Born near Spoleto, Italy, Rita wanted to be a nun but married in deference to her parents. For nearly 20 years, she endured her profligate husband’s mistreatment. Following his violent death, she was admitted after three refusals to an Augustinian convent at Cascia, where she spent the next 40 years. She is remembered for her devoted care of sick nuns and for a deep forehead wound that lasted 15 years, caused she said by a thorn from Christ’s crown of thorns. She has a large popular following, and is invoked in Italy for difficult situations.