Monday, August 8, 2022

Saints for Today: Frances of Rome (1384-1440)

Must Read

A History of the Spanish Colonists of San Mateo Parish

From several accounts, the village of San Mateo, New Mexico was founded in 1862. In the push of the...

“La Fiesta de Colores” Marks 20 Years of Hispanic Cultural Celebration

It may be one of the best-kept secrets in New Mexico. Twenty years ago, a group of artists decided to...

When bread and wine become literal Flesh and Blood: The Lanciano Eucharistic Miracle, 1300 years later

When he said the Words of Consecration, with doubt in his soul, the priest saw the bread change into living flesh and the wine change into blood.
Dr. Jean Lee
Jean M. Lee, M.A., D.Min., is a licensed behavioral health and substance abuse counselor, founding a nonprofit, state-licensed behavior health counseling agency and Christian gift/book store. Volunteer work includes: Jail ministry, Legion of Mary membership, door-to-door evangelization, and writing a weekly newspaper column titled “Faith and Inspiration: Encyclopedia of Saints for Today.” A Catholic revert after 32 years away from the Church, she is devout in the Catholic faith, loves the saints, and lives a deeper spiritual/religious and more joyful life since returning to the Church.

Feast Day: March 09

Frances, was born in the Trastevere district of Rome, to parents who were both wealthy and deeply religious. With the Benedictine spiritual director her mother chose for her, Frances planned an ascetic religious life for herself, but her parents had already chosen a husband for her. She became a young bride and mother, marrying at the age of 12 after her father denounced her desire to become a nun. The early years of her marriage were hard on Frances, as she preferred prayer and penance over her husband’s parties and play.

Frances and her sister-in-law snuck away daily to Mass, pledging to God that they would be dutiful wives despite their longing to work with the poor. Frances saw everyone—rich and poor, nobility and peasantry—as her equal, and thus was a positive influence on her peers. Other women of class and privilege turned to Frances for spiritual advice and support and often imitated her generosity to the poor, as well as her devotion to her husband and children. They also came to follow her in her faith and service to God.

After the death of her husband to whom she had been married for forty years, Frances joined the religious community she had founded (Oblates of Tor de Specchi, after the tower into which they moved in 1433). They were not religious Sisters and did not take vows, but they were committed to living in common (which Frances could not do while her husband was alive) and devoting their lives to works of mercy. Frances is known to have had mystical experiences and revelations, and to have had the constant apparition of her guardian angel. She developed remarkable powers of healing (which she attributed to her guardian angel), and the fame of these spread all over Rome.

Miracles of healing attended her death and the odor of sanctity was intensely noted in the room in which she died. During the time that the funeral was delayed due to the mass of people who wanted to pay their respects, the fragrance continued to linger—to the delight of the visitors.

When a monumental tomb was prepared a few months after her death, the first tomb was opened to effect the transfer of Frances’ remains. At this time the body was found perfectly preserved and still exhaling the same sweet fragrance as before. Currently, the Saint’s body is no longer incorrupt.

“A married woman must, when called upon, quit her devotions to God at the altar to find him in her household affairs.” — St. Frances of Rome


Burns, Paul. “Butler’s Saint for the Day.” Collegeville: Liturgical Press, 2007.
Cruz, Joan Carroll. “Mysteries Marvels Miracles in the Lives of the Saints.” Charlotte: TAN Books, 1997.
Trigilio, Rev. John, Ph.D, Th.D, and Rev. Kenneth Brighenti, Ph.D. “Saints for Dummies.” Hoboken, NJ: Wiley Publishing, 2010.


Featured Image: Wikimedia Commons


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

Aging and a Season of Fruitfulness

‘The fast pace of the world can lead seniors to implicitly accept the idea that they are useless. My uncle never succumbed to this temptation.’


Other recent stories:

How Love of the Eucharist Helps With the Challenges of Raising a Family

Here it was, my suffering, presented to me in the darling chubby cheeks of delight of the incredibly beautiful children entrusted to me.

The Eucharist and Daily Living

Jesus gifted us with the greatest gift ever offered - Himself to us in the form of Holy Communion.

Jesus is Calling You: How the Eucharist Reveals Our Vocation

When you spend privileged time with Jesus, He will invite you to follow Him more closely. And, when the time is right, He will make His call to you clear.

Mary and the Eucharist

How Our Lady points the way to her Son.


More Articles Like This