Beatification and Canonisation

Although veneration of Rita among the citizens was quick, the path of ascent to the altars was not as quick. The beatification process begins on 19 October 1626, during the pontificate of Urban VIII, who knows the Saint well having been bishop of Spoleto until 1617.
Among the main supporters of the cause of beatification, in addition to the Barberini family, figures Cardinal Fausto Poli, a native of Usigni, a village in Cascia territory. And it is also Cardinal Poli who concerns himself with the places in Roccaporena linked to Rita, turning her house into a chapel in 1630.

The process takes place in Cascia, in the church of St. Francis, with detailed thoroughness. On 2 October 1627 following the Cascia process, Urban VIII grants the diocese of Spoleto and the Augustinians the right to celebrate mass in honour of Blessed Rita. On 4 February 1628, he decrees that this mass can also be celebrated in Augustinian churches by secular clergy. With these initiatives, which authorised the worship, the beatification is sanctioned although not in a solemn and traditional canonical form.

In 1737, the Augustinians and the municipality of Cascia decide to press for canonisation. As a result of a long series of events, the canonical process is repeatedly interrupted and resumed, until its reopening in 1853 and the turn in events represented by the miracle obtained by Cosma Pellegrini of Conversano in 1887.

On 25 February 1896, the decree on heroic virtues is finally drawn up. In 1899, after having examined the various miracles,judged useful for the canonisation, those approved include: the perfume that emanates from the body of the saint, the healing of the little girl Elisabetta Bergamini and that of Cosma Pellegrini, who is healed of an incurable disease.

Finally, on 24 May 1900, Leo XIII proclaims Margherita of Cascia a Saint.

John Paul II, in the Great Jubilee of 2000, concedes a general audience to a special pilgrim and her brothers on 20 May. Rita of Cascia returns to Roma, flying with the State Police, Diocesan Archbishop Mons. Riccardo Fontana, Rector Father Bolivar Centeno and Father Giovanni Scanavino, on 19 May. She is immediately escorted to her brothers in St. Augustine in Campo Marzio. The entire day, until late at night, is spent in prayer. The next day accompanied by a host of people, while devotees from all over the world wait in St. Peter's Square, the meeting takes place between the Vicar of Christ, the humble Saint of Cascia and her brothers; bearing witness to the world that the message of love and peace must still prevail today. From this meeting, by the will of the Supreme Pontiff, Saint Rita is de facto inserted in the typical Latin edition of the Roman Missal of 2001. Since 18 May 1947.

Since 18 May 1947 the body of Ritahas rested in the Basilica of Saint Rita in Cascia, inside the crystal and silver urn made ??in 1930. Medical examinations have confirmed the presence of a bone sore (osteomyelitis) on the forehead, proving the existence of the stigmata. The face, hands and feet are mummified, while the Augustinian nun's habit conceals the entire skeleton (as it appears from the first half of the 18th century). The right foot has signs of a disease suffered in her last years, perhaps sciatica, while her height was 1.57 m.

Read the testimonies of devotees to Saint Rita

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