mercredi 16 janvier 2013

Bienheureuse STÉPHANIE QUINZANI, vierge tertiaire dominicaine

Bse Stéphanie Quinzani

Vierge du Tiers-Ordre de Saint-Dominique

(1457-1530)

Cette fille de saint Dominique naquit le 5 février 1457, à Orzinovi, petit village situé près de Brescia, en Italie. Son père, Lorenzo Quinzani alla bientôt s’établir à Soncino pour se mettre sous la conduite du dominicain Mathieu Carreri, célèbre maître de la vie intérieure. Celui-ci avait remarqué la petite Stéphanie et prédit à la jeune enfant qu’elle serait son héritière. L’enfant ne comprit rien à ces paroles, mais, quelques années plus tard, quand le bienheureux Matthieu mourut, la Sainte se sentit frappée au coeur d’une blessure très douloureuse. Au même instant, le défunt lui apparut et lui apprit que cette blessure était l’héritage qu’il lui avait promis.

La souffrance devait être le partage de la bienheureuse Stéphanie; elle était destinée par Dieu à prendre rang parmi ces âmes privilégiées que Sa divine sagesse conduit hors des voies communes et élève par des moyens extraordinaires jusqu’aux plus hauts sommets de la vie mystique.

Chez la bienheureuse, la grâce prévint la nature. A l’âge de sept ans, elle fit voeu de pauvreté, de virginité et d’obéissance. Notre-Seigneur voulut aussitôt lui montrer combien sa générosité Lui avait été agréable. Il lui apparut accompagné de Sa Très Sainte Mère, et de plusieurs autres Saints et lui donna le titre d’épouse et comme gage de cette alliance, lui remit un anneau précieux. Vers l’âge de dix à onze ans, elle sentit un vif attrait pour la souffrance. Elle comprit qu’elle devait suivre le Christ, son Époux, sur le chemin du Calvaire. Aussi se mit-elle à pratiquer une rigoureuse mortification. Les épreuves ne lui furent pas épargnées et le démon lui suscita de terribles tentations contre la sainte vertu. Pour en triompher, la jeune fille eut recours à un remède énergique: elle se précipita avec un courage intrépide dans un amas d’épines et s’y roula jusqu’à ce que la douleur eût calmé les efforts de la tentation.

A l’âge de quinze ans, un Vendredi-Saint, alors qu’elle méditait avec larmes sur les souffrances de son Sauveur, elle reçut de Jésus-Christ l’impression des sacrés stigmates et Il lui déclara que désormais elle aurait part à toutes Ses douleurs et que dans chacun de ses membres elle porterait une partie de ce que Lui-même avait souffert. A partir de ce moment, chaque semaine, le vendredi, elle semblait reproduire dans son corps et dans son âme les mystères de la sanglante Passion. On la voyait dans une sorte d’agonie pendant laquelle il lui sortait de tous les pores une sueur mêlée de sang. Puis on eût dit qu’on la déchirait de coups de fouet. Enfin, sa tête portait comme l’empreinte du couronnement d’épines. A ces souffrances corporelles venaient s’ajouter d’indicibles angoisses morales. Pendant quarante ans, la Bienheureuse dut passer à travers des ténèbres, des sécheresses, des impuissances et des délaissements terribles. Et ce martyre de l’âme était si effroyable qu’elle eût succombé sous la rigueur des épreuves, si des faveurs extraordinaires n’étaient venues la soutenir.

Selon son plus grand désir et la promesse qu’elle avait faite en son jeune âge, elle revêtit l’habit du Tiers-Ordre de Saint-Dominique. Elle établit un monastère à Soncino et entreprit de bâtir un couvent sous le vocable de saint Paul. Dieu lui vint en aide, et, dès l’année 1519, une trentaine de jeunes filles des plus nobles familles y travaillaient sous sa direction à acquérir la perfection religieuse.

Elle mourut le 2 janvier 1530 à l’âge de soixante-treize ans en prononçant les paroles du Divin Crucifié dont elle avait été la fidèle imitatrice: "Seigneur, je remets mon âme entre Vos mains."

Causeries du dimanche



Blessed Stephana de Quinzanis, OP V (AC)

(also known as Stephanie)

Born near Brescia, Italy, in 1457; died January 2, 1530; cultus confirmed in 1740 by Pope Benedict XIV.

It was Blessed Stephanie's good fortune always to live with holy people and to have the edifying example of many holy friends. She was born of pious parents in a little village in northern Italy. While she was still very small, her father became a Dominican Tertiary. On visits with him to the Dominican convent, she met the holy stigmatic, Blessed Matthew Carrieri, whose influence was to last throughout her long life. He taught her the catechism and much of his own spirit of sanctity. In fact, he told her that one day she was to be his spiritual heiress. She did not understand this for many years.

Early trained to sanctity, Stephanie responded with the love of a true saint. She fasted and did penance from her earliest years. The visions that were to sweeten her mystical life began when she was seven, and at that time she made the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. She was favored with a beautiful visitation from Our Lord and several of the Dominican saints, and was given a splendid ring--as a token of her espousal to Christ. From then on, her heart and mind were centered on God, and no earthly attraction had power to distract her.

When Stephanie was 14, Blessed Matthew Carrieri died, and, shortly thereafter, appeared to her. Wounded with a terrible pain, the girl realized that she had received the sacred stigmata. This was the legacy the Blessed Matthew had promised her. Now she intensified her penances, and she meditated almost ceaselessly on the Passion. In addition to her physical endurance of the Passion, she had to undergo a spiritual desolation and dryness. This aridity lasted forty years.

At age 15, Stephanie was given the Tertiary habit of the Dominicans at Soncino and devoted herself to ministering to the poor and sick. Some years later, she founded a community (San Paolo) of Third Order sisters in her native town of Soncino and became its first abbess. As a Tertiary, she had been able to go out to minister to others; as a member of a regular community, she continued her charity, dispensing both material and spiritual riches. People of all classes came to consult her and ask for her prayers; Saint Angela Merici and the Dominicans, Augustine of Biella and Blessed Osanna of Mantua, were among these.

The life of Blessed Stephanie is a series of marvels. Only under obedience she revealed the principal visions and ecstasies long after they happened, though many people witnessed her in the state of ecstasy. She participated in various stages of the Passion of our Lord, which was attested to by 21 witnesses in 1497 in a still extant account.

She lived in constant union with God, and her every action had upon it the imprint of His favors. Keeping an almost perpetual fast, she punished her body with instruments of penance. Her devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and to the Passion of Our Lord was intense. She could discuss the most profound truths of mystical theology, and had the ability to read the hearts and minds of those around her, and to prophesy future events. She was credited with performing numerous miracles of healing.

Of the saints of the order to whom she had a great devotion, she was particularly drawn to Saint Thomas Aquinas, for one time, to overcome temptation of thought against purity, she threw herself upon a cartload of thorns. Rising exhausted from this penance, she prayed fervently to Saint Thomas, and, like that great saint, she was girded by angels with a cord, which they tied so tightly around her waist that she cried out in pain.

Blessed Stephanie died, after having prophesied the day of her death and the place where she would be buried. Her tomb became a pilgrimage site almost immediately. Her intercession was often felt in the convent that she had founded, where the sisters obtained both material and spiritual help through her intercession (Benedictines, Delaney, Dorcy).

SOURCE : http://www.saintpatrickdc.org/ss/0102.shtml

Blessed Stephanie of Quinzanis
Memorial day: January 2nd

Profile

    Born to pious parents; her father became a Dominican tertiary while Stephana was very young. She was taught her catechism by the stigmatic Blessed Matthew Carrieri who lived at the nearby Dominican convent; though she was too small to understand, he told her that she was to be his spiritual heiress. Began receiving visions of Dominican saints from age seven, at which point she made vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Carrieri died when Stephana was 14; soon after he appeared to her in a vision, and she received the stigmata.

    Dominican tertiary at Soncino at age 15. Devoted to caring for the poor and sick. She founded a community of Third Order sisters in Soncino, and served as its first abbess. Her counsel was sought by many including Saint Angela Merici, Blessed Augustine of Biella, and Blessed Osanna of Mantua.

    Though she had no formal theological training, she could discuss mystical theology at the most profound level. She could read the hearts and minds of the people around her, and had the gift of prophesy and healing. She lived in a nearly continuous fast, and inflicted severe penances on herself. Stephana accurately predicted the date of her own death.

Born: 1457 at Soncino, Italy

Died: 2 January 1530 of natural causes

Beatified: December 14, 1740 by Pope Benedict XIV (cultus confirmed)


Prayers/Commemorations

First Vespers:

Ant. This is a wise Virgin whom the Lord found watching, who took her lamp and oil, and when the Lord came, she entered with Him into the marriage feast.

V. Prayer for us Blessed Stephana

R. That we may be worthy of the promises of Christ.

Lauds:

Ant. Come O my chosen one and I will place My throne in thee for the King hath exceedingly desired thy beauty.

V. Virgins shall be led to the King after her.

R. Her companions shall be presented to Thee.

Second Vespers:

Ant. She hath girded her loins with courage, and hath strengthened her arm; therefore, shall he rlamp not beput out forever.

V. Pray for us, Blessed Stephana

R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Prayers:

Let us Pray: O God, who didst wonderfully cause Thy holy Virgin, Blessed Stephana, inflamed with the love of the Crucified, to become a partaker of His passion, grant , we beseech Thee, that we, by her prayers and example may likewise deserve to be made conformable to the image of Thy Son. Who with Thee liveth and reigneth world without end. Amen.

Prayer II

God of all consolation, you made Blessed Stephana a sharer in the passion of Christ. With the help of her prayers and by following her example may we be conformed to the image of your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. - General Calendar of the Order of Preachers

SOURCE : http://www.willingshepherds.org/Dominican%20Saints%20I.html#Stephana