St. Rose of Lima

Even as a baby, Isabel de Flores so pretty that she was called “Rose,” the most beautiful of all the flowers. Growing up in Lima, Peru, Isabel developed a talent for gardening, so it is not surprising that she took the name “Rose” as her confirmation name. As she tended the flowers in her family garden, she prayed. Her relationship with God was the most important thing in her life.

Rose’s parents hoped that she would get married, but Rose wanted to give her life completely to God. She told her parents that her dream was to join the convent to become a nun, but they would not give her permission. They needed Rose at home, helping to support the family.

Rose moved into a hut in the garden. She earned money by selling her flowers during the day. At night she did needlework, making designs with colorful threads on cloth. People bought the clothing she decorated. With the money she earned, Rose helped her family and also bought food for the needy people in her community. She put her prayers into action. With help from her brother, she added rooms to her hut and cared for homeless children and the elderly. She became a much-loved woman everywhere in her country.

We honor Rose of Lima on August 23. She was the first person from the New World—the Americas—to be named a saint. Rose’s life teaches us to reach out to our neighbor and to use our talents to help them live better lives. (Source)
Canonized as Santa Rosa de Lima, she is the patron saint of the Americas, needleworkers, gardeners and florists. She is symbolized by her love for the Holy Infant, roses, as a Dominican tertiery holding roses and as a Dominican tertiery accompanied by the Holy Infant. A very interesting article about her visions can be found here; biography here.

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