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St. Rita Pesto Cheese Dip

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St. Rita

(1381 – 1457)

Feast Day: May 22nd

Patroness of - Desperate Situations and Hopeless Causes

“St. Rita was born in the year 1381 in Spoleto, Italy. From the time she was a small child, she told her elderly parents that she wanted to become a nun and enter the convent. Her parents had other ideas and insisted that at the age of 12 she enter a marriage they had arranged for her. Rita married Paolo who tragically was very mean and had a terrible temper. She spent 18 unhappy years, constantly praying for Paolo’s conversion. They were the parents of two sons. Unfortunately, the boys followed in their father’s ways. St. Rita never prayed for her husband to treat her well or to love her, instead she prayed that he would be converted and give his life to Jesus. For 18 years she prayed through tears and sorrow and abuse; finally Paolo decided he wanted to change his life and become the man that Jesus wanted him to be. Although her boys were still suffering the influence of a bad father, Rita was overjoyed that her husband was finally ready and willing to change! Unfortunately, Paolo had made many enemies along the way, and soon after his conversion, he was stabbed to death. St. Rita’s only consolation was that he had converted before his death and had really attempted to change his ways.

Rita’s sons wanted revenge for their father’s death and she was terrified that they would lose their souls in the seeking of this revenge. She prayed to God, “Lord, please save their souls.” Soon after, both her sons came down with terrible fevers, forgave their father’s murderers and died.

With her family gone, St. Rita decided to join the convent of the Augustinian nuns. She was devoted to the Passion of Christ. She begged Him one day, “Please let me suffer like You, Divine Savior.” After praying this prayer before the crucifix, a thorn from the Crown of Christ suddenly struck her on the forehead. It caused a deep wound, which never healed and caused her to suffer a great deal for the rest of her life. Before her death at the convent, Rita’s cousin asked her if there was anything she wanted from her former home. It was in the dead of winter, but Rita asked for a rose and fig from the garden. The cousin went to look for them without much hope, but to her surprise, a beautiful bright rose was blooming and she also found a ripe fig! She took both back to St. Rita. Such is God’s love for St. Rita, that through her intercession, He will make a rose bloom in any “winter moments” you experience in life! Yellow roses are particularly connected with St. Rita, due to their brightness. St. Rita died on May 22, 1457.

If you ever feel your marriage is hopeless, go to St. Rita! If you ever feel the situation is desperate, go to St. Rita! She can help you through her intercession with Jesus. St. Rita was a faithful friend of His, and she knows all about suffering and despair. St. Rita wants to be your friend too. Pray the following novena to St. Rita and allow her to help you!”

Copyright 2003, Building the Family Cookbook, Suzanne Fowler – Over 10,000 sold!

Novena to St. Rita – Helper of the Hopeless

Holy Patroness of those in need, St. Rita, you were humble, pure and patient. Your pleadings with your divine Spouse are irresistible, so please obtain for me from our risen Jesus the request I make of you (mention request). Be kind to me for the greater glory of God, and I shall honor you and sing your praises forever.

Glorious St. Rita, you miraculously participated in the sorrowful passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Obtain for me now the grace to suffer with resignation the troubles of this life, and protect me in all my needs. Amen.

Pray one Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory be.

St. Rita Pesto Cheese Spread

This recipe was chosen for St. Rita because of the Italian flavor! It is the perfect dish to make if you and your husband want to have some time to yourselves and enjoy something special. Oh, and think you can’t eat this way and lose weight? With Light Weigh you can, because this is what peace with food looks like!


Lightly buttered pie plate or quiche dish & turn your oven on to 350.

Place the 4 oz. of goat cheese, 4 oz. of feta cheese and 4 oz. of cream cheese in your dish.

Using a fork, mash them together.

Spread the pesto over the cheeses.

Using a fork, put the sundried tomatoes on top of the pesto.

Cover with aluminum foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 15-20 minutes, until warm and bubbly.

Serve with bread slices or bread that is torn into chunks.


St. Rita Pesto Cheese Spread

Feast Day: May 22nd

350 Degree Oven A lightly buttered pie plate or quiche dish


12 oz cheese total:

4 oz goat cheese

4 oz feta cheese

4 oz cream cheese

(You may use any combination of the above. I use 4 oz each of goat, feta & cream cheese.)

4 oz Pesto

8 oz jar sun dried tomatoes – chopped

Combine the cheese and smash in the bottom of a pie or tart dish. Spread the pesto on top. Sprinkle tomatoes on top. Cover with foil and heat in a 350 degree oven for about 15-20 minutes. The cheese should be warm and a little bubbly. Serve with torn French bread, crackers or toasted baguette.

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