Saturday, May 16, 2009

St. Gemma Galgani

In the Passionist Order, today marks the feast date of St. Gemma Galgani. A contemporary saint ( she died in 1903 at the age of 25) , her extraordinary life was marked by the sufferings and trials saints so often bear in the service of Our Lord. St. Gemma was gifted with the wounds of Christ at age 21.

I am enthralled and inspired by the life of this beautiful, humble saint. Divine grace surrounded her always, and Our Lord and Our Lady appeared to her often. She used to send letters to her spiritual director, Father Germano, through a very special delivery service….

However, the most unusual angelic errands were the one’s that Father Germano writes about in Gemma’s biography. Gemma would write a letter to him (Father Germano) seeking some spiritual guidance, and then place it in a “Little Manger Shrine” that was in the Gianinni home (her "adopted" family -editor), and because she had no money for stamps, she would request her angel to deliver the letter for her. Father Germanus, living several hundred miles away in Rome at the time, would soon “find” the letter unstamped on his desk, or another such place. (yet another reason for the angelic deliveries was the fact that Father Germanus travelled extensively in his preaching ministry, and Gemma never knew where to reach him)Realizing how unusual this was, Father Germano asked Heaven for a sign that these "angelic deliveries" were it was in accord with God’s Will. Afterwards, while he was staying at the Passionist house in Corneto, Italy, a "young boy" knocked at the door asking for him. Father Germanus answered the door and the boy handed him a letter from Gemma, and ubruptly turned and left without saying a word. Who was the boy and how could Gemma have known that he was visiting at Corneto? He opened the letter and immediately realized that God anwered his prayer as to the authentcity of these "angelic" deliveries. After Gemma’s death, he wrote: “I always received the angelic letters faithfully. The fact is unusual … I confess I do not understand it at all....To how many tests did I not I submit this singular phenomenon in order to convince myself that it took place through a supernatural intervention! And yet none of my tests ever failed; and thus I was convinced again and again that in this, like in many other extraordinary things in her life, Heaven was delighted in amusing itself, as it were, with this innocent and dear maiden.”

For more on St. Gemma, please visit this outstanding site . It is one of my favorite places to visit when I have a free moment in the day!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Happy Catholic!
    Thank you so much for the post on St Gemma and the link to the St Gemma Galgani website. Her life is so inpirational and edifying.

    I pray that St Gemma may be your special friend and advocate before our loving God.
    May God bless you and yours!
    Glenn Dallaire (from the St Gemma Galgani website)