Monday, November 29, 2010

St. Colette (Jan. 13, 1381 to March 6, 1447)

  "I thought you were European," said Faye, a woman from China, when she was introduced to me today at a company meeting. "I was surprised when I heard you speak."
  I told Faye that she was right, in a way, since my grandfather was born in Italy and my ethnicity is half  Italian and half French.
  It's not the first time I've been mistaken for a non-American although I was born in Rhode Island. It could be the way I dress or put outfits together (scarves, leather boots and handbags, tailored black coats, and dressy shirts). Maybe Faye noticed a look or a spirit in me that she has seen in Europeans.
  My mom always said the best looking people were a mixture of nationalities. When she'd ask my grandfather who I looked like, he'd say I looked like myself.
  It's funny. As much as I try to break away from my heritage and where I came from, it seems the older I get, I am drawn to things that are like me.
  St. Colette was born Nicolette Boylet in Picardy, France on Jan. 13, 1381. She was orphaned as a teenager and left to the care of Benedictines. Yet, St. Colette was drawn to the Franciscan Order and had dreams that St. Francis of Assisi wanted her to restore the Rule of St. Clare.
  She founded the Colettine Poor Clares and established 17 monasteries. St. Colette and the sisters in her order lived a life of poverty and refused any form of income. She died on March 6, 1447. Canonized: 1807. St. Colette's feast day is March 6.

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