California woman who had visions of Jesus, Virgin Mary moves closer to canonization as saint
A California woman who had visions of Jesus, Virgin Mary and other saints in her early years has said she has found the motivation to become a priest.
“I always dreamed of becoming a priest and now I’m here,” said Monica Mora, a retired school teacher who lives in San Jose. Born in Colombia but raised in the United States, the 46-year-old was ordained as a priest in 2004.
“The process has been long, but I could not have stopped the process,” she said, explaining that it took years to move past the fear she felt over not having a priest minister to others.
“I lived my whole life thinking no one would take me seriously,” Mora said. “Now I’m a priest. I’m a man who is helping people and helping God.”
After graduating from San Jose State University with a master’s degree in religious studies and a bachelor’s in history, Mora became a Catholic. She met the Rev. Ronald Mora with whom she had a long-term relationship before deciding to pursue ordination.
Monica Mora, who recently became a Catholic priest, is pictured at her alma mater.
A long journey
Mora said her mother had a vision of St. Joseph and a vision of Jesus. “After that I started going to church,” she said, adding that her mother always accompanied her.
She credits her parents for helping her move into the Catholic church. “If there was something my parents wanted me to do, they encouraged me to do it. That is the power of parent,” she said.
Monica Mora with her mother, Monica Marie Mora, at San Joaquin Catholic High School in San Francisco.
Her family in Colombia taught her about the Catholic faith but Mora said she doesn’t consider herself to be Colombian.
“I come from a Hispanic family and I’