Spirituality for Today – September 2014 – Volume 19, Issue 2

Saint of the Month
St. Maria Patrocinio Giner

September 21

A photo of Saint Maria Patrocinio GinerSaint Maria Patrocinio Giner

Tortosa in Spain, not far away from where Ebro River flows into the Mediterranean Sea, was the home of Maria Cinta Asuncion Giner. She was born there on January 4, 1874, one of the youngest in a very pious family with seven children. A few of her siblings felt a religious vocation and joined various monastic institutions. Maria went to a school run by the Claretian nuns, so she chose that congregation and professed her vows in 1893, taking the name Maria Patrocinio. She started work in a school, where she proved to be a good and wise tutor. She took care of children and their parents. In times of unrest she provided an example of Christian attitude to family and social problems.

For many years she was a novice mistress and prioress of the monastic house in Valencia. She stayed there – although no longer performing administrative functions – when the civil war broke out. She preserved a peace of spirit in the face of brutal repression by the leftist militia. She encouraged sisters to show forgiveness and understanding to the oppressors who prevented the nuns from leaving the house. But she was steadfast on the most important issues and did not allow profanation of the Holy Sacrament.

She was arrested on November 13, 1936 and executed without a court trial. When she was dying, she prayed for the conversion of her oppressors. She was beatified with a group of 233 Spanish martyrs on March 11, 2001.

Merciful God,
Bl. Maria Patrocinio Giner gave her life
for conversion of her oppressors.
Grant that we imitate her in love for enemies,
so that we can receive from You absolution for our sins.
Through Christ our Lord, Amen.

From Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives