St. Walburga of Germany (+February 25, 777 or 779)
Commemorated May 1
St. Walburga was born into an aristocratic family in the county of Devonshire, England. Her father, St. Richard the Pilgrim, was one of the underkings of the West Saxons. Winna, her mother, was sister of St. Boniface, Apostle of Germany. St. Walburga had two brothers, St. Willibaldand St. Winibald.
St. Richard, when starting with his two sons on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, entrusted Walpurga, then 11 years old, to the abbess of Wimborne Abbey, Dorset, where she was educated by the nuns. She spent 26 years as a member of the community. She then travelled with her brothers, Willibald and Winibald, to Francia(now Württembergand Franconia) to assist St. Boniface, her mother's brother, in evangelizing among the still-pagan Germans. Because of her rigorous training, she was able to write her brother Winibald's vitaand an account in Latin of his travels in Palestine. As a result, she is often called the first female author of both England and Germany.
St. Walburga became a nun in the double monasteryof Heidenheim am Hahnenkamm, which was founded by her other brother, Willibald, who appointed her as his successor. Following his death in 751, she became the abbess.