The ways of politics
But Robert decided to become a priest instead, devoting himself to prayer, study, and teaching as a Jesuit.
His reputation as a teacher became widespread and he was eventually asked to teach in Rome. He wrote important works that defended the Christian faith against the heretics of the time. So great was his reputation for wisdom and faithfulness, that this academician who had rejected politics as a profession, ended up serving at various Vatican offices and advising a number of Popes.
At conclaves, many spoke of him favorably as a papabile (to his own horror), but politics spared him, because some Cardinals were prejudiced against Jesuits.
Often in frail health, Robert died at the age of 58 on this very day in 1621.
After centuries of politically-inspired delays, St. Robert Bellarmine was canonized in 1930.