I have always felt drawn to St. Gianna Beretta Molla. I remember the first time I ever saw her picture. It was sometime in 1994 after the loss of my firstborn baby, Will. I was back to work but on Wednesdays (my day off), I volunteered at the White Rose Women's Center. Their office space had a room downstairs that had been made into a Blessed Sacrament chapel. Pictures of various saints, especially those often invoked to help mothers in crisis pregnancies, adorned the walls on both sides. St. Gianna's picture was displayed prominently on the left side of the wall. I remember inspecting it closely as I had never heard of her. At this point in time, she was just Servant of God, but already the pro-life community had adopted her as a powerful patron for the unborn babies and mothers in crisis pregnancy.
Since that day fifteen years ago, many have come to know this most wonderful and powerful intercessor. I personally know two baby "Gianna's." :) Both were born to mothers who had difficult pregnancies and St. Gianna was invoked throughout their pregnancies to safeguard their precious babies.
Many may have already read these two books on St. Gianna but I want to personally recommend them as they are inspirational and indicative of the holiness of this Italian mother of four, who lived her life dedicated to God and who sacrificed herself for her child. The second book, is a compilation of letters of love that she wrote to her husband, Pietro. They are lovely and apparently this title is out of print as the copies are quite expensive. I am grateful to have a copy myself already!
Fr. Z posted the most wonderous 2nd miracle of St. Gianna, the one that allowed her to be canonized by the late Pope John Paul II. I had never heard this story and it touched me deeply. I wanted to share it with others on this special feast day of St. Gianna. May she continue to bring more souls to Christ and teach us the value of every human life!
Today, we will read a brief story about St. Gianna, color a picture, and pray our Rosary specifically for the unborn babies who are in danger of abortion.
This is a beautiful prayer penned by the saint herself:
"0 Mary, into your maternal hands I place myself and I abandon myself completely, sure of obtaining whatever I ask of you. I trust in you because you are the sweet Mother, I confide in you because you are the Mother of Jesus. In this trust I place myself, sure of being heard in everything; with this trust in my heart I greet you "my Mother, my trust", I devote myself entirely to you, begging you to remember that I am yours, that I belong to you; keep me and defend me, 0 sweet Mary, and in every instant of my life, present me to your Son, Jesus".