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Castello, Italy: Tomb of Saint Margaret of Castello in the Church of Saint Dominic

About Saint Margaret of Castello:

Born into a wealthy family in 1287, Catherine had many physical deformities. She was a dwarf, had a curved spine that left her hunched over, was blind, and as she grew it was discovered that she was lame to the point that she could barely walk.

Her family was embarrassed by her, and kept her hidden away for many years. As young as age 6, she was walled up in a room beside a chapel. A family chaplain taught her about God. Seeking a miracle, her parents took her to a Franciscan shrine. Disappointed that their prayers were not answered, they abandoned her. Some in the community took pity on her, and gave her the help she needed to survive.

She became a member of the Dominican Third Order of Castello, developed a deep prayer life and devoted the remainder of her life to performing acts of penance and charity.

Despite her suffering, Saint Margaret remained serene, calm, cheerful and courageous. She never became bitter, complained, criticized others or became discouraged. She went to mass daily, and prayed fervently to Jesus, Mary, Joseph and St. Dominic. St. Margaret accepted her suffering with the eyes of faith. She did not know why God allowed her to suffer from so many afflictions, yet she did know that He was all-good, did not allow evil without a good reason and always turned evil into good for His children. She wondered why people pitied her; was it not a privilege to suffer with Christ? Suffering for her was her way to heaven.

One benefit of her suffering was that it made her more sympathetic to the trials of others. She visited prisoners, helped the sick and comforted the dying.

Since her death at age 33, she has been a great intercessor: many cures have since been attributed to her intercession. She is an inspiration to those who are discouraged and tempted to self-pity. Her intercession is most powerful to those who suffer from eye and muscular diseases.

She has also become a patron for pro-life groups, and those who are unwanted and abandoned.

We have to wonder….how many potential saints have we aborted due to their physical infirmities?  It reminds us of the question that Hillary Clinton once asked Mother Theresa:  “Why do you think we haven’t had a woman president yet?  Her reply:  “Because you probably aborted her”.


About the tomb of Saint Margaret of Castello in the Church of Saint Dominic:

St. Margaret was declared Blessed in 1609. Her incorrupt body lies under the main altar of St. Dominic Church in Castello. Many visit her shrine here. She was canonized a saint, 701 years after her death, by Pope Francis April 24, 2021.

We celebrate the Feast of Saint Margaret of Castello on April 24.


Other churches with shrines to Saint Margaret of Castello:

There two churches in the U.S. that have shrines to Saint Margaret of Castello:  Saint Patrick’s Church in Columbus, Ohio and Saint Louis Bertrand Church in Louisville, Kentucky.

Traveling to Castello, Italy:

Castello is roughly 140 miles north of Rome in the Province of Perugia.

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