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Philomena statue
St. Philomena in Saint Philomena Roman Catholic Church
 Lansdowne, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia. In May, 1802, the relics of St. Philomena were discovered in Italy.

chapel

Tomb of St. Philomena in the Sanctuary in Mugnano del Cardinale, Avellino, Italy.

catacombs of priscilla
The catacombs of Priscilla: the Greek Chapel near the body of Philomena. St. Philomena was a second century girl whose remains were discovered in an ancient catacomb in Rome.

vase philomena
The glass vase, containing a vile of her dried blood, which was found inside the tomb of Saint Philomena, also with bone relics. What would a DNA sample reveal today?

spTiles
The three tiles on the tomb: LUMENA / PAX TE / CUM FI.

In Latin the tomb read, “Pax tecum, Filumena”, which translates “Peace be with you, Philomena”.

Several years later Philomenia’s remains were enshrined in a village in Mugano, Italy and there begins the interventions and unusual events surrounding this girl of fourteen or fifteen. So great were here intersessions and miracles, that many religious and lay people began following her spirit. One such admirer who experienced “a burning in my heart” for Philomena, was St. John Baptist Vianney (Cure d’Ars) as explained here.

Philomena painting pa
Painting of Philomena at Saint Philomena Roman Catholic Church
 in Lansdowne, Pennsylvania (Philadelphia).

She was made a saint in 1837 by Pope Gregory XVI. She is the only person recognized as a saint based solely on her intersessions, since little is know of her otherwise. On the spirituality side, Philomena revealed her story to Mother Maria Luisa di Gesu, Foundress of the Oblates of Our Lady of Sorrows on August 3, 1833. Here is what St. Philomena said to Mother Maria Luisa di Gesu of her background.

“Dear Sister, August the tenth was the day of my rest, my triumph, my birth into Heaven, my entering into the possession of such eternal goods as the human mind cannot possibly imagine. That is why my Heavenly Spouse disposed, by His most high decrees that my coming to Mugnano should be on the day which had seen my coming to Heaven! He prepared so many circumstances which should make my arrival at Mugnano glorious and triumphant; giving joy to all the people, even though the priest who brought me had absolutely decided that my translation should take place on the fifth of the month very quietly in his own house. My omnipotent Spouse impeded him with so many obstacles that the priest, although he did all he could to carry out his plan, could not do so. And so it came about that the said translation was made on the tenth, the day of my feast in Heaven.” – Mother Maria Luisa di Gesu

Philomeia Church PA
Exterior of St. Philomena Church in the suburbs of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The church was dedicated on May 27, 1900 in honor of the Saint.

altar philomena
St. John Neumann while bishop of Philadelphia, was a true promoter of St. Philomena. He said of Philomena, “to whom God denies nothing for whoever invokes her.”

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini carried a small statue of Philomena on her numerous journeys. The Blessed Pius IX (1792-1878) also had a deep and sincere devotion to St. Philomena.

side shrine
The side shrine of St. Philomena, with a first class relic below, brought from the Shrine in Mugnano del Cardinale, near Naples, Italy.
All of Philomena’s miracles are explained here.

philomena church statue
Philomena up close.

St. Padre Pio called Philomena the “Princess of Heaven”. Padre Pio used to reply to those who doubted the existence of the Saint: “for the love of God!  It might well be that her name is not Philomena, but this Saint has performed many miracles and it is not the name that did them.”

ist class relic
Closeup of the first class relic at St. Philomena Roman Catholic Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

“My children, St. Philomena has great power with God. Her virginity and generosity in embracing heroic martyrdom has rendered her so agreeable to God that He will never refuse anything that she asks for us.” by St. John Vianney, the Curé d’Ars.

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