St Rita of Cascia was also called Margherita Lotti. She was born in 1381 in Roccaporena, Perugia, Umbria, Italy and died on May 22 1457 at the age of 75–76 in Cascia, Perugia, Umbria, Italy. She was a widow who became an Augustinian nun. Her feast day is celebrated on May 22 every year in the Roman Catholic Church.
|Saint Rita of Cascia Biography|
|Date of Birth||1381|
|Place of Birth||Roccaporena, Perugia, Umbria, Italy|
|Profession||Mother, Stigmatist, Consecrated Religious nun|
|Place of Work||Umbria, Italy|
|Date of Death||May 22 1457|
|Place of Death||Cascia, Perugia, Umbria, Italy|
|Feast Day||May 22|
|Beatification||By Pope Urban VIII in 1626|
|Canonization||By Pope Leo XIII on May 24 1900 in Vatican City, Rome|
|Patron Saint of||
Saint Rita of Cascia Life History
St Rita was born in the year 1381 in Roccaporena, Cascia, Umbria, Italy. In this city, there are various sites which are connected with her and many people visit there for pilgrimages.
Her parents were a pious, noble and charitable couple called Antonio and Amata Ferri Lotti. St Rita was initially being pursued by a man called Gubbio but she declined his offer. She would later be married, against her wish, at age twelve to a rich man called Paolo Mancini. All she wanted was to join a convent of religious sisters.
Rita had the virtues of humility, patience and kindness and therefore, was able to make her husband renounce a family feud, at that time, popularly known as La Vendetta and became a better person.
Rita was blessed with two sons namely, Giangiacomo (Giovanni) Antonio, and Paulo Maria. She brought them up with strong Christian values.
The family feud between the Chiqui and Mancini families became more pronounced. Some of Paolo Mancini’s friends betrayed him and he was stabbed to death by a member of the feuding family named Guido Chiqui.
Her marriage lasted for eighteen years, and she is fondly remembered for her strong Christian values as a model mother and wife who made strides to convert her husband to a better person.
St Rita forgave her husband’s murderers but Bernardo, her husband’s brother, continued the feud and convinced Rita’s sons to seek revenge.
Bernardo managed to make St Rita’s sons leave the house they lived in and live at the Mancini villa ancestral home. As Rita’s sons continued to live with Bernardo, their characters began to become bad. They began to plan to revenge for their father’s murder.
St Rita feared that her sons would lose their souls, she prayed to God to protect them from the mortal sin of murder. She tried to convince them to stop the retaliation with no success. Coincidentally, her sons died of dysentery a year later and it is believed that this was God’s answer to her prayer. God gave her sons a death through natural causes rather than letting them commit murder, which is a mortal sin punishable by Hell.
After the deaths of her sons and husband, St Rita wished to enter the monastery of Saint Mary Magdalene in Cascia but her request was rejected. The nuns shied away from being associated with her due to the bad publicity surrounding her husband’s violent death.
She did not relent in her quest to join the convent. Rita pestered the nuns until she was given a condition to fulfill before the monastery could accept her. This was to reconcile the family feud between the Chiqui and Mancini families.
She sought the intercessions of John the Baptist, Augustine of Hippo, and Nicholas of Tolentino to assist her. She began establishing peace between the hostile parties of Cascia. It is said that there came the bubonic plague in the region, which infected and affected Bernardo Mancini, thus making him completely drop his desire to continue feuding with the Chiqui family. The long-standing conflict was resolved and at the age of thirty-six, St Rita was allowed to enter the monastery.
Saint Rita of Cascia birth
She was born in 1381 in Roccaporena, Perugia, Umbria, Italy
Saint Rita of Cascia death
She died on May 22 1457 at the age of 75–76 in Cascia, Perugia, Umbria, Italy
Saint Rita was beatified by Pope Urban VIII in 1626
Saint Rita was canonized by Pope Leo XIII on May 24 1900 in Vatican City, Rome
Saint Rita of Cascia is venerated in the Roman Catholic Church.
St Rita’s body has remained incorruptible over the centuries. It is venerated today in her tomb which is in The National Shrine of St Rita of Cascia.
St Rita of Cascia Feast Day
The feast day of St. Rita of Cascia is celebrated on May 22 every year in the Catholic Church.
Saint Rita of Cascia Representation
St Rita has several religious symbols related to her. She is depicted
- Holding a thorn – This is a symbol of her penance and stigmata
- Holding a large Crucifix
- Holding a Palm leaf with three crowns – They represent her two sons and husband
- Flanked by two small children – Her sons
- Holding a Gospel book
- Holding a skull – This is a symbol of mortality
- Holding a flagellum whip – This is a symbol of her mortification of the flesh
The forehead wound
Rita was meditating before a large Crucifix when she was around sixty years old when a small wound appeared on her forehead. This wound looked as if a thorn from the crown on Christ’s head had become loose, fallen and penetrated her own flesh. This was viewed as partial Stigmata. She remained with this wound until she died in 1457.
When St Rita died and the sisters of the convent were bathing her body for burial, they noticed that the wound on her forehead remained there with light still being reflected by the drops of blood.
St Rita’s body was exhumed at a later date and that wound still remained the same, with light still being reflected by the drops of blood. Her body had not deteriorated. Her body has remained incorruptible after being exhumed several years later.
Near the end of her life, St Rita was confined to her bed at the convent. Her cousin came to visit her and asked if she wanted anything from her old manor home. St Rita replied and said that she wanted a rose from her manor garden. Because it was January and no rose could grow in that season, her cousin did not expect to find one. However, when she went to Rita’s house, a single rose blossomed in the garden, and her cousin took it back to Rita at the convent.
Therefore, St. Rita is usually depicted holding roses or with roses nearby. In churches and shrines of St. Rita, on her feast day, the congregation is provided with roses that are blessed by the priest during Mass.
Saint Rita of Cascia is the Patron Saint of
- Wounded people
- Victims of physical spouse abuse
- Sterile people
- Sick people
- Lost causes
- Impossible causes
- Forgotten causes
- Difficult marriages
- Desperate causes
- Bodily ills
- Against wounds
- Against sterility
- Against sickness
- Against loneliness
- Against infertility
- Abuse victims
- Santa Rita do Sapucaí
- Santa Rita do Itueto
- Santa Rita do Ibitipoca
- Santa Rita de Minas
- Santa Rita de Jacutinga
- Santa Rita de Caldas
- Presidente Olegário, Brazil
- Nova Resende
- Cascia, Italy
- Igbaras, Iloilo, Philippines
- Dalayap, Philippines
Saint Rita Prayers and Novena
- Prayer to Saint Rita
- Hymn to Saint Rita
- Novena to Saint Rita
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