Saint Gianna Beretta Molla (1922-1962) was an Italian doctor, wife, and mother who gave her life for her child. At a time when many professions were not open to women, Gianna studied medicine and embarked on a successful medical career in pediatrics in Milan. She married Pietro Molla in 1955. She had three healthy children, but when pregnant with her fourth child, Gianna Emanuela, complications meant that she had to make the difficult choice between saving her child's life and saving her own. She chose her child, and passed away a week after Gianna Emanuela was born. Gianna Emanuela (St. Gianna's daughter) is now a medical doctor and frequently speaks about respect for life.
St. Gianna famously said, ''Love and sacrifice are closely linked, like the sun and the light. We cannot love without suffering and we cannot suffer without love.''
St. Gianna Beretta Molla (Theotokos Kids). By Allan and Veronica Caballero. Illustrated by QBN Studios. Theotokos Kids. (K-1) Courage, Charity, Heroism. A board book for younger children with a simple story of St. Gianna's life.
Gianna Beretta Molla: Wife, Mother, and Doctor. Barbara Yoffie. Illustrated by Katherine Borgatti. Liguori Publications, 2013. (K-2) Courage, Charity, Heroism. This book from the Saints and Me! series tells the story of St. Gianna's life for young children, focusing on her family life as an example of a beautiful Christian family.