Mogas Fontcuberta, María Ana, Bl.
MOGAS FONTCUBERTA, MARÍA ANA, BL.
Co-foundress of the Capuchin Congregation of Franciscan Missionaries of the Mother of the Divine Shepherd; b. Corró de Vall-Granollers (near Barcelona), Catalonia, Spain, Jan. 13, 1827; d. Fuencarral (north of Madrid), Spain, July 3, 1886.
María Ana was raised in Barcelona by her widowed aunt or godmother, María Mogas, following the deaths of her father Lorenzo Mogas (d. 1834) and mother Magdalena Fontcuberta (d. 1841). María Ana was provided with all the benefits of high social standing, as well as faith. She searched for her vocation under the spiritual direction of the exclaustrated Capuchin Father José Tous Soler. He introduced her to two former Capuchin nuns, María Valdés and Isabel Yubal. All had been given permission to minister outside the convent.
Together they founded at Ripoll (near Gerona) the third order regular sisters of the Mother of the Divine Shepherd (June 13, 1850) for the education of children. With the permission of the Bishop of Vic the sisters were veiled. He gave them charge over a school at Ripoll, and María was elected superior (September 1950). Mother María Ana professed her vows, June 25, 1851. When the two former Capuchin nuns returned to their cloister, María fulfilled the legal requirements to administer a school, then recruited new members. The congregation grew rapidly thereafter, and a second group was established in Barcelona.
At the request of Bishop Benito Serra, María Ana began to work with the noblewoman María Antonia Oviedo to establish (December 1865) a ministry for the regeneration of prostitutes in Ciempozuelos (Madrid). She later abandoned the project and accepted instead the direction of another school.
Following her death her body was buried in Santa Ana cemetery. After miracles occurred at her grave, it was exhumed (1893) and translated to the college chapel. Her relics were lost during the Spanish civil war (1936), but recovered in 1967 and placed in the motherhouse at Madrid. A miracle attributed to her intercession was approved in 1996. Thereafter, Pope John Paul II beatified Mother María Ana, Oct. 6, 1996.
Feast: Oct. 6.
Bibliography: i. paz gonzÁlez, Las Terciarias Franciscanas de la Madre del Divino Pastor: (contribución al estudio de la vida religiosa en España durante el último cuarto del siglo XIX) (Madrid 1978). Acta Apostolicae Sedis, (1996) 999.
[k. i. rabenstein]