Saint Henry, Pray for Us!

Today is the optional memorial of Saint Henry. As far as I can tell, Saint Henry isn’t a particularly well-known or popular saint. So why write about him? Because, in some ways, he is just like us.

Saint Henry, Pray for Us!

Image by Foxy_ (2012) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

Granted, unlike most of us, Saint Henry was born into royalty. He became the duke of Bavaria in 995  and after the death of a cousin he was appointed the emperor of Germany. He was well educated and pious and when he married, he and his wife made a vow of chastity.

Still, Saint Henry lived out his vocation in the secular world. He was generous, had a strong sense of justice and a great love for the Church. At one point in his life, he became ill and had a crippled leg but bore his sufferings with great forbearance.

He also had his faults. In particular, he was a little too quick to jump into battle especially by today’s standards. He fought against those who went against his empire and he fought against those who caused trouble in Rome.

However, AmericanCatholic.org points out, “All in all, this saint was a man of his times. From our standpoint, he may have been too quick to do battle and too ready to use power to accomplish reforms. But, granted such limitations, he shows that holiness is possible in a busy secular life. It is in doing our job that we become saints.

This is why I am pointing him out to you. He lived a busy life, he fulfilled his duties with care, and  he still managed to live a faithful life with his eyes on Christ. He shows that we can do the same thing. No matter what is going on, we can still grow in holiness right where God has put us. We can still make time for prayer because, as Saint Henry shows us, we make time for those things that are important to us!

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Resources: American Catholic, Catholic News Agency, Catholic Online

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