Feast Day: 11 April

Patronage: Students and Pharmacists

St. Gemma Galgani, also known as the Flower of Lucca (the Italian town in which she was born), was an Italian mystic often referred to as the “Daughter of Passion,” for her replication of the Passion of Christ. 

She was born in 1875, and was a quiet, reserved child. She had to quit school due to chronic ill health, and though she wished to become a nun poor health prevented her from entering the convent.

It is told that on June 8, 1899, Gemma felt some unusual grace was about to be granted to her. She felt pain and blood coming from her hands, feet and heart. These were the marks of the stigmata. Each Thursday evening, Gemma would fall into rapture and the marks would appear. [The stigmata refers to the appearance of the wounds of the crucified Jesus Christ appearing on the bodies of some men and women].

On St Gemma, the stigmata would remain until Friday afternoon or Saturday morning. When the bleeding would stop, the wounds would close, and only white marks would remain in place of the bleeding gashes. Gemma’s stigmata continued to appear until she was advised her to pray for their disappearance due to her declining health. Through her prayers, the phenomenon ceased, but the white marks remained on her skin until her death.

She died at the age of 25 years from tuberculosis in 11 April 1903.  Her Parish Priest said, “She died with a smile which remained upon her lips, so that I could not convince myself that she was really dead.”

She was canonized by Pope Pius XII in 1940.