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Blessed Seraphina Sforza

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Born at Urbino about 1434; died at Pesaro, 8 September, 1478. Her parents were Guido Antonio of Montefeltro, Count of Urbino, and Cattarina Colonna. She was brought up at Rome by her maternal uncle, Martin V. In 1448 Seraphina married Alexander Sforza, Lord of Pesaro. Ten years afterwards her husband gave himself up to a dissolute life. All the efforts of Seraphina to reform him were in vain. Instead, he heaped insults and ill-treatment upon her, and even attempted her life, and finally forced her to enter the convent of Poor Clares at Pesaro. Her life there was one of incessant prayer especially for the conversion of her husband, which was finally granted. In 1475 Seraphina was elected abbess of the monastery at Pesaro. Her body, exhumed some years after her death, was found incorrupt, and is preserved in the cathedral at Pesaro. She was beatified by Benedict XIV in 1754, and her feast is kept on 9 September throughout the Franciscan Order.

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