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March 8th

Saint John, the man of God, the monk

He was born in 1495 AD near Lisbon, Portugal. When he was forty-two years old, and after spending his life in several jobs, including farming, soldiery, and commerce, and experiencing the emptiness of a world far from God, he chose “the best lot.” He devoted himself to serving Christ by caring, spiritually and physically, for the needy and the sick. He founded many hospitals, one of them in the Spanish city of Granada, and he relied in his projects on what divine providence provided, so he was urging people to donate, saying: “Do good, for yourselves, my brothers.” Hence the name of the Order in Latin (Fate bene fratelli). Then he joined other companions, who later established the “Hospital Order of Saint John, the Man of God.” Rest in God in Granada in 1550. is considered the intercessor of nurses and patients.

March 09

Saint Francis of Romania, the nun

She was born in 1384 AD into a rich and noble Romanian family. Since her childhood, she yearned for the ascetic life, but she got married when she was a young woman at the age of thirteen to satisfy her family, so God blessed her with three children. She lived through difficult days, while political conflicts were raging in Rome, as two of her children died and her husband became disabled, so Francisca faced these conditions with great faith and was the example of a Christian wife and mother. She was famous for her generosity, as she distributed her money to the poor, and devoted herself to serving the sick and the needy. She was amazing in practicing virtues, especially humility and patience. In 1425, she founded the Congregation of Consecrated Women, according to the canons of St. Benedict. After the death of her husband, she moved to life with her devoted sisters, who chose her as the head of their monastic community. I fell asleep in 1440.