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Josephine Margaret Bakhita F.D.C.C.
Mother Josephine, as she was affectionately known, was born in Darfur, Sudan 1868, she died 8th February 1947 in Italy.
Canonised by Pope John Paul II in 2000.
Feast day: 8th February.
She is considered patron saint of Sudan, slaves and victims of human trafficking.
Kidnapped and sold into slavery when a child she was given the name
'bakhita' meaning fortunate. After being sold several times she finally
arrived in Italy and met the Canossian Sisters in Venice where she was
baptized and confirmed, choosing the Christian name Josephine.
Josephine entered the Insitute of St Magdalene of Canossa in 1893,
legally a free woman. She was professed in 1896. She served in their
community in Verona for over 40 years until her death.
Pope John Paul II at her canonisation Mass said:
find a shining advocate of genuine emancipation. The history of her
life inspires not passive acceptance but the firm resolve to work
effectively to free girls and women from oppression and violence, and to
return them to their dignity in the full exercise of their rights."
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