samedi 15 juin 2013

Bienheureuse YOLANDE (ou JOLENTA) de HONGRIE, princesse et clarisse

Bienheureuse JOLENTA de HONGRIE

Princesse hongroise, clarisse (✝ 1299)

ou Hélène.

Fille du roi Béla IV de Hongrie, elle épousa le duc de Kalisz non loin de Lodz, tandis que sa sœur, sainte Cunégonde, épousait Boleslas V, roi de Pologne. Toutes deux devinrent veuves la même année et entrèrent ensemble chez les clarisses de Gniezno, près de Poznan. Yolande en devint l'abbesse.

Béatifiée en 1827.

Près de Gniezno en Pologne, l’an 1298, la bienheureuse Yolande, abbesse. Après la mort de son mari, le duc Boleslas le Pieux, elle abandonna tous ses biens terrestres et, avec sa fille, fit profession de vie monastique dans l’Ordre de sainte Claire.

Martyrologe romain


Bienheureuse Yolande de Hongrie

12 juin

religieuse IIème Ordre

Fille de Béla IV, roi de Hongrie, nièce de sainte Elisabeth de Hongrie, Yolande est née en 1235 et fut formée à la vie chrétienne par sa soeur aînée. En 1256 elle épousa Boleslas le Pieux dont elle eut trois filles. Veuve en 1278, elle entra avec sa fille cadette chez les Clarisses de Sandec. Malgrè son opposition elle fut élue abbesse et mourut en 1298.


Jolenta was the daughter of Bela IV, King of Hungary. Her sister, St. Kunigunde, was married to the Duke of Poland. Jolenta was sent to Poland where her sister was to supervise her education. Eventually married to Boleslaus, the Duke of Greater Poland, Jolenta was able to use her material means to assist the poor, the sick, widows and orphans. Her husband joined her in building hospitals, convents and churches so that he was surnamed "the Pious."

Upon the death of her husband and the marriage of two of her daughters, Jolenta and her third daughter entered the convent of the Poor Clares. War forced Jolenta to move to another convent where, despite her reluctance, she was made abbess.

So well did she serve her Franciscan sisters by word and example that her fame and good works continued to spread beyond the walls of the cloister. Her favorite devotion was the Passion of Christ. Indeed, Jesus appeared to her, telling her of her coming death. Many miracles, down to our own day, are said to have occurred at her grave.

Comment :

Jolenta’s story begins like a fairy tale. But fairy tales seldom include the death of the prince and never end with the princess living out her days in a convent. Nonetheless, Jolenta’s story has a happy ending. Her life of charity toward the poor and devotion to her Franciscan sisters indeed brought her to a “happily ever after.” Our lives may be short on fairy-tale elements, but our generosity and our willingness to serve well the people we live with lead us toward an ending happier than we can imagine.

June 15


JOLENTA, or Helena as she is called by the Poles, was one of four sisters who are honoured with the title of Blessed. They were the daughters of Bela IV, King of Hungary, the nieces of St Elizabeth, the great-nieces of St Hedwig, and lineal descendants of the Hungarian kings St Stephen and St Ladislaus. When she was five years old, Jolenta was committed to the care of her elder sister, Bd Cunegund, or Kinga, who had married Boleslaus II, King of Poland. Under their fostering care, the little girl grew up a pattern of virtue. She became the wife of Duke Boleslaus of Kalisz, with whom she spent a happy married life. Both of them were addicted to good works, and together they made various religious foundations. Jolenta was beloved by all, but especially by the poor, for whom she had a tender love. After the death of her husband, as soon as she had settled two of her daughters, she retired with the third and with Bd Cunegund, now, like herself, a widow, into the convent of Poor Clares which Cunegund had established at Sandeck. Jolenta's later years, however, were spent at Gnesen as superior of the convent of which she had been the foundress. She died there in 1299.

See 1. B. Prileszky, Acta Sanctorum Hungariae, vol. ii, Appendix pp. 54-55; Hueber, Menologium Franciscanum, p. 918; and cf. the bibliography attached to Bd Cunegund on July 24.