Friday 16 November 2018

# Saints

Saint Gertrude the Great

The 16th of November is the feast day of Saint Gertrude the Great (January 6, 1256 – c. 1302). She is also known as Saint Gertrude of Helfta. She is the patron saint of the West Indies.

Saint Gertrude the Great lived between 1256 till 1302 and is also known as Gertrude of Helfta. She was born on the feast of Epiphany in Thuringia which is now modern Germany. At the age of four or five years old, she was sent to the Benedictine monastery in Helfta to be educated. She was a bright student studying secular studies though she was negligent in her prayer life. She received visions of Christ when she was 26, where He chastised her for not leaving room for God in her studies. Saint Gertrude abandoned her secular studies and studied Sacred Scripture and the Church Fathers in response. She became one of the great writers and mystics of the 13th century and is the only female saint to have the title “The Great.” She also helped spread devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Image: Ecstasy of St. Gertrude by Pietro Liberi