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Saint of the Day January 04: St. Angela of Foligno

Saint Angela of Foligno: Life, Conversion and Teachings of the Franciscan Mystic

Name

Saint Angela of Foligno

Title

Franciscan tertiary

Birth

13th century, Foligno

Death

04 January 1309, Foligno

Recurrence

04 January

Beatification

1693, Rome, Pope Innocent XII

Canonization

Oct. 09, 2013, Rome, Pope Francis

 

Prayer

O glorious Saint Angela, who, enlightened by grace, in the contempt and renunciation of all that is fleeting, would run with great “steps” along the way of the Cross toward God “love of the soul,” impart to us that we may love the Lord as You loved her. Teach us, O Mistress of the spirit, to detach ourselves from the fallen things of earth, to possess God, our true wealth. So be it.

Roman Martyrology

At Foligno in Umbria, Blessed Angela, who, after her husband and children died, following in the footsteps of St. Francis, gave herself completely to God and entrusted her profound experiences of mystical life to her autobiography.

The Saint and Mission

St. Angela of Foligno, a significant figure in medieval spirituality, embodies a profound mission that transcends her historical context, speaking directly to the heart of those seeking God in the complexities of the modern world. Her life is a tale of radical transformation, from a materially rich but spiritually empty existence to a total dedication to God through an intense journey of conversion, prayer and service.

St. Angela’s mission is initially manifested in her profound inner change. Her conversion was not a simple change of habits, but a total restructuring of her existence. This radical reorientation toward God highlights a fundamental component of the Christian mission: the relentless journey of personal conversion and renewal, which becomes a living witness to the transformative power of divine grace.

After her conversion, Angela embarks on a life of intense prayer and communion with God, exploring the depths of spirituality and mystical intimacy. Her search for God is a powerful example of how Christian mission is first and foremost an inner journey, an ongoing search for God’s presence and love that then radiates outwardly through an individual’s words and actions.

In addition, St. Angela dedicated herself to the service of others, particularly the poor and the sick, becoming the hands and feet of Christ for those on the margins of society. This aspect of her mission emphasizes that the true pursuit of God results in an active commitment to neighbor, a concrete love that seeks to alleviate suffering and respond to the needs of others.

Finally, Angela’s legacy, including her writings, continues to influence and inspire those who seek a deeper life with God. Her mission, therefore, extends beyond her earthly life, continuing to speak to and guide future generations toward a greater understanding and love for God.

St. Angela of Foligno represents a Christian mission lived with authenticity and depth. Her life of conversion, prayer and service is a powerful reminder of the core of Christian mission: an unceasing journey toward God that transforms the individual believer and, through him, the whole world.

The Saint and Mercy

St. Angela of Foligno, a 13th-century Franciscan mystic and tertiary, is a figure who profoundly embodies mercy through her conversion experience, her prayer life and her service to others. Her personal story as a sinner-turned-saint offers a powerful testimony to divine mercy and the human capacity for change and renewal.

Mercy in St. Angela’s life is initially manifested in her conversion journey. After years of worldly life and detachment from God, Angela experiences a profound spiritual conversion followed by the death of her family members. This radical turning point is a clear sign of God’s intervening mercy, transforming grief and loss into a journey toward a deeper understanding and love for Him. Angela’s story reminds us that God’s mercy is always available and that no one is beyond the possibility of change and salvation.

After her conversion, Angela’s life becomes an example of dedication to prayer, penance and service to others. Her deep relationship with God is fueled by mystical visions and an intense interior life, but what makes her experience a true act of mercy is her decision to share this received love. Angela does not simply live her spirituality in isolation; rather, she devotes herself to helping the poor and the sick, becoming the hands and feet of God’s mercy in the world.

Moreover, Angela’s writings, which include reflections on her spiritual life and mystical revelations, are a source of encouragement and guidance for many. By offering her wisdom and experience, Angela extends God’s mercy to those who seek to deepen their spiritual lives, becoming a guide for those who wish to follow a path of conversion and deeper love.

The life of St. Angela of Foligno reminds us of the transformative power of divine mercy and our call to become instruments of that mercy. Through her conversion story, her prayer life and her commitment to serving others, Angela teaches us that mercy is a path we receive and are called to share, a path that changes lives and brings light into darkness.

Hagiography

Lived between 1248 and 1309. Born in Foligno to a good family, after marriage she led a worldly and profligate life until she converted and became a Franciscan tertiary; after the death of her husband and children she gave herself completely to God and penance and in 1291 became the leader of a large group of male and female tertiaries the Franciscan Third Order. At the request of her confessor Brother Arnaldo, Angela dictated to him a memoir of her visions of ecstasy, in which she reveals herself as one of the greatest among mystics.

This spiritual autobiography shows the thirty steps the soul takes in reaching intimate communion with God, through meditation on the mysteries of Christ, the Eucharist, temptations and…

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Source and Images

SantoDelGiorno.it

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