SAINT MARY MAGDALENE of PAZZI
Virgin, Carmelite
(1566-1607)
Saint Mary Magdalene of Pazzi was the only daughter of the illustrious Camille de Pazzi, related to the Medicis of Florence. She was born in the year 1566, and was baptized with the name of Catherine. As a child she loved to go into solitary places to enter into prayer with God, who revealed Himself to her from her tender years without the aid of teachers, as her Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier. She made a crown of thorns one day, and wore it for an entire night, enduring great pain. She received her First Communion at ten years of age; at twelve years, she made a vow of virginity and took great pleasure in teaching Christian doctrine to poor children.Her father, not knowing of her vow, wished to give her in marriage, but she persuaded him to allow her to become a religious, and chose the Carmelites, because there the nuns received Communion frequently. She entered in the year of the death of Saint Teresa of Avila, 1582, at the age of sixteen. It had been more difficult to obtain her mother’s consent; while she was a novice, her mother sent a portrait artist to the convent, with instructions that her daughter be portrayed in lay clothing. The Sisters complied with her request, and the portrait can still be seen in the Convent. She became professed at eighteen years of age in the Carmelite monastery of Santa Maria degli Angeli in Florence, May 17, 1584, Feast of the Holy Trinity. She changed her name of Catherine to that of Mary Magdalene on becoming a nun, and took as her motto, “Either suffer or die.”

reasonable creature or one without reason; I see nothing in myself but a little good will never to offend the divine Majesty.”

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