Friday, November 17, 2006

St. Elizabeth of Hungary

I love St. Elizabeth of Hungary, especially as a role model for girls. When my daughters and I talk about where God may call them, they wonder if it will be to marriage or to religious life. St. Elizabeth of Hungary was, in a way, called to both, and accepted both of God's calls with love.

By all accounts, her marriage was an extremely happy one. She was devoted to her husband, her children and to the poor, to whom she often took food. Her husband died very young, just before their third child was born. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia:

On hearing the tidings Elizabeth, who was only twenty years old, cried out: "The world with all its joys is now dead to me."

But that was not true. Elizabeth persevered and continued to listen to God's claim on her life. She devoted herself to service to the poor and the suffering, became a third order Franciscan, and built a hospital.

Elizabeth died at the age of 24, and was canonized four years later.

Elizabeth illustrates that we never know for certain what God may be calling us to, and that the call may change at any moment. She is a model of trust, obedience and acceptance of God's will.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary, pray for us.


Jennifer said...

I liked your take on this today. I thought my daughter would just be excited about the princess part - but I didn't consider the call to different vocations. She is a great saint for young girls from every angle.

Lucille said...

Amazing... And look how much she accomplished in just the 4 short years between her husband's death and her own... And at such a young age. Thanks for sharing!

Karen E. said...

Thanks, Lucille, for stopping by! I always love to hear from new commenters!

Jennifer, I forgot about the "princess" part, though that's definitely part of the appeal to little girls ... a crown *and* an enormous heart -- the perfect princess. :-)