A member of the Dominican Sisters’ Congregation of St. Rose of Lima in northern Italy sells prints at the Santa’s Sanctuary of Lima. / Photo credit: Abel Camasca/ACI

Denver Newsroom, Aug 30, 2022 / 14:00 pm (CNA).

After the miracles in Italy worked through the intercession of St. Rose of Lima and her canonization in 1671, a congregation of Dominican nuns was established in Italy in honor of the patron saint of South America. Each member of this congregation is named Rose.

St. Rose was a Dominican tertiary. The Catholic Church celebrates her feast day on Aug. 23, though it was formerly celebrated Aug. 30.

“All of us bear the name of Rose because of our patron saint and mother, St. Rose of Lima. The day when we receive the holy habit, they also change our name; they give us all the name of Rose, by tradition,” Mother Rosa Mónica Gamonal, prioress of the Dominican convent of St. Rose of Lima, explained to EWTN News.

The Congregation of the Dominican Sisters of St. Rose of Lima was founded in 1677 by Mother Giovanna Caterina Boldona in Finalborgo, northern Italy. She was impressed with this saint of the New World and, following her spiritual path, she decided to give her life to God in a convent along with a group of young women.

“Our founding mother, on hearing about the life of St. Rose, fell very much in love with her charism, with her life; she became enthused and felt the call to found a congregation so we could continue what she has left us, what she has handed on to us. To continue with her work of love for Christ, of this gift of self, and also of love for neighbor,” Mother Rosa Mónica recounted.

The prioress said that the miracles that took place in Italy through the intercession of St. Rose of Lima made the saint much loved.

“The miracles for her canonization fittingly were in Italy and they were numerous; four were used in the canonization process. Especially women with terminal cancer, already beyond hope. At that moment of great pain, of much suffering, they had implored Rose for help and they were completely healed,” the nun related.

She also described a miracle that Pope Clement X requested before he decided to canonize her.

“Even Pope Clement X, before naming her a saint, said: ‘Rose, if you really are a saint, you have to give me a sign. I would like to see it rain roses. And the pope felt he saw this rain of roses. Very convinced of her sanctity, he went on to canonize her,” the prioress recounted.

The sister also noted that her congregation is present in several places in Italy and in Brazil, where they serve in the slums. In Peru they serve those most in need and live in the monastery that is inside the saint’s shrine in central Lima.

Mother Rosa Mónica said that St. Rose of Lima is an example of holiness for many today and that “she teaches us to look at Christ, walk with Christ, and for each day to be an act of faith, an act of love of Christ.”

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

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