“I have chosen you to be my first Servants, and under this name you are to till my Son’s vineyard. Here, too, is the habit which you are to wear; its dark color will recall the pangs which I suffered on the day when I stood by the cross of my only Son.”
The Blessed Virgin Mary to the Seven Founders of the Order of Servites.
One of the Founders was Saint Alexis Falconieri. Coming from a Florentine noble family of power and wealth, he turned his back on the world to serve Christ. Unlike the other Founders he was never ordained a priest, constantly protesting that he was completely unworthy. Living to the remarkable age of one hundred and ten, he died on February 17, 1310. A well attested contemporary account states that on his deathbed he was visited by the infant Jesus.