She was rushed to the hospital from her convent after she felt stomach cramps. The 31-year-old nun gave birth to a healthy 9-pound baby boy.
The mother and baby are doing well and other new mothers in Rieti hospital have begun collecting clothes and donations for her because the nun has indicate she will raise her child.
The nun reportedly told the hospital staff:
"I did not know I was pregnant. I only felt a stomach pain."
The Italian news agency ANSA reported that the nun named her baby Francesco (Francis). The name is the same one chosen by the pope. It is also one of the most popular names in Italy where St. Francis of Assisi is the much-loved national patron saint.
The nun who gave birth belongs to a covenant near Rieti known as “Little Disciples of Jesus.” The nuns manage a senior citizen home there.
The other nuns in the convent were “very surprised” about the birth.
Local religious leaders believe the nun's story that she was unaware she was expecting. However, no one has explained why she didn't know.
The story about the nun who gave birth has drawn so much attention to the city of Rieti that Mayor Simone Petrangeli has asked for privacy.