Wednesday, May 23, 2012



 OR BADONICUS , Abbot Bishop
 Born c. 500; died c. 570 (some scholars believe he may have died as early as 554).

 FEAST DAY : January 29
Gildas may have been born in the lower valley of Clydeside in Scotland. He is often called "Badonicus" because he was born in the year the Britons defeated the Saxons at Bath. He may have married and been widowed, but he eventually became a monk at Llanilltud in southern Wales, where he was trained by Saint Illtyd together with Saint Samson and Saint Paul Aurelian, though he was much younger. Well-known Irish monks, including Saint Finnian, became his disciples. He made a pilgrimage to Ireland to consult with his contemporary saints of that land and wrote letters to far-off monasteries. He seems to have had considerable influence on the development of the Irish church.  He is considered to be the first English historian.

 He was son to a British lord, who to procure him a virtuous education, placed him in his infancy in the monastery of St. Iltutus in Glamorganshire. The surname of Badonicus was given him, because, as we learn from his writings, he was born in the year in which the Britons under Aurelius Ambrosius, or, according to others, under king Arthur, gained the famous victory over the Saxons at Mount Badon, now Bannesdown, near Bath, in Somersetshire. This Bede places in the forty-fourth year after the first coming of the Saxons into Britain, which was in 451. Our saint, therefore, seems to have been born in 494; he was consequently younger than St. Paul, St. Samson, and his other illustrious school-fellows in Wales: but by his prudence and seriousness in his youth he seemed to have attained to the maturity of judgment and gravity of an advanced age. The author of the life of St. Paul of Leon, calls him the brightest genius of the school of St. Iltut. His application to sacred studies was uninterrupted, and if he arrived not at greater perfection in polite literature, this was owing to the want of masters of that branch in the confusion of those times. As to improve himself in the knowledge of God and himself was the end of all his studies, and all his reading was reduced to the study of the science of the saints, the greater progress he made in learning, the more perfect he became in all virtues. Studies which are to many a source of dissipation, made him more and more recollected, because in all books he found and relished only God, whom alone he sought. Hence sprang that love for holy solitude, which, to his death, was the constant ruling inclination of his heart. Some time after his monastic profession, with the consent, and perhaps by the order of his abbot, St. Iltut, he passed over into Ireland, there to receive the lessons of the admirable masters of a religious life, who had been instructed in the most sublime maxims of an interior life, and formed to the practice of perfect virtue, by the great St. Patrick. The author of his Acts compares this excursion, which he made in the spring of his life, to that of the bees in the season of flowers, to gather the juices which they convert into honey. In like manner St. Gildas learned, from the instructions and examples of the most eminent servants of God, to copy in his own life whatever seemed most perfect. So severe were his continual fasts, that the motto of St. John Baptist might in some degree be applied to him, that he scarce seemed to eat or drink at all. A rough hair-cloth, concealed under a coarse cloak, was his garment, and the bare floor his bed, with a stone for his bolster.
By the constant mortification of his natural appetites, and crucifixion of his flesh, his life was a prolongation of his martyrdom, or a perpetual sacrifice which he made of himself to God in union with that which he daily offered to him on his altars. If it be true that he preached in Ireland in the reign of king Ammeric, he must have made a visit to that island from Armorica, that prince only beginning to reign in 560: this cannot be ascribed to St. Gildas the Albanian, who died before that time. It was about the year 527, in the thirty-fourth of his age, that St. Gildas sailed to Armorica, or Brittany, in France:[1] for he wrote his invective ten years after his arrival there, and in the forty-fourth year of his age, as is gathered from his life and writings. Here he chose for the place of his retirement the little isle of Houac, or Houat, between the coast of Rhuis and the island of Bellisle, four leagues from the latter. Houat exceeds not a league in length; the isle of Hoedre is still smaller, not far distant: both are so barren as to yield nothing but a small quantity of corn. Such a solitude, which appeared hideous to others, offered the greatest charms to the saint, who desired to fly, as much as this mortal state would permit, whatever could interrupt his commerce with God. Here he often wanted the common necessaries and conveniences of life; but the greater the privation of earthly comforts was in which he lived, the more abundant were those of the Holy Ghost which he enjoyed, in proportion as the purity of his affections and his love of heavenly things were more perfect. The saint promised himself that he should live here always unknown to men: but it was in vain for him to endeavor to hide the light of divine grace under a bushel, which shone forth to the world, notwithstanding all the precautions which his humility took to conceal it. Certain fishermen who discovered him were harmed with his heavenly deportment and conversation, and made known on the continent the treasure they had found. The inhabitants flocked from the coast to hear the lessons of divine wisdom which the holy anchoret gave with a heavenly unction which penetrated their hearts. To satisfy their importunities, St. Gildas at length consented to live among them on the continent, and built a monastery at Rhuis, in a peninsula of that name, which Guerech, the first lord of the Britons about Vannes, is said to have bestowed upon him. This monastery was soon filled with excellent disciples and holy monks. St. Gildas settled them in good order; then, sighing after closer solitude, he withdrew, and passing beyond the gulf of Vannes, and the promontory of Quiberon, chose for his habitation a grot in a rock, upon the bank of the river Blavet, where he found a cavern formed by nature extended from the east to the west, which on that account he converted into a chapel. However, he often visited this abbey of Rhuis, and by his counsels directed many in the paths of true virtue. Among these was St. Trifina, daughter of Guerech, first British count of Vannes. She was married to count Conomor, lieutenant of king Childebert, a brutish and impious man, who afterwards murdered her, and the young son which he had by her, who at his baptism received the name of Gildas, and was godson to our saint: but he is usually known by the surname of Treuchmour, or Tremeur, in Latin 'Trichmorus. SS. Trifina and Treuchmeur are invoked in the English Litany of the seventh century, in Mabillon. The great collegiate church of Carhaix bears the name of St. Treuchmour: the church of Quim per keeps his feast on the 8th of November, on which day he is commemorated in several churches in Brittany, and at St. Magloire's at Paris. A church situated between Corlai and the abbey of Coetmaloon in Brittany, is dedicated to God under the invocation of St. Trifina.

St. Gildas wrote eight canons of discipline, and a severe invective against the crimes of the Britons, called De Excidio Britanniae, that he might confound those whom he was not able to convert, and whom God in punishment delivered first to the plunders of the Picts and Scots, and afterwards to the perfidious Saxons, the fiercest of all nations. He reproaches their kings, Constantine, (king of the Danmonians, in Devonshire and Cornwall,) Vortipor, (of the Dimetians, in South Wales,) Conon, Cuneglas, and Maglocune, princes in other parts of Britain, with horrible crimes: but Constantine was soon after sincerely converted, as Gale informs us from an ancient Welsh chronicle.

(Taken from Vol. I of "The Lives or the Fathers, Martyrs and Other Principal Saints" by the Rev. Alban Butler, the 1864 edition published by D. & J. Sadlier, & Company)


 Sulpicius 'Severus,'

 FEAST DAY : January 29
Disciple of St. Martin
 Born in Aquitaine; died 591. There was a great writer named Sulpicius Severus, not numbered among the saints, who authored the Life of Saint Martin of Tours. This is not he, though his moniker has often caused confusion. Saint Sulpicius, bishop of Bourges from 584 until his death, was born into a wealthy and illustrious Roman family. He was highly learned in secular literature and the law, which he practiced for a time. Sulpicius began to consider the religious life following the death of his beloved wife, from whom he inherited even greater wealth. For a time he continued to live in the same household as his pious mother-in-law, Bassula, with whom he shared a mutual affection. Her example and exhortations confirmed the resolution of Saint Sulpicius to turn his life over to Christ unreservedly. His conversion at about age 32 occurred during the same year of Saint Paulinus of Nola's conversion about 392. (Some of what we know about Saint Sulpicius comes from the testimony of the latter saint.)
  In a letter to Aurelius the deacon, he relates that one night in a dream he saw St. Martin ascend to heaven in great glory, and attended by the holy priest Clarus, his disciple, who was lately dead: soon after, two monks arriving from Tours, brought news of the death of St. Martin. He adds, that his greatest comfort in the loss of so good a master, was a confidence that he should obtain the divine blessings by the prayers of St. Martin in heaven. St. Paulinus mentions this vision in an inscription in verse, which he made and sent to be engraved on the marble altar of the church of Primuliacus.  St. Sulpicius wrote the life of the incomparable St. Martin, according to Tillemont and most others, before the death of that saint: but De Prato thinks that though it was begun before, it was neither finished nor published till after, his death. The style of this piece is plainer and more simple than that of his other writings. An account of the death of St. Martin, which is placed by De Prato in the year 400, is accurately given by St. Sulpicius, in a letter to Bassula, his mother-in-law, who then lived at Triers. The three dialogues of our saint are the most florid of all his writings. In the first Posthumain, a friend who had spent three years in the deserts of Egypt and the East, and was then returned, relates to him and Gallus, a disciple of St. Martin, (with whom our saint then lived under the same roof,) the wonderful examples of virtue he had seen abroad. In the second dialogue Gallus recounts many circumstances of the life of St. Martin, which St. Sulpicius had omitted in his history of that saint. In the third, under the name of the same Gallus, several miracles wrought by St. Martin are proved by authentic testimonies. The most important work of our saint is his abridgment of sacred history from the beginning of the world down to his own time in the year 400. The elegance, conciseness, and perspicuity with which this work is compiled, have procured the author the name of the Christian Sallust, some even prefer it to the histories of the Roman Sallust, and look upon it as the most finished model extant of abridgments.  His style is the most pure of any of the Latin fathers, though also Lactantius, Minutius Felix, we may almost add St. Jerom, and Salvian of Marseilles, deserve to be read among the Latin classics. The heroic sanctity of Sulpicius Severus is highly extolled by St. Paulinus of Nola, Paulinus of Perigueux, about the year 460, Venantius Fortunantus, and many others down to the present age. Gennadius tells us, that he was particularly remarkable for his extraordinary love of poverty and humility. After the death of St. Martin, in 400, St. Sulpicius Severus passed five years in that illustrious saint’s cell at Marmoutier. F. Jerom De Prato thinks that he at length retired to a monastery at Marseilles, or in that neighbourhood; because in a very ancient manuscript copy of his works, transcribed in the seventh century kept in the library of the chapter of Verona, he is twice called a monk of Marseilles. From the testimony of this manuscript, the Benedictin authors of the new treatise On the Diplomatique,  and the continuators of the Literary History of France,  regard it as undoubted that Sulpicius Severus was a monk at Marseilles before his death. Whilst the Alans, Sueves, and Vandals from Germany and other barbarous nations, laid waste most provinces in Gaul in 406, Marseilles enjoyed a secure peace under the government of Constantine, who, having assumed the purple, fixed the seat of his empire at Arles from the year 407 to 410. After the death of St. Chrysostom in 407, Cassian came from Constantinople to Marseilles, and founded there two monasteries, one for men, the other for women. Most place the death of St. Sulpicius Severus about the year 420, Baronius after the year 432; but F. Jerom De Prato about 410, when he supposes him to have been near fifty years old, saying that Gennadius, who tells us that he lived to a very great age, is inconsistent with himself. Neither St. Paulinus nor any other writer mentions him as living later than the year 407, which seems to prove that he did not survive that epoch very many years. Guibert, abbot of Gemblours, who died in 1208, in his Apology for Sulpicius Severus, testifies that his festival was kept at Marmoutier with great solemnity on the 29th of January. Several editors of the Roman Martyrology, who took Sulpicius Severus, who is named in the calendars on this day, to have been this saint, added in his eulogium, Disciple of St. Martin, famous for his learning and merits. Many have proved that this addition was made by the mistake of private editors, and that the saint originally meant here in the Roman Martyrology was Sulpicius Severus, bishop of Bourges;  and Benedict XIV. proves and declares 20 that Sulpicius Severus, the disciple of St. Martin, is not commemorated in the Roman Martyrology. Nevertheless, he has been ranked among the saints at Tours from time immemorial, and is honoured with a particular office on this day in the new Breviary used in all that diocess. See his works correctly printed, with various readings, notes, dissertations, and the life of this saint at Verona in 1741, in two volumes folio, by F. Jerom De Prato, an Italian Oratorian of Verona: also Gallia Christiana tum Vetus tum Nova: Tillemont, t. 12. Ceillier, t. 10. p. 635. Rivet, Hist. Litér de la France, t. 2. p. 95.   2

 He was venerated by Saint Gregory of Tours


Virgin Mary and Child, with Saints Louis of Toulouse, Lawrence, Herculanus of Brescia, and Constantius of Perugia. Pietro Perugino, 1497. 

Constantius and Companions
 FEAST DAY : January 29

 Died 170.
 The first bishop of Perugia, Italy, Saint Constantius, was martyred with many of his flock under Marcus Aurelius. The Acts of these martyrs are untrustworthy
Saint Constantius also known as Costantius, Constance or Costanzo died ca. 170 AD is one of the patron saints of Perugia, Italy.Local tradition makes him the first bishop of Perugia. This tradition states that he became the first bishop of the city at the age of 30. He was active in evangelism and care for the poor.he was arrested during the persecutions of Antoninus (some sources say Marcus Aurelius) and whipped, and then forced into a stove along with his companions, from which all escaped unharmed. He was jailed and set free by his guards, whom he had converted to Christianity. He sought refuge in a house owned by a Christian named Anastasius. But he, along with Anastasius, were arrested again and after being tortured in prisons at Assisi and Spello, were decapitated near Foligno.
 In art, Costantius is often represented as a bishop wearing a mitre and robe and bearing a crozier. He frequently appears in the company of another Perugian patron saint, Sant'Ercolano (Herculanus of Perugia). His feast day is 29 January.The four variations of his legend are consistent in regards to the place of his martyrdom (Foligno). A church in Perugia dedicated to him was demolished in 1527.[1] The accounts of his martyrdom state that his body was carried to Perugia and buried near the site of the present-day cathedral there. His relics were translated in 1825 with great solemnity to a new altar at the present-day church of San Costanzo.


Blessed Charles of Sayn, OSB Cist.,
 FEAST DAY : January 29
 Died 1212. Charles started his career in the military but became a Cistercian at Hemmerode in 1185. In 1189, he was elected prior of Heisterbach and in 1197 abbot of Villers in Brabant. In 1209, he resigned and returned to Hemmerode to prepare for his death. He has always been venerated as a beatus by the Cistercians


Saint Triphina of Brittany,
 6th century,
 feast may be : January 29 or  July 5. Saint Triphina was the mother of the infant-martyr Saint Tremorus. She passed the later years of her life in a convent in Brittany

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Bl. Boleslava Lament

Feast day: January 29
1862 - 1946
Beatified By: Pope John Paul II

Boleslava Lament, virgin, in the midst of political upheaval founded the Congregation of the Missionary Sisters of the Holy Family to promote Christian unity, help the poor and train the girls to Christian life.


St. Papias and Maurinus

Feast day: January 29
Died: 303

Roman soldiers put to death in Rome for defending the faith. . These two are always pictured as the Roman soldiers they were. They were martyred under Maximian in Rome, where they are venerated


St. Caesarius of Angoulême

Feast day: January 29
Died: 1st century

Deacon of Angouleme, France, during the era of St. Ausonius, the first bishop of that diocese.