November 17, 2022
St. Elizabeth was born in 1207, the daughter of King Alexander II of Hungary. On the age of 4 she was sent for education to the court of the Landgrave of Thuringia, to whose infant son she was betrothed. As she grew in age, her piety also increased by leaps and bounds. In 1221, she married Louis of Thuringia, and despite her position at court began to steer an austerely easy life, practicing penance and devoting herself to works of charity.
Her husband — himself much inclined to religion — esteemed her virtue highly and encouraged her in her exemplary life. That they had had three children together when tragedy struck: Louis was killed while fighting with the crusaders. After his death, Elizabeth left the court, made arrangements for the care of her children, and in 1228, renounced the world and have become a tertiary of St. Francis. She built the Franciscan hospital at Marburg and devoted herself to the care of the sick until her death on the age of 24 in 1231.
St. Elizabeth is the patron saint of bakers, countesses, the death of kids, the falsely accused, the homeless, nursing services, tertiaries, widows, and young brides. Her symbols are alms, flowers, bread, the poor, and a pitcher.
After leaving court, Elizabeth lived in exceptional poverty and humility. Soon after her death, miracles were reported at her tomb. She was canonized by Pope Gregory IX in 1235.
From Johnnette Benkovic’s Graceful Living: Meditations to Help You Grow Closer to God Day by Day
I declare before God that I even have seldom seen a more contemplative woman. When she was coming from private prayer, some religious men and girls often saw her face shining marvelously and light-weight coming from her eyes just like the rays of the sun.
— From a letter of Conrad of Marburg, spiritual director of St. Elizabeth of Hungary
And all of us, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being become his likeness from one degree of glory to a different; for this comes from the Lord who’s the Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18). How does this passage explain the phenomena related on this quotation about St. Elizabeth? How does this encourage me?
St. Elizabeth, you were able to offer up a lifetime of honor and wealth and live simply. Pray for us, that we are going to not be sure to the fabric things of this life, but at all times live our lives dedicated to God. Amen.
Other Saints We Remember Today
St. Gregory Thaumaturgus (“The Wonder-Employee”) (270), Bishop
image: User:Gubbubu, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons