If I had to create a Top 10 List of Favorite Saints, then St. Monica would make that list.
Who, you ask, was St. Monica? She was the mother of St. Augustine, the theological powerhouse of the early Church. However, before Augustine jumped on the Jesus Train, he was one lost soul. St. Monica was a Christian but had an arranged marriage to a pagan, Patricius. Life for women in the 4th century was not kind and Patricius was not a good husband. Monica bore her struggles with patience, love, humility, and prayer. She is the quintessential example of the good Christian wife and mother.
Augustine was a wild child and explored philosophies and non-Christian religions before he finally met Christ in the Word. Through it all she prayed and prayed and prayed for her son. If you want to know more about St. Monica, there's a great biography on her by Giovanni Falbo, St. Monica: The Power of a Mother's Love. Falbo doesn't simply rely on "folklore" to share the story of Monica, he uses Augustine's own words about his mother. I highly recommend this book if you want to know more about Church history, Monica, and Augustine.
St. Monica serves as a reminder that prayers sometimes take years before they are answered. Also, even the most difficult situations with children can find a happy ending in Christ.
St. Monica, pray for us.