In Case You Have Forgotten…

In just a couple of short weeks, Blessed Mother Marianne Cope will be canonized a saint. I suspect many of you are not aware of her, even though I did blog about her earlier this year. Almost everyone knows St. Damien of Molokai, the Belgian Sacred Heart priest who ministered to and died with the lepers at Kaluapapa on the island of Molokai, Hawaii. Far fewer know of Bl. Mother Marianne Cope.

For many years, Fr. Damien pleaded with the church authorities to sent to him and the lepers nuns who might assist him in caring for the needs of his parishioners. For years, the civil government wouldn’t allow it, insisting that Kaluapapa was not a place for women, when in fact they meant Caucasian women, forgetting that the peninsula had hundreds of Hawaiian women living there. Finally, out of Syracuse, New York, Mother Marianne agreed to come with a handful of her sisters, and the government relented. There she and her sisters tended to the physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual needs of the lepers, along with Fr. Damien. Mother Marianne was there at Fr. Damien’s bedside when he eventually succumbed to leprosy (Hansen’s disease).

St. Philomenia Church Molokai

The people of Molokai, indeed all of Hawaii, are very excited about going to Rome to see her canonized on October 21. Groups of pilgrims are being organized, and spirits are high,  just as they were in 2009 when Fr. Damien was canonzed.

Soon-to-be St. Mother Marianne Cope, pray for us!

About Deacon Bob

Moderator: Deacon Bob Yerhot of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester, Minnesota.
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