Many of us hold our mother in a revered place in our heart, recognizing that her unconditional love is nothing short of saintly. But Pierluigi Molla can say it in a much more literal sense – his mother was the last person to be canonized as a saint by Pope John Paul II.

Pierluigi is the eldest child of St. Gianna Beretta Molla, an Italian pediatrician, wife and mother who is known for refusing both an abortion and a hysterectomy when she was pregnant with her fourth child, despite knowing that continuing with the pregnancy could result in her death. A few days before the child was due, she told doctors: “If you must decide between me and the child, do not hesitate: choose the child - I insist on it.”

A week after giving birth in 1962, she died of complications at the age of 39, when Pierluigi was only 5. She was canonized in 2004, in a Vatican ceremony witnessed by her family.

Pierluigi will share some of his family story with people of the Archdiocese of Edmonton on Thursday, November 1, at St. Joseph’s Basilica. He will speak as a witness at the first session in the fifth year of the Nothing More Beautiful series, a year that will focus on “The Beauty of the Apostolate.” Archbishop Smith will offer the opening catechesis that evening on “Evangelizing the Family.”

Please join us for an unforgettable evening, or watch the live webcast at www.caedm.ca/webcast.


Nothing More Beautiful: Evangelizing the Family
7 p.m., Thursday, November 1
St. Joseph’s Basilica
Children’s program available ages 3-9
Simultaneous ASL Translation

For more information on all the presentations coming up in this year's Nothing More Beautiful series, visit the Dates, Times and Speakers page.