Oil Dedicated to Blessed Helen Enselmini
The Oil Dedicated to Blessed Helen Enselmini the saint who was born in Padua in 1208. Early in life she entertained an ardent desire to become a bride of Christ. When St Francis established a convent of Poor Clares in her native city in 1220 she joined. She received the habit of St Clare from the hands of St Francis himself. St Anthony of Padua was her director. Under his guidance the young novice advanced rapidly in religious perfection.
In order to purify His spouse thoroughly, Our Lord began to send her grievous and painful maladies when she was but eighteen years of age. She became lame, blind, and dumb, and remained thus until her death. Helen bore this trial with heroic constancy and perfect surrender to her suffering and crucified Savior. Blessed Helen was afflicted with sickness that the power and grace of God might be made manifest in her, and her virtue might be proved in patience.
But as recompense, Blessed Helen Enselmini was also strengthened and enlightened by abundant heavenly consolation. In spirit she saw the glory of the blessed in heaven, especially that of our holy Father St Francis and all the religious who were faithful to their vocation. God permitted her also to behold the sufferings of the souls in purgatory, in order to encourage her to pray the more zealously for them and to bear her own sufferings with still greater patience.
Finally, on November 4, 1242, God called Blessed Helen Enselmini to her eternal home. She was thirty-four years old, and had spent twenty-two years in the convent. Her body has remained incorrupt to the present day, and numerous miracles have been wrought at her intercession. Pope Innocent XII approved the public veneration given to her since her death.
Tradition of oils
The tradition of anointing with 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.