Bl. Maria Crocifissa Curcio – (1877-1957)
Born January 30th, 1877 in Noto, Sicily. Seventh of ten children born to Salvatore Curcio and Concetta Franzò. She had only 6 years of school, but educated herself by reading widely in her family library. She was deeply affected by reading the Life of Saint Teresa of Jesus, which she found at a time when she was feeling drawn to religious life. In 1890, at age thirteen and against some family objection, she joined the Carmelite Tertiaries in Ispica, Sicily. She and several other tertiaries moved in together to see if they were ready for community life. Rosa transferred to Modica and managed the Carmela Polara which helped poor and orphaned girls. She travelled to Rome on May 17th, 1925 for the canonization of Saint Therese of the Child Jesus.
Soon after she moved to Santa Marinella, diocese of Porto Santa Rufina, Italy on July 3rd, 1925 to work with the many poor of the area. There she founded the Congregation of the Carmelite Missionary Sisters of Saint Therese of the Child Jesus which received official recognition in 1930; its goal was “to bring souls to God” by feeding the poor, educating children and supporting families. They spread out across Italy, and in 1947 she sent missionary sisters to Brazil; the Congregation continues its good work today. Her whole adult life Rosa felt a call to the missions, but due to health problems she was forced to stay put, be a loving mother to her sisters, and send them into the world. She died July 4th 1957 In Porto Santa Rufina, Italy of natural causes. Beatified November 13th, 2005 by Pope Benedict XVI. Canonization is pending.
Last content update 07/03/09