He was ordained as a Catholic priest and then joined the Franciscans. He arrived in Italy by a quirk of fate having been blown off course when returning from Morocco to Portugal.
He was known as a great preacher. Anthony had a book of psalms that was important to him. It went missing and he prayed for its return. The young novice who had left the order with the book was moved to return the book and come back to the order.
Praying to St Anthony for lost things can be traced back to this incident. Several legends are attached to St. Anthony including “preaching to the fish”. Anthony became ill and died on 13 June 1231. He was 35. He is venerated in the Anglican and Catholic Churches. He is the Patron Saint of Lisbon, Peru, Brazil, Lost Things, Lost Souls to name but a few.