Above: Provence and Piedmont in 843 C.E.
Image in the Public Domain
SAINT HELDRAD (DIED CIRCA 842)
Roman Catholic Abbot
St. Heldrad entered the world at Lambec, in Provence; his father was a feudal lord. The saint spent the entirety of his inheritance on building a church, erecting a hospice, and helping the poor. Then he became a religious pilgrim and visited holy places in Italy, France, and Spain. After that the saint settled down at the Benedictine monastery at Novalese, in Piedmont, at the foot of the Alps Mountains. Ordained, he received responsibility for training novices. In time the saint became abbot there. He rescued travelers stranded on Mt. Cenis. He also built a hospice there and helped to expand the monastery’s library.
Growing up in southern Georgia, U.S.A., heard many people define prayer as “talking to God.” That is one form of prayer–a valid one. Yet listening is another valid form of prayer. And living properly is another. I find that my prayer life is moving away from talking very much to God and shifting toward listening more often. And I seek the erasure of the border between prayer and the rest of my activities. This preference explains my attraction to the examples which St. Heldrad and many others (most of whose names are lost to history) set. Prayer, as I understand it, is living with a heightened awareness of being in the presence of God and responding to the divine presence favorably.
KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR
DECEMBER 14, 2011 COMMON ERA
THE FEAST OF SAINT VENANTIUS HONORIUS CLEMENTIUS FORTUNATUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP
THE FEAST OF SAINT JOHN OF THE CROSS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR
THE FEAST OF CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH, COMPOSER
whose blessed Son became poor that we through his poverty might be rich:
Deliver us from an inordinate love of this world,
that we, inspired by the devotion of your servant Saint Euphrasia of Constantinople,
may serve you with singleness of heart,
and attain to the riches of the age to come;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Song of Songs 8:6-7
Psalm 34 or 34:1-8
Luke 12:33-37 or Luke 9:57-62
–Adapted from The Book of Common Prayer (1979), pages 249 and 927
Revised on December 24, 2016