Saint Corona was only 15 when she professed her Christian faith during the persecution of the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius.
In the earliest version of the saint’s story, written by a fourth-century deacon in Antioch, Corona publicly confessed her faith and comforted Saint Victor, a Roman soldier, as he was being tortured and killed for his Christian faith.
Afterward, she, too, was martyred – tied between two palm trees that had been bent to the ground and torn apart when the trees were allowed to snap back to full height.
Many suggest the two martyrs met their fate in Syria.
However, the date and location of their deaths are unclear.
Both saints’ feast day is May 14, and they are particularly venerated in Austria and eastern Bavaria.
Recently, several articles and posts have gone viral on social media, suggesting Saint Corona is the patron saint of pandemics.
Though it would be eerie if it were true, is seems this is not the case.
It’s likely that people have begun to draw a line between the two amid the coronavirus pandemic due to her name.
Corona means “crown” in Latin which is also where the coronavirus gets its name, from the spikes of protein that form a crown around the virus.
In Catholicism, the crown is a widely used emblem for martyrdom, particularly for female saints.
But Saint Corona is traditionally invoked in connection with superstitions involving money, such as gambling or treasure hunting.
If you’re looking for a saint to pray to during this turbulent time, here are some suggestions:
- Saint Rosalia – patron saint of Palermo; believed to have saved the Sicilian city from the plague in 1624.
- Saint Roch – Invoked against cholera, epidemics, knee problems, plague and skin disease.
- Saint Rita – Patron saint of lost and impossible causes, sickness, wounds, marital problems, abuse and mothers.