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St. Bede the Venerable

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Saint Bede the Venerable

Confessor & Doctor of the Church

Bede was born in Northumbria in the late seventh century. From the age of seven he was educated by the abbot St. Benedict Biscop. Bede grew up to become a monk, and was made deacon and then priest by Bishop St. John of Beverly. He always refused attempts to make him an abbot, preferring to avoid the everyday distractions of administrating a monastery. Bede devoted himself primarily to study of the Holy Scriptures, but there were few subjects on which he was not an expert, and during his own lifetime he was considered the most learned man of his day. His work Ecclesiastical History of the English People led to his reputation as the “Father of English History”. By alternating study and prayer he kept his mind constantly active to avoid sin, and for both his wisdom and his holiness he gained, while yet living, the title “Venerable”, which has remained attached to him ever since. The Venerable Bede died on the feast of the Ascension in the year of Our Lord 735, lying upon the floor of his monastic cell, chanting the Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto with his last breath. He was declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Leo XIII, and is celebrated on May 25th in the modern calendar.


Traditional Roman Martyrology for May 27th

THE demise of the Venerable Bede, priest, confessor and doctor, renowned for sanctity and learning.

The birthday of St. John, pope and martyr, who was called to Ravenna by the Arian king of Italy, Theodoric, and after languishing a long time in prison for the orthodox faith, terminated his life.

At Dorostorum, in Mysia, in the time of the emperor Alexander, the martyrdom of blessed Julius, a veteran soldier in retirement, who was arrested by the officials and presented to the governor Maximus. Having in his presence execrated the idols, and confessed the name of Christ with the utmost constancy, he was condemned to capital punishment.

At Sora, in the time of the emperor Aurelian and the proconsul Agathius, St. Restituta, virgin and martyr, who overcame in a combat for the faith the violence of the demons, the caresses of her family, and the cruelty of the executioners. Being finally beheaded with other Christians, she obtained the honor of martyrdom.

In the territory of Arras, St. Ranulph, martyr.

At Orange, in France, St. Eutropius, a bishop, illustrious for virtues and miracles.

℣. And elsewhere many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

℟. Thanks be to God.

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