Archive for the ‘St. Wilfrid the Younger’ Tag

Feast of St. Hilda of Whitby (November 18)   Leave a comment

Above:  St. Hilda of Whitby

Image in the Public Domain

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SAINT HILDA OF WHITBY (614-680)

Roman Catholic Abbess

Roman Catholic and New Zealand Anglican feast day = November 17

Episcopal feast day = November 18

Church of England feast day = November 19

St. Hilda of Whitby, born in Northumbria, England, in 614, crossed paths with a number of other canonized saints.  Her sister, St. Hereswitha (d. 690), was a princess.  Our saint’s grand-uncle was St. Edwin (reigned 616-633), the first Christian King of Northumbria.  Her grand aunt was St. Ethelburga, Queen of Northumbria.  Bishop St. Paulinus of York (584-644) baptized St. Hilda at age 13, in 627.  Our saint, a single lay woman until the age of 33 years, became a Benedictine nun at Challes, France.  Later, she became the abbess of Hartepool.  Then, in 657, she became the founding abbess of Whitby.  St. Caedmon (d. circa 670), a foundational English poet, was one of her monks and a recipient of her mentoring.  St. Hilda was also the abbess to future bishops St. Wilfrid of York (d. circa 744) and St. John of Beverley (d. 721).

St. Hilda was a reconciling figure.  She had made sure that her monastic houses followed the Celtic liturgy.  The Synod of Whitby (664), at which the Roman Catholic Church took over the Celtic Church, met at her abbey at Whitby.  After that synod, St. Hilda followed the Latin Rite instead.

St. Hilda died in 680.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 10, 2019 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF PIERRE TEILHARD DE CHARDIN, ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIEST, SCIENTIST, AND THEOLOGIAN

THE FEAST OF HENRY VAN DYKE, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER AND LITURGIST

THE FEAST OF HOWARD THURMAN, PROTESTANT THEOLOGIAN

THE FEAST OF MIKAEL AGRICOLA, FINNISH LUTHERAN LITURGIST, BISHOP OF TURKU, AND “FATHER OF FINNISH LITERARY LANGUAGE”

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O God of peace, by whose grace the abbess Hilda was endowed with gifts of justice, prudence, and strength

to rule as a wise mother over the nuns and monks of her household,

and to become a trusted and reconciling friend to leaders of the Church:

Give us the grace to recognize and accept the varied gifts you bestow on men and women,

that our common life may be enriched and your gracious will be done;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Proverbs 6:20-23

Psalm 113

Ephesians 4:1-6

Matthew 19:27-29

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 687

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Feast of St. Benedict Biscop (January 12)   2 comments

England 700 CE

Above:  England in 700 C.E.

Image in the Public Domain

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ST. BENEDICT BISCOP (CIRCA 628-JANUARY 12, 688/689)

Roman Catholic Abbot of Wearmouth

As I read and took notes about the life of St. Benedict Biscop I became increasingly impressed.  I also decided that he was among my kindred spirits separated from me by time and space.  His habit of accumulating a relatively large library spanning a variety of subjects yet focused on service books confirmed that conclusion.

January 12 seems to be an auspicious date for saints from Northumbria.  In the previous post I wrote about St. Aelred of Hexham (circa 1109/1110-1167), an influential abbot and writer.  Now I write about St. Benedict Biscop (circa 628-689/690), also an influential abbot and scholar.

Biscop Baducing came from Northumbrian nobility.  For a time he was a warrior of King Oswiu of Bernicia (reigned 642-670).  Our saint, who traveled to Rome five times (often in part to purchase books), was a friend of St. Wilfrid, Bishop of York (lived 634-709), a predecessor of St. Wilfrid of Ripon (died circa 744), also Bishop of York.  (Some sources identify the first St. Wilfrid as St. Wilfrid the Elder and the second St. Wilfrid, the one from Ripon, as St. Wilfrid the Younger.)  In 665, after returning from his second journey to Rome, Biscop settled on the island of Lerins, where he studied to become a monk for two years then took vows and a new name–Benedict.

Thus St. Benedict Biscop found his calling and pursued it.  In 668 and 669 he accompanied St. Theodore of Tarsus, Archbishop of Canterbury from 668 to 690, from Rome to England.  Upon their arrival the Archbishop appointed our saint the Abbot of Sts. Peter and Paul’s, Canterbury, a post he held for two years.  In 674 King Ecgfirth of Northumbria (reigned 670-685) granted St. Benedict Biscop land on which to build a monastery–St. Peter’s, Monkwearmouth.  Our saint traveled in Europe to find the masons to erect the structures in the Pre-Romanesque style.  He also made his final journey to Rome in 679 and returned with books, relics, glaziers, masons, and a papal grant of special privileges for the monastery.  Ecgfirth, impressed, granted more land adjacent to St. Peter’s, Monkwearmouth, in 1182.  Thus St. Paul’s, Jarrow, came to exist.  The priory of St. Peter’s and St. Paul’s became a center of learning, due primarily to its library of almost 300 books–an impressive number for the time and place.  (There were no printing presses in Europe yet, although the Chinese had invented one by that time.)  That library proved invaluable to St. Bede of Jarrow, or the Venerable Bede (circa 673-735), a great historian.

St. Benedict Biscop, who did much to influence the world for the better, spent his last two years in pain and confined to his bed.  He died on January 12, 689 or 690, but his legacy has never ceased to live.  The legacies of teachers survive in their students and those whom the students influence.  To this day the writings of St. Bede remain in print, awaiting more readers.  They would not exist without the efforts of St. Benedict Biscop.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

SEPTEMBER 5, 2015 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF MOTHER TERESA OF CALCUTTA, ROMAN CATHOLIC NUN

THE FEAST OF AARON ROBARTS WOLFE, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM MORTON REYNOLDS, U.S. LUTHERAN MINISTER, EPISCOPAL PRIEST, EDUCATOR, AND HYMN TRANSLATOR

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O God, you have endowed us with memory, reason, and skill.

We thank you for the faithful legacy of [St. Benedict Biscop and all others]

who have dedicated their lives to you and to the intellectual pursuits.

May we, like them, respect your gift of intelligence fully and to your glory.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Psalm 103

Philippians 4:8-9

Mark 12:28-34

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 6, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHRODEGANG OF METZ, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF EDMUND KING, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF LINCOLN

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Feast of Sts. Bosa of York, John of Beverley, Wilfrid the Younger, and Acca of Hexham (April 29)   3 comments

Above:  England in 700

SAINT BOSA OF YORK (DIED CIRCA 705)

Roman Catholic Bishop of York

His feast transferred from March 9

preceded

SAINT JOHN OF BEVERLEY (DIED 721)

Roman Catholic Bishop of Hexham then of York

His feast transferred from October 12

preceded

SAINT WILFRID THE YOUNGER (DIED CIRCA 744)

Roman Catholic Bishop of York

His feast = April 29

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SAINT ACCA OF HEXHAM (660-742)

Roman Catholic Bishop of Hexham

His feast transferred from October 20

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This post carries me through English church history I have dabbled in by the way of St. Wilfrid of Ripon.  His path crossed those of other saints.  For the sake of clarity I have chosen to write about part of that saga in one post and another part in this one.  Anyhow, once gain one  name has led to others and to a tale of positive influences.

We begin with St. Bosa of York (died circa 705).  A Benedictine monk at Whiby, he became Bishop of York in 678, replacing St. Wilfrid of Ripon, who refused to accept the division of the diocese.  St. Wilfrid returned to serve as Bishop of York from 686 to 691. after which the tenure of St Bosa resumed.  The Venerable Bede of Jarrow called St. Bosa

a man beloved of God…of most unusual merit and sanctity.

St. John of Beverley (died 721) succeeded St. Bosa as Bishop of York in 705.  A protege of St. Theodore of Tarsus, Archbishop of Canterbury, who supervised his education, St. John became a famous preacher renowned for his erudition.  St. John served as Bishop of Hexham from 687 to 705.  He also participated in the Synod of Nidd (705), which decided the proper settlement of St. Wilfrid of Ripon‘s case.  After serving as Bishop of York from 705 to 717, St. John retired to the monastery at Beverley.  Among his pupils (and therefore legacies) was the Venerable Bede of Jarrow, whom he ordained.

Another legacy of St. John of Beverley was St. Wilfrid the Younger (died circa 744).  Educated at Whitby Abbey, he became a priest under St. John, to whom he functioned as a chaplain and a close aide.  St. Wilfrid the Younger succeeded his mentor as Bishop of York in 717, serving for fifteen years before retiring to Ripon monastery.

St. Bosa had another protege, St. Acca of Hexham (660-742).  This saint grew up in St Bosa’s household and became his (Acca’s) mentor’s aide and traveling companion.  St. Acca also befriended the Venerable Bede of Jarrow and traveled with St. Wilfrid of Ripon in Europe.  St. Acca, Abbot of St. Andrew’s Monastery, Hexham, was St. Wilfrid of Ripon‘s handpicked successor as Bishop of Hexham, serving from 709 to 732.  Renowned for his lovely singing voice, St. Acca encouraged the revival of vocal music in the church.  He also built many churches.  And the Venerable Bede of Jarrow found St Acca’s large library essential for research purposes.

It seems that St. Acca found himself on the wrong side of royal politics in Northumbria in 732.  King Coelwulf (reigned 729-731, 732-737) had to spend part of 731-732 in exile in a monastery due to political intrigues.  Apparently, St. Acca had at least supported the palace coup.  So Coelwulf, restored to the throne, either deposed the bishop in 732 or did not act to reverse that deed.  I found two stories of what St. Acca did after 732.  He either fled west and became Bishop of Whithorn or retired to the hermitage at Withern, in Galloway.

Coelwulf, by the way, is a saint in the Roman Catholic Church.  His feast day is January 15.  Given the uncertain nature of the information I have found about him, I prefer simply to note what I have written in this paragraph and to leave the matter there.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 2, 2012 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SHABBAZ BHATTI AND OTHER CHRISTIAN MARTYRS OF THE ISLAMIC WORLD

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHAD  OF LICHFIELD, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

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 Heavenly Father, Shepherd of your people, we thank you for your servants

Saint Bosa of York

Saint John of Beverley,

Saint Wilfrid the Younger,

and Saint Acca of Hexham,

who were faithful in the care and nurture of your flock;

and we pray that, following their examples,

we may by your grace grow into the stature of the fullness of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ;

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Ezekiel 34:11-16

Psalm 23

1 Peter 5:1-4

John 21:15-17

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 718