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Quiz about Flemish Saints
Quiz about Flemish Saints

Flemish Saints Trivia Quiz


The saints of Flanders/Belgium are among the most fascinating, historically significant, and (occasionally) amusing figures in Church history. Enjoy!

A multiple-choice quiz by jouen58. Estimated time: 5 mins.
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Author
jouen58
Time
5 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
213,436
Updated
Jul 23 22
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
369
Awards
Top 35% Quiz
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. This female saint was born at Landen in the 7th century. She married Ansegilius, son of St. Arnulf of Metz, with whom she had two children; Pepin of Herstal and Martin of Laon. The former became King of France and was the father of Charles Martel. Who was she? Hint

St. Itta
St. Godelieve
St. Gudula
St. Begga

2. St Gertrude of Nivelles was born at Landen in the 7th century. Her mother founded a convent upon the death of her husband; she joined the convent herself, and Gertrude became its abbess. Gertrude is one of the patron saints of gardeners, who traditionally regarded her feast day- March 17- as a time to begin planting. Gertrude shares this feast day with a much more famous male saint; who is it? Hint

St. Patrick
St. Valentine
St. George
St. Nicholas

3. St. Chrodegang was a native of Brabant who became the secretary to Charles Martel. In 742, he was elected bishop of Metz, although he had not yet taken holy orders. As bishop, he was involved in a momentous event in French history; what was it? Hint

The Second Crusade
The Battle of Fontenoy
The Great Schism
The coronation of the first Carolingian monarch

4. St. Hubert of Liege was a courtier in the service of Pepin of Heristal in the late 7th century. After his wife's death, he was emotionally devastated and devoted much of his time to hunting. It was while engaged in this pastime that he underwent a religious conversion and made the decision to take holy orders. According to legend, Hubert was actually converted by one of the animals he was hunting; what type of animal was it? Hint

A fox
A bear
A stag
A pheasant

5. St. Drogo was a Flemish nobleman of the 12th century who became a hermit and shepherd in Sebourg, France, after undertaking a series of pilgrimages. He was best-known for a certain miraculous ability he had, which gave rise to a famous Flemish folk saying; what was it? Hint

Levitation
Walking on water
Becoming invisible
Bi-Location

6. St. Godelieve (a.k.a. Godeleva, Godliva, or Godelive) was a pious young woman born in 1049 at Hondeforte-lez-Boulogne. At the age of 21, she was murdered at the instigation of her husband, to whom she had been married for less than three years. She was venerated as a martyr, and miracles were reported at her tomb. One of these miracles, ironically, involved a member of her husband's family; who was it? Hint

His mother
His daughter by a second marriage
His second wife
His father

7. The life of St. Albert of Louvain bears certain striking similarities to that of England's St. Thomas Becket (a near contemporary of Albert's, coincidentally). Like Becket, Albert clashed with a stubborn monarch, whose knights (possibly at his instigation) tracked him down and murdered him. With which Holy Roman Emperor did Albert have his fateful disagreement? Hint

Frederick II
Philip of Swabia
Henry VI
Otto IV

8. St. Christina was born at Brusthem in 1150. Her piety manifested itself in extremely bizarre and outlandish ways, which earned her an unusual nickname; what was it? Hint

Christina the Devil
Christina the Madwoman
Christina the Astonishing
Christina the Possessed

9. This saint was born in 1599 at Driest; he was an altar boy in childhood, and gave indications of great piety even then. At age 18, he became a student at the Jesuit college at Malines; as a student, he learned all of the major European languages in hopes of working among migrants, and hoped to be sent to China as a missionary following his ordination. Sadly, he never lived to be ordained; at age 22, he died suddenly after a brief illness. He is the patron of altar boys; who is he? Hint

St. John Vianney
St. John Eudes
St. John Berchmans
St. John Francis Regis

10. Although his canonization is still pending as of this writing (2005), Father Damien de Veuster has long been venerated as a saint for his selfless devotion to those suffering the terrible disease of leprosy. On what Hawaiian island was Father Damien's famous leper colony, where he himself ended his life as a victim of the dreaded disease? Hint

Kauai
Molokai
Maui
Oahu


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. This female saint was born at Landen in the 7th century. She married Ansegilius, son of St. Arnulf of Metz, with whom she had two children; Pepin of Herstal and Martin of Laon. The former became King of France and was the father of Charles Martel. Who was she?

Answer: St. Begga

Begga was the daughter of St. Itta and Pepin of Landen, mayor of the palace. St. Gertrude of Nivelles was her sister and St. Gudula (who is the patroness of Brussels) was their cousin. Begga was the great, great grandmother of the emperor Charlemagne.

In 691, Ansegilius was killed in a hunting accident, leaving Begga a widow. She took holy orders and founded a convent at Ardenne on the Meuse river, of which she became abbess. Begga herself died in 693.
2. St Gertrude of Nivelles was born at Landen in the 7th century. Her mother founded a convent upon the death of her husband; she joined the convent herself, and Gertrude became its abbess. Gertrude is one of the patron saints of gardeners, who traditionally regarded her feast day- March 17- as a time to begin planting. Gertrude shares this feast day with a much more famous male saint; who is it?

Answer: St. Patrick

In my part of the world (the Northeastern United States) farmers and gardeners are cautioned to have their peas planted by St. Patrick's day (peas enjoy cold, wet weather and should be planted well in advance of the heat of summer). It is possible that this is an echo of the European veneration of St. Gertrude. In addition to her patronage of gardeners, Gertrude is traditionally invoked by travelers and those who care for them, such as inkeepers and other hospitalers. She was remembered for her extraordinary hospitality to travelers, missionaries, and pilgrims. A Flemish tradition holds that the souls of the blessed spend the first night of their journey to Heaven in her care. It was also traditional for travelers to drink a cup in her honor (known as "Sinte Geerts Minne"- "St. Gertrude's Cup") before setting out on a journey.

Gertrude is also traditionally invoked against infestations of mice (she is traditionally depicted with a mouse running up her staff) on account of her own success in ridding her convent of the destructive rodents. As an offshoot of this (cat lovers take note), she is also the official patroness of cats.
3. St. Chrodegang was a native of Brabant who became the secretary to Charles Martel. In 742, he was elected bishop of Metz, although he had not yet taken holy orders. As bishop, he was involved in a momentous event in French history; what was it?

Answer: The coronation of the first Carolingian monarch

You'll notice that the early history of the Carolingian dynasty runs as a common thread throughout the first third of this quiz. Chrodegang was involved in the coronation of Pepin III (a relative of his, also called Pepin the Short) as King of the Franks. Pepin was the first monarch of the Carolingian dynasty which would reach its apex in the reign of Pepin's son Charlemagne, the first Holy Roman Emperor (the Second Crusade, the Great Schism, and the Battle of Fontenoy all occured after Chrodegang's death).

It is not generally well known that Charlemagne himself was, at one time, venerated as a saint- largely because of his staunch support of the papacy. Although never formally canonized, Pope Benedict XIV bestowed the title "blessed" upon him, and he was given a feast day (not generally oserved outside of France) of January 28.

Chrodegang encouraged Charlemagne's forerunner Pepin in his passionate defense of the papacy. A diligent reformer of religious orders, Chrodegang was also responsible for the establishment of the canon regular movement, and for the formation of a "schola cantorum" ("school of singing") which acheived considerable fame and helped spread the practice of Gregorian chant.
4. St. Hubert of Liege was a courtier in the service of Pepin of Heristal in the late 7th century. After his wife's death, he was emotionally devastated and devoted much of his time to hunting. It was while engaged in this pastime that he underwent a religious conversion and made the decision to take holy orders. According to legend, Hubert was actually converted by one of the animals he was hunting; what type of animal was it?

Answer: A stag

The legend of Hubert's dramatic conversion bears a striking similarity to earlier legends of St. Eustace and St. Julian the Hospitaler, as well as the German legend of the Accursed Huntsman. Hubert was hunting on Good Friday (considered a grave sacrilege at the time) when he noticed a crucifix between the antlers of the stag he was about to shoot.

The animal spoke to him, saying "Hubert, unless you turn to the Lord, and lead a holy life, you shall quickly go down to hell." Chastened and somewhat frightened as well, he became a student of St. Lambert, from whom he eventually took holy orders.

After Lambert's murder in 705 (reputedly at the hands of assassins hired by Pepin's mistress, after Lambert had denounced their adulterous affair), Hubert succeeded him as bishop of Maestricht.

He moved the episcopal see to Liege, and became the first bishop of that city. He converted many pagans and was successful in completely ending the practice of idol worship in his diocese, using non-violent persuasion to achieve this goal.

He died in 727, while reciting the Lord's Prayer.
5. St. Drogo was a Flemish nobleman of the 12th century who became a hermit and shepherd in Sebourg, France, after undertaking a series of pilgrimages. He was best-known for a certain miraculous ability he had, which gave rise to a famous Flemish folk saying; what was it?

Answer: Bi-Location

Drogo's story is a particularly sad one; he was informed at age eighteen that his mother had died giving birth to him, and that his father had died before he was born. This double revelation filled him with such self-loathing that he undertook several penitential pilgrimages (including several to Rome) before settling down at Sebourg.

Being a hermit, Drogo had no one to take his place in the sheep pasture while he attended daily mass, so he contrived to miraculously be in both places at once. This gave rise to the expression "Not being St. Drogo, I can't be in two places at the same time" which (I'm told) is- or was- a popular Flemish folk saying.

After six years in Sebourg, Drogo resumed his pilgrimages until an unsightly ulcerated leg forced him back to his hermitage. He remained there for the last forty years of his life, subsisting on little else but the holy Eucharist. Drogo is the patron saint of shepherds (for obvious reasons) and of coffee-house proprieters (for much less obvious reasons).
6. St. Godelieve (a.k.a. Godeleva, Godliva, or Godelive) was a pious young woman born in 1049 at Hondeforte-lez-Boulogne. At the age of 21, she was murdered at the instigation of her husband, to whom she had been married for less than three years. She was venerated as a martyr, and miracles were reported at her tomb. One of these miracles, ironically, involved a member of her husband's family; who was it?

Answer: His daughter by a second marriage

Godelieve was married at age 18 to Bertulf of Ghistelles. Bertulf, apparently tired of his young wife even before the wedding night got underway; he got drunk at the wedding banquet and rode off, leaving Godelieve behind. She was obliged to spend her "honeymoon" in the custody of her mother-in-law, who treated her with appalling cruelty and all but starved her. This proved too much even for someone with the patience (literally) of a saint, and Godelieve contrived an escape. She returned to her parents' home and related her tale of woe. Her parents appealed to the archbishop, who publicly chastised Bertulf, ordering him to take Godelieve back home and to treat her kindly.

Bertulf outwardly affected remorse, but soon began mistreating his wife again. After he became enamoured of another woman, he contrived Godelieve's murder. While he was away on a visit to nearby Bruges, making himself conspicuous, two of his servants lured Godelieve from the palace, garroted her, and drowned her in a nearby pond. Although it was commonly assumed that Bertulf was responsible, he could not be charged since he had been away at the time.

Godelieve was venerated as a martyr, and her tomb became a place of pilgrimage, where many miracles were reported. Bertulf had, by this time, remarried and had a daughter by his second wife. When the child was stricken blind, he and his wife took her to Godelieve's grave to pray for a miracle (which, under the circumstances, must have taken considerable nerve). When the child was cured, Bertulf finally admitted his crime. He went on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, after which he entered a monastery, where he spent the rest of his life doing penance.

Godelieve is unique among female saints in that her veneration as a saint seems to have arisen out of public indignation for the sufferings she endured as an abused wife. She is the patroness of those who suffer from domestic violence and verbal abuse.
7. The life of St. Albert of Louvain bears certain striking similarities to that of England's St. Thomas Becket (a near contemporary of Albert's, coincidentally). Like Becket, Albert clashed with a stubborn monarch, whose knights (possibly at his instigation) tracked him down and murdered him. With which Holy Roman Emperor did Albert have his fateful disagreement?

Answer: Henry VI

In 1191, Albert was elected Bishop of Liege; his rival for the post was the uncle of Henry's consort, the empress Constance. Henry summarily deposed Albert and appointed Lothaire, the provost of Bonn, Albert appealed to Pope Celestine III, who declared his election valid. Although Albert was subsequently consecrated bishop, Lothaire, with the emperor's support, refused to relinquish the see. Shortly afterward, Albert was murdered en route to Saint-Remi abbey by a group of Henry's knights.

The murder of Albert backfired upon both Henry and Lothaire; the latter was excommunicated and banished, forcing Henry to submit to Rome. Henry (as with England's Henry II before him) was forced to do penance for Albert's murder, for which he was held morally responsible.
8. St. Christina was born at Brusthem in 1150. Her piety manifested itself in extremely bizarre and outlandish ways, which earned her an unusual nickname; what was it?

Answer: Christina the Astonishing

Christina was an epileptic, a condition little understood in the 12th century; her seizures were considered a sign of madness, demonic possession, or both (there were other reasons for this belief, however, as you'll see). At age 21, Christina suffered a cateleptic seizure which left her in such a catatonic state that she was presumed to be dead. During her funeral mass, she suddenly sat up in her coffin and levitated to the rafters of the church. When the priest ordered her to come down, she descended to the altar, and announced that she had visited heaven, hell, and purgatory. In the latter place, she had encountered a number of her fellow villagers, and she had decided to devote herself to their release into Paradise.

Christina's spectacular levitation at her funeral was but one of several such feats. Oddly, her levitations were not motivated by religious fervor (as is often the case), but by her utter repugnance for the odor of human flesh (she claimed that she could smell the sin in people although, given the state of personal hygeine in 12th century Europe, one suspects that it was something other than sin). She resorted to many bizarre means of distancing herself from her fellow mortals, such as climbing trees, hanging from weathervanes, and hiding in ovens (she was impervious to both heat and cold). Passionately devoted to the holy Eucharist, she once awakened the local priest in the middle of the night and begged him to let her receive the sacrament. When he refused, she ran screaming into the frigid Meuse river, and swam away. In lighter moments, she was wont to amuse herself by taking rides on mill-wheels (as though they were ferris-wheels); she suffered no apparent injuries when the wheels carried her under. Small wonder that even the usually reserved Alban Butler (author of "Butler's Lives of the Saints") refers to Christina as "...a pathological case."

In her later life, after spending an evening submerged in a baptismal font, Christina apparently was cured of her overly acute sense of smell and was able to join a community of nuns at the convent of St. Catherine. The prioress at the convent subsequently insisted that Christina, despite her "eccentricities", was a model of obedience and humility. She came to be renowned for both her wisdom and her sanctity, and was consulted by many notable people, including the Count of Looz. She died in 1224 at age 73.
9. This saint was born in 1599 at Driest; he was an altar boy in childhood, and gave indications of great piety even then. At age 18, he became a student at the Jesuit college at Malines; as a student, he learned all of the major European languages in hopes of working among migrants, and hoped to be sent to China as a missionary following his ordination. Sadly, he never lived to be ordained; at age 22, he died suddenly after a brief illness. He is the patron of altar boys; who is he?

Answer: St. John Berchmans

John Berchmans was somewhat of an earlier male forerunner to the tremendously popular St. Therese of Lisieux. Like Therese, he was fascinated by the missionary life (which neither saint lived to actually participate in). He was also an exponent of acheiving holiness and spiritual perfection through small, ordinary actions, which prefigures Therese's celebrated "little way". John's patronage of altar servers (which now include girls as well as boys, at least in the U.S.) stems from the devotion he exhibited during his childhood stint as an altar boy.

He is also the patron of novices, and of Catholic youth in general (along with St. Therese and St. Aloysius Gonzaga).
10. Although his canonization is still pending as of this writing (2005), Father Damien de Veuster has long been venerated as a saint for his selfless devotion to those suffering the terrible disease of leprosy. On what Hawaiian island was Father Damien's famous leper colony, where he himself ended his life as a victim of the dreaded disease?

Answer: Molokai

Damien was born Joseph de Veuster in 1840 at Tremeloo, Belgium, the son of a farmer. At the age of 20, he joined the Picpus fathers (Fathers of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary) and took the name Damien. While still awaiting ordination, he was sent as a missionary to Hawaii (not yet a part of the U.S.) and was ordained at Honolulu in 1864.

Damien was made the resident priest of the parish of St. Philomena at Molokai; working largely by himself, he alleviated the wretched conditions at the rundown leper colony, ministered to their spiritual and physical needs, and was responsible for obtaining superior medical care for the inhabitants. He himself contracted the terrible disease in 1885 (he informed his community by beginning his Sunday sermon with the words "We lepers...") and died less than four years later, working tirelessly for his community up to the end.

Damien was the object of considerable controversy during his life, and many slanderous accusations were made about him both before and after his death. These included allegations regarding his personal cleanliness and his relations with his female charges, particularly after he contracted leprosy himself. He was passionately defended after his death in an essay written by his great friend, the author Robert Louis Stevenson, who had visited him at Molokai. In 1935, Damien's remains were taken from his humble grave at St. Philomena's and reinterred at the cathedral at Antwerp. He was declared venerable by Pope Paul VI in 1977 and beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1995.
Source: Author jouen58

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