February 4

St. Joan of Valois

St. Joan of Valois

Early Life

Saint Joan of Valois, daughter to the king of France, was born on April23, 1464. She had a sound mind but was physically deformed. Her love forthe Lord was remarkable as a child, she dedicated her time to meditationand prayers. Her father wasn’t pleased with her devotion and lifestyle.While her father treated her harshly, she took everything with patienceand total surrender to God. She told nobody about her situation.

Dedication and Devotion

Because she always prayed and was fond of the Virgin Mary at an earlyage, she had asked how she could best please the Virgin Mary.

A reply came to her heart, “Before you die, you shall found the Orderin my honor: this is the greatest pleasure that you can give to my Sonand myself.”

She didn’t know how it was going to come to pass.

At the age of 12, Joan’s father betrothed her to the Duke of Orleans. Itwas a forced marriage and her suffering continued for 22 years. Shelived a life of loneliness and humility in her marriage. Just like herfather, her husband detested her so much that it reflected in the wayshe was treated, like a stranger.

In 1498, when Duke Louis ascended the throne as Louis XII, he decided tofile for a divorce. Given the condition of compulsion of marriage, thepope declared the marriage null and void. Joan accepted the situationand surrendered to God. She said,

“God has now detached me from the world and has made it possible for meto serve Him better than heretofore.”


After the divorce, Joan left for Bourges, where she continued herdevotion to God. By this time, the revelation she had had at a young agewas to come to pass. She gathered a group of women to create a religiouscommunity devoted to the special veneration of the Blessed Virgin Mary.Joan’s confessor, Father Gilbert assisted her in bringing the revelationto pass. He drew up statutes in ten chapters, similar to the ten virtuesof the Virgin Mary.

Pope Alexander VI approved the new institute in 1500AD and the youngwomen were called Sisters of the Annunciation of Mary, or Annunciades.

In 1503, Joan of Valois took the veil in the convent of Bourges, whereshe made her solemn vows.

Death and Canonization

On February 4, 1505, Joan of Valois died and was canonized in 1950

5 Interesting Facts About St. Joan of Valois

  1. Did you know that St. Joan of Valois became the Duchess of Berry
    after her divorce?
  2. Did you know that many miracles occurred at St. Joan of Valois’
  3. Did you know that St. Joan of Valois’ body was cut after 57 years of
    her death and blood came out of the wounds?
  4. Did you know that St. Joan of Valois is the patron of those in
    difficult circumstances?
  5. Did you know that Pope Benedict XIV sanctioned the public veneration
    of Jane in the year 1742?

Prayer to St. Joan of Valois

O Mary, Virgin and Mother of Jesus,Grant that I think, say, and do all thatis most pleasing to God and to you.