Saints and Holy People

Find out about their lives and how they changed the world

Saint Germaine of Pibrac (1579–1601)

Saint Germaine of Pibrac (1579–1601)

Patron saint of abandoned people, abuse victims, against poverty, disabled people, girls from rural areas, illness, impoverishment, loss of parents, shepherdesses, sick people, unattractive people, physical therapists

Feast day: June 15

Saint Germaine of Pibrac was born with a withered hand. She was desperately poor, growing up on a farm in the French countryside. She was mistreated by her stepmother, fed on scraps, and forced to sleep in the stable. She was a shepherdess from the age of nine.

On one bitter, cold, icy winter day, she was accused by her stepmother of stealing a loaf of bread to feed a starving beggar. Germaine’s apron was wrenched open and onlookers expected to see the stolen loaf fall to the ground. Instead, out fell a shower of fresh spring flowers, as fresh and redolent as if they were picked seconds before.

Saint Germaine of Pibrac died at the age of 21, still a poor French shepherdess. (From Saints Passionate and Peculiar [Saint Mary’s Press]) 

(Image Robert Redeker, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)