Bl. Christine of the Holy Cross
Christine of the Holy Cross (1237?-1310) is esteemed as one of the founders of the female monastic branch of the Augustinian family. She was notable for her humility, charity, purity of life and spirit of contemplation.
Oringa Menabuoi was born around the year 1237 in Santa Croce (Holy Cross) sull'Arno, Lucca, Italy. Raised in a farming family, she was as a child frequently alone in the fields watching over the herd of cows and oxen. At these times, she would give herself over to prayer.
Her family wanted her to marry, but she wanted to consecrate herself to God as a nun. So she left her family home, going to Lucca, where she did domestic work.
She made a pilgrimage to the shrine of Saint Michael the Archangel in 1265 and then went to live in Rome. There she started using the name Christine. While making a pilgrimage to Assisi, she was inspired to start a religious house in her home town of Santa Croce.
In 1279 Christine did establish a hermitage there. Initially this hermitage was affiliated with the Franciscans, but in 1294 it became a monastery following the Rule of Saint Augustine.
She died January 4, 1310.