St. Gianna’s intercession has been credited with two miracles investigated during the process of her canonization by the Catholic Church.
The first miracle was the medically unexplainable cure in 1977 of a woman in Brazil who developed a severe vaginal abcess following the birth of a stillborn infant. The infection spread quickly and was life threatening. The hospital where the woman was being treated had been founded by St. Gianna’s brother, Father Alberto Beretta, who was a missionary priest. One of the nurses caring for this sick woman was a nun named Sister Bernardina, and she prayed to St. Gianna asking her to intercede so that the woman’s pain would be relieved and she would be spared a difficult transport to another hospital for surgery. Two other nurses joined Sister Bernardina in her prayer, and immediately, the woman was healed.
The second official miracle occurred also in Brazil, when a baby was born healthy despite the rupture of the amnionic fluid and its failure to reaccumulate at 16 weeks gestation. The mother of this child was told when her “water broke” at 16 weeks that there was no possibility of a successful delivery of a viable infant and that she should have an abortion to save her own life. The woman and her husband refused and with the guidance of the local Diocesan Bishop who had celebrated their wedding, they all prayed to St. Gianna asking for protection of the woman from infection and for a miracle for the baby’s survival. To the amazement of her treating physician, the woman’s pregnancy continued and the baby continued to develop despite the absence of amnionic fluid. The baby was successfully delivered on May 31, 2000 and was named “Gianna Maria”.
There are many more “unofficial” miracles attributed to the intercession of St. Gianna Beretta Molla, and many are the answered prayers of women asking for help during difficult pregnancies and of infertile couples asking for the gift of a child. The inspiration for St. Gianna’s Center for Women’s Health and FertilityCare came from this beautiful saint, and we ask St. Gianna daily to pray for the Center and for all who come here.