She is most well known as the martyr of chastity. She is none other than Blessed Albertina Berkenbrock. Meet your first of many WYD 2013 Patron Saints.
This week, we introduce to you, as part of our lead up to JMJ 2013, an indepth series on patron saints. In this instalment, we look at a phenomenal and captivating woman who is a model for all.
Blessed Albertina is one of many saints in the country of Brazil even though her family was originally from Germany. In fact, it is Albertina’s grandparents who brought her father to Brazil.
Blessed Albertina was born in São Luís, Brazil on Apr. 11, 1919. On May 25 of the same year, she was baptized and received into the Church. On August 16, 1928, she made her First Holy Communion. When Blessed Albertina looked back on receiving First Eucharist, she described that most holy experience as being the most beautiful day in her life.
At the early age of 12, Albertina was attacked and almost raped by one of her father’s work employees, Maneco Palhoça. It is known that later, while in prison, Palhoça made it known that the reason he killed Blessed Albertina was because she had resisted his rape attempts. In the struggle, Albertina tried fighting back, to the best of her ability. Sadly, she died as a result of having her throat slashed.
Pope Benedict beatified Blessed Albertina on Oct. 20, 2007. In the universal Church, we celebrate her feast day every year on June 15.
It is worth noting that Blessed Albertina has a special devotion to St. Aloysius Gonzaga, patron saint of São Luís and a definite model for purity. Not only does she look up to St. Aloysius Gonzaga, but Mother Mary too.
Be sure to join WYDCentral every Monday for the next instalment on Patron Saints, as we begin our incredible journey to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Blessed Albertina, pray for us!