Third Sunday of Lent
March 7, 2021
Andrea Westkamp, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virginia
Walburga – Healing Presence
This week our companion is Saint Walburga. She is the second one from the left. Note that she is holding an oil lamp in her hand.
Saint Walburga was born in 710 A.D., the daughter of Richard, an under-king of the West Saxons of Britain. She went to school at Wimborne Monastery, Dorset, England, and later became a nun there. At the request of her uncle, Saint Boniface, the “Apostle of Germany”, the Wimborne Monastery sent Walburga and other sisters to form monasteries in Germany. Walburga was a leader during the early Christian years of the Germanic tribes. The feast of Saint Walburga is celebrated on the date of her death, February 25. Her remains were transferred to St. Walburg Monastery in Eichstätt, to which the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia and monasteries in our federation trace their roots.
Beginning in 893A.D., a liquid to which many cures are attributed began to flow from Walburga’s tomb annually between October 12th and February 25th. This liquid became known as "Walburga's Oil", and was seen as a sign of her continued intercession. The oil has always been collected and given to pilgrims. Healings attributed to St. Walburga's intercession continue to be reported up to the present day. Here is an image that shows her as healer.
This week reflect on what it means to be a healing presence to others.
How is God a healing presence in your life?
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Sister Andrea Westkamp is a member of Saint Benedict Monastery in Bristow, VA. Currently, she is serving as subprioress, canonical treasurer, oblate director and spiritual director. Her background is in pastoral counseling, spiritual direction and early childhood education. She enjoys long walks, artwork, reading mysteries. Her passion is exploring the depth of the Rule of Benedict for our times.