July 6, 2018 3:30 pm

Dear Friends,
Thanks to all who helped us move the chairs in the church while the ceiling was being painted. It should be finished by tomorrow morning.

Today is the memorial of St. Maria Goretti. She was murdered at the age of 11, because she refused to let a man, Alessandro Serenelli, rape her. She would rather die than allow herself be defiled before God. Alessandro stabbed her 14 times, although she only died later in hospital. Alessandro was sentenced to 30 years in prison. Initially he showed no repentance for his sin, but six years later St. Maria appeared to him and gave him 14 lillies. He realised they represented the 14 times he had stabbed her and that this was her way of telling him that she had forgiven him. This brought about a dramatic conversion for Alessandro. He was released from prison 3 years early because of his exemplary behavior. He then went to Maria’s mother’s house and asked for her forgiveness, which she granted him. It was Christmas Eve and both of them went to mass and received Communion together.
In 1950 both Maria’s mother and Alessandro were present when Maria was declared a saint.
An extraordinary story.