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Feast Day of St. Gerard 2013

Fr. Allan Weinert, C.Ss.R.
 

Dear St. Gerard,

We ask your special blessing
on all women
awaiting the birth
of their child,
especially those who
may have any complications.

We ask you
to watch over all life
developing in the womb,
may this life be
loved,
cherished,
nourished,
cared for with profound respect
and come safely
to see the light of day.

Amen.

Dear Friend of St. Gerard,

Good News! St. Gerard Majella has now entered fully into the digital age and embraced 21st century social media! St. Gerard continues to be very popular as a miracle worker, one who powerfully intercedes for us before the God of Mercy, especially for mothers. He is rightly called “The Mothers’ Saint”.

Each quarter, the League of Saint Gerard eNewsletter is sent out via e-mail to over three thousand people and is then published on St. Gerard’s website: TheMothersSaint.org, where one can learn more about St. Gerard Majella and even light a candle. St. Gerard also has a Facebook page: www.Facebook.com/SaintGerardMajella. There are daily postings on this page, where an online prayer community of nearly 7,000 is growing rapidly among the friends of St. Gerard.

The purpose of the website, Facebook page and eNewsletter is to continue promoting devotion to St. Gerard Majella and increase prayers for the gift of motherhood, women having difficulty conceiving, pregnant women, women enduring complicated pregnancies, safe delivery, new mothers, women who adopt, mothers who are poor, for mothers of children with special needs, for mothers of the incarcerated, for mothers of soldiers, for single mothers, for foster mothers, for birth mothers, for teenage mothers, for mothers who have lost a daughter or son, for grandmothers, for husbands and fathers, for a sick child, for women with health problems, for respect for life, and much more.

I invite you to forward this eNewsletter to your friends and family so that they too can subscribe to the League of St. Gerard eNewsletter. Please visit and encourage others to visit St. Gerard’s website and to like St. Gerard’s Facebook page. We want you and thousands more to be part of St. Gerard’s growing prayer community. Help make our eNewsletter, website and Facebook page places where mothers and those seeking motherhood can find hope and inspiration. Please join me in promoting devotion to St. Gerard Majella and praying for those who most need his help and intercession.

St. Gerard, Pray for us!

Father Allan Weinert, C.Ss.R.


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St. Gerard Naming Stories

Do you know anyone named Geraldine, Gerard, Majella—even Deena or Geri? If so, it’s likely that your friend or family member is named after a humble Redemptorist brother born nearly 300 years ago in an obscure Italian village. According to countless couples who have turned to St. Gerard Majella for help, his heavenly prayers have helped them conceive a child. Others say that St. Gerard watched over their families and kept their children safe from harm. Some adoptive parents credit St. Gerard with helping them find the very child God had destined for their loving home.

Today, St. Gerard’s birthplace is no longer obscure. Each year, more than a million pilgrims visit his shrine in the mountainous region of Materdomini, Italy to thank him for favors received and pray before his tomb. Thanks to the Internet, those of us far from his homeland can pay a “virtual visit” to The Mothers’ Saint, as he is popularly known, by checking out the official English-language website and Facebook Page: TheMothersSaint.org and Facebook.com/SaintGerardMajella. Every day, women and men from around the world visit these online sites to post private and public intentions, light animated votive candles, pray for one another, and give thanks for answered prayers.

Sometimes, grateful parents name their children after the Redemptorist saint. Intrigued by the growing number of testimonials, the Redemptorists invited St. Gerard’s online fans to share their naming stories. We present below a small selection of these stories, testifying not only to St. Gerard’s powerful intercession, but also to the unwavering faith of young couples, parents, and grandparents from all walks of life. Wherever there is a baby in danger, a mother in need, a child who is sick, or a family in distress, St. Gerard stands ready to help!

Testimonials

“When my mom was pregnant with me, she started hemorrhaging. She was about fifteen weeks along. She had had previous miscarriages and clearly was having one again. She pleaded with St. Gerard to save the child. She promised to name the child, boy or girl, after St. Gerard. After finding out there was still a heartbeat she considered it a miracle, and so I was named Gerri.”
Gerri Ann, USA

My mother asked me to send this story to you. My mother had four girls and then she was told it was impossible for her to have any more children. She tried for many years and visited many doctors, but each told her the same. After seven years she started a novena to St. Gerard and promised him that if she were to have another baby she would put Gerard to his name if it was a boy and Gerardine if it was a girl. About five weeks after finishing her novena, my mother found out she was pregnant. The doctors couldn't believe it or explain how it happened. They said it was a miracle. All in our family were over the moon. Throughout her pregnancy my mother continued to pray to St. Gerard. On the 27th of October 2003, fifteen days overdue, my mother gave birth to a healthy baby boy and called him Patrick (Paddy) Gerard. He is age 10 this October and my parents call him their miracle baby. My mother firmly believes that having my brother was through St Gerard Majella's intercession, and she will be forever thankful to him.
Melissa McDonagh on behalf of her mother Julie McDonagh, Ireland

My fourth baby (just six weeks old now) is Majella Catherine. The vast majority of people comment what a beautiful name it is, and it gives me the opportunity to share who St. Gerard Majella was. Of course, there are the occasional negative people too. A woman asked her name yesterday and when I told her and explained who St. Gerard was, she said, "I always named mine after people I know. I don't go for these different names." To which I replied, "Oh! I agree! I know St. Gerard very well."
Mary Therese, USA

My father was named Gerard Majella...fitting, really, since my mother had 7 daughters!
Fiona Sankey, England

My son is Noah Gerard. I went into labor at 18 weeks and I had to have an emergency surgery to try to carry him as long as I could. I was on complete bed rest for 14 weeks - until I delivered him at 32 weeks. He was 4lbs 7 oz and healthy! I prayed for St Gerard's intercession every day faithfully, and I truly believe Noah was a miracle.
Marie Sandoval, USA

My husband and I had been trying to conceive for two years when I heard that St. Gerard helps couples struggling with infertility. I began praying to St. Gerard and I made a necklace with his medal. Three months later, I found out I was pregnant! We were so excited and grateful, we almost couldn't believe the news. We took 10 pregnancy tests, and they were all positive. This is truly a miracle, especially since our last pregnancy ended in a miscarriage. I am now 20 weeks pregnant—half way there! Everything in this pregnancy has been perfect. We found out we are having a boy, and we are naming him Giovanni Gerard. We are so blessed by this baby. I still can't believe that God answered our prayers!
A young wife from Texas, USA

My mother had trouble conceiving, so she prayed to St. Gerard. My middle name is Gerard. I might not be here today it weren’t for them prayers!
Jerry, USA

My mother lost her firstborn shortly after delivery. Her second born had Down Syndrome. She then turned to St. Gerard and her third born (me) was a healthy baby! Although the spelling does not match up, I was named Geralda Suzanne and I was told I was named after St. Gerard. Her fourth born, another healthy baby, was named Gerald John, again after praying to St. Gerard. I have prayed to him through my two pregnancies and for my four grandchildren and have been blessed with healthy babies!
Suzanne Dartez Reed, USA

Gerard Majella was my guide and support from the day I found out I was pregnant. To this day, I always carry my St Gerard medal with me. Our daughter was conceived unexpectedly and I wasn't well. St Gerard was our strength during the pregnancy and my husband and I agreed that we would be naming this child after St Gerard. Being a beautiful little girl, we named her Majella. I never miss the opportunity to spread the word about St Gerard whenever anyone comments on Majella's name.
Teresa, Australia

There are 10 years between my older brother and me. The reason for such a long gap between us is that my mother gave birth to three children in that time, all of who died shortly after being born. My mother decided to pray to St Gerard when she became pregnant with me, and I made it. If I had been a girl I would've been called Majella.
Gerry Keating, USA

My brother is called Gerard, because right after delivery my mother was told that there was something wrong with her baby. He was sent to Children’s Hospital to be operated on as he had no windpipe in his neck. He’s now a happily married man with three daughters of his own. Thank you, St. Gerard, for minding my baby brother!
Roberta, Ireland

My son is Palmer James Gerard. We had several miscarriages and St. Gerard reached out to us through a close friend. We prayed to him every night (and continue to do so) and we were blessed with a beautiful, healthy boy - and now a daughter as well. We owe so much gratitude to St. Gerard and we honor him with our son's name.
Shawn Patrick, USA

My son is Mark Gerard McKnight. I named him after St. Gerard because I had four miscarriages before someone gave me a St. Gerard medal to wear. She told me not to take it off, and promised that one day I would become a mother no matter what. So I wore the medal for eight years, and now I have two beautiful children. I believe St. Gerard is always with me and helped bring my children into this world.
Mary, USA

I am named Christina Geraldine. When my mother was pregnant with me, the doctors told her that I would not survive labor. So she prayed to St. Gerard through her whole labour while hiding in the labour ward as they wanted to stop the labour. Now my mother is no longer with me, she is an angel in heaven, but I am fine and I have always prayed to my Saint!
Mrs. B., Ireland

My mother had 6 children. Her last 3 pregnancies were rough. She always prayed to St. Gerard. My brother, the 6th, was born 2 months premature. He stopped breathing 3 times, and then he also had the RH factor and had to have all his blood transfused. Twice. But he turned out fine and healthy. He is a miracle still and such a kind, thoughtful man - John Gerald.
Sarita Sweeney, USA

I had lots of problems keeping a pregnancy, so a nun told me to do novenas to St Gerard and promise to name my child after St Gerard. I finally became pregnant then and managed to have a baby. Her name is Giulia-Maria Geraldine. My miracle baby!
Marla Toldo, Australia

I have three children. I named my second child Lorcan Gerard and my third child, a girl, I named Aoibheann Majella. Thank you, St. Gerard Majella: I don’t know what I would have done without you!
Donnie Donnelly, UK

With my second child I suffered hemorrhaging in the first trimester, and I was told I would miscarry the child. I prayed to St Gerard - our priest introduced me to him - and six years later our daughter Mayela (this how it was spelled in my Spanish prayer book) is our most headstrong child. St Gerard has blessed me many times. He is my BFF saint (“Best Friends Forever” saint).
Andrea Ortiz Valdez, USA

My baby, who just turned one year old, is named Majella Catherine after St. Gerard and St. Catherine Labouré. I have always prayed to St. Gerard and I have always loved the name Majella. I know he was with me during her delivery as it was the easiest of my four children.
Mary Therese, USA

My mum named me after St Gerard as she had many miscarriages and prayed on my birth to him. She believes he brought me to full term. I'm proud to be named after such a wonderful Saint!
Gerard Murray, Ireland

My son Domenick Gerard is named after St. Gerard. I prayed the novena for many months when I was trying to conceive. In Newark, NJ, there is a national shrine to him, and I was blessed with twin boys after visiting there and pinning two dollars on his gown. A miracle!
Suzanne Infantes USA

My son was named Isaac Gerard. We waited for 7 years for him. The final 2 years, we went to the Saturday Novenas at Novena Church in Singapore, asking St. Gerard and Mother Mary to intercede for us. Our son was born in March of last year.
Thomas Chong Kenn Szee, Singapore

We named our second son after St. Gerard. After 12 years of not being able to conceive, and after adopting our first son, we did conceive and named our son Paul Gerard. We prayed for St. Gerard's intercession for many years. Now we teach others about him each time we teach the Baptism class at our parish.
Cristina Zakis, USA

My middle name is Majella, after the man himself. I was born in September but my mum prayed to him all through her pregnancy. I would have been Gerard had I been a boy. I try to make the novena to St. Gerard Majella every year in my parish church. St. Gerard helped me through my own pregnancy 5 years ago, and I now pray now for friends and family who are expecting children or who are trying to conceive.
Niamh McAlevey, Ireland

My grandmother had a very difficult time delivering my dad so she named him Gerard. When my son was born I wanted him to have part of my dad's name, Anthony Gerard. It was fitting since I had a horrible delivery myself. But I knew St. Gerard was watching over me.
Tracey Striano-Molfino, USA

I was named after St. Gerard because when my mother had me she was 39 years old and back in the day, that was old to have a child! Everyone kept giving her St. Gerard medals, so I ended up with my name. I still have the medals—and my mom is in heaven now!
Gerardette Mika McCarthy, USA

I was born on June 3, 1956 in the early morning hours. Shortly after giving birth, my mother was told that I had not survived the birth process. She was told it was over and that they would be putting her to sleep. But she prayed to St. Gerard, and when she woke up I was alive! I am so very honored to be named after St. Gerard, and I feel him in my spirit everyday.
Gerard Welch, USA

May we pray for you?
Send us your prayer requests in times of hope, times of joy, or times of sorrow. Read Saint Gerard's story and learn why he has special care for mothers.



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