Repetto, Maria, Bl.

views updated


Sister of Our Lady of Refuge of Mount Calvary; b. Nov. 1, 1807, Voltaggio, northern Italy; d. Jan. 5, 1890, Genoa, Italy. Maria, the eldest child of Giovanni Battista Repetto and his wife Teresa Gozzola, helped raise her siblings. Of the nine children, five girls became religious sisters and one boy a priest. At age 22 Maria became a cloistered nun of Our Lady of Refuge in Genoa. There she served the community in various offices (infirmarian, laundress, laborer), but became known as a portress of unwearying charity and wisdom. She nursed the sick of Genoa through the cholera epidemics of 1835 and 1854.

Revered for her holiness while she lived, her body was interred in the chapel of Our Lady of Refuge of Mount Calvary. During Repetto's beatification (Oct. 4, 1981), Pope John Paul II recalled her words: "Jesus must be contemplated, loved, and served in the poor, at all moments of our life." Patroness of Genoa. Feast: Jan. 5.

Bibliography: Acta Apostolicae Sedis (1982): 110003. L'Osservatore Romano, English ed. 41 (1981): 1, 12.

[k. i. rabenstein]