Monday, October 18, 2010

Saint Benedict of Nursia

Saint Benedict of Nursia

[Saint Benedict of Nursia]
Also known as

* Benedict of Narsia
* Benedict of Norsia
* Benedetto da Norcia
* Founder of Western Monasticism

Memorial

* 11 July (Latin Rite)
* 21 March (Benedictine monks and nuns)
* 14 March (Byzantine Rite)

Profile

Born to the Roman nobility. Twin brother of Saint Scholastica. Studied in Rome, Italy, but was dismayed by the lack of discipline and the lackadasical attitude of his fellow students. Fled to the mountains near Subiaco, living as a hermit in a cave for three years; reported to have been fed by a raven. His virtues caused an abbey to request him to lead them. Founded the monastery at Monte Cassino, where he wrote the Rule of his order. His discipline was such that an attempt was made on his life; some monks tried by poison him, but he blessed the cup and rendered it harmless. He returned to his cave, but continued to attract followers, and eventually established twelve monasteries. Had the ability to read consciences, the gift of prophesy, and could forestall attacks of the devil. Destroyed pagan statues and altars, drove demons from groves sacred to pagans. At one point there were over 40,000 monasteries guided by the Benedictine Rule. A summation of the Rule: “Pray and work.”

Born

* c.480, Narsia, Umbria, Italy

Died

* 21 March 547 of a fever while in prayer at Monte Cassino, Italy
* buried beneath the high altar there in the same tomb as Saint Scholastica

Canonized

* 1220 by Pope Honorius III

Patronage

* against erysipelas
* against fever
* against gall stones
* against inflammatory diseases
* against kidney disease
* against nettle rash
* against poison
* against temptations
* against witchcraft
* agricultural workers
* cavers
* civil engineers
* coppersmiths
* dying people
* Europe
* farm workers
* farmers
* Heerdt, Germany
* Italian architects
* monks
* Norcia, Italy
* people in religious orders
* school children
* servants who have broken their master’s belongings
* speliologists
* spelunkers
* students
* Subiaco, Italy

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