Monday, December 6, 2010

Blessed Imelda Lambertini (1322 to May 12, 1333)

  At a Christmas bazaar yesterday, I found an unusual ceramic ornament made by the monks at St. Andrew Priory, a Benedictine monastery in the desert in Valyermo, California. It was a First Communion angel girl with large brown eyes and a friendly face.
  The ornament had a previous owner because a handwritten note on its original tag read "Grandpa spoke at a meeting with these monks in 1986." I learned that it was designed by Fr. Maur van Doorslaer.  
  Although I have no need for a First Communion ornament, I consider it a tiny treasure at a cost of just 25 cents.
  Blessed Imelda Lambertini is the patron of first communicants. She was born in Bologna, Italy in 1322. As a small child, she wanted desperately to receive the Most Holy Eucharist. But, being too young (the age back then was 14) she was told she had to wait.
  Blessed Imelda Lambertini thought that if she became a nun she'd be able to receive it sooner. So, at age 9, she joined a cloistered Dominican group. Again, she was not allowed to receive the Body of Christ.
  Finally, at age 11, Blessed Imelda Lambertini's wish came true on the vigil of the Ascension. The Light of the Host appeared around her head while she was praying. It was witnessed by the sacristan and a priest who was convinced she was worthy of receiving the Most Holy Eucharist.
  After receiving Jesus on May 12, 1333, she went into ecstasy, collapsed on the floor, and died. Blessed Imelda Lambertini was beatified in 1826. Her body, pictured above, remains incorrupt. Her feast day is May 12.

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