Saint Frances of Rome was an Italian noblewoman from the fifteenth century. Frances surprised her wealthy parents when she asked to join the convent at age eleven. Having previously arranged for Frances to marry a wealthy land owner, instead she found herself married two years later at age thirteen. She remained devotedly married for the next forty years.

The early fifteenth century found the city of Rome to be less than the “eternal city” we know today. Rome suffered from internal warfare, natural catastrophe and disease. It was during these difficult periods that Frances and her sister-in-law,Vannozza, reached out to assist many of those affected by disease and the warring strife. Disasters did not escape Frances. Her home was pillaged by Ladislaus of Naples in 1409 and her husband, Lorenzo dei Ponziani, was forced into exile. Historically, these were not uncommon occurrences, however these were, none the less, difficult situations to endure. Upon his return home in 1414, Lorenzo found himself a broken man, yet fortunate to have Frances care for him.

Frances of Rome found fame for her acts of charity and she attracted other women who shared her ideals of self-denial and good works. On August 15, 1425 she founded the Benedictine Oblates of Monte Oliveto. At this time Frances shared her time between family and “community.” In 1433 Pope Eugenius IV approved the community’s Constitution and in 1436, finding herself widowed, Frances officially entered her own community.

Frances of Rome died on March 9, 1440 at the age of fifty-six. She had lived an honorable and good life, especially through her continued acts of charity and love for her townspeople. Though early on she had lost two of her three children, seen her husband lose his pride and dignity and lost all of her personal possessions, Frances never swayed from contributing to the aid of others. Ultimately, Frances was canonized on May 29, 1608. Today her tomb can be viewed at Santa Francesca Romana and her congregation still flourishes through their educational work.

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  1. She is my patron saint….. I love her soooooooooooo much….. I am so proud of her…. I use her name for my signature

  2. This is an interesting read. However, her name spelling threw me off. I thought I was reading about St. Francis of Padua. Thank you.

  3. st frances Is my sisters patron saint.i’m sure she knew about st frances life. I didn’t, but how interesting. R.i.P. FRANNY!!

  4. St Frances of Rome thanks in advance for answered prayers ‘re healing and protection and detoxing and deliverance from substance abuse from grandson and that he is in the hands of Jesus and Mary today and always amen

  5. St. Frances Of Rome, please pray for us especially myself, my children and the rest of myself. Thank you St. Frances for great dedication to God Almighty. Amen!

  6. Merciful Father,
    in Frances if Rome
    you have given us
    a unique example of love in marriage
    as well as in religious life.
    Keep us faithful in your service,
    and help us to see and follow you
    in all the aspects of life.
    Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
    who lives and reigns with you
    in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
    one God, for ever and ever.


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