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Pope canonizes Mother who gave her life for her unborn child

Date: 2004-05-16

St. Gianna Beretta Molla: "Messenger of Divine Love"

VATICAN CITY, MAY 16, 2004 ( John Paul II presented the beauty of the family when canonizing an Italian doctor who accepted the risk of death rather than endanger her unborn child.

The Pope recalled Molla (1922-1962) as "a simple yet especially significant messenger of divine love" when he canonized her and five others today in St. Peter's Square.

"A few days before her marriage, in a letter to her future husband, she wrote: 'Love is the most beautiful sentiment that the Lord has put in the spirit of man,'" the Holy Father said in his homily. Present at the canonization were Molla's widowed husband and three children.

"Following the example of Christ, who 'having loved his own ... he loved them to the end,' this holy mother of a family was heroically faithful to the commitment she took on the day of her marriage," the Pope said.

"The supreme sacrifice that sealed her life testifies that only the one who has the courage to give himself totally to God and to brothers fulfills himself," he added.

He added: "May our age be able to discover, through the example of Gianna Beretta Molla, the pure, chaste and fruitful beauty of conjugal love, lived as a response to the divine call!"

Code: ZE04051610


  1. Saint Gianna, pray for us.

    I can imagine what the pro-choice element is saying about St. Gianna. "She abandoned her family"..."suicide"...something about the Vatican taking a stand against women's rights.

    How many children of saints were there at their parents' canonization? Talk about a great statement of faith and of the value of life! And what a blessing to know your spouse really is waiting for you in heaven.

  2. My good friend and fellow Teaching Couple Mary Wolpiuk has re-inspired me to follow this "new feminism" through...what is the true feminism?

    I'm thinking about when Helen Alvaré was in Rome for the POntifical Council on the Family and the Pope admonished the Council: "I am the Feminist Pope!"

    Would that the Holy Spirit enlight the world to truly understand this!