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St. William of York

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Saint William of York

Bishop & Confessor

William Fitzherbert was born in England in the late eleventh century, to King Henry I’s treasurer and King Stephen’s half-sister. As a cleric he rose to become treasurer of the Archdiocese of York. In the year of Our Lord 1142 he was elected archbishop, with the approval of the king, but simony accusations caused William to go to Rome to plead his case. He was opposed by St. Bernard of Clairvaux himself, who preferred a fellow Cistercian monk as candidate. William proved himself innocent of bribery, but before he could be fully confirmed by receiving the pallium of an archbishop, the pope died and was succeeded by Bl. Eugene III. Pope Eugene was a Cistercian himself, and suspended William. After some of William’s supporters foolishly attacked the Cistercian abbey near York, a council deposed William and the pope confirmed his Cistercian rival. William spent several years as a simple monk, patiently offering up his sufferings, until his rival died and William was able to successfully plead his case to a new pope. William triumphantly entered York, an archbishop once more, to the joyful acclaim of his people, but the holy man died not long after, in the year of Our Lord 1154.


Traditional Roman Martyrology for June 8th

AT Aix, in France, St. Maximin, first bishop of that city, who is said to have been a disciple of our Lord.

The same day, St. Calliopa, martyr, who, for the faith of Christ, had her breasts cut off, her flesh burned, was rolled on broken pottery, and being lastly decapitated, received the palm of martyrdom.

At York, in England, St. William, archbishop and confessor, who, among other miracles wrought at his tomb, raised three persons from the dead. He was placed in the calendar of the Saints by Honorius III.

At Soissons, in France, the birthday of St. Medard, bishop of Noyon, whose life and precious death are illustrated by glorious miracles.

At Rouen, St. Gildard, bishop, brother of St. Medard. They were born on the same day, consecrated bishops at the same time, and being taken away from this life also on the same day, they entered heaven together.

At Sens, St. Heraclius, bishop.

At Metz, St. Clodulphus, bishop.

In the March of Ancona, St. Severin, bishop of Steptempeda.

In Sardinia, St. Sallustian, confessor.

At Camerino, St. Victorinus, confessor.

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

℟. Thanks be to God.

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