Franciscan Saints


14th October

The Servant of God Anna Apollonia Stadler

Virgin, Third Order

In Munich, the capital of Bavaria, there was a convent of Tertiaries called the Ridler Convent after its founder; it was also called The Stairs because  they had built there a replica of the stairs on which the bleeding Christ ascended to the judgement hall of Pilate . Habig writes that the convent itself was a holy staircase �since holy zeal for perfection reigned there and many souls ascended from there to heaven.�

In the second half of the seventeenth century this zeal for perfection was due mostly to the efforts of the servant of God Anna Apollonia Stadler:-

A contemporary of hers wrote that in the nine years Sr. Anna Apollonia spent as novice mistress, followed by the nine years she spent as superior most of her undertakings were to do with the holy angels. Certainly, the holy angels rejoiced in this true spouse of Christ since in everything she did, recollected as she was in God, always so cheerful and of pleasant countenance that she seemed already, though still earthbound, united with the angels in praising God.

It is said that Almighty God showed the measure of his favour for her once at Holy Communion when as she approached the Lord�s Table the son of God stepped out of the consecrated Host in the form of a lovely infant and allowed Apollonia to hold him in joyful embrace.

So from praising God on earth she passed to eternal praise of Him among the angelic choirs; a few days before her death, while at choir singing the Te Deum Apollonia was seized with an illness; in death, they said her face was more splendid than in life.


In my usual research for the saint for today I came across an Ann McBride who became a Poor Clare and took the name of Sr. Apollonia; here is what her relatives have written:

All spelling is original


Notes for ANN MCBRIDE: AKA Sr Apollonia McBride

From Tree #3499 :This information was received from the archives of the Sisters of Loretto at Nerinx, Ky 40049 of 7/24/1990.

 The exact site of the cemetary is not know but the monks there erected a  monument in 1985 with the names of the 13 sisters  buried there and Sr. Apollonia was one of them, �sister was the second in  this community to die there. The school was established in 1818 and closed in 1848. This property was sold later to the Trappist Monks who reside there to this date.


Sister Apollonia was the 28th sister to join that community. She was received in the community on Christmas day 1817 at the tender age of 16. She took her final vows on Christmas Day 1818.

The Sister's of Loretto at the Foot of The Cross was founded in 1812 by Charles Nerinckx, a Belgian priest exiled by the French Revolution.

In the book AMERICAN HOLY LAND: A History of the Arch diocese of Louisville by Fr. Clyde Crews, Page 90. "It was the Bethania community near Fairfield that would surface as the greatest problem for the Loretto in its first generation.  At Bethania, 11 sisters died in little more than two years and Bishop Flaget  became seriously alarmed. He wrote in Rosati at St. Louis that in eleven years  24 sisters under the age of 30 had died. He estimated that of the 80 sister living there 38 were in poor health. He wanted immediate changes; no more going barefoot in most seasons or sleeping in religious habits; he also wanted grammer taught to the sisters."


I believe Sister Apollonia was one of the first of these to die from the rigid life style they lived. It is my guess that she took the name Apollonia, from the Franciscan saint,  Anna Apollonia Stadler. A third order Franciscan and a virgin. In the second  half of the seventeenth century, the zeal for PERFECTION, was due in large part  to this saint, Anna Apollonia. It also fits that her given name was Ann. This feast is celebrated on Oct 15th, the time frame is also a near fit.


On July 2, 1992, my wife and I visited this monastary, and did in fact see the monument with Sr. Appollonia McBride's name on it with a death date of  3/5/1820. This is the Abbey of Gethsemani, at Trappist Monastary, in Trappist, Ky., 15 miles south of Bardstown, Ky. This monastary started with a colony of 44 men from the Breton Abbey of Melleray, near Nantes, France, when they settle here on land purchased from the Sister's of Loretto, at Loretto, Ky.

Prayer of the church

(Mass of the Holy Angels)

O God who in Thine unspeakable providence dost graciously

send Thy holy angels to keep watch over us: grant us, Thy

suppliants, that we may always be shielded by their protection and

every rejoice in their fellowship.

Through the same Christ Our Lord  Who liveth �and reigneth

with Thee

 and the Holy Spirit,  One God, now and forever.  Amen

Habig, Marion A., O.F.M., 1959, ed., The Franciscan book of Saints, Franciscan Herald press, Chicago, Illinois


Research: Crawford, Kenneth, A., Descendants of William BOWLES, Generation No. 2, �2009, web of, accessed 14th October 2012, <>


Last edited 13/09/2017 10:12 
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