Monday, 24 July 2017

# Saints

Saint Christina the Astonishing

Christina the Astonishing appearing in the 1630 Fasti Mariani calendar of saints - feast day July 24th front of card.
The 24th of July is the feast day of Saint Christina the Astonishing. She is the patron saint of millers, people with mental disorders, and mental health workers.

Saint Christina the Astonishing is also known as Christina Mirabilis. She lived between 1150 till 1224. Her family were Belgium peasants and both her parents died while she was a child and she was raised by her two older sisters. She suffered a severe seizure at the age of 21 and thought dead. However, during her funeral, she revived and levitated before the congregation. She later explained that this was because she couldn't bear the smell of the sinful people there. She also said that during her coma, she went to heaven, hell and purgatory and that purgatory was a very gloomy place, filled with souls whose torments endured could not be described. She was then offered a choice to remain in heaven or return to earth to suffer penances for the souls in purgatory. Christina chose to return to earth and from then on lived in extreme poverty, wearing rags, sleeping on rocks and begging for food.  She was jailed twice, first because they suspected her of being possessed. She would throw herself into burning furnaces and stayed there for extended times, uttering frightful cries, but when came out, had no signs of burns on her. In winter she plunged into the frozen Meuse River for hours, days and weeks at a time, praying to God and imploring God's mercy. She sometimes would be carried by the currents down the river to a mill where the wheel would whirl her round, but she didn't suffer any dislocations or broken bones. She died of natural causes at the age of 74.

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