Today I’m feasting with… Saint Gianna Molla.
Saint Gianna was born on October 4th, 1922 in Magenta, Italy. Gianna was an active member of her parish, the St. Vincent de Paul Society, and the Azione Cattolica movement. On November 30th, 1949, Gianna earned her medical diploma from Pavia College and opened a pediatric office in the town of Mesero.
At the age of thirty two, Gianna married Pietro Molla and they spent their honeymoon visiting Saint Peter’s Square. The two newlyweds would have four children together before Gianna passed away shortly after the birth of their fourth child.
Early in the pregnancy of her fourth child, Gianna developed a tumor on her uterus. Her doctors gave her options for treating the tumor. The first option was to abort Gianna’s child and give her a complete hysterectomy. The second option was to remove the tumor and preserve the life of her child. Given the two choices, Gianna chose the second option. She knew that her child’s life was just as important as her own. Terminating her child to save her own life was not an option.
Seven months after choosing life, little Gianna Emanuela Molla was born! Unfortunately, post-operative complications led to an infection for momma Gianna. She died on April 28th, 1962. One week after the birth of her daughter.
Saint Pope John Paul II canonized Saint Gianna on May 16th, in the year of our Lord, 2004. Her feast day is April 28th and she is the patron saint of doctors, mothers, and unborn children.
Saint Gianna, pray for us!