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July 11

St Benedict of Nursia - July 11

Saint Benedict of Nursia

Abbot, Founder

(480 – 587)

Prayer ought to be short and pure, unless it be prolonged by the inspiration of Divine grace.

Saint Benedict of Nursia

Saint’s Life Story

Early Life Leaving Rome

Benedict and his twin sister Saint Scholastica were born into a Christian noble family in Nursia (modern day Norcia), Umbria, Italy around 480. Benedict went to Rome for his studies. He grew weary of life in Rome, having found his companions’ lives dissolute and immoral, and his teachers unchristian and corrupt. This led Benedict to abandon his studies in Rome to pursue a spiritual life. Benedict left the city with his faithful family nurse Cirilla accompanying him as far as Enfide (modern Affile).

Life as a Hermit

Benedict spent time living as a hermit, in spiritual isolation in a cave later identified as the Sacro Speco at Subiaco. For three years, he remained there in the care of a monk named Romanus. The monks of a nearby monastery at Vicovaro asked Benedict, who was by then a well-known holy man, to become their new abbot.

Attempts on His Life

His insistence on proper monastic discipline, however, brought him into conflict with the community who attempted to poison him.  Benedict miraculously escaped harm and returned to his cave. St. Gregory the Great, Pope wrote about Benedict in Second Book of Dialogues, 38 chapters about Benedict’s life and miracles.  In this book, St Gregory recounts the tale of Benedict’s rescue; when Benedict blessed the pitcher of poisoned wine, it broke into many pieces. Thereafter, he left the undisciplined monks and established twelve monasteries with twelve monks each in the area south of Rome near Subiaco. In the 13th monastery, he resided as abbot.

The Rule

Around the year 529, Benedict left Subiaco with his most devoted disciples for Monte Cassino.  Benedict destroyed the pagan temple dedicated to Apollo and built his premier monastery in the ancient pagan acropolis on the hill overlooking the town. Here, Benedict wrote the supremely influential Rule for the monastery of Monte Cassino though he envisioned that it could be used elsewhere. The Rule is the sole known example of Benedict’s writing, but it manifests his genius to crystallize the best of the monastic tradition and to pass it on to the European West. Benedict served as the new monastery’s first abbot until his death on a March 21, traditionally thought to have been in 547.

 

Beatified:           N/A

Canonized:        1220 by Pope Honorius III

Feast Day:         July 11

Patron Saint:    Against Poison, Architects, Benedictines, Europe

Source:

Reflection

Saint Benedict had an unparalleled impact not only on the Benedictine orders but also on our current understanding of living the Christian life. He emphasized compassion for “strangers, the young, the old and the sick.”

To whom do you show compassion? Ask Jesus to help you feel compassion for others and for yourself. Ask that he would show you opportunities to love others and to compassionately appreciate yourself.

Source: Saint Benedict of Nursia (c.480-547) | Saint Mary’s Press (smp.org)

Prayers

Saint Benedict, you were a humble monk whose life remains largely unknown, yet you left a massive legacy. Help each Christian in his home, church, and workplace to labor from the shadows to create light, to be the unseen cause behind great effects, and to light lamps that guide others through the darkness.

Saint Benedict of Nursia, pray for us. Amen.

Source: Saint Benedict, Abbot – My Catholic Life!

Saint Links 

Aleteia – The role of hospitality in the Bible

All Saints & Martyrs – Saint Benedict of Nursia – Abbot

AnaStpaul – Saint of the Day – 11 July – St Benedict of Nursia OSB (c 480-547) Patron of Europe and Founder of Western Monasticism

Bartleby.com – Rev. Alban Butler. Volume III: March. The Lives of the Saints. 1866. March 21 St. Benedict, Abbot

Catholic Culture – Saint Benedict

Catholic Exchange – St. Benedict: Luminous Star of History

Catholic Fire – St. Benedict of Nursia

Catholic Ireland – St Benedict (480-547), abbot, Patron of Europe

Catholic News Agency – St. Benedict Feast Day: Jul 11

Franciscan Media – Beer, Pizza, and Saint Benedict

My Catholic Life – Saint Benedict

New Advent – Ford, H. (1907). St. Benedict of Nursia. In The Catholic Encyclopedia.

Saints, Feast, Family – Saint Benedict’s Story

Saint Mary’s Press – Saint Benedict of Nursia (c.480-547)

Saint of the Day – July 11 St. Benedict of Nursia

uCatholic – The Basilica of Saint Benedict Has Been Destroyed By An Earthquake

Wikipedia

Video Link

St. Benedict – YouTube (Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network – USA)