Elizabeth Canori Mora (1774-1825)
This remarkable Italian saint is a role model of for abused women everywhere . . .
Feast Day: February 5
Beatified: April 24, 1994
A Roman native, Elizabeth Canori married Christopher Mora, a lawyer from a wealthy family. The couple was happy, but Christopher soon took a mistress and did nothing to hide his indiscretions.
He also made disastrous investments, which left them bankrupt. His family blamed Elizabeth for his adultery. Christopher and his family even pressured her to give written consent for her husband’s infidelities. Elizabeth responded to her husband’s physical and psychological abuse with total fidelity.
“It is good for me to have spent two hours in prayer!” she wrote. “God gave me so much strength that I was ready to give my life rather than to offend my Lord.”
At age 50, she developed dropsy. The condition incapacitated her. Miraculously, it caused Christopher to return. During her final weeks, he rarely left her. On her last night on earth, however, he was with his mistress. Upon returning, he found her dead. Seeing her cold corpse, he wept furiously for the sins he had committed. Nine years later, he became a Franciscan priest.
Brian O’Neel is a writer, husband and father of six living in southeast Pennsylvania. His latest book is “39 New Saints You Should Know.”