Gertrude of Helfta (Eisleben, Alemannia, 1256 – Helfta, november 17, 1302), called “the Great”, entered the Cistercian monastery of Helfta. A woman of profound culture, even profane, she nourished her spiritual life in the liturgy, especially in the Eucharist, in Scripture and in the Fathers. She had a high mystical experience, characterised by the living sense of freedom of the children of God and a tender devotion to the humanity of Christ. He was a precursor of worship of the Heart of Jesus.
Our founder, Father Dehon, wrote: «Jesus was pleased with the heart of Saint Gertrude, because he found there the same feelings of love, fidelity, compassion and dedication that he had experienced in his friends in Bethlehem and Nazareth, Bethany and the Upper Room, Gethsemane and Calvary» (DSP 1936, 443).