasant family with four other brothers. Um...unfortunately I can't say too much about his childhood because I have two books that mostly tell about his later works in life. Anyway, with poor health, his mother always took care of him. She'd teach him about God and take him to church, often sitting in the back just in case he felt sick.
When he was six years old, his teacher, Rosina Cardona (Kind of like one of those sweet Sunday School teachers I imagine :-), asked her eighty students what they wanted to do in the future. James paused for a moment before saying, "I am going to be a priest." His teacher then saw great potential in him, and did her best to teach him well.
Even with poor health, thin and weak, he advanced well in his school years. Once, when he was nine years old, he was running fast to tell his mother that he had passed ahead of his class. But he didn't dare to tell her that he had promised to light a candle to the Madonna of Flowers, whom his mother had a great devotion to. She guessed, and scolded him saying not to just like a little candle. Then she gave him a coin that was enough for a larger one.
As a student he loved to read. He'd play sometimes, but it wasn't his aptitude, due to his poor health. He'd rather watch, or study with another student.
Most students, especially farmers, would usually finish after third grade (sniff...why can't we?), but James Alberione was the first in his family to have gone through the first year of junior high.
When farming (or something, I can't remember) he would be in charge of holding the lantern for light. Tired and sleepy, it was hard for him to lift it high. So that his father wouldn't scold him, his mother would call out to him, "James, give them light!"
Part two about entering the seminary coming next year :-P ;-)