What Are Some Facts About St. Anne?

St. Anne is the mother of the Virgin Mary, the grandmother of Jesus Christ and the wife of St. Joachim. Her feast day is on July 26. In Catholic dogma, the Virgin Mary’s Immaculate Conception took place inside the womb of St. Anne.

St. Anne is considered the patron saint of housewives, unmarried women, women in labor, horseback riders, and the Mi’kmaq First Nation people of Canada. She is also the patron saint of several U.S. cities, such as Santa Ana, California, and Detroit, as well as cities such as Quebec, Canada, and Sao Paulo, Brazil. Many miracles have been attributed to St. Anne, and the two most prominent shrines in her honor, Ste. Anne d’Auray in Brittany, France and Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré Shrine in Quebec, Canada contain her miraculous relics.

Little is known about St. Anne’s life because she is not mentioned in the Bible. Most of what is known about her comes from early Christian apocryphal manuscripts written in the second century, notably the Protoevangelium of Saint James. As was the custom of the day, she married at a very young age of around 14 or 15 but remained childless until her mid-30s, which was considered very old and unlucky at the time. Her conception of the Virgin Mary reportedly happened after an angel announced her impending motherhood to her and St. Joachim. St. Anne is also revered in Islam and is known as Hannah.