- Born in 1207 in a castle in northern Hungary
- Married in 1221 to Louis of Thuringia
- Mother of three children
- Died November 17, 1231 in Marburg at the age of 24
- Feast day: November 17
Read St. Elizabeth’s whole story in the Catholic Encyclopedia.
Pope Benedict XVI spoke about St. Elizabeth in his weekly audience on October 20, 2010. Of her marriage, the Holy Father says:
“Elizabeth’s marriage was profoundly happy: she helped her husband to raise his human qualities to a supernatural level and he, in exchange, stood up for his wife’s generosity to the poor and for her religious practices…A clear witness to how faith and love of God and neighbors strengthen family life and deepen ever more the matrimonial union.”
Quote from St. Elizabeth:
“I want to adorn myself, not out of worldly pride, but for the love of God alone – in a fitting manner, however, so as to give my husband no cause to sin, if something about me were to displease him. Only let him love me in the Lord, with a chaste, marital affection, so that we, in the same way, might hope for the reward of eternal life from him who has sanctified the law of marriage.”
(Source: Ferdinand Holbock, Married Saints and Blesseds Through the Centuries, trans. Michael J. Miller (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2002), 198.)
St. Elizabeth of Hungary, pray for us!
About this series:
On the Marriage: Unique for a Reason blog, we’ll be highlighting from time to time married saints and blesseds, that is, those men and women whom the Church holds up to us as exemplary models of the Christian life. The saints teach us what holiness looks like (see the Catechism, no. 2030). Married saints, then, teach us what holiness looks like as a married person. On a website dedicated to teaching the authentic meaning of marriage, it is only fitting to look to those who have lived the authentic meaning of marriage. They are the “great cloud of witnesses” that have gone before us and who inspire us to “persevere in running the race that lies before us” (Heb. 12:1).
“The saints have always been the source and origin of renewal in the most difficult moments in the Church’s history.” – Bl. John Paul II, Christifideles Laici, no. 16
St Elizabeth gets at the heart of what I have commented on elsewhere. We need to recapture the dignity of chastity within and without marriage in order for those who attack marriage to be convinced that marriage is holy.
Right now, a push to “re-define” marriage is based on the fact that people do not see beyond marriage as being a sexual “free-for-all” with tax breaks, etc.
It is not! Marriage is the bedrock of the domestic Church–family. It needs no “re-definition” it just needs to be rehabilitated to how saints like Elizabeth lived it out–chaste but fruitful.