Francis Xavier Michael Tomie

Francis Xavier Michael Tomie, S.J., died on the tenth of December, 1850. We find in the Truth-Teller the following account of this excellent person, with whom we had the pleasure of such acquaintance as assures us of its justice. He was born in 1792, in Tivoli, of the most respectable family in the place. He made his studies at home, under a private tutor; pursued them in the Roman Seminary until the reëstablishment of the Society in 1814; that year he entered the novitiate, and immediately began to teach literature. He terminated with great distinction his course of theology, and as soon as the Roman College was restored to the Society, in 1825, was appointed Professor. In the twelve following years he was successively Rector of the Colleges of Spoleto, Fermo, Forli, and Reggio di Modena. At Spoleto he was an intimate friend of Pius the Ninth, then Cardinal Archbishop Mastai. While Rector of the College of Fermo, he was chosen by Cardinal Ferretti, its founder, his theologian, and never did this Cardinal, even when in Rome, cease to place confidence in his advice. In 1837 he was designated Professor of Moral Theology, and Prefect of Studies in the Roman College, where he lived till the Revolution of 1848. Gregory XVI. had appointed him Examinator of the Roman Clergy, during which time he had prepared several dissertations, treatises, &c., on theology and philosophy, which may some day be published. On the breaking out of the Revolution he retired some time to Monseigneur Morini, of Florence, until this learned and devout man was stabbed in the streets for his opposition to the revolutionists. Thus cast upon the world without a protector, he wished to take refuge in the Sanctuary of the Virgin, at Genezzano, which according to tradition was transported thither from Albania, and is still kept by the Hermits of St. Augustine. His superior's wish however sent him to England, where he lived six months in the mansion of Lord Waterton. In 1849 he came to America, and taught moral theology in Georgetown College. In 1850 he began to fill the same office (i.e., Professor of Moral Theology) in St. Joseph's Seminary, in the diocese of New-York. He was endeared to the Church for his mildness, cheerfulness, and charity, insomuch that among the younger students of St. John's College he was known as the "Good Father, who is always smiling." On the 6th of December he fell ill; on the 8th, the President of St. John's College, in presence of the Fathers and Religious of the Society, administered the viaticum. The following night he was anointed; and on the 10th, towards ten o'clock in the afternoon, he breathed his last. On the evening of the 11th, at six o'clock, according to the custom of the Society, a solemn service was celebrated by all the members of St. John's College and Seminary. On the 12th, at six o'clock a. m., he was buried in the cemetery attached to the College.