Celebrating Saint Rita of Cascia

The month of May, for us Augustinians and for so many devotees around the world, is linked to the figure of the great Augustinian nun, Saint Rita of Cascia. Saint Rita lived in Umbria in Italy, more than 600 years ago, but the different experiences that life has brought together, have made her a figure that appeals so much even to our times. She lived the challanges of married life, the experience of a mother who even lost her sons, the call to the consecrated life as an Augustinian nun, and in the last years of her life God granted her the grace to experience closely the suffering of his Son through a thorn on her forehead. In all this she lived heroically the Christian virtues particularly, love, forgiveness, faith, and total disposition to the will of God.

Along the 20th century, the devotion to Saint Rita spread rapidly, not only in Italy, but also in so many countries around the world. The Augustinians worked hard to spread such devotion presenting her to the people of God as a model of hope in the difficulties of life. Many devotees keep Thursdays as the day to resort to her with their difficulties and problems humbly requesting her intercession to deliver their prayer to God almighty.

In Malta the national centre of devotion to the Saint is the Parish Church of St. Augustine in Valletta where the feast is celebrated on the liturgical day being the 22nd of May. This year, the 9.30am mass on that day will be broadcast even on TVM2. In Gozo, the feast will also be celebrated on the same day at St. Augustine Church in Victoria.

In addition to the program of celebrations in these two churches, the feast will also be celebrated in all the other Augustinian churches with celebrations on different days close to the date. It is thus recommended that one looks for the program, in the Augustinian church that is most comfortable for him so that we can continue to praise the Lord for the gift of our dear Saint Rita of Casia and pray together through her intercession.

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