Padre Pio: "On my shoulders is the whole world."

From this beautifully researched article by Frank Rega. At one time, Padre had confided to his paisano from Pietrelcina, Brother Modestino Fucci, that his greatest pains occurred when he changed his undershirt…On February 4, 1971 Modestino was assigned the task of taking an inventory of all the items in the deceased Padre’s cell in the friary, and also his belongings in the archives. That day he discovered that one of Padre Pio’s undershirts bore a circle of bloodstains in the area of the right shoulder. (The picture is of Modestino Fucci). This reminded Brother Modestino that he had once read about a devotion to the shoulder wound of Jesus, caused by his bearing of the heavy cross beam, the patibulum, to Calvary. The beam could weigh up to 100 pounds…
On that very evening of February 4, 1971, Brother Modestino asked Padre Pio in prayer to enlighten him about the meaning of the bloodstained undershirt. He asked Padre to give him a sign if he truly bore Christ’s shoulder wound. Then he went to sleep, awakening at 1:00 AM with a terrible, excruciating pain in his shoulder, as if he had been sliced with a knife up to the shoulder bone. He felt that he would die from the pain if it continued, but it lasted only a short time. Then the room became filled with the aroma of a heavenly perfume of flowers – the sign of Padre Pio’s spiritual presence – and he heard a voice saying "Cosi ho sofferto io!" – "This is what I had to suffer!" Modestino remarked that he had a strange sensation after the pain subsided: that being deprived of this pain was also a suffering. His body had suffered from it, but his soul had desired it. He said, "It was painful and sweet at the same time."
What is the mystical and spiritual significance of the shoulder wound of St. Padre Pio? The book by journalist Saverio Gaeta, Sulla Soglia del Paradiso, reports that Padre Pio said this of his spiritual children: "When the Lord entrusts a soul to me, I place it on my shoulder and never let it go." From this statement, it can reasonably be inferred that the saint offered up the suffering and the extreme pain of his shoulder wound for his spiritual children.
Cleonice Morcaldi once said in the presence of Gaeta, "On the shoulders of Padre Pio rests the whole world and the Church." This expression seemed an exaggeration to the writer. But on the very same day that Gaeta had heard this, he later joined Padre Pio and some others in conversation. Padre Pio was telling the story of St. Christopher, and how he had carried the child Jesus on his shoulders across a river. Then, turning his gaze to look directly at Saverio Gaeta, Padre Pio pointedly said to the writer, "On my shoulders is the whole world."


  1. St. Bernard of Clairvaux was given the revelation from Christ that the wound on His Shoulder was the most painful. Thank you for your meditation, and pray for me, an exiled-ex-pat, who wants to come home

  2. I promise prayers for you Supertradmum, and for all the readers of this blog. I hope you get your chance to come home. I know how you feel, there are times when I miss living in Ireland but feel called to live my life's vocation in London.

  3. This is a wonderful blog….thank You so very much for all the articles..Padre Pio has helped my family tremendously….. Thank You very much! I will pray for you Mary also..

  4. THANK EACH OF YOU FOR YOUR COMMENTS. I will pray for each of you. I can't imagine the pain Padre Pio suffered, but my what a wonderful spiritual and human pain dedicated to others. Jesus had the worst death ever and if I could just feel Jesus, that would be the maximum life could offer. I need prayers for faith, need to get back on the wonderful road to heaven. Each day brings us closer to God BUT I need to live for God only. This earth is filled with too many distractions. This day I'm going to be humble, try very hard at it. Wish I could communicate with each of you daily. God bless all!


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