St. Maria Goretti was only a child when she died a martyrs death. Yet today, she inspires millions who find in her a perfect model of purity and holiness. Read here about her great holiness in the midst of tremendous suffering , how she died at the hands of a vicious murderer who tried to defile her purity, and how she visited this very same murderer years later in his jail cell to forgive him. Fr. Jeffrey Kirby examines the life of this little saint as he reflects on the Beatitudes and how she, along with her family, lived them each day. In a world where purity is corrupted in the darkness of the night and mercy is abandoned in the name of vengeance, let us turn to St. Maria Goretti and see her as the dawn of a new day, where the light of Christ shines on each of us and guides us into His Kingdom.
Fr. Jeffrey Kirby is a priest of the Diocese of Charleston, SC. He holds a Licentiate in Moral Theology from the Holy Cross University in Rome. He is the author of the books Lord, Teach Us to Pray, 101 Surprising Facts on St. Peter's and the Vatican, and The Life and Witness of St. Maria Goretti. Fr. Kirby is the instructor for the Catholic Courses on St. Peter's Basilica and The Spiritual Life. He was the founding Director of the Drexel House: Catholic Residence for Men, and for over five years was a Vocations Director helping men and women find their place in the Church. Due to Fr. Kirby's love for the Divine Mercy, he is regularly sought out as a retreat leader, spiritual director, and confessor.