Prayer to St. Maria Goretti
Oh Saint Maria Goretti who, strengthened by God's grace, did not
hesitate even at the age of twelve to shed your blood and sacrifice
life itself to defend your virginal purity, look graciously on the
unhappy human race which has strayed far from the path of eternal
salvation. Teach us all, and especially youth,with what courage
and promptitude we should flee for the love of Jesus anything that
could offend Him or stain our souls with sin. Obtain for us from
our Lord victory in temptation, comfort in the sorrows of life,
and the grace which we earnestly beg of thee (here insert intention),
and may we one day enjoy with thee the imperishable glory of Heaven.
Prayer for youth through St. Maria Goretti:
St. Maria Goretti, pray in heaven that I may love purity as much
as you did. I wish to keep my soul good and holy as when it came
from the waters of Baptism and after my First Holy Communion. Thank
you for showing young people that purity of soul is even more precious
than a long life here on earth.
St. Maria Goretti, from your place in heaven, pray that I may be
always pure and holy. Pray that all young people may be heroes in
our fight against the evil spirit of wickedness. Amen
Maria Goretti: Model of Purity, Patron of Youth
Maria Goretti died a martyr before her twelfth birthday. Young
as she was, she made a choice, a choice based on her faith. The
Church holds up to the world the life, death and the faith of Maria
Her feast day is July 6. Born 16 October 1890 at Corinaldo, Ancona,
July 1902, Maria, though illiterate, had completed her Catechism
instructions in order to receive her First Holy Communion.
How she had longed to take Jesus into her heart often! Once a week
on Sunday just did not seem like enough. Maria managed the rigors
of life because she had her Jesus for strength. This serious little
girl had matured spiritually beyond her years, too. Her night prayers
become longer. She examined her conscience repeatedly for occasions
of sin, her small body trembled with fear and bitter sobs.
In 1902 at age twelve, Maria was attacked by 19-year-old farm-hand
Alessandro Serenelli. He tried to rape the girl who fought, yelled
that it was a sin, and that he would go to hell. He tried to choke
her into submission, then stabbed her fourteen times. She survived
in hospital for two days, forgave her attacker, asked God's forgiveness
of him, and died holding a crucifix and medal of Our Lady. Before
she died, the parish priest came in to offer her Viaticum, but first
she took time to reflect on the good Father's reminder that Jesus
had pardoned those who had crucified Him. As she gazed at the crucifix
on the far wall, she said without anger or resentment, "I,
too, pardon him. I, too, wish that he could come some day and join
me in heaven." This act was counted as a martyr.
While in prison for his crime, Allessandro had a vision of Maria.
He saw a garden where a young girl, dressed in white, gathered lilies.
She smiled, came near him, and encouraged him to accept an armful
of the lilies. As he took them, each lily transformed into a still
white flame. Maria then disappeared. This vision of Maria led to
Alessandro's conversion, and he later testified at her cause for
On June 24, 1950, Pope Pius XII canonized Saint Maria Goretti as
a virgin and martyr saint of the Roman Catholic Church. Maria's
mother was present at the ceremony - the first mother ever to attend
the canonization ceremony of her child. Alessandro Serenelli was
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