Jun 9 – Blessed Anne Marie Taigi (1769-1837), Wife, Mother, Mystic, Patroness of Spouses Who Suffer Abuse

Anna_Maria_Gesualda_Antonia_Taigi_in_2012

Kelly and I having passed our sixth anniversary, I realize, at least intellectually, we are still babies at this marriage thing.  Growth in trust and unity takes time and success in cooperation, deepening.  Faith requires time and trust, growing in unity.  The parallels are profound and significant.  Two becoming one.  We are still children in marriage certainly compared to those, tragically too few, and rarer now all the time, clocking in at fifty or sixty plus!  Talk about your miracles!  Talk about the power of grace!  Kelly makes it very easy for me.  I wish I made it easy for her.  I AM THE LUCKIEST MAN IN THE UNIVERSE!!!!  THANK YOU, JESUS!!!  Thank you, Kelly!!!

I have come to the realization getting married and asking someone to marry you is choosing the person who will see you at your worst and whom you believe will love you still in spite of that.  Over and over again.  Kind of like Jesus, no?  Exactly like Jesus.  This is wisdom gained in hindsight, from mistakes, and upon reflection and contrition on my part.

Love is more than a feeling.  “For love is not merely a feeling; it is an act of will that consists of preferring, in a constant manner, the good of others to the good of oneself.” (JPII, World Youth Day XIX, 2/22/04) Overtones of marriage and the Christian, even mystical life, are many.  Too many to mention here.  Don’t tempt me!  🙂

Born May 29, 1769, daughter of Luigi Giannetti and Maria Masi, Anne Marie’s father was a pharmacist in Siena, Italy, but his business went bankrupt when Anna Marie was five years old. The family moved to Rome, Italy in search of work, but Luigi could only find a job as a household servant. As a child and a teenager, Anne seemed of average piety and spirituality.  Anne was married on 7 January 1789 to Dominico Taigi, a butler to the noble family of Chigi. She was married for 48 years, and mother of seven, two of whom died very young.

Anne Marie was always very concerned about her dress and appearance, far more than would be expected of a working class mother. Life at home was not always peaceful, Dominico could be ill-tempered and caustic.  The contents on the dinner table could wind up on the floor if he was not pleased.  And, Anne was known to have had an adulterous affair with an older man. Walking through St Peter’s Square, a priest gave her a piercing look, which she took to be a sign of impending judgment.

And then one day while at prayer at Saint Peter’s Cathedral, she felt a sudden strong inspiration to ignore the things of this world. She decided to go to confession.  She chose a confessional surrounded by numerous penitents, but on entering it in her turn tears overcame her, and she cried: “Father, you have at your feet a great sinner.” The priest wondered for a moment who the unknown might be, and then said brusquely:  “Go away; you are not one of my penitents.” How­ever, he consented to hear a hasty recital. Yet discovering nothing to justify her passionate out­burst, he gave her absolution and curtly slammed back the slide, leaving the unfortunate woman more troubled than ever.

Embracing this humiliation as a penance, she began to live a more austere life, and to listen to the Spirit. She found holy spiritual directors, gave all she could to the poor, visited the sick, and counselled many of the patients at the hospital of San Giacomo of the Incurables. She worked hard to evangelize her own family, changing her husband’s demeanor, and they all regularly assembled in a small personal chapel to pray together.

As the years went on and Anne Marie devoted herself more and more to prayer, she began to receive mystical gifts, including prophecy and clairvoyance. She sometimes went into ecstacies, and received heavenly and prophetic visions. Her simple presence had a powerful effect on many, and she helped with many conversions. She was a counsellor to cardinals, royalty and three popes.  Ecstasies often came at inconvenient times. Once while doing housework: “O Lord, leave me in peace! Withdraw Thyself and let me get on with my work. Keep the treasures of Thy love for consecrated virgins; I am only a poor wife and mother.”  God chooses whom He wills, when He wills.  Vocatus atque non vocatus Deus aderit.

It is said she knew with certainty the fate of the dead. Her gaze traveled to the ends of the earth and discovered there people on whom she had never set eyes, reading them to the depth of their souls. One glance sufficed; upon whatever she focused her thoughts, it was revealed to her and her understanding. She saw the whole world as we see the front of a building. It was the same with nations as with individuals; she saw the cause of their distresses and the remedies that would heal them.

The Beata also predicted an apocalyptic “three days of darkness”:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEjSZVmoghQ

Because of her charismatic gifts, and her lack of concern about worldly matters, Anne was often the topic of gossip and slander, but she was the recipient of public veneration soon after her death.  There were miracles reported at her tomb.  Domenico gave frank and loving testimony in his depositions in the investigations for her cause of beatification.  Her body remains incorrupt.

Novena to Blessed Anne Marie Taigi

O Blessed Anna Marie Taigi, by that humble submission with which you believed in and adored the august mystery of the One True God in Three Persons, obtain for me from the Most Holy Trinity the favor which I confidently implore…(mention your request here…)
O Blessed Anna Marie Taigi, by the great love and tender pity with which you honored the mysteries in the life of Jesus, obtain for me from Him the favor which I earnestly implore… (mention your request here…)
O Blessed Anna Marie Taigi, through your filial devotion to the Blessed Virgin, obtain for me from Her the favor which I humbly implore… (mention your request here…)

Happy Mother’s Day!
Love,
Matthew

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