“How many people can say that they work at a place where miracles happen?” said Florence Dellisanti, a buyer for The Shrine of the Miraculous Medal’s gift shop, located at 500 East Chelten Ave.
Dellisanti has been attending the shrine since she was a child. Memories of picking out her first rosary, blue to be exact, still bring a smile to her face. Her mom had brought her over to each novena, a Catholic prayer devotion. Her tradition of going to the Monday novena continued into her high school years as most teens used the novena as an excuse to have the potential to run into their boyfriends and girlfriends.
In 1964, Dellisanti graduated from high school and had been in the process of applying for a position at the IRS. But everything changed when the priest from the shrine came around collecting for the church.
“He asked if I was working and that they were looking for a replacement,” she explained.
Dellisanti got an interview at the church the next day and was immediately hired.
“I was supposed to stay for three months and leave for the IRS. That was 47 years ago,” Dellisanti added.
She never married. She explained that her life has been fulfilled by her work at the Shrine.
“I just see it as this is where I’m supposed to be,” she said with a smile.
After all, her last name does mean “of the saints,” in Italian.