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March 25

St Lucia Filippini - March 25

Saint Lucia Filippini

Nun, Founder

(1672 – 1732)

“The Church of God is not a restful garden, but a working vineyard.

Saint Lucia Filippini

Saint’s Life Story

Her Early Life

 Lucia (Lucy) was born on January 13, 1672 in Corneto-Tarquinia, Tuscany, Italy  – a city that existed centuries before Rome was built. She was the fifth and youngest child of Filippo Filippini and Maddalena Picchi. Her mother died when Lucia had not yet reached her first birthday. Six years later, her father died. Now orphaned, Lucia went to live with her aunt and uncle. As a child, she would prepare small altars and pray devoutly. She was an intelligent, modest, and spiritual child whose vision was focused on serving God. In the nearby Benedictine Nuns’ Monastery of Santa Lucia, she received her First Communion.

Her Pious Childhood

When Cardinal Mark Anthony Barbarigo made his first pastoral visit to Corneto, he made a lasting impression on Lucia. She followed him to Montefiascone, Italy. Entrusting herself to the Cardinal’s guidance, Lucia was eager to leave behind all worldly things. She had a special devotion to Our Lady, her spiritual mother. Throughout her life, her deep love for Mary and her faith, sustained her. When Cardinal Barbarigo’s plans were to be implemented in his dioceses, he had envisioned Lucia as a key factor to bring about a rebirth of Christian living. He had already begun by establishing a seminary where young priests might study and train for the ministry of the Word.   

Hope for the Future

His next step was to develop a Christian conscience and encourage the practice of virtue in the home.  He resolved to do this by opening schools for young ladies, particularly the children of the poor, in whom he saw hope for the future. Lucia would head the schools they founded to promote the dignity of womanhood and help influence a healthy family life. Together, they looked ahead to fulfilling their generous, ardent and profound mission of faith and charity. In 1692, teachers were trained to staff the rapidly expanding schools.   

The young ladies of Montefuscione were taught domestic arts, weaving, embroidering, reading, and Christian doctrine. Twelve years later, the Cardinal devised a set of rules to guide Lucia and her followers in the religious life. Fifty-two schools were established during Lucy’s lifetime. As the Community grew, it attracted the attention of Pope Clement XI who, in 1707, called Lucia to Rome to start schools, which he placed under his special protection. Here, she completed the work of founding the schools.  

Founded Institute of the Maestre Pie that became Religious Teachers Filippini

Lucy helped form the Institute of the Maestre Pie and founded. The institute, which came to be known as the Religious Teachers Filippini, is credited with the religious and social improvement of Italian women well before compulsory education. To complement the work of the schools, Lucia and her teachers conducted classes and conferences for women. These women were strengthened in their faith as they took part in prayer, meditation, and good works. Lucia’s focus for the social apostolate was to encourage her teachers to minister to the needs of the poor and the sick. Her method of teaching attracted widespread attention.  She testified that the young ladies were the coordinating element that underlies family life: ‘Having learned in school those things that were necessary, they repeat them to parents and relatives at home and thus become so many young teachers.

Her Death

At the age of 60 a victim of many illnesses, Lucia died of cancer on March 25, 1732, in Montefiascone, Italy. She is buried at the Cathedral of Montefiascone. Not only was she officially declared a Saint of the Church, but Lucia was given the last available niche in the Basilica of Saint Peter in Rome. This mission initiated by the Cardinal and Lucia 300 years ago, continues today through the schools and the Religious Family to which they gave life. Its mission has spread beyond Italy into Europe, the United States of American Brazil, Ethiopia and India.

Born:                  January 13, 1672 in Corneto-Tarquinia, Tuscany, Italy

Died:                  March 25, 1732 in Montefiascone, Italy

Beatified:           June 13, 1926 by Pope Pius XI

Canonized:        June 22, 1930 by Pope Pius XI

Feast Day:         March 25

Patron Saint:    Religious Teachers Filippini

Source:

Reflection

Being without parents by the age of seven did not stop Saint Lucia Filippini to go to use the grace she received for her mission to educate young girls. Saint Lucia would head the schools she founded to promote the dignity of womanhood and help influence a healthy family life. Her focus for the social apostolate was to encourage her teachers to minister to the needs of the poor and the sick. As her community grew, her community attracted the attention of Pope Clement XI who asked her to start schools in Rome. During Saint Lucia’s lifetime, she established 52 schools all over Italy. This mission Saint Lucia initiated over 300 years ago, continues today spreading beyond Italy into Europe, the United States of American Brazil, Ethiopia and India.

What mission do you have to passionately evangelize and serve the poor and sick? While your works may not be recognized by the Pope, whatever acts of kindness you initiate in love will be remembered by those whom you serve and help you grow in your faith. 

Prayers

O God, giver of every gift, You kept Saint Lucia Filippini  faithful in proclaiming Christ and witnessing to Him, the one Teacher and light of the world. Grant that, illumined by divine grace, we may persevere in listening to Your word and preach it by good works, and so be living signs of holiness and apostolic zeal.

Saint Lucia Filippini, pray for us. Amen.

Source: St. Lucy Filippini (catholicfire.blogspot.com)

Saint Links 

AnaStpaul – Saint of the Day – 25 March – St Lucia Filippini (1672-1732)

Catholic Fire – St. Lucy Filippini

Catholic Lane – St. Lucia Filippini, Virgin

Catholic Online – St. Lucy Filippini

CatholicSaints.Info – Saint Lucia Filippini

CatholicSaints.Info – Katherine I Rabenstein’s Saints of the Day – Lucy Filippini

Religious Teachers Filippini – Our Founders

St. Peter’s Basilica.info – St. Lucy Filippini

The Wanderer – Catholic Heroes . . . St. Lucy Filippini by Carole Breslin

Vatican – Address to the Religious Teachers Filippini by Pope John Paul II, 29 January 2001

Wikipedia – Lucy Filippini

Video Link