This digital art print of Saint Maria Goretti is the perfect addition to your home decor or a great gift for birthdays, Confirmation, weddings, or Christmas.
St. Maria Goretti was born into a close-knit family in Italy, and though her short life was filled with tragedy, she nonetheless remained steadfast in her faith. Maria’s father died of malaria while she was young and Maria’s mother fought hard to keep her children fed. Together, the family worked together to cook, sew, keep the house clean, and take care of each other.
One day while Maria was mending a shirt for her neighbor Alessandro, he approached her and attempted to sexually assault and rape her. Maria cried out against him and reminded him that what he was doing was a mortal sin and that his actions would send him to hell. Rather than release her, Alessandro began choking her. When Maria said she would rather die than commit a mortal sin, Alessandro pulled out a knife and stabbed her eleven times. Maria broke free and ran towards her house, but Alessandro caught her, stabbed her three more times, and ran away.
Maria’s family found her and rushed her to the hospital. The doctor attempted to save Maria but was unable to do so. Before she died, Maria forgave Alessandro for her assault and murder and said that she wished to see him in heaven with her.
Alessandro did not get away with his crime: he was caught and imprisoned after confessing that he was unable to successfully assault Maria. He also confessed that this incident was not the first of his attempts to get close to Maria.
Alessandro spent many remorseless years in prison before having a dream where Maria gave him lilies that burned in his hands. After this dream, he repented for his crimes and begged Maria’s family for forgiveness after he was released from prison. Maria’s mother said, “If my daughter can forgive him, who am I to withhold forgiveness?”
Alessandro eventually became a priest and was even present in the St. Peter’s Basilica crowd to celebrate Maria Goretti’s canonization and sainthood. Maria is considered a martyr because she desired to die rather than give in to sexual sin, and she is looked up to as a role model for forgiveness.
St. Maria Goretti is the patron saint of the youth and young women, purity, and victims of rape.