Discalced Carmelite Nun (1891-1974)
+ Born in 1891, Maria was the daughter of the Spanish Ambassador to the Holy See.
+ Remembered as being a pious child, she felt called to the religious life at a young age and entered the Carmelites in the Carmel of El Escorial in Madrid in 1920.
+ In 1924, Maria was asked to help establish a new Carmel near Madrid. She was appointed prioress of the community in 1926. This community grew so quickly that she was asked to travel to Kottayam, India, to establish a new Carmelite community there. She would, in time, found several communities in India.
+ Maria returned to Spain in 1936 and, as part of the anticlerical actions of the Spanish Civil War, she was arrested and placed under house arrest for fourteen months. After her release, she and her community moved to Salamanca.
+ In the years that followed, Mother Maria Maravillas would establish eight other Carmelite convents in Spain.
+ Honored for her life of prayer and dedication to her Order, Saint Maria Maravillas de Jesús died on December 11, 1974, and was canonized in 2003.
For prayer and reflection
“One thing is necessary: she has chosen the better part, which shall not be taken away from her.”—Luke 10:42
On this day the Church also remembers the Servite priest Blessed Jerome Ranuzzi. Remembered for his learning and scholarship, he died around the year 1468 and devotion to him was confirmed by the Holy See in 1775.
O God, who called your handmaid blessed Maria Maravillas to seek you before all else, grant that, serving you, through her example and intercession, with a pure and humble heart, we may come at last to your eternal glory. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Holy Men and Women—For a Nun)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.