Year of Faith: St. Rose Philippine Duchesne and Strawberry Cake

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gantley feb1This  month for my Year of Faith series,  I highlight a saint that has been listed on the USCCB Saints for the Year of Faith.

The month of February is dedicated to St. Rose Philippine Duchesne.

She was born in Grenoble France to a wealthy and political family. She was baptized in the Church of St Lois and received the name Philip, the Apostle and Rose of Lima.  She became the first Saint of the New Continent.

She was educated in the convent of the Visitations in Grenoble. This is also where she joined the convent at the age of 19 against her parents wishes. At first they were angry but they began to get used to the idea of her becoming a nun. In 1792 during the French Revolution her convent was dispersed and she returned home to her family.

After the Revolutionary War, her convent was regrouped into the Society of the Sacred Heart. Rose became a postulant in December 1804. She made her final vows in 1805.

In 1815, she and four other sisters were sent as missionaries to the Louisiana Territory. In 1818 she opened her first free school west of the Mississippi. It was a log cabin in St. Charles Missouri. By 1828, she had six more schools.

In her seventies and no longer mother superior, she began serving the American Indians. She helped with a school in Sugar Creek Kansas for the Potawatomi Indians. They called her “Woman who prays always”. In July 1842 she returned to Missouri. Philippine died at the age of 83,

Because her symbol is the rose, I decided to make a rose cake. If you don’t have a fancy rose pan like I do, you can use any pan you like.

gantley feb2Strawberry Cake

1 ½ sticks of softened butter
½ cups white sugar
4 large eggs
½ cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup strawberry jam
3 medium bananas mashed
3 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a Bundt pan with cooking spray. Using an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, milk and vanilla extract. Add strawberries and bananas. In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture a cup at a time until combined. Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before inverting the pan. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Copyright 2013 Veronica Gantley

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