Brazil’s First Saint Celebrated in Pennsylvania’s Coal Region
A ten-year-old Amabile Lucia Visintainer immigrated with her family to Brazil from Trento, Italy in 1865. Prior to immigrating, Amabile heard the call to service and when she arrived in the state of Santa Catarina, Brazil she began ministering to the sick and poor in her new land.
Amabile would go on to found the Congregation of the Sisters for the Immaculate Conception in Brazil. She would take the name Pauline of the Agonizing Heart of Jesus as she professed her final vows. Mother Pauline led the Congregation for decades.
When John Paul II canonized her in 2002, she became Brazil’s first female saint. First class relics were given to the Vatican, the Congregation of Sister she founded, and her closest relatives who live here in Pennsylvania’s Anthracite Coal Region.
With such a responsibility, a foundation was created to ensure all have the opportunity to venerate Saint Pauline. Each year on her feast day, a pontifical Mass is celebrated in what is the only shrine to Mother Pauline in the world. Most Reverend Ronald W. Gainer, D.D., J.C.L., Bishop of Harrisburg and Chaplain in the Federal Association’s Lancaster Region concelebrated this Mass with priests from the Anthracite deanery.