Saint Colette

St. Colette (1381-1447) was born in Picardy, France, the daughter of a poor carpenter who served the local Benedictine abbey. Her parents conceived her in their old age after praying to St. Nicholas for a child, naming Colette after him. She became well known for her faith and spiritual wisdom from a young age. After the death of her parents she joined the Third Order of St. Francis and became a hermit. She led a life of asceticism and solitude until a dream revealed that God willed her to reform the Poor Clares. She obeyed and joined the Poor Clares in 1406. Her mission of reformation was sanctioned by Benedict XIII of Avignon (the anti-pope) who appointed her superior of each of the convents she reformed. Despite resistance from within the Poor Clares, she successfully reformed several existing convents and founded 17 new ones dedicated to a stricter observance of the Poor Clares, known as the Colettines. She experienced visions and ecstasies of Christ's Passion, and even prophesied her own death. Through her life’s work, St. Colette’s reformation breathed new life into the Poor Clares and created a lasting model of spirituality. St. Colette's feast day is March 6th.

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