Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity

Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity (1880-1906), Elizabeth Catez, was born into a military family in France on 18th July 1880. She entered the Carmel of Dijon in 1901 dying there five years later of Addison's disease

Feast day: 9th November 
Patron:   Sick people, loss of parents, against illness
Died: 9th November 1906
Beatified: 25th November 1984 by Pope John Paul II
Canonized: 16th October 2016 by Pope Francis.

 Élisabeth Catez was born on 18th July 1880 at the military base at Avord in Cher. She was the first born child of Captain Joseph Catez and Marie Rolland. . She was baptised the following 22nd July. On 2nd October 1887 Elizabeth's father died unexpectedly and following this the family moved to Dijon. During that same year  Élisabeth made her first confession. Her First Communion was on 19 April 1891 at Saint-Michel and her Confirmation was at Notre-Dame on the following 8 June.

 

As a child Elizabeth had a terrible temper. After receiving her First Communion in 1891 she worked hard on this and gained more self-control and had a deeper understanding of God and the world. She also gained a profound understanding of the Trinity to which she became very devoted. Elizabeth visited the sick, sang in the church choir and taught religion to children who worked in factories.

As she grew older Elizabeth wanted to enter the Discalced Carmelite Order, however her mother strongly advised against it. Men had been interested in Elizabeth and had asked for her hand in marriage. Elizabeth declined these offers because she wasn't giving up her dream to enter the Discalced Carmelite monastery that was located 200 meters from her home. Elizabeth entered the Dijon Carmel on 2 August 1901. She said: "I find Him everywhere while doing the wash as well as while praying." Elizabeth experienced many highs and lows during her time in the Carmelite convent. She wrote about when she felt she needed a richer understanding of God's great love.

At the end of her life, she began to call herself "Laudem Gloriae" which means "praise of glory". She wanted that to be her name in Heaven.  She said: "I think that in Heaven my mission will be to draw souls by helping them to go out of themselves in order to cling to God by a wholly simple and loving movement, and to keep them in this great silence which will allow God to communicate Himself to them and to transform them into Himself."Elizabeth had a great zeal for contemplation and the salvation of souls.

Elizabeth died at the age of 26 of Addison's disease, which has no cure. Though her death was painful, Elizabeth gratefully accepted her suffering as a gift from God. Her last words were: "I am going to Light, to Love, to Life!"

Daniel Chowning, O.C.D., Carmelite writer, lecturer, and retreat leader
speaking about St Elizabeth

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