SAINT OF THE DAY: 09 MARCH, 2016

Saint Frances of Rome

Widow
(1384-1440)

Saint Frances of Rome

Frances was born in Rome in 1384. Her parents, of high rank, overruled her desire to become a nun, and when she reached the age of twelve, married her to Lorenzo Ponziano, a Roman noble.

During the forty years of their married life they never had a disagreement.

While spending her days in retirement and prayer, Saint Frances attended promptly to every household duty, saying, A married woman must leave God at the altar to find Him in her domestic cares.

She once found the verse of a psalm, at which she had been four times thus interrupted, completed for her in letters of gold.

Her ordinary food was dry bread, and secretly she would exchange with beggars good food for their hard crusts.

Two of her children died young.

Her son was nine years old when he foretold his father’s death wound and his own coming departure for heaven; and then he returned a year later with an Angel whom she saw clearly.

He said he had come for his little five year-old sister, that she might be placed among the Angels with him. He left the Angel with her in exchange, to remain always.

During the invasion of Rome in 1413, Lorenzo was banished, his estates confiscated, his house destroyed, and his eldest son taken as a hostage.

Frances saw in these losses only the hand of God, and blessed His holy Name. When peace was restored Ponziano recovered his estates, and after her husband’s death, Saint Frances founded a Community of Benedictine Oblate nuns.

At the age of forty-three, barefoot and with a cord about her neck she asked admission to the community, and was soon elected Superior.

She lived at all times in the presence of God, and among many visions was given constant sight of her Angel, who shed such a brightness around him that the Saint could read her midnight Office by this light alone.

He shielded her in time of temptation, and directed her in every good act.

But when she fell into some fault, he faded from her sight, and whenever any unsuitable words were spoken before her, he covered his face in shame.

Saint Frances died on the day she foretold, March 9, 1440.

(SOURCE: Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints, a compilation based on Butler’s Lives of the Saints and other sources by John Gilmary Shea (Benziger Brothers: New York, 1894).)

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READING OF THE DAY: 09 MARCH, 2016

Jesus21

“Jesus answered the Jews: “My Father is at work until now, so I am at work.”

For this reason the Jews tried all the more to kill him, because he not only broke the Sabbath but he also called God his own father, making himself equal to God.

Jesus answered and said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, a son cannot do anything on his own, but only what he sees his father doing; for what he does, his son will do also.

For the Father loves his Son and shows him everything that he himself does, and he will show him greater works than these, so that you may be amazed.

For just as the Father raises the dead and gives life, so also does the Son give life to whomever he wishes.

Nor does the Father judge anyone, but he has given all judgement to his Son, so that all may honour the Son just as they honour the Father.

Whoever does not honour the Son does not honour the Father who sent him.

Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes in the one who sent me has eternal life and will not come to condemnation, but has passed from death to life.

Amen, amen, I say to you, the hour is coming and is now here when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.

For just as the Father has life in himself, so also he gave to his Son the possession of life in himself.

And he gave him power to exercise judgement, because he is the Son of Man.

Do not be amazed at this, because the hour is coming in which all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and will come out, those who have done good deeds to the resurrection of life, but those who have done wicked deeds to the resurrection of condemnation.

I cannot do anything on my own; I judge as I hear, and my judgement is just, because I do not seek my own will but the will of the one who sent me.”” – John 5:17-30.