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Birth: 1807

Death: 1890

Beatified By: Pope John Paul II


Maria Repetto, of Voltaggio, Italy, was one of five girls in her family to enter religious life. At the age of twenty-two, she entered the Genoa convent of the Sisters of Our Lady of Refuge. Having asked to be assigned only to tasks within her convent, she served as a seamstress, washerwoman, infirmarian, and portress. The latter office afforded her the opportunity to comfort and counsel the many poor who came to the door. Often she gave visitors holy cards of Saint Joseph, to whom she was especially devoted. Through his intercession she obtained numerous conversions and physical cures. Sister Maria spent much time, and even whole nights, praying before the Blessed Sacrament. On many mornings, she was discovered kneeling on the front step of the altar after a night of adoration. Her zeal for reverent liturgical celebrations and beautifully adorned churches prompted her to assist in providing poor parishes with fitting liturgical furnishings. On her deathbed, Sister Maria uttered as her final words the beginning of the Marian Easter antiphon, Regina Caeli: “O Queen of heaven, rejoice. Alleluia!”


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