Nov 17 – Memorial for St. Elizabeth of Hungary, married woman, religious
St. Elizabeth (1207-1231) was a princess, the daughter of King Andrew of Hungary, and the great-aunt of St. Elizabeth of Portugal. At the age of 13, she married Prince Louis of Thuringia. She built a hospital at the foot of the mountain on which her castle stood, and tended to the sick herself. Her family and courtiers opposed this, but she insisted she could only follow Christ’s teachings, not theirs.
Once, when she was taking food to the poor and sick, Prince Louis stopped her and looked under her mantle to see what she was carrying; the food had been miraculously changed to roses. Upon Louis’ death, Elizabeth sold all that she had, and worked to support her four children. Her gifts of bread to the poor, and of a large gift of grain to a famine-stricken Germany, led to her patronage of bakers and related fields.
- Patron Saint Index
“Zacchaeus, come down. Hurry, because I must stay at your house today.”
I love this verse because of the candid nature of the wealthy chief tax collector, who climbs up the sycamore tree. His short stature led him to climb up the tree for a better vantage point to see Jesus for himself.
Growing up, I was not exposed to many bible stories and only read this story when I started volunteering in church in 2006. The cartoons of Zacchaeus up on that tree always put a smile on my face as it brought back memories of when I used to climb trees while playing hide and seek with friends.
Zacchaeus was probably seeking answers to his lack of fulfilment in his life, which only Jesus could provide. Similarly, I found that chasing after the glories and power of the world left me wanting more, and this greed fuelled deep unsettledness and anxiety.
Only when I opened the doors of my heart for Christ to enter, did the anxiety subside bit by bit, “for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.”
Brothers and sisters, let us hope to be like Zacchaeus, and keep Jesus in our ‘home’ (our hearts) today and everyday.
(Today’s Oxygen by Christian Eber)
Prayer: Lord, teach me to be humble like Zacchaeus and be willing to part with my possessions for the sake of the kingdom.
Thanksgiving: Thank you for standing at my door and knocking. Please enter our house and dine with us today.