MARY & HER MIRACULOUS MEDAL
Memorial: 28 November; formerly 31 December
Profile: Ninth of eleven children born to a farm family, and from an early age felt a call to the religious life. Never learned to read or write. Forced to take over running the house at age eight after her mother died and her older sister joined the Sisters of Charity. Worked as a waitress in her uncle's cafe in Paris. Upon entering a hospital run by the Sisters of Charity she received a vision in which Saint Vincent de Paul told her that God wanted her to work with the sick, and she later joined the order, taking the name Catherine.
On 18 July 1830 she had a vision of Our Lady who described to her a medal which she wished struck. On one side it has the image of Our Lady, and the words, "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee"; on the other are the hearts of Jesus and Mary. Our Lady told Catherine that wearers of the medal would receive great graces, it has become known as the Miraculous Medal, and its wearing and devotion has spread worldwide. Miracles reported at her tomb.
Born: 2 May 1806 at Fain-les-Moûtiers, Côte d'Or, Burgundy, France as Zoe Laboure
Died: 31 December 1876 at Enghien-Reuilly, France; body incorrupt; entombed in her convent chapel
Beatified: 1933 by Pope Pius XI
Canonized: 27 July 1947 by Pope Pius XII