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Article Index

4. Mortification / Penance

Fr. Juan de Santo Domingo in his Breve wrote clearly of how Mother Francisca practiced this virtue from the time a community was formed until her death.

The year 1694, the house of Antonia was no longer big for five Beatas. The Dominican Fathers bought the dilapidated house adjoining it. It was renovated, walls were built around the yard, an altar was framed and a neat and spacious oratory was formed. Seeing the oratory, Mother Francisca ordered that the Rosary be prayed by the community in the morning, at one o’clock during the day followed by mental prayer and the spiritual exercises lasted until three o’clock. The Rosary was also prayed at night and at midnight they rose up for mental prayer.

These spiritual exercises became a regular community horario before their exile at Santa Potenciana in the year 1704.

After the Beatas’ exile in Sta. Potenciana, they returned to the Beaterio to start all over again. The sufferings at Sta. Potenciana and the rigors of community life at the Beaterio intensified by her own penance, fasting and mortification resulted in a sickness which kept Mother Francisca in bed for many months.

Fr. Juan de Santo Domingo observed that, “although she was not yet 64 years old, externally she looked more than 70 years”. Despite her weakness, she would still force herself to go down to the church to receive Holy Communion until such time when she could no longer rise from bed and therefore, Fr. Juan de Sto. Domingo would go to her room and celebrate Holy Mass. Fr. J. Sto. Domingo writes: “She received the Lord with supreme joy” amidst suffering and pain.