May 8: Death of Bl. Miriam Teresa Demjanovich, SC

by | May 8, 2016 | Formation

demjanovich-facebookOn May 8, 1927, Sister Miriam Teresa Demjanovich, a Sister of Charity of St. Elizabeth, died at Saint Elizabeth Hospital, Elizabeth, New Jersey, USA. She was 26 years old. She is the fourth native-born American (U.S.) woman to ever have been beatified (who were the other three? Scroll to the end of this article to find out). Who was Sister Miriam Teresa? How did she live her brief life? Why is she on the path to Sainthood in the Catholic Church? Watch the video to find out more:

As a postulant and novice, Sister Miriam Teresa taught at the Academy of Saint Elizabeth, Convent Station in 1925-1926. In June, 1926 her spiritual director asked her to write the conferences for the novitiate. She wrote 26 conferences which, after her death, were published in a book, Greater Perfection. The contents of the book are:

  1. The Will of God: Your Sanctification
  2. The Sacrifice of the Mass: The Greatest Means of Sanctification
  3. The Sacraments: The Second Greatest Means of Sanctification
  4. Prayer: The Third Great Means of Sanctification
  5. The “Word Made Flesh” for Our Sanctification
  6. The End of Existence: Sanctity; Union with God

From the final section:

Union with God, then, is the spiritual height God calls everyone to achieve– any one, not only religious but any one, who chooses, who wills to seek this pearl of great price, who specializes in the traffic of eternal good, who says ‘yes’ constantly to God… The imitation of Christ in the lives of saints is always possible and compatible with every state of life. The saints did but one thing– the will of God. But they did it with all their might. We have only to do the same thing; and according to the degree of intensity with which we labor shall our sanctification progress.

Read her biography at the Vincentian Encyclopedia.

**The other three American-born women were: St. Kateri Tekakwitha (born in New Netherland (modern-day upstate New York), 1657), St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (born in New York, 1774), and St. Katharine Drexel (born in Pennsylvania, 1858).