top of page

November 3 or 5


Saint of the day:
Saint Sylvia

Patron Saint of Pregnant women, Invoked by pregnant women for a safe delivery

St. Sylvia

St. Sylvia, Mother of St. Gregory the Great (Feast - November 5) The Church venerates the sanctity of Sylvia and Gordian, the parents of St. Gregory the Great, as well as his two aunts, Tarsilla and Emiliana. St. Sylvia was a native of the region of Sicily while St. Gordian, her husband, came from the vicinity of Rome. They had two sons: Gregory and another whose name has not survived the ages. Gordian died about 573 and Gregory converted his paternal home into a monastery. Sylvia therefore retired to a solitary and quasi-monastic life in a little abode near the Church of St. Sava on the Aventine. It became her custom frequently to send fresh vegetables to her son on a silver platter. One day, when Gregory found himself with nothing to give a poor beggar, he presented him with the platter. St. Sylvia is thought to have gone on to her heavenly reward between 592 and 594. After her death, the holy Pontiff had a picture of both his parents depicted in the Church of St. Andrew. In the sixteenth century, Pope Clement VIII had St. Sylvia inscribed in the Roman Martyrology.







Basilica of San Saba

Piazza Gian Lorenzo Bernini, 20, 00153 Roma RM, Italy

According to legend, St. Silvia, mother of Pope Gregory I, had built a chapel in her house. In 645, the monks from the monastery of Mar Saba (Palestine) settled in this house, and devoted it to the celebration of Saint Sabas. In the 9th century an oratory was erected over her former dwelling, near the Basilica of San Saba. Pope Clement VIII (1592–1605) inserted her name under 3 November in the Roman Martyrology. She is invoked by pregnant women for a safe delivery. Two of her relatives, sisters-in-law Trasilla and Emiliana, are also venerated as saints, as well as her other sister-in-law Gordiana, and her husband Gordianus.




Chestnut Risotto


  • 1/2 red onion, chopped

  • 1/2 celery stick, chopped

  • 75g of pancetta, cubed

  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary

  • 1 tbsp of olive oil

  • 200g of Arborio risotto rice

  • 800ml of chicken stock

  • 100g of chestnuts, cooked,
    peeled and finely chopped (Italian Jarred Chestnuts)

  • 50ml of brandy

  • 75g of unsalted butter

  • 100g of Parmesan, grated

  • black pepper, freshly ground


  1. Soften the onion, celery, pancetta and rosemary in the olive oil over a low heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the risotto rice and cook for 5 minutes.​

  2. Bring the stock to a simmer in a separate pan. Add to the rice pan, ladle by ladle waiting for each to be absorbed before adding the next.

  3. Stir continuously for 15 minutes or until the rice is al dente and most of the liquid has been absorbed.

  4. When all the stock has been added, add the chestnuts with the brandy and stir through.​

  5. Cook for a further 2 minutes to cook off the brandy. Mix in the butter, Parmesan and some black pepper. Serve immediately.

bottom of page