Gregory Barbarigo was born in 1625, of a very ancient and distinguished Venetian family. A brilliant student, he embraced a diplomatic career and accompanied the Venetian Ambassador, Contarini, to the Congress of Munster in 1648. He was later ordained to the priesthood and became the first Bishop of Bergamo consecrated by Pope Alexander VII. Eventually he became a Cardinal with authority over the diocese of Padua. Through his efforts the seminaries of both Padua and Bergamo were greatly increased.
Gregory worked unceasingly toward the Counter-Reformation – the movement by the Council of Trent as a response to the Protestant Reformation specifying Catholic doctrine on salvation, the sacraments, and the Biblical canon.
Gregory died at Padua of natural causes in 1697. He was canonized in 1960 and his body is buried in the Cathedral of Padua.