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St. Maria Goretti

St. Maria Goretti is unique in that she is the youngest canonized saint in the Church. She died tragically on July 6, 1902, at the age of eleven by Alessandro Serenelli, her neighbor. Alessandro forced himself upon Maria in an attempt to rape her. Though she prevented him from violating her, Alessandro brutally stabbed her numerous times. Maria died the next day in the midst of horrendous infection brought on by her lacerations. Her last words were, “I forgive Alessandro Serenelli … and I want him with me in heaven forever.”

During his prison sentence Maria appeared to Alessandro and forgave him. That act of love, filled Alessandro with contrition for his crime. It was also a turning point for him where grace entered his heart. From that point on, he lived a beautiful and converted life of holiness, eventually becoming a Franciscan lay brother.

Maria is known as a wonder-worker. She has intervened with the Lord to produce countless miracles. She is the Patron Saint of Youth, and her feast day is July 6th (9th Traditional).

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