Dominican Tertiary — (1254-1292)
+ Benvenuta was born in Cividale del Friuli, Italy. As a child, she refused to take part in games that she felt promoted vanity and worldliness and she began to practice various penances as an adolescent.
+ As a young woman, she became a Dominican tertiary (a lay affiliate of the Order of Preachers) and lived a simple life at home, dedicating her time to prayer and penance.
+ She eventually became critically ill and was confined to bed for five years. During Mass on the feast of Saint Dominic she was carried to Mass and experienced a vision of the saint. She was miraculously healed during the Mass.
+ Benvenuta experienced other visions, including both angels and demons.
+ Blessed Benvenuta died on October 30, 1292. Devotion to this holy woman was confirmed by Pope Clement XIV in 1763.
Other members of the Dominican Third Order include Saint Catherine of Siena, Saint Rose of Lima, Saint Louis de Montfort, and Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati.
“Here is a wise virgin whom the Lord found watching; when they took up their lamps she brought oil with her and when the Lord came she went in with him to the wedding feast.”—Entrance Antiphon for the Mass from the Common of Virgins
Lord, you gave Blessed Benvenuta the gifts of penance, prayer and humility. Through self-denial and contemplation on heavenly things may we too live in the Spirit and find rest and glory in you, the one God. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(Proper prayer for the commemoration of Blessed Benvenuta approved for the Order of Preachers)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.