Oct. 9 Optional Memorial of St. Denis, bishop and martyr and companions, martyrs; St. John Leonardi, priest; Bl. John Henry Newman (Eng/Wales), Weekday Brian Schoonover October 9, 2018 Saint of the Day St. John Leonardi (1543-1609), a zealous Italian apostle, founded the congregation of the Mother of God, whose priest-members traveled throughout Tuscany urging the people to a stronger interest in their religion. Fr. John Leonardi longed to convert pagans, but his spiritual director, St. Philip Neri, told him to remain in Italy. So instead he founded a seminary in Rome to train young men for the priesthood from all the mission lands.