St. Catherine’s Day

Saints are undoubtedly very much like George W. Bush in that they probably don’t pay much attention to polls. If they did, however, St. Catherine of Alexandria would find herself way up in the pantheon. They call her one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers, since she’s so helpful.

If you need help making a wheel, you might call on her, since she’s the patron saint of wheelwrights, but then again, if you like the wheel you’re making, you might want to think twice, since they started calling her St. Catherine of the Wheel when the wheel she was supposed to be tortured on disappeared when she touched it.

But what she’s most known for is helping girls find husbands, which is also somewhat strange because she reportedly told her parents she would only marry someone whose “beauty was more radiant than the shining of the sun, [whose] wisdom governed all creation, [whose] riches were spread throughout all the world” (which sounds like something someone wanting to be a saint, not a wife, would say).

And so on this day in France, they pray to her for husbands, in such a pathetic little prayer I’ll just leave it un-translated.

Sainte Catherine, soyez bonne
Nous n’avons plus d’espoir
qu’en vous
Vous êtes notre patronne
Ayez pitié de nous
Nous vous implorons à genoux
Aidez-nous à nous marier
Pitié, donnez-nous un époux
Car nous brûlons d’aimer
Daignez écouter la prière
De nos cœurs fortement épris
Oh, vous qui êtes notre mère
Donnez-nous un mari

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