Saint Gerard Maiella
St. Gerard was born in Muro, a small town in the South of Italy on April 6, 1726. He was the only son of Benedetta and Comenico Maiella who already had three daughters. Because of his frail health he was not immediately accepted into the Order but, due to his insistence and persistence he was finally accepted in May of 1749 and became a lay brother of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. He was a model of obedience and in everything he sought the Will of God.
During his apprenticeship he performed many miracles. He is known especially for his "Motherhood" miracles.
Although no one has officially been designated as the Patron of Mothers, the title has been given to him by popular acclaim in many countries, including the United States.
St. Gerard died in October, 1755, at age 29.
In 1977, St. Gerard's chapel in St. Lucy's Church was dedicated as a national shrine. Each year during our Feast days which include October 16th, there are the traditional lights, music, food stands and the street procession, it is apparent that this Feast is a spiritual exercise with all of the essential activity centered around the 'Saint' and the Chapel. Devotees visit the Shrine also throughout the year to pray to and petition the help of this Miraculous Wonder Worker.