Bl. Roza Czacka

Blessed Countess Róża Maria Czacka (also known under religious name Elżbieta; 22 October 1876 – 15 May 1961) was a Polish religious sister who founded the Franciscan Sisters Servants of the Cross. Czacka had an accident in her childhood that later led to her becoming blind after she turned 22 despite the numerous surgical interventions that were performed on her. The next decade saw Czacka travel throughout Europe hoping to learn about techniques that she could use to help the blind; she adapted Polish phonetics into the Braille alphabet that ended up becoming mandated in all schools for the blind since 1934. Czacka entered the Franciscan Third Order in 1917 before founding her own religious congregation in late 1918 based on ideas that she had formulated since at least 1915. Her work received approval from the apostolic nuncio Achille Ratti (the future Pope Pius XI) who lauded her efforts as an exceptional apostolate. In 1950 she retired her role as the Superior General for her order (having held the post since around 1923) due to her declining health.

The process for her beatification launched in 1988 in her native Poland before it moved to Rome for further investigation. Pope Francis confirmed her heroic virtue and named her as Venerable on 9 October 2017 before later approving a miracle attributed to her in late 2020. This latter confirmation enabled for Czacka to be beatified in Warsaw on 12 September 2021.


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