Saint Catalina Thomas

 (1531 - 1574)

Memorial : 1 April
Formerly 5 April
27 July and 28 July in Valldemossa, Spain

Other Names : Catherine Tomas, Catherine Thomas, Catalina Thomas, Catalina Tomas
Katarina Tomás av Palma

The saint who inspires the most devotion and popularity in Mallorca: St. Catalina Thomàs, better known as the Beata or Beateta.

Catalina Thomàs was born in Valldemossa (Mallorca) in 1531 and died in the odour of sanctity in Palma in 1574. Orphaned when young, she displayed signs of religiosity and was determined to enter a convent at a very early age. After overcoming her family’s reluctance and the lack of a dowry, she entered the convent of St Maria Magdalena in Palma, which was run by Augustinian nuns, in 1553. 

Subjected to many strange phenomena and mystical experiences including visits from angels, Saint Anthony of Padua and Saint Catherine of Siena. Had the gifts of visions and prophecy. Assaulted spiritually and physically by dark powers, she sometimes went into ecstatic trances for days at a time; her wounds from this abuse were treated by Saint Cosmas and Saint Damian. During her last years she was almost continually in ecstasy. Foretold the date of her death.

Every house in the village you will
 see a tile of the same style as this:
 "Santa Catalina Thomas pregau per
Nosaltres" , Santa Catalina Thomas
pray for us.
News of her exemplary life and the ecstasies she experienced spread beyond the convent’s walls and her fame so penetrated the town that she was already venerated it as a saint by her death, although beatification did not take place until 1792. Cardinal Antoni Despuig, who took part an active part in that process, also commissioned a sumptuous chapel to be erected in the convent church of Santa Maria Magdalena where St. Catalina had taken her vows and where her uncorrupted body can now be venerated. Catalina Thomàs was canonised in 1930 by Pope Pius XI. The house in which she was born in Valldemossa is open to visitors. 

Several towns on the island hold major celebrations in her honour every year, among them Valldemossa (late July), Santa Margalida (the first week of September), Palma (on the third Saturday in October) and Vilafranca de Bonany (late July). 

 Altarpiece, by an unknown painter of 18th cent.,
 with Saint Catherine Thomas,
in a chapel at Valldemossa, Mallorca

Birth house of the Majorcan saint Catalina Thomas
Relic of St. Catalina Thomas

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