My favorite saint’s feast day is today: Blessed Anna Maria Tagi.
Blessed Anna Maria Taigi was born in Siena on May 29, 1769 and baptized the following day. Because of financial difficulties, her parents, Louis Giannetti and Mary Masi, moved to Rome when Anna Maria was six years old.
In the Eternal City, Anna Maria attended the school conducted by the Flippini Sisters for two years. Following her schooling, she worked at various occupations–even that of a maid–to bring financial assistance to her parents.
When still a young girl, she married Dominic Taigi, a pious young man but of difficult and rather coarse character. Disregarding these defects, Anna Maria was more concerned with his virtue. For the forty-nine years of their married life, she conducted herself with the greatest affability and delicacy, finding ample opportunity to exercise continually the virtues of patience and charity.
Their marriage was characterized by the highest Christian principles. Understanding the profound social and moral values of Christian marriage and considering it, above all, as one of the highest missions from Heaven, Blessed Anna Maria transformed her home into a real sanctuary in which God had the first place. Docile to her husband in every way, she avoided anything which might irritate him and thus disturb the family peace. Serious and hardworking, she saw to it that nothing was lacking to her family and, in so far as one in her impoverished circumstances could, she was generous to the poor.
Blessed Anna Maria bore seven children, three of whom died in childhood. Two boys and two girls grew to maturity and she provided them with the most accurate and complete religious and secular education.
Having sought to correspond to grace from her childhood, Blessed Anna Maria now began to live a life of intense spirituality. She had one desire only: to love God and to serve Him in everything; she had only one preoccupation: to avoid the least shadow of the slightest voluntary imperfection. She was greatly devoted to the Holy Eucharist, to the Most Holy Trinity, to the Infant Jesus, to the Sacred Passion of Our Lord and ever had the tenderest devotion to our Lady.
Anna Maria Taigi is one of the great mystics of the last century. Yet, she achieved her sanctification by living the ordinary life of wife and mother in a spirit of Christian mission and compliance with God’s will. Her daily attendance at Mass, her total surrender to God, her readiness to help anyone in need, and her being an active member of the Third Order of the Most Holy Trinity were, at the same time, the sources and the fruits of her intense spiritual life. She entered the Third Order of the Most Holy Trinity on December 26, 1808.
God enriched her with many supernatural gifts. The most unusual of these was the apparition of a luminous globe like a miniature sun which shone before her eyes and in which, for forty-seven years, she could see present or future events anywhere in the world as well as the state of grace of individuals, living or dead.
Anna Maria died on June 9, 1837. In testimony to how an ordinary housewife an mother could become a saint and positively affect society and the lives of those who come in contact with her, Holy Mother Church declared her Blessed on May 30, 1920. Her incorrupt mortal remains lie in the Chapel of the Madonna in the Basilica of San Crisogono in Rome, Italy. The Trinitarians are actively promoting the cause of her canonization.
Here are some pictures I took of her when I went to visit her in Rome: