St. Agnes of Montepulciano
April 20, Saint


Born wealthy. A pious child, at age six she began nagging her parents to join a convent. She was admitted to the convent at Montepulciano, Italy at age nine. When her spiritual director was appointed abbess at Procena, she took Agnes with her. Agnes’s reputation for holiness attracted other sisters. Abbess at age fifteen after receiving special permission from Pope Nicholas IV. Agnes insisted on greater austerities in the abbey; she lived off bread and water, slept on the ground, used a stone for a pillow. In 1298 she returned to Montepulciano to work in a new Dominican convent. Prioress of the house the last seventeen years of her life. Pilgrim to Rome, Italy.

    Many stories grew up around Agnes, including

  • Her birth was announced by flying lights surrounding her family’s house.
  • As a child, while walking through a field, she was attacked by a large murder of crows; she announced that they were devils, trying to keep her away from the land; years later, it was the site of her convent.
  • She was known to levitate up to two feet in the air while praying.
  • She received Communion from an angel, and had visions of the Virgin Mary.
  • She held the infant Jesus in one of these visions; when she woke from her trance she found she was holding the small gold crucifix the Christ child had worn.
  • On the day she was chosen abbess as a teenager, small white crosses showered softly onto her and the congregation.
  • She could feed the convent with a handful of bread, once she’d prayed over it.
  • Where she knelt to pray, violets, lilies and roses would suddenly bloom.
  • While being treated for her terminal illness, she brought a drowned child back from the dead.
  •  At the site of her treatment, a spring welled up that did not help her health, but healed many other people.


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