The Salvadorean nun who unexpectedly gave birth in Italy last Tuesday has spoken about the shock of finding out she was about to have a baby – and said that she sees her surprise child as a “gift from God”.
When Sister Roxana Rodriguez was rushed to hospital with what she thought were stomach pains, and doctors told her she was pregnant and in labour, she screamed, “I can’t give birth – I am a nun!”
But, after delivering to a healthy 9lb boy, she said to a social worker, “How do I feel? More like a mum than a nun.
“I will definitely take care of my baby because he is a gift of God. I called him Francis in honour of our South American pope.”
Sister Roxana said she’d put down her pains and swollen stomach to a bladder infection and digestive trouble – and had completely lost track of her menstrual cycle.
She also said how anxious she was about the scandal she has caused. “I am very worried about the commotion that this has stirred up. They are talking about this, not only in Italy but in my own country and I am afraid to return there.”
The local bishop has already said that Sister Roxana may have to leave her convent near the Italian town of Rieti, and Sister Erminia Pusceddu, head of the convent, has been quoted as saying, “She did not know how to resist temptation.”
It seems Sister Roxana may have become pregnant when she went back to El Salvador in March last year to renew her passport. She is thought to have written to her order’s Mother Superior, apologising for breaking her vows.