Maria Crocifissa Curcio was born in Ispica (Province of Ragusa) on January 30, 1877, and given the name Rosa. In 1890, she received permission to join the Carmelite Third Order and took the name Sr. Maria Crocifissa. Through her reading of the life of St. Teresa of Jesus, she understood the plan of God that she called to make Carmel flourish in her country as well as many others.
She arrived in Rome on May 17, 1925, for the canonization of St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face and on the following day, together with the Carmelite priest Lorenzo van den Eerenbeemt with whom she shared the idea of making a Carmelite missionary foundation, she visited Santa Marinella on the coast near Rome, discovering the place where the Divine Will could finally be realized. On July 3, 1925, she settled in Santa Marinella together with some companions. On July 16 re received the much desired affiliation to the Carmelite Order..
In 1947, the dream of a mission outside of Italy was realized when the first four sisters were sent to Brazil.
She died at Santa Marinella on July 4, 1957, leaving a vivid memory of her holiness in the hearts of all. She was declared blessed in a ceremony in Rome on November 13, 2005.
From the Letters of Blessed Maria Crocifissa Curcio
Every day, you draw love from the Eucharistic Source; share it with the whole world through prayer, and with immense desires to save all souls. With your words and above all with your good example, capture the innocent hearts of the young in order to present them to the One who has created us to love Him above all else. Use gentle words– words that are inspired by the One who is Immense Love. A spirit of intimate union with Jesus in the Eucharist must always guide you in all your actions, even those that do not seem important. When you are at rest and when you are working, may you always be guided by the Divine Light, by the flame of love from the Eucharist that you must always have present within you. If you do this, my good and beloved daughters, you will retain the interior peace that binds you to Jesus your Spouse. In Him, you will share this peace with your neighbor and so you will do a great deal of good. You will also fill your soul with joys and beauty that are not of this world, even though you lament your powerlessness.
The first disciples of the Divine Master were poor, uneducated fisherman … but filled with the spirit of God, how much good did they accomplish through the whole world? For the accomplishment of the divine plan, Uncreated Wisdom does not use educated and power people but humble means in order to demonstrate to the world that it is He alone who does these things through lowly instruments. Do not be surprised that the Divine Goodness should have chosen us for this arduous mission, but in admiration we must bow our heads, and with humble simplicity abandon ourselves like…
This is what our little but great St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus did when she received the task of directing the novices. She admitted her powerlessness for such a difficult task, but like a child she abandoned herself to Jesus and asked that her little hand be filled with nourishment for His little daughters and that He give to each of them whatever was necessary through her: “fill my hands, and without leaving your arms, I will distribute your food to the soul who comes to me seeking your treasures.” May the spirit of this wonderful little saint who represents us be our guide and, by imitating her, we will live forever!
May Jesus speak deep within you and fill you with peace. May he give you a great love for the Greatest Good and love for each other. You must maintain in your soul the recollection that you had in the novitiate. We have not been called to the cloister but to the active life. However, with the life of prayer and the spirit of our Carmelite Order we must nourish union with God in order to strengthen us in our work…. Jesus in the Eucharist lives in your house day and night; you always have the Divine Spouse who gives you light and strengthens you in prayer and in the depths of your heart. He is all around you, gazing upon you and asking for your love. Love the Immaculate Host; be vigilant sentries of the tabernacle; keep your heart always in an attitude of adoration before the Host, who is Love, enclosed in the little house for love of us, even when you are at work. Blessed are those souls who know how to discover the secret of true sanctity in Him who alone can form saints!
The eyes of the Crucified gaze upon you. They question you and appeal to you. Do you wish seriously to renew your alliance with Him? What will your response be? “Lord, where shall I go? You alone have the words of life.” Ave Crux, spes unica!