‘You are a Saint’: 'Blessed by Cancer' Catholic Personality Jessica Hanna Dies, Social Media Mourns

Popular social media personality, pro-life advocate, and mother of four Jessica Hanna, known for her social media handle, “Blessed By Cancer,” passed away on April 6, 2024, after a long battle with cancer.

ChurchPOP previously reported that Hanna refused abortion after she was diagnosed with terminal breast cancer amid her pregnancy in 2020. Following the birth of her baby in 2021, she was miraculously healed of cancer.

However, the cancer returned in 2022.

Hanna used her voice on social media, particularly Instagram, to promote joy in suffering, encouraging her followers to offer their sufferings to Christ.

She also regularly encouraged devotion to the saints, the Blessed Mother, and the sacraments, and led live prayer with her followers. She especially encouraged devotion to the Blessed Mother through the Holy Rosary and the Seven Sorrows of Mary.

She currently has over 45,000 Instagram followers.

In a Nov. 2022 “Yes Catholic” podcast episode, Hanna explained why she named her social media accounts “blessed by cancer.”

“I call myself ‘blessed by cancer’ because without this suffering I would never have abandoned the world and FINALLY put the entire focus on my eternal life. No matter how my story continues or where my ministry takes me, I know one thing for certain…God’s plan is my only plan, I have no plan B!”

One of Hanna’s last personal posts entitled, “My Good Friday,” depicts her lying in a hospital bed. She describes uniting her suffering with Christ’s but stresses that she deserves this suffering, while Christ did not.

“…be joyful in your sufferings because Christ made suffering redemptive when He expired on the cross. Do not despair, instead offer and rejoice!” Hanna wrote. “Your Good Friday will soon become Easter Sunday…so long as you first pick up your cross and not run from it.”

On April 6, Hanna’s husband Lamar announced her death. As of this writing, the post generated over 26,000 likes and more than 5,000 comments.

Catholics on Instagram responded with sorrow over the announcement. However, they also expressed joy, referring to her as “a saint” and an inspiration for holiness in suffering.

Here’s what some users said:

“Jessica you are a saint,” Katie from Sweet Catholic Life wrote.

“I’m so sorry for your loss. We will certainly keep you and your family in our prayers,” Keith from Grassroots Catholic also said. “If there ever was a prime example of a saint in today’s world, it’s Jessica.”

“A most beautiful soul. Thanks be to God for Jessica,” Brittany from A Catholic Convert added. “She has touched so many hearts, including my own. A beautiful and joyful saint now in heaven.”

“I’m deeply sorry for your loss,” Annie from “Catholic Wife, Catholic Life” posted. “Her constant encouragements to keep the faith and pray in the face of uncertainty and suffering are something I will not soon forget. I will pray for you and all her loved ones.”

“Divine Mercy Sunday…It is clear Jesus reached for her hand, and personally walked her into eternal Glory,” Instagram user Maricruz Saucedo also said. “Soon to be Blessed Jessica – I saw Jesus through you. I saw Mercy, I saw grace, I saw purification, and was amazed.”

“Rest in peace, dear Jessica. Will continue to pray for your soul just like you asked us to when this time came,” Maggie from Saintly Heart also wrote. “Though you lived your life of suffering with joy and strength–that only a Saint can do. So pray for us too!”

Eternal rest grant unto Jessica, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her. May her soul and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

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