August 17 – Her great beauty aroused the jealousy of the queen

August 16, 2012

St. Beatrix da Silva

A Portuguese nun, died 1 September, 1490. In Portuguese she is known as Blessed Brites. She was a member of the house of Portalegre and descended from the royal family of Portugal. She accompanied the Portuguese Princess Isabel to Spain, when she married John II of Castile. There Beatrix seems to have aroused the jealousy of her royal mistress and was imprisoned for three days without food. After a vision of Our Blessed Lady, whom she saw attired in the blue mantle and white dress of the Conception Order which she was afterwards to found, Beatrix was allowed to retire to Toledo where she entered the Dominican Order.

There she lived forty years, being specially honored and frequently visited by Queen Isabel the Catholic. The latter aided her to found an order in honor of the Immaculate Conception, which adopted the Franciscan Rule. It was approved by Innocent VIII in 1480 and with some modifications by Julius II in 1511. Beatrix died ten days before the solemn inauguration of her new order. She is much honored in Spain, and there is a life of her by Bivar. (See also the “Anal. jur. pont.”, III, 549.)

She was canonized 3 October, 1976, by Pope Paul VI.

St. Beatrix da Silva with Queen Isabella the Catholic


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