Saint Catherine of Sweden

St. Catherine of Sweden (1331-1381) was the fourth of eight children born to St. Bridget of Sweden and her husband, Ulfo. As a child she was sent by her parents to be educated in a convent, and was later given in marriage to a German nobleman. Catherine was able to persuade her husband, a virtuous young man, to live together in a mutual vow of perpetual chastity. They lived happily together in complete devotion to God. After the death of her father, and with her husband's consent, Catherine accompanied her mother to Rome. While there, Catherine's husband died. She continued to be a companion to her mother and rejected further offers of marriage. Her mother worked to establish a new religious order, called the Order of the Holy Savior, or the Bridgettines. After her mother's death, Catherine took her body back to Sweden for burial while continuing the work of establishing the Bridgettines. She later traveled back to Rome to advocate for her mother's canonization and for Pope Urban VI to ratify her Order. While in Rome she became great friends with St. Catherine of Siena. St. Catherine of Sweden finally returned to Sweden and became abbess of the newly founded Bridgettines, living the rest of her days as a model of prayer and penance. St. Catherine of Sweden is the patron saint against abortions and miscarriages. Her feast day is March 24th.

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