So, did you hear the one about how holiness is only for priests and religious?
Yeah, I haven’t either, and today’s saint proves the point that holiness is open for all.
St. Elizabeth of Hungary was a princess, queen, wife, mother, widower, and saint. She died in the year 1231 at the tender age of 23, and was declared a saint a scant 4 years later!
How to achieve such a remarkable run? Easy! She was married while still a teenager, which was rather common in those days, to a prince of Thuringia, within modern day Germany. Her husband was assassinated, leaving her the widowed queen with three small children. However, she did not let that stop her. She became a Franciscan Tertiary (a lay person associated with the charisms of a particular order, her poverty.) In iconography, she is always depicted holding loaves of bread as she gave away large stores of food the poor of her day and age, while she kept to a strict schedule of fasting and prayer.
For her life, she was declared patronness of widows and Catholic Charities.
St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Pray for us!
– Father Schnippel