JUNE 16. the venturesome lips of juliana falconieri
Patron saint of bodily ills, sick people, sickness
Lived 1270 to 1341
While still in the crib, without prompting, Juliana pronounced the names of Jesus and Mary. At sixteen, Juliana "bid adieu to all worldly thoughts and pleasures" and "consecrated her virginity to God." According to one blogger, who fails to cite a source, "this did not make her a dour or morbid personality, Juliana simply knew what her priorities in life were."
Modest Juliana lived in lifelong avoidance of mirrors and men's faces; she never once lifted her eyes to use or gaze upon either. "She was seen to sink to the ground, as one dead, whenever a crime was so much as mentioned." Juliana led a life of apostolic charity, converting sinners, reconciling enemies, and healing the sick by sucking putrid matter from their ulcerous sores with her own lips.
Juliana slept briefly each night on the bare floor, and spent the rest of the night in prayer. She chastised her figure with wire chains and scourges.
As she advanced toward death, Juliana vomited non-stop due to years of rigorous fasting. Unable to swallow, she instead asked to kiss the Blessed Sacrament. Denied, she requested that a communion wafer be placed on her chest on a linen. A priest granted this request, and by some miracle, the host--composed of Christ's flesh--managed to penetrate her body and nourish her. In this last hour, angels visited her in the form of white doves and the Christ child crowned her with a flower garland. Once she expired, the image of the cross from the host was found on her breast and/or stamped upon her heart in the exact spot over which the Blessed Sacrament had been placed--"like a seal pressed into the flesh".