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Saint Mary of the Cross (Mary MacKillop)

Born: January 15, 1842 in Newtown, New South Wales (now Fitzroy, Victoria, Australia)

Died: August 8, 1909 in North Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Venerated:  Catholic Church

Beatified: January 19, 1995 by Pope John Paul II

Canonized: October 17, 2010 by Pope Benedict XVI

Feast Day: August 8

Patronages: Knights of the Southern Cross
Places: Australia; Brisbane

Mary Helen MacKillop, also known as Saint Mary of the Cross, was an Australian Roman Catholic nun who, together with Father Julian Tenison Woods, founded the Sisters of Saint Joseph of the Sacred Heart and a number of schools and welfare institutions throughout Australia with an emphasis on education for the poor, particularly in country areas. Since her death she has attracted much veneration in Australia and internationally.

On July 17, 2008, Pope Benedict XVI prayed at her tomb during his visit to Sydney for World Youth Day 2008. On December 19, 2009, Pope Benedict XVI approved the Roman Catholic Church's recognition of a second miracle attributed to her intercession. She was canonized on October 17, 2010 during a public ceremony in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican. She is the only Australian to be recognized by the Roman Catholic Church as a saint.

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