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Maria Adeodata Pisani

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Blessed Maria Adeodata Pisani
Adeodata Pisani.jpg
Born December 29, 1806(1806-12-29), Naples, Italy
Died February 25, 1855, Mdina, Malta
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Beatified May 9, 2001 by Pope John Paul II
Feast February 25

Born 29 December 1806 at Naples, Italy; Died 25 February 1855 at the Benedictine monastery at Mdina, Malta

Venerated: 24 April 2001 by Pope John Paul II (decree of heroic virtues)

Beatified: 9 May 2001 by Pope John Paul II. The beatification process was delayed for many years.

Detail of beatification miracle: 24 November 1897 - the abbess Giuseppina Damiani from the Monastery of Saint John the Baptist Subiaco, Italy was suddenly healed of a stomach tumour following her request for Maria Pisani’s intervention.

Quote: “Born in Italy of a Maltese father, Sister Maria Adeodata Pisani came here at the age of nineteen, and spent most of her life as a splendid figure of Benedictine religious consecration in the Monastery of Saint Peter. I know that some of the Sisters of the Monastery were not able to come here, but are following this ceremony on television. To you, dear Sisters, I send a very special blessing on this happy day. Prayer, obedience, service of her Sisters and maturity in performing her assigned tasks: these were the elements of Maria Adeodata’s silent, holy life. Hidden in the heart of the Church, she sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching (cf. Luke 10:39), savouring the things that last for ever (cf. Colossians 3:2). Through her prayer, work and love, she became a well-spring of that spiritual and missionary fruitfulness without which the Church cannot preach the Gospel as Christ commands, for mission and contemplation require each other absolutely (cf. Novo Millennio Ineunte, 16). Sister Adeodata’s holy example certainly helped to promote the renewal of religious life in her own Monastery. I therefore wish to commend to her intercession a special intention of my heart. Much has been done in recent times to adapt religious life to the changed circumstances of today, and the benefit of this can be seen in the lives of very many men and women religious. But there is need for a renewed appreciation of the deeper theological reasons for this special form of consecration. We still await a full flowering of the teaching of the Second Vatican Council on the transcendent value of that special love of God and others which leads to the vowed life of poverty, chastity and obedience. I commend to all consecrated men and women the example of personal maturity and responsibility which was wonderfully evident in the life of Blessed Adeodata." - (Pope John Paul II during the beatification Mass for Blessed Maria 9 May 2001 )

Blessed Maria Adeodata Pisani, OSB.

Pope John Paul II declared her as a Blessed on 9 May 2001 at Floriana, Malta. Soon after, the huge portrait of the Blessed - a replica of the oil original painting commissioned in 1898 by the Archbishop of Rhodes and Bishop of Malta Pietro Pace in , was unveiled. The Pontiff also announced that her feast would be celebrated on 25 February, the day of her death.

The day after Pope John Paul II signed and released both the decree on the virtues and the miracle, paving the path for the beatification, the bishops released a pastoral letter in which they emphasized that Maria Adeodata had had "a difficult childhood as her parents did not live together. She renounced and disposed of her wealth, willingly living as a cloistered nun." Even the team of theologian experts, while evaluating her life and virtues, admitted that she had to face serious difficulties.

Maria Adeodata Pisani was the daughter of a noble Maltese father (Benedetto Pisani, whose father Gaetano received the title of Barone di Frigenuini (Second Creation) from Grand Master Francisco Ximenes de Texada on the 17 June 1773 and was invested on the 21 June 1773). The title formed part of the Maltese nobility however nobody appears to have claimed this title before the Royal Commission appointed to enquire into the claims of the Maltese nobility.

While still a little child, her mother decided to leave home, unable to cope with the baron's irresponsible behaviour. She was cared for mostly by her grandmother, not her mother, and was given proper schooling for almost seven years, secluded in a college. A few years after her father was sent back to Malta by King Ferdinand, Maria Adeodata and her mother had to leave Naples. Once in Malta, she decided to become a nun, but her mother did not approve. Besides suffering from delicate health, Maria Adeodata had a deformity in her shoulder, caused, as it was testified, by a maid who beat her when she lived with her grandmother in Naples, Italy. She even kept a wound in one of her fingers to herself for three months without seeking any help. She suffered heartache and hydropisis in silence, until death.

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