Venerable Matt Talbot: Patron of People Struggling with Alcoholism

On June 19 Franciscans recall the memory of Venerable Matt Talbot (1856-1925), an Irish Secular Franciscan considered a patron of men and women struggling with alcoholism and other forms of addiction.

Venerable Matt Talbott

Only known photo of Matt Talbot (man in front).

Born into poverty

Matthew Talbot was born in the North Strand neighborhood of Dublin, the second oldest of 12 children of Charles and Elizabeth Talbot. The family always remained poor due to Charlie’s heavy drinking, moving from one cramped tenement to another.

Venerable Matt Talbott Dublin street scene 1800s 700pxlsDublin street scene 1800s. The city had some of the worst slums in Europe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Early alcoholism

Matt only went to school a short time; he joined the workforce at the age of twelve. Unfortunately, he worked in a beer and wine bottling company where he began to sample the wares. By the time he was thirteen, he was a confirmed

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