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Monica's Review of the New "Cabrini" Movie

We will be hearing a lot about Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini when a movie about her life premieres on March 8th. Titled Cabrini, the movie depicts the life and work of St. Frances in America at the turn of the last century.  

Hopefully, people will fill the theaters as they have for other enterprises by Angel Studios (The ChosenSound of Freedom). The studio should be applauded for their astute marketing, as the movie opens on International Women’s Day, and the trailers clearly emphasize St. Frances’ strong personality in her dealings with important men of her time. This, along with themes of social justice and the immigrant experience, will attract many people to the movie, both religious and secular.

This type of entertainment is moving in the right direction and we should support it – and, in the case of “Cabrini,” we should also educate ourselves on the full story of this remarkable saint.


This cinematic portrayal tells only part of the incredible story of St. Frances, the first American canonized saint and patron saint of immigrants. St. Frances (also known as “Mother Cabrini”) was a woman whose primary motivation in life was her Catholic faith. Because of this, she was able to achieve great changes in America and throughout the world.

Mother Cabrini was many things:  a woman, a religious sister, an Italian, an educator, and a businesswoman, but most importantly, she was a Catholic missionary. 

In 1889, Mother Cabrini and 6 sisters from her order were sent specifically to the United States by Pope Leo XIII to bring Christ’s message to the newly-arrived Italian immigrants who were far from home and drifting away from God. Their lack of knowledge of English and inability to find a respectable place in American society (due, partly, to the then-widespread prejudice against Italians) led to their horrific treatment. When the Pope learned of this – and especially their loss of faith – he sent Italian sisters and priests as missionaries to America to support them. 

St. Frances Cabrini took this mission very seriously. By the time of her death in 1917, she had founded a religious order (Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus) that numbered over 2,000 sisters, as well as 67 schools, hospitals, and orphanages in the U.S., South America and Europe – all in a time when women did not typically or easily conduct business in a man’s world.

Her accomplishments are extraordinary and should be recognized, but the deeper and potentially more important message from the life of Mother Cabrini is this: her tireless missionary work was fully inspired by her desire to serve God and save souls. Despite many setbacks and chronic illnesses, she persevered because of her belief in this mission.


Angel Studios should be commended for making this movie and others like it. We should not only support Cabrini, but also take time to learn more about St. Frances Cabrini’s noteworthy life and service to her beloved Church.

Are you going to see "Cabrini" in theaters?

  • Yes

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