Letran Community, Dominican Sisters Commemorate 312th Death Anniversary of Ven. Mo. Francisca del Espiritu Santo

By: Augusto Urbano II
August 25, 2023

The imaged of the Venerated Mother Francisca del Espiritu Santo honored and graced with the presence of the Letran and Dominican communities on her 312th death anniversary. Photo courtesy of Vicente Mate IV of The LANCE.

The Congregation of the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine of Siena commemorates the 312th death anniversary of their foundress, the Venerable Mo. Francisca del Espiritu Santo de Fuentes on Thursday, August 24.

At the Colegio’s chapel, the mass was presided by. Rev. Fr. Jose Martin Sibug O.P., prior of the convent of St. John Lateran.

Fr. Sibug reflected on the gospel reading’s John 1:48, “Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.” The priest then explained, “Even if we are not fully aware of God’s plan for us, God has always been there watching over us.”

“We need an external voice, a friend, affiliate, who may tell us to come and see… Lahat tayo ay tinatawag ng Diyos, pero hindi lahat ay pumapansin sa tawag niya,” Fr. Sibug added.

The second part of the homily focused on how Mo. Francisca del Espiritu Santo lived a holy life and accepted the life that God planned for her.

She was widowed shortly after getting married, therefore, she was childless. But those unfortunate events on Mo. Francisca’s life did not stop her from living a holy life. Fr. Sibug then reiterated, “May plano ang Diyos para sa atin.” 

Mo. Francisca del Espiritu Santo de Fuentes founded the Congregation of the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine of Siena in Intramuros on July 26, 1696, with Fr. Juan de Sto. Domingo.

Since then, the congregation grew in numbers, having members from different parts of Asia, Europe, the Americas, and Africa.

The last part of Fr. Sibug’s homily enumerated the lessons we can learn from the life of Mo. Francisca. “We can imitate Mo. Francisca as a woman of great faith, resolute hope, and steadfast love… We need persons like Mo. Francisca… We need to see and experience the life of Mo. Francisca, who is a woman for our times,” the priest explained.

Ven. Mo. Francisca del Espiritu Santo de Fuentes is buried on the Gospel side of the steps of the main altar of the old Chapel of the Colegio, which was destroyed during the war.

Her burial site is situated in front of the Image of Our Lady of Aranzazu on the school quadrangle.

After the mass, a groundbreaking ceremony was conducted for the proposed Mo. Francisca Garden Shrine outside the Colegio, where the sites are aimed to be a place for public prayers and meditation.