St. Elizabeth of Hungary: "Everything I own really belongs to the poor."

Today Mother Church celebrates St. Elizabeth of Hungary, patron saint of the Sisters of Mercy, Catholic Charities, and the Franciscan Third Order.

Her words which title this post–“Everything I own really belongs to the poor”–are those she spoke at the end of her life when asked what she wanted to be done with her few possessions. She believed that indeed Jesus is present in the poorest of the poor.

This kind of attitude guided her life. And ought to guide ours.

I made a more extensive entry on her last year, which details some of the work she did for others through Mother Church in the name of Christ. We have a lot to learn from her.

Today might be a good day to offer a rosary for the Sisters of Mercy or Catholic Charities or the Franciscan Third Order. How wonderful that so many people give of themselves, as Elizabeth did, to continue to stretch out the hand of Christ to the poor in this world. Mother Church continues to be the presence of God on Earth, through his grace, despite the imperfect ones who make it happen.

The image above is one image of St. Elizabeth, the triple crown, each crown representing a different role in her life. One symbolizes her role as mother, another reveals her place in a royal family, and the other represents her status as a saint of the Church.

The photo shows her with roses. Story goes that Elizabeth went out with loaves of bread, not roses, so as to feed the hungry. Her husband, Louis, never appreciated her tendency to “throw away” their resources by sharing with the poor. Her husband saw her with a cape full of something (he didn’t see that it was bread but suspected it) so he ran up to her and angrily opened her cape. The bread turned to roses!

Hence she is the patron saint of bakers, and roses!

St. Elizabeth of Hungary: Pray for us!