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Saint Juliana Falconieri

Saint Juliana Falconieri

 

 

The name Falconieri is famous in church annals.  The uncle of St. Juliana, St. Alexis Falconieri, is one of the Seven Founders of the Servite Order.  He was very instrumental in the upbringing of St. Juliana, her father having died when she was very young.

It was obvious to her mother and uncle that Juliana had a vocation from the time she was a very young child.  She was not interested in material things, or grooming herself in order to find a husband.  Her mother chided her about not taking her sewing spinning wheel lessons seriously.  Juliana was not concerned.  Finally at age 15, Juliana let it be known to all that she fully intended to give her life over to Our Lord in His service. Her mother Riguardata was not happy at all with this decision, but Juliana was extremely strong willed.

She was trained by her uncle Alexis, and invested into the Servite Order by St. Philip Benizi in the Church of Annunziata in Florence, for which her parents had paid to have built.  Juliana founded the order of Servites nuns, and became the first superior.  She never asked her ladies to mortify themselves more than Juliana.  As a matter of fact, no one was able to keep up with her zeal, or mortification.  She hindered her health greatly.  Because of this, at the end of her life, her stomach was so weakened that, on her death bed at age 70, she was not able to receive Our Lord Jesus in the Eucharist.

THE MIRACLE

The Saint lay on her death bed.  She grieved that she was not able to receive the Lord in the Eucharist.  She was very loved by the community, and the priest in attendance at the end of her life.  She still had a very strong will.  She convinced the priest, Fr. James de Campo Reggio,  to bring the Eucharist to her bedside, so that she could at least SEE Her Lord before she died.  The priest gave in.

When he brought the Blessed Sacrament into the room, she was obsessed with the desire to touch Him somehow.  She pleaded with the priest to allow her to at least kiss the Host.  He refused.  She waited a little longer.  It was very obvious to all that she was nearing death.  She begged the priest to put a corporal on her chest, and just lay the Lord gently on her chest, near her heart. The priest, who found it very difficult to deny her anything, gave in.  Fr. James arranged the Cloth on her chest, as she had requested.  No sooner had the Host been placed there than It disappeared from sight, to the astonishment of the 18 people gathered in the room.  Saint Juliana closed her eyes, smiling.  She never opened them again.  At the touch of Our Lord Jesus on her heart, her life had been fulfilled, and she went to Him.

There was a hush in the room.  They had all seen it, but no one could believe their eyes.  All of the sisters in the room, and the priest, fell to their knees in reverence to the Miraculous Gift they had been given.  They prayed for the safe journey of the soul of their Foundress to her heavenly reward.  In due time, her body was prepared for the funeral.  Blessed Joan Solderini, who assumed the saint’s responsibility in the community, was the first to notice another miracle.  They took St. Juliana’s bedclothes off the body.  On her left breast was the outline of the Crucified Christ, encircled by the Host.  It was in the same position as the Host which had been placed on her chest, and had disappeared.

We’ve attempted to take just a few examples of ways in which Our Dear Lord Jesus has come to the aid of His loyal supporters by means of Eucharistic Miracles.  He is extremely generous with the special gifts He gives to those who love Him.  He finds it very difficult to turn down any request from these intimate friends who have been willing to lay down their lives, pick up their crosses, and follow Him.  There are many documented miracles to substantiate this giving nature of Our Lord Jesus. 

Excerpt from Miracles of the Eucharist Book 1

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