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Saturday, June 23, 2018
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Daily Saint

December 16: St. Adelaide

St. Adelaide was born in 931. At the age of sixteen, this Burgundian princess was married to King Lothair. Three years later, her husband died. The ruler who is believed to have poisoned him tried to get Adelaide to be his wife. She absolutely refused. In anger, he treated her with great cruelty. He even locked her up in a castle on a lake.

Adelaide was saved when King Otto the Great of Germany conquered this ruler. Although she was twenty years younger than he, Otto married the lovely Adelaide on Christmas Day. When he took his new queen back home, the German people loved her at once. She was as gentle and gracious as she was pretty. God sent five children to the royal couple. They lived happily for twenty-two years. When Otto died, Adelaide's oldest son became the ruler. This son, Otto the Second, was good, but too quick to act without thinking. He turned against his own mother and she left the palace. In her great sorrow, she appealed to the abbot, St. Majolus. He made Otto feel sorry for what he had done. Adelaide met her son in Italy and the king begged her forgiveness. She in turn prayed for her son, sending offerings to the great shrine of St. Martin of Tours.

In her old age, St. Adelaide was called on to rule the country while her grandson was still a child. She started many monasteries and convents and worked to convert the Slavic people. All her life, this saintly empress had obeyed the advice of holy people. She had always been willing to forgive those who had hurt her. St. Addle of Cluny called her a "marvel of beauty and grace."

She died on December 16, 999.

Reflection: This holy woman was loved as a wise ruler. How is God's grace at work in my own responsibilities?