Blessed Anna Taigi healing oil
The Blessed Anna Taigi healing oil is dedicated to the 19th century Italian saint. Taigi married Domenico Taigi who was a brash and impulsive individual though devoted to his wife. She experienced a series of ecstasies during her life. She was known to have heard the voices of God and Jesus Christ on several occasions. Taigi became a Secular Trinitarian after experiencing a sudden religious conversion in winter 1790 while at Saint Peter’s Basilica.
Anna Maria Giannetti was born in Siena on 29 May 1769 as an only child to Luigi Giannetti and Maria Masi.
Her father served as a pharmacist in a small store he ran in Siena but lost his fortune. He was obliged to seek work elsewhere. Giannetti moved to Rome with her parents in 1774. Luigi found a job as a household servant in Rome. It was in Rome that she attended a school that the Filippini Sisters managed. Once she completed her education she worked in several occupations to provide for her parents. While living in Rome she was often nicknamed as “Annette”. She received her Confirmation in the Archbasilica of Saint John Lateran in 1780. She had her First Communion in her parish church of San Francesco di Paola in 1782.
On 7 January 1789 she married the Milanese Domenico Taigi (1761-1850s) in the church of San Marcello al Corso. The pair went on to have a total of seven children. Three of those children died.
When her daughter Sofia was set to be married she allowed for her fiancée Micali to frequent the house prior to the marriage. The pair could meet but it would take place in Anna Maria and Domenico’s presence. Her son Camillo was conscripted into the armed service at some point. When Sofia became widowed it was Taigi who allowed her to lodge at her home. This was with her six children – her grandchildren – in tow.
Her husband could sometimes be ill-tempered and caustic but was devoted to his wife. It was also alleged that she had an adulterous affair with an older man. Her mother came to live with the family at one stage when she was widowed. On one particular occasion in winter 1790 she visited Saint Peter’s Basilica with her husband leaning on his arm in an extravagant dress when the large throng saw her bump into the Servite priest Angelo Verandi in the piazza.
Taigi went into the Confessio and felt a strong inspiration to renounce vanities she gave into; she cried to the priest: “Father; you have at your feet a great sinner” but the priest said: “Go away; you are not one of my penitents”. But the priest relented and allowed her to confess and he absolved her and curtly slammed the slide shut. She then visited the church of San Marcello al Corso and went to the confessional where she met again Father Verandi.
Sometime later she was in the church of San Andrea della Valle and before the Crucifix heard Jesus Christ: “What is your wish? To follow Jesus poor and naked and stripped of all, or to follow Him in His triumph and glory? Which do you choose?” and she replied: “I embrace the cross of my Jesus. I will carry it like Him in pain and ignominy. I await at His hands triumph and glory in the hereafter”.
Taigi later became a professed member of the Secular Trinitarians in the church of San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane on 26 December 1802. She also liked to visit hospitals and in particular liked to visit and aid patients at San Giacomo of the Incurables. Taigi also experienced a series of ecstasies and frequent visions in which she foresaw the future. On one occasion she went to sleep with a serene look on her face as her eyes drifted towards Heaven which led to her daughter Maria tearfully proclaiming: “Mamma is dead, Mamma is dead” to which Sophia corrected: “No! She is praying”. This led to Domenico growling: “Be quiet; she’s asleep. Let her alone, she had no sleep last night”.
Taigi predicts future popes
She attended the 1825 Jubilee that Leo XII convoked. Taigi knew of the latter pope’s ill health and before he died in 1829 she saw one morning the sun and prayed for him and heard a voice say: “Arise and pray. My Vicar is on the point of coming to render an account to Me”. His successor Pope Pius VIII lived in the shadow of ill health and she also foresaw his death and so and prayed for his soul as she did with his predecessor; she had predicted the pontificate of Pius VIII would be a short one and ended up successfully foreseeing that Cardinal Bartolomeo Alberto Cappellari would be elected as Pope Gregory XVI.
Before Pius VIII died, she and Monsignor Natali went to San Paolo fuori le Mura. When Cardinal Cappellari arrived, Taigi was in a small chapel which Natali tried to have her vacate for the cardinal, but she would not leave. Though Cappellari told Natali not to disturb her and went to kneel elsewhere in reflection, when she emerged she fixed her eyes on the cardinal. Natali asked her why she did this and she frankly responded: “That is the future pope”.
Taigi died at 4:00am on 9 June 1837 after a period of illness after receiving the Viaticum and the Anointing of the Sick from the local curate.
Her remains were transferred to San Crisogono on 18 August 1865 after it was discovered that she wanted to be buried there. In 1868 her remains were found intact though her clothes had decayed for the most part so was replaced.
Blessed Anna Taigi healing oil/Tradition of oils
The tradition of anointing with sacred oil is very old indeed. It is used in sacraments and also as a devotional practice. The sick person applies the oil and blesses themselves. As they do so, they are asked to pray to whomever the oil is dedicated to. The Irish blessings oils do not have miraculous power. It is God who has the power to heal. Applying the oil while praying are important ways for us to express our faith in God’s power. Moreover, by doing so we place our trust in God.