Gertrude of Aldenberg
Blessed Premonstratensian abbess of the convent of Aldenberg, near Wetzlar; b 1227; d. 1297
Gertrude of Aldenberg, BLESSED, Abbess of the Premonstratensian convent of Aldenberg, near Wetzlar, in the Diocese of Trier; b. about 1227; d. August 13, 1297. She was the youngest of the three daughters of Louis VI, margrave of Thuringia, and his wife St. Elizabeth of Hungary. Gertrude’s father died on his way to the Holy Land shortly before she was born. She was scarcely two years old, when St. Elizabeth brought her to the convent of Aldenberg, where she afterwards became a nun. In 1248, being then only twenty-one years old, she was elected Abbess of Aldenberg, over which she ruled forty-nine years. With the inheritance which she received from her uncle, the Margrave of Meissen, she erected a church and a poor-house. She took personal charge of the inmates of the poorhouse and led a life of extreme mortification. When Urban VI published a crusade against the Saracens, Gertrude and her nuns took the cross and obliged themselves to contribute their share to the success of pointed some capable monks to attend to the outer the crusade by prayer and acts of mortification. In 1270 she began to observe the feast of Corpus Christi in her convent, thus becoming one of the first to introduce it into Germany. Clement VI permitted the ecclesiastical celebration of her feast to the convent of Aldenberg, and granted some indulgences to those continuous abstinence from food and sleep that she who visit her relics at that convent.