Rebecca is the English name for St. Rafqa / Rafka. St. Rebecca is one of the few Middle Eastern canonized saints, so she is especially beloved to Maronite Catholics, and her story of suffering will encourage you to remain joyful in the midst of your own suffering.
St. Rebecca was an only child whose mother died when the little girl was only seven years old. Her father sent her away for many years to earn money as a household servant, and when she returned home, she found herself at the center of a marriage dilemma: different family members wanted to arrange marriage for her with different suitors, but Rebecca, who astutely listened to the will of God, had only one suitor in mind: Jesus Christ. She rebuffed all marriage offers and joined a convent. She requested of Jesus to share in His suffering, and she soon began experiencing severe eye pain and shoulder pain. Her condition worsened throughout her life, but her joy remained constant until her death in 1914.
Her feast day is March 23, and she is the patroness against bodily ills and loss of parents.
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