Tomorrow is the Feast of Saint Gemma Galgani, whom Pierre Jovanovic (who used to live around the corner from us at Saint Joseph’s, avenue Hoche) referred to in his Enquiry into the Existence of Guardian Angels as The Marilyn Munroe of the Saints. Gemma is the most beautiful and the most fascinating of the saints associated with the Passionists. Her biography, by Father Germano (whose tomb is shown below), was recently placed by one blogger on the top five list of scary spiritual reading .
Last autumn I had the privilege of visiting her tomb at the Passionist Nuns Monastery at Lucca with a group of Passionist pilgrims from Australia. Here we are in front of Saint Gemma’s tomb.
Afterwards we had lunch at the recently-built pilgrims centre. Here is our General, Father Ottaviano, cutting the cake which one of the nuns made for the occasion.
You can find an English translation of Letters of Saint Gemma Galgani at the Library of Congress (-this links to a pdf file).