Saint Gemma was born in 1878 near Lucca, Italy. From her childhood, she dedicated herself to meditation on the Passion of Jesus Christ, leading an innocent life and longing ardently for heaven. She was orphaned and then charitably welcomed into the home of a deeply Christian family. Consecrating herself to God by a vow of virginity, she joyfully applied herself to pursue the way of perfection. She had a singular devotion toward the Eucharist and toward Jesus Crucified. Graced with special supernatural charisms, she offered herself to God for the conversion of sinners. Although her ardent desire to enter the Passionist Nuns was never realized because of various difficulties, she distinguished herself as an extraordinary exemplar of holiness in the midst of the world. She died at Lucca on Holy Saturday, April 11, 1903.


Prayer


All-powerful God, you made the virgin St. Gemma Galgani a living image of your Crucified Son. Through her prayers, may we suffer with Christ and so share in his glory, for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever.