Skip to content

Christmas SALE 20% off

Catholic Online Shopping

FREE Shipping* + 20% off

* FREE Shipping all orders to lower 48

St. Odilia

Short Cuts

Author and Publisher - Catholic Online

Image of St. Odilia

Facts


Saint Odilia

About the year 300, Saint Odilia and ten other virgins set out from England on a pilgrimage to the East. By accident or plan the ship in which they sailed went up the Rhine. They were captured by some soldiers and taken to Cologne. There the young women were killed in defense of their Christian faith and their purity. St. Odilia's future role as the Patroness of the Order of the Holy Cross is pictured by the Crosier standard and her motto, "I have chosen the cross."

St. Louis of France helps found the Parish House

The Paris house of the Crosiers is very important in the history of Saint Odilia. It was here that she appeared to John of Eppa with her special message. The Crosier community was founded in Paris in 1258. King St. Louis was particularly interested in the Order of the Holy Cross because of his great devotion to the Passion of Christ. Construction of the Church was begun about the year 1268.

Saint Odilia appears to Brother John in Paris

In the spring of 1287, Saint Odilia appeared three times to Brother John of Eppa, a Crosier lay brother, in the Paris monastery. She told him that God had commanded her to be the Protectress of the Order and where her relics were to be found. Brother John and his companion, Father Louis, journeyed to Cologne and the garden of Arnulph where the relics were buried.

Saint Odilia's relics are found and taken to Huy

After overcoming the skepticism of Arnulph, the two Crosiers began to dig around the pear tree in his garden where Odilia said the relics were to be found. Three urns were unearthed containing the remains of Odilia, Ida and Emma. Many cures took place through the intercession of Saint Odilia. The newly-discovered relics were taken to the mother house of the Crosiers at Huy, Belgium, with great solemnity.

Persecuted by the world, The Order loses the relics

The Order suffered much during the Protestant Revolt, the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars. The Mother house at Huy was destroyed but a priest managed to escape with the relics of St. Odilia. They were to remain in a parish church in Kerniel, Belgium, for many years.

The relics of Saint Odilia are returned to the Order

In 1949, the relics of Saint Odilia were returned from the parish church at Kerniel where they had been since the French Revolution, to the care of the Order of the Holy Cross. They were taken in solemn procession from Kermiel to the Crosier monastery at Diest, Belgium as shown in these windows. In 1952 a major relic of Saint Odilia was brought to Onamia, Minnesota. A shrine in honor of the Patroness of the Order and the Patroness of the blind and afflicted was then set up in the seminary chapel.

Shrine of Saint Odilia

It was a long, long time ago, in the fourth century, that Odilia, the daughter of a powerful ruler of Britain, went to her martyrdom at Cologne, Germany, together with Ursula and a group of other virgins. These virgins were seeking a place where they might practice their faith in peace and quiet, but at the gates of Cologne they were met by fierce and cruel barbarians. The life-story of these valiant women ends here. They chose death.

The work of the Saints in heaven, though sometimes unseen and unheralded, is richer by far than it was on earth. So it was with Saint Odilia. About eight hundred years later, in 1287, she appeared to John Novelan, a lay brother of the Crosier Order in Paris, and told him she had been appointed by God to be the Patron Saint and Protectress of the members of the Order of the Holy Cross (now commonly called Crosier Fathers). She informed him also that her relics were to be found in an orchard in Cologne and begged him to get permission to unearth them. He did ask permission of his superior but was refused. Saint Odilia was persistent; she appeared twice more. Finally the Prior consented and commanded a priest of the Order to accompany the brother.

When these two reached Cologne, they had little trouble finding the relics. Joyfully they informed the Archbishop, who came personally to witness the findings.

Saint Odilia had instructed Brother John that her relics were to be taken to the Motherhouse of the Order at Huy in Belgium. Both at Cologne and on the way to Huy various cures took place, of blindness, of paralysis and other bodily infirmities.

In 1797, at the time of the French Revolution, the monastery at Huy was totally destroyed; and although the relics were saved they were lost to the Order. Fortunately, just recently, in 1949, Saint Odilia "came back home". Her relics were returned to the order, and a large portion of one of her bones was brought to Onamia, Minnesota, and now rests in her Shrine here. It can be viewed by entering the Shrine, where it is encased in a marble reliquary. Saint Odilia has promised to shower a stream of graces upon the Crosier Fathers and upon all those who invoke her aid in their hour of need. For centuries it has been the practice in the Crosier Order to bless water in honor of Saint Odilia, dipping her relic in it and asking God to give it "power against all diseases and bodily infirmities". Many are the cures, especially of diseases of the eyes, obtained through her intercession.

Thousands of people, from every state, send in their petitions to be included in the novenas, and many letters of thanks are received from people whose favors have been granted. Apparently Saint Odilia is kept busy in heaven showering graces and blessings upon her friends on earth.

Retreat

In July of each year, the Crosier Fathers and Brothers offer a one-day healing retreat, focusing on Saint Odilia, Patroness of the Blind and Afflicted and Patroness of the Crosiers. This retreat is held at the National Shrine of Saint. Odilia in Onamia, Minnesota.

Novena

Novenas in honor of Saint Odilia are made at Crosier Monastery twice a month, beginning on the 5th and 17th of each month, and the national novena is held from July 10-July 18.


This Information was Provided By Crosier Fathers and Brothers



St. Odilia Comments


More Saints






Browse Saints by Category


Popular Saints

Rank

Saint

60.

Image of St. Catherine of Alexandria

St. Catherine of Alexandria

Saint Catherine of Alexandria is a canonized saint in the Catholic Church who, per Christian tradition, was martyred around 305 in Alexandria, Egypt. Of course, the Church of the first ... continue reading

61.

Image of St. Ignatius Loyola

St. Ignatius Loyola

Born Inigo Lopez de Loyola in 1491, the man known as Ignatius of Loyola entered the world in Loiola, Spain. At the time, the name of the village was spelled "Loyola," hence the discrepancy. ... continue reading

62.

Image of St. Jerome

St. Jerome

Before he was known as Saint Jerome, he was named Eusebius Sophronius Hieronymus. He was born around 342 AD, in Stridon, Dalmatia. Today, the town, which ceased to exist in Jerome's time, ... continue reading

All Popular Saints

Saint of the Day

Image of Bl. Miguel Pro

Bl. Miguel Pro

Born on January 13, 1891 in Guadalupe, Mexico, Miguel Agustin Pro Juarez was the eldest son of Miguel Pro and Josefa Juarez. Miguelito, as his doting family called him, was, from an early age, ... continue reading

More Saint of the Day
November 2017
S M T W T F S
1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930

Saint of the Day by E-Mail

Saint of the Day newsletter icon

Learn about the lives of the saints and other saint resources, including a calendar, over 5,000 saint biographies, our most popular saints, and a list of patron saints. 7 days / week. See Sample


Required


Female Saints

Image of St. Bernadette Soubirous

St. Bernadette Soubirous

St. Bernadette was born in Lourdes, France on January 7, 1844. Her parents were very poor and she was the first of nine children. She was baptized at St. Pierre's, the local parish church, on January 9. As a toddler, Bernadette contracted cholera and suffered extreme ... continue reading

More Female Saints



Saint Calendar
Saint Feast Days
Saint Fun Facts

Angels

Image of St. Michael the Archangel

St. Michael the Archangel

Saint Michael the Archangel isn't a saint, but rather he is an angel, and the leader of all angels and of the army of God. This is what the title "Archangel" means, that he is above all the others in rank. St. Michael has four main responsibilities or offices, as we ... continue reading


Image of St. Gabriel, the Archangel

St. Gabriel, the Archangel

St. Gabriel is an angel who serves as a messenger for God to certain people. He is one of the three archangels. Gabriel is mentioned in both the Old and the New Testaments of the Bible. First, in the Old Testament, Gabriel appears to the prophet Daniel to explain his ... continue reading



Saints Fun Facts

Saints Fun Facts for St. Dymphna

St. Dymphna

Dymphna was born in Ireland sometime in the seventh century to a pagan father and devout Christian mother. When she was fourteen, she consecrated herself to Christ and took a vow of chastity. Soon afterward, her mother died and her father - who had loved his wife ... continue reading

Saints Fun Facts for St. Edward the Confessor

St. Edward the Confessor

Edward the Confessor was the son of King Ethelred III and his Norman wife, Emma, daughter of Duke Richard I of Normandy. He was born at Islip, England, and sent to Normandy with his mother in the year 1013 when the Danes under Sweyn and his son Canute invaded England. ... continue reading



Christian Saints & Heroes

Image of Let us remember to give thanks for this day the Lord has made.

Quotes of the Saints - Five saints have a message for you on this Thanksgiving holiday

By Marshall Connolly, (California Network)

If you are an American, today is Thanksgiving. Hopefully today you have made a point to attend Mass and to give thanks to God for all His blessings. If you are not American, today's holiday is a reminder that God deserves thanks from all His creation. We pray you will ... continue reading

More Christian Saints & Heroes

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Information
Learn about Catholic world

Catholic Online
Inform - Inspire - Ignite

Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained

Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need

Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online

Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye

Daily Reading
Today's bible reading

Lent / Easter
Death & resurrection of Jesus

Advent / Christmas
Birth of Jesus

Rest of Catholic Online
All Catholic world we offer

Services
Products and services we offer

Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books

The California Network
Inspiring streaming service

Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on catholic.org

Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel

Catholic Online Singles
Safe, secure Catholic dating

The California Studios
World-class post production service

Education
Learn the Catholic way

Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all

Student Classes
K-12 & Adult Education Classes

Catholic Online MasterClass
Learn from experts

School Teachers
Teacher lesson plans & resources

Catholic Media Missionaries
The New Evangelization

Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education

Socials
Connect with us online

Catholic Online on Facebook
Catholic social network

Catholic Online on Twitter
Catholic Tweets

Catholic Online on YouTube
Enjoy our videos

Catholic Online on Instagram
Shared Catholic moments

Catholic Online on Pinterest
Catholic ideas style inspiration

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.