Nov. 18 - Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne

St. Rose Philippine Duchesne (1769–1852) was born in Grenoble, France, to a wealthy and prominent family. At the age of 18 she joined the Visitation nuns against the wishes of her family, taking her religious name after St. Rose of Lima and St. Philip Neri. During the anti-religious fervor of French Revolution, the "Reign of Terror," her convent was shut down. She then took up the work of providing care for the sick, hiding priests from the revolutionaries, and educating homeless children. When the tensions of the revolution subsided, she rented out her old convent in an attempt to revive her religious order, but the spirit was gone. She and the few remaining nuns of her convent then joined the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Since childhood St. Rose Philippine had had a strong desire to do missionary work in the New World, especially among the Native Americans. This was realized in 1818 when she and four nuns traveled across the Atlantic, a journey of eleven weeks, and another seven weeks up the Mississipi river to serve in one of the remotest outposts in the region in St. Charles, Missouri. St. Rose Philippine was a hardy pioneer woman ministering in the Midwest during its difficult frontier days. She opened several schools and served the Potawatomi Indians who gave her the name "Quah-kah-ka-num-ad," meaning, "Woman-who-prays-always." Her feast day is November 18th.

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