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Nun gives birth: ‘I did not know I was pregnant, I only felt a stomach pain’

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The nun gives birth news that happened in Italy this week stunned not only her fellow nuns but most importantly the nun herself. “I did not know I was pregnant. I only felt a stomach pain," the nun was quoted as saying by the Ansa news agency according to a Jan. 17, 2014, BBC News report.

The nun who gave birth to a healthy baby boy in the central Italian city of Rieti was rushed to the hospital early Wednesday morning because she thought she was experiencing stomach cramps.

A few hours later, the 32-year-old nun, who is originally from El Salvador, who belongs to the "Little Disciples of Jesus" convent in Campomoro near Rieti, and who usually manages an old people's home -- gave birth to a nine-pound (3.5 kilogram) baby boy and called him Francis.

Local pastor Don Fabrizio Borrello told reporters that even though the birth was quite a surprise for everyone, the nun is intending to take care of her baby boy. "I guess she's telling the truth when she says she arrived at the hospital unaware of the pregnancy."

While the nun who gave birth to a healthy baby boy has drawn international attention to the city of Rieti, which has 47,700 inhabitants, the surprised new mother’s fellow nuns, Rieti’s residents, and the town’s major are supporting the nun with gifts, donations, and by collecting clothes for the mother and her child. “The mayor of Rieti, Simone Petrangeli has appealed to the public and media to respect the woman's privacy.”

Nun gives birth news update:

Unfortunately, there has been quite a bit of misinformation published in the news about the nun's birth -- much of it due to internet translation problems.

  1. The translation of the nun's words, "“No sabía que estaba embarazada, solo tenía un fuerte dolor de vientre” means "I didn't know I was pregnant, I only felt a strong stomach pain." An internet translation skips the "no."
  2. Similarly, the translation of the other nuns' reaction is skipping the "no." The sisters in the convent did not know that the nun was pregnant. It was the sisters who called emergency services because they were concerned about the nun's stomach pain.
  3. Lost in translation is also the town's reaction to the nun's birth. No, the other nuns nor the town of Rieti are "humiliated" by the nun having given birth to a healthy baby boy. As the Mother Superior says below, the nun "has done nothing wrong to anyone." For many Catholics in Europe, babies are a gift from God -- even if it is a nun who gives birth to a baby boy.

According to the Italian LaPatilla report about the nun giving birth, Sister Herminia, the Mother Superior of the “Little Disciples of Jesus,” told the media that the nun "has done this all alone" and that “the other nuns in the convent had not noticed anything.” Sister Herminia added that the nun “failed to resist the temptation but has done no wrong to anyone. I do not understand why so much attention is paid to this story.”

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