May 22: Benedizione delle Rose (Blessing of the Roses)

Happy Feast Day of St. Rita of Cascia!

Today is a big day in Cascia! May 22nd is the Celebration of the Feast of St. Rita, and in just a month from today, on June 22, we will be walking those very streets where today everything is coming up roses!

One of the most beloved Italian saints is St. Rita of Cascia, a native of Umbria who died in Cascia in 1456. Santa Rita is widely celebrated throughout the country on her feast day with Mass, processions, and other festivities. On her feast day, churches and shrines of St. Rita provide roses to the congregation that are blessed by the priest during Mass.

Why roses? 
It is said that near the end of her life, Rita was bedridden at the convent. While visiting her, a cousin asked if she desired anything from her old home. Rita responded by asking for a rose from the garden. It was January, and her cousin did not expect to find one due to the season. However, when her relative went to the house, a single blooming rose was found in the garden, and her cousin brought it back to Rita at the convent. St. Rita is often depicted holding roses or with roses nearby.

If you'd like to learn more about St. Rita before visiting her home, Ignatius has a movie on DVD titled Saint Rita

On this beautiful feast day, ask St. Rita to walk with you and help you be the woman God has created you to be.

Looking forward to journeying with you!


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