Beatified in Italy the promoter of Catholic women Armida Barelli and Fr. Mario Ciceri

Jasjot Singh

Cardinal Marcello Semeraro, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, celebrated a Mass this Saturday at Milan Cathedral on the occasion of the beatification of the Italian Servants of God, Armida Barelli and Fr. Mario Ciceri.

“Holiness is this: following in the footsteps of the perfume of Christ. For Blessed Mario Ciceri it was the vocation to the sacred ministry; for Armida Barelli it was the vocation to the lay apostolate,” the Cardinal said in his homily on April 30.

Regarding Fr. Mario Ciceri, he said that he “has been compared to the Holy Cure of Ars” since he “made a daily effort to soften some temperamental anguish, showing in himself an effective union between spiritual life and pastoral life, to the point that all they recognized in him a priest who fulfilled his vocation with zeal and fidelity”.

“Armida Barelli was also in love with a constant filing of her temperament. Blessed Ildefonso Schuster said of her as her illness consumed her: The Divine King is chiselling her jewel,” he continued.

“Speaking of Armida Barelli – the Cardinal recalled – Giovanni Battista Montini [Papa Pablo VI]from the beginning of his ministry as pastor of this archdiocese, said that she should receive applause not only from Milan, but from Italy, for having left a legacy that truly enriches the ranks of Catholic life and paves the way for education. modern female youth.

He also said that Barelli’s apostolate “encompassed several fronts, from the Royal Work of Our Lord Jesus Christ to the Catholic University of the Sacro Cuore.”

“In this regard, Fr. Agostino Gemelli in his spiritual testament wrote: ‘All my collaborators remember that in the eyes of men I appear as someone who has done works: these would not have been born, nor flourished without zeal, piety, the intelligence and especially the supernaturally inspired life of Miss Barelli’”, added Cardinal Semeraro.

Brief biography of Armida Barelli

Armida Barelli was born on December 1, 1882 in Milan (Italy) and died in Marzio (Italy) on August 15, 1952.

The Italian Blessed belonged to the Third Secular Order of Saint Francis and helped found the Italian Catholic Action (ACI), the Secular Institute of the Missionaries of the Royalty of Christ (ISM) and the Catholic University of the Sacro Cuore (UCSC).

She is recognized for having worked for the recognition of a new role for Christian women in the world through human and Christian formation.

Armida Barelli contributed to female youth “a formative and organizational dimension capable of growing several generations of conscious and motivated women, capable of acting, respecting the forms of the time, with an unprecedented ecclesial role”, indicated the vice-postulator for his beatification cause, Ernesto Preziosi.

Brief biography of Blessed Mario Ciceri

Mario Ciceri was a diocesan priest who was born on September 8, 1900 in Milan (Italy) and died on April 4, 1945, two months after being hit by a car while riding his bicycle to confess Catholic faithful.

This priest from northern Italy dedicated his pastoral work to young people and to the care of the sick. He risked his life doing charity work during World War II in favor of the underprivileged, soldiers, persecuted war and Jews.

During the war years, he helped young soldiers feel accompanied through the “Voce Amiga” (“Voce Amica)” bulletin.

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