Melania the Younger
Melania the Younger (named for her grandmother, Melania the Elder) was born to a wealthy Christian family in Rome in 383. She was a pious child who only wanted to give herself to God, but was married when she was thirteen to Pinianus. When their second child died, Melania convinced her husband of her vocation as a celibate. Pinianus and her widowed mother joined her in giving away their riches, setting free slaves, and working with the poor.
Melania, her mother and Pinianus left Rome around 406, traveling to Italy and North Africa. Melania and Pinianus met many Christian leaders such as St. Augustine, St. Paula and St. Jerome. She founded a monastery for women, and another for men in Numibia before continuing her pilgrimage to Jerusalem where she worked in a hospice for pilgrims. After contact with the Desert Fathers and Mothers, she wanted to live a quiet life of prayer, so lived many years at a hermitage on the Mount of Olives.
Melania the Younger was fifty-six years old when she died on December 31, 439.