It has emerged that there is a patron saint for epidemics and pandemics whose remains lie in Northern Italy, the site of the first COVID-19 lockdown in Europe.
Ironically, the Saint is known as St. Corona and history has it that, she was martyred together with Saint Victor, a Roman soldier. Their relics believed to have been preserved since the 9th century are said to be held in a basilica in Anzu, Northern Italy, right in the middle of the Coronavirus pandemic which has claimed more than 10,000 lives globally.
St. Corona and St. Victor, are said to have lived (and died) during the reign of Marcus Aurelius and were put to death by order of a Roman judge named Sebastian for being Christians. The 16-year old St. Corona was then married to a Roman soldier who didn’t know she was a Christian.
According to Aleteia, a Catholic news service, “St. Victor and St. Corona are pre-congregation saints meaning they were recognized as saints prior to Church canonization processes being standardized. (The first saint canonized by a pope was Ulrich, the bishop of Augsburg, who died in 973. He was canonized by Pope John XV at the Lateran Council of 993. Canonization became the general law of the church under Pope Gregory IX (1227-41)).”
St. Corona was initially believed to be superstitiously prayed to by money-seekers but there’s no direct evidence to this. Today, she is now revered as the patron saint for epidemics and pandemics.