Teenage girl with a ravaged face
It was not simply a matter of her "unattractive" face and poor vision: she herself had something else in mind for her life. Her heart was set on a very special man to whom she had been introduced when she was a little girl: Jesus Christ.
When she turned 18, she was baptized and dedicated herself to a life of holiness. She met with great opposition and eventually had to be taken away from her hometown for her own safety.
She came to live in a Christian house and many came to be impressed by her spiritual beauty.
She would die at the age of 24 and would be instantly revered by all who knew of her.
Three hundred years later, on June 22, 1980, Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha, the first Native American to be proposed for sainthood, was beatified by the great Pope John Paul II. Her memory is celebrated on this day.
(adapted from an earlier post)