Feast of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini - November 13
The feast of Mother Cabrini is celebrated on November 13. Mother is the first naturalized American Saint canonized in Rome on July 7, 1946. We thought we would share some facts about Mother Cabrini that you might enjoy.
Francesca Maria Cabrini was born prematurely to Stella and Agostino Cabrini, the tenth of eleven children. They lived in a northern Italian town called San Angelo. The parents were from a middle class farming society. Francesca grew up with only five siblings and by the time she was elven years old only three siblings remained – Maddalena, Rosa and Giovanni Battista. Francesca was small, fragile, weak and prone to fevers and had contracted malaria in her missionary journeys.
Francesca’s parents died in the same year when she was 20 years old. She obtained a teacher’s diploma and taught for two years in the public school in the town of Vidaro. At 23 she requested admission into two religious congregations but both refused her because of her poor health. The bishop asked her to assist at the House of Providence where she gathered the first six companions for her new religious congregation.
Mother Cabrini traveled 23 times across the ocean despite her fear of water. She was present in the USA for over 13 years and in Europe for over 11 years and in Latin America for a little over 3 years. All her ocean voyages totaled 9 months of travel. From 1880 to 1917, Mother founded 67 institutions.
Given her frail health, her numerous travels and the many schools, orphanages, and hospitals that she established, it is easy to understand that her favorite scripture passage was “I can do all things in Him who strengthens me.”
An excerpt from Pope Francis’ “Joy of the Gospel”
“Those who have a true encounter with Christ find their lives filled with happiness. This is a deep happiness that brings inner emptiness to an end because these Christians are set free from selfishness. They are saved. I want to encourage everyone who experiences this to spread the word, beginning a new chapter in the history of the Church.”