March 21 and July 11: Saint Benedict


O glorious St. Benedict, sublime model of all virtues, pure vessel of God’s grace!

Behold me, humbly kneeling at thy feet. I implore thy loving heart to pray for me before the throne of God.

To thee I have recourse in all the dangers which daily surround me. Shield me against my enemies, inspire me to imitate thee in all things.

May thy blessing be with me always, so that I may shun whatever God forbids and avoid the occasions of sin.

Graciously obtain for me from God those favors and graces of which I stand so much in need, in the trials, miseries and afflictions of life.

Thy heart was always so full of love, compassion, and mercy towards those who were afflicted or troubled in any way.

Thou didst never dismiss without consolation and assistance any one who had re-course to thee.

I therefore invoke thy powerful intercession, in the confident hope that thou wilt hear my prayers and obtain for me the special grace and favor I so earnestly implore (mention it), if it be for the greater glory of God and the welfare of my soul.

Help me, O great St. Benedict, to live and die as a faithful child of God, to be ever submissive to His holy will, and to attain the eternal happiness of heaven.Amen.


St. Benedict, born in 480 A.D., was the founder of western monasticism and is renowned for his power against the Devil.

St. Benedict was also a great miracle worker, as many books document. In particular, we recommend The Life of St. Benedict by Pope St. Gregory the Great.

He is a powerful patron that we need today when impurity, apostasy and infidelity inundate the earth.

St. Benedict died March 21, 543, as he stood before the altar of Monte Cassino immediately after receiving Holy Communion.

St. Benedict is easily one of the greatest saints of all time.


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Comment by Dawn Marie on March 22, 2018 at 9:07am

Saint Benedict Brings Child back to Life
Being upon a day gone out with his monks to work in the field, a country man carrying the corpse of his dead son came to the gate of the Abbey, lamenting the loss of his child: and inquiring for holy Benedict, they told him that he was abroad with his monks in the field. Down at the gate he laid the dead body, and with great sorrow of soul ran in haste to seek out the venerable father. At the |93 same time, the man of God was returning homeward from work with his monks: whom so soon as he saw, he [the country man] began to cry out: "Give me my son, give me my son!"
The man of God, amazed at these words, stood still, and said: "What, have I taken away your son?" "No, no," quoth the sorrowful father, " but he is dead: come for Christ Jesus' sake and restore him to life."
The servant of God, hearing him speak in that manner, and seeing his monks upon compassion to solicit the poor man's suit, with great sorrow of mind he said: "Away, my good brethren, away: such miracles are not for us to work, but for the blessed Apostles: why will you lay such a burthen upon me, as my weakness cannot bear?" But the poor man, whom excessive grief enforced, would not give over his petition, but swore that he would never depart, except he did raise up his son.
"Where is he, then?" quoth God's servant.
He answered that his body lay at the gate of the Abbey: to which place when the man of God came with his monks, he kneeled down and lay upon the body of the little child, and rising, he held up his hands towards heaven, and said: "Behold not, O Lord, my sins, but the faith of this man, that desireth to have his son raised to life, and restore that soul to the body, which thou hast taken away."
He had scarce spoken these words, and behold the soul returned back again, and therewith the child's body began to tremble in such sort that all which were present did behold it in strange manner to pant and shake. Then he took it by the hand and gave it to his father, but alive and in health. Certain it is that this miracle was not in his own power, so he prostrated upon the ground and prayed so earnestly.

Comment by Dawn Marie on March 21, 2018 at 7:50pm

21st March, St Benedict, Abbot, Patriarch of Monks

St Benedict, Abbot, Patriarch of Monks
At every turning of history God raises up great saints in order to strengthen the supernatural hold over souls exercised by the Church in virtue of her divine mission.
The Roman Empire had crumbled down and the Barbarians had invaded the whole of Europe. Then appeared Benedict, as chief of the monks of the West. He was born at Nursia, in Umbria, in 480. Sent to Rome for his studies, but already endowed with the wisdom of age, says St. Gregory, he fled from the world to the solitude of Subiaco. After spending three years in a cave he attracted crowds by his virtues.
The great Roman families sent their children to him and he soon founded in the mountains twelve monasteries "schools for the Lord's service", where, under the direction of an Abbot, the monks learned, by the exercise of public prayer, of private prayer and of work, to forget self and live in God. St. Benedict, in the Holy Rule, orders the examination of novices to ascertain if they are full of solicitude for the work of God, for obedience and for humiliation".
As "idleness is the enemy of the soul'" the holy Law-giver adding example to his words, showed his disciples how they were to clear lands and hearts. Uniting manual labour "with constant preaching to the pagan population of Monte Cassino" he left to his sons the monastic motto: Ora et labora: pray and work.
Forty days after the death of his sister St. Scholastica, St. Benedict, standing at the foot of the altar where he had just, by holy Communion, taken part in the sacrifice of the Mass and of Calvary, and supported by his disciples who surrounded him, gave up to God his soul transfigured by 63 years of austere penance and of fidelity to the divine law which he kept in his heart (Introit). This was in 543.
Like Moses on Sinai (Epistle), Benedict on Monte Cassino was the Lawgiver of his people, and God established over His house this prudent servant (Communion). "The Holy Rule," as the Councils called it, "inspired by the same Spirit who has dictated the Sacred Canons" has sanctified thousands of souls which, especially during the six centuries when no other important Order existed in Europe left everything following the example of the glorious Patriarch of the West (Gospel), to enroll themselves in the militia of Christ under the Benedictine observance. (A recent commentator mentions 57,000 known Benedictine saints, of which 5,555 for Monte Cassino alone.) The first of his precepts recommends not to prefer anything to the liturgical worship in which adoration finds its most perfect expression.
(Italy and France in the seventh and eighth centuries were covered with monasteries which counted up to a thousand monks or nuns. Even then numerous laymen forming confraternities entered the institution of secular oblates which allowed them, as the Third Orders later did, to participate in all the merits of the Benedictine family. In 1780, says Godescard, the Order counted 30,000 houses. Reduced to 2000 after the Revolution to-day it counts with its branches over 14,000 subjects.)

St. Benedict is called the Doctor of humility. He was a prophet and wrought miracles and "was filled with the spirit of all the just" says St. Gregory. (His empire over devils is still exercesed nowadays by the medal of St. Benedtct which works wonders especially in missionary countries where Satan is most powerful.)

Among his sons are counted more than twenty popes, and an immense number of bishops, doctors, apostles, learned men and educators who have deserved well of humanity and of the Church. (Five sons of 8t. Benedict are numbered among the Doctors of the Church. St Augustine of Canterbury converted England; St. Boniface, Germany; St. Amandus, St. Willibrord, St. Anscharius and others brought to the faith more than twenty pagan nations.)

By his life he powerfully co-operated in the work of redemption and his glorious death has made him the patron of holy dying.

"Let us keep our lives in all purity so as to atone for and correct during the holy season of Lent all the negligences of other times." (Holy Rule, ch. 49).

Gaudeamus omnes in Domino, diem festum celebrantes sub honore sancti Benedicti Abbatis: de cujus solemnitate gaudent Angeli, et collaudant Filium Dei. * Magnus Dominus et laudabilis nimis: in civitate Dei nostri, in monte sancto ejus.
Let us all rejoice in the Lord, celebrating a festival in honour of  the holy Abbot Benedict; at whose solemnity the Angels rejoice, and give praise to the Son of God. * Great is the Lord, and exceedingly to be praised: in the city of our God, in his holy mountain.
(Psalm 47:2 from the Introit of Mass, according to the proper Benedictine Usage)

Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui hodierna die carnis eductum ergastulo sanctissimum sublevasti ad coelum: concede, quaesumus, haec festa tuis famulis celebrantibus cunctorum veniam delictorum; ut, qui exsultantibus animis ejus claritati congaudeant, ipso apud te interveniente consocientur et meritis.
O almighty and everlasting God, who didst this day deliver out of the prison of the flesh thy most holy Confessor Benedict and bear him up to heaven, grant, we beseech thee, thy servants, who are celebrating this festival, forgiveness for all sins, that in the gladness wherein they are united in rejoicing at his glory, they may by his intercession before thee partake also in his merits.
(Collect, according to the Benedictine usage)

Sequence for the Mass of St Benedict
(according to the Missale Monasticum)

Laeta quies magni ducis,
Dona ferens novae lucis,
Hodie recolitur.

Caris datur piae menti,
Corde sonet in ardenti,
Quidquid foris promitur.

Hunc per callem orientis
Admiremur ascendentis
Patriarchae speciem.

Amplum semen magnae prolis
Illum fecit instar solis
Abrahae persimilem.

Corvum cernis ministrantem,
Hinc Eliam latitantem
Specu nosce parvulo.

Elisaeus dignoscatur,
Cum securis revocatur
De torrentis alveo.

Illum Joseph candor morum,
Illum Jacob futurorum
Mens effecit conscia.

Ipse memor suae gentis,
Nos perducat in manentis.
Semper Christi gaudia.

Joyful rest of our leader, that brings the gift of a new light, we commemorate you today.

Grace is given the loving soul, may our ardent heart be united to the songs of our lips.

By the radiant way going up to the east, let us admire our Father rising to heaven, equal to the patriarchs.

His innumerable posterity, figure of the sun, made him like to Abraham.

See the crow serving him and recognize hence Elias hiding in a little cave.

Recognize Eliseus, when he bids return the axe from beneath the current.

It is Joseph through his life without stain; it is Jacob bringing future things to mind.

May he be mindful of his people, and may he lead us till we behold with him the eternal joys of Christ.

The sequence sung by the monks of Norcia:

From the Catholic Encyclopaedia on St Benedict:
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