On March 17th every year, St. Patrick steals the show..but did you know there is another Saint whose big day is also the 17th of March? Saint Gertrude Patron Saint of Cats has March 17th as her feast day. Gertrude was born in the year 626 and died March 17th, 659. She is the patron saint against mice, for cats and the mentally ill. If you have ever heard the term “crazy cat lady”, Gertrude might have been the perfect woman to help take care of someone meeting that description.
Gertrude was born into a wealthy family, which caused some problems for her as a child, but as an adult she spent her time in her role as Abess of a church in Nivelles, Belgium where she was known for taking care of orphans, widows, captives and pilgrims. Gertrude is said to have gained her title of Patron Saint of Cats because she was kind to the cats who lived around her monastery, and she would feed them and show them love.
The next time you are out celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, take a moment to toast Saint Gertrude as well, since it is her day too.