Mattias, Maria de, Bl.

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Foundress of the Sisters Adorers of the Most Precious Blood; b. Vallecorsa (Frosinone), Italy, Feb. 4, 1805; d. Rome, Aug. 20, 1866. Maria's parents, Giovanni and Ottavia (de Angelis) de Mattias, were poor but afforded the girl a good education. During a mission preached in Vallecorsa by St. Gaspare del bufalo (1822), she was inspired to dedicate her life to prayer and good works. Under the guidance of Giovanni merlini, her spiritual director, Mattias organized a group of religious women with special devotion to the precious blood, dedicated to the education of youth. The congregation dates its origin from the opening of a school at Acuto on the invitation of the bishop of Anagni (March 4, 1834). Despite habitual poor health and misunderstanding within the community concerning the foundress's intention, Mattias established 63 houses. In part this success was due to the generosity of a Russian widow, Princess Zena Wolkonska. Mattias was beatified Oct. 1, 1950.

Feast: Oct. 1 (see precious blood sisters).

Bibliography: m. e. pietromarchi, La beata Maria de Mattias: Fondatrice dell'istituto delle Suore Adoratice del Preziosissimo Sangue (Rome 1950). a. myerscough, Redemptive Encounter: The Precious Blood in the Spirituality of Maria de Mattias (Washington 1963). m. a. masterson, Smiling Maria: Blessed Maria de Mattias (Ruma, Ill. 1966). n. bufalini, Valore sociale ed assistenziale dell'opera di Maria de Mattias (L'Aquila 1971). j. l. baudot and l. chaussin, Vies des saints et des bienheureux selon l'ordre du calendrier avec l'historique des fêtes, ed. by the Benedictines of Paris, 12 v. (Paris 193556); v. 13, suppl. and table générale (1959) 13:174176. Acta Sanctae Sedis 42 (1950) 719723.

[a. j. pollack]

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Mattias, Maria de, Bl.

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