Tag Archives: Benedictine saints and blesseds

Saints Odo, Maiolus, Odilo, Hugh, and Blessed Peter the Venerable, Abbots of Cluny

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Lord our God, you are the shield and glorious reward of those who walk blamelessly before you. Keep us steadfast in your holy service so that, by the example and intercession of the blessed abbots of Cluny, we may with open hearts run the path of perfect charity

The Benedictine liturgical calendar honors the holy abbots of Cluny, Saints Odo, Majolo, Odilo, Hugh, and Blessed Peter the Venerable. 

Saint Odo, the second abbot of Cluny, born circa 878, and he died on 18 November, 942. He reformed several monasteries in Aquitaine, northern France, and Italy, and was entrusted with some important political missions;


Saint Majolus or Maieul born in 906, and died in 994. Otto II desired to make him pope in 974 but he refused;


Saint Odilo, fifth abbot of Cluny, born around 962 and died on 31 December 1048. The number of monasteries in the Cluniac congregation (mainly by reforming existing monasteries) increased from 37 to 65 under his abbacy; we worked to achieve a truce, that is, ‘the peace of God’ that restricted warfare; he acted charitably which saved thousands during a time of famine and he is most remembered for introducing the Feast of All Saints into the Roman liturgical calendar;


Saint Hugh the Great was born at Semur (Brionnais in the Diocese of Autun, 1024 and died at Cluny, 28 April, 1109. A friend of Pope Saint Gregory VII Hugh played a key role in the reform of the clergy, and was widely recognized for his sanctity even during his lifetime.

Saint Anselm of Canterbury

Anselm statue canterbury cathedral outside.jpgYou might be surprised to read this, not all theologians root their work in theology in prayer, personal and communal, of personal devotion, liturgical and lectio divina. I am somewhat confident that some Catholic theologians have a beautiful relationship with the Divine Majesty; that they care, in an intense way, about their spiritual lives through a regular practice of daily prayer, meditation, by availing themselves to the sacraments, attendance at Mass and even the daily singing of the Divine Office. However, you would never know that theologians, particularly Catholics, have rely on prayer for their work  because rarely talk about their experiences of prayer. A notable Jesuit spiritual director and writer once said that if you can’t articulate the pattern of your prayer, you aren’t praying.

Yesterday I heard Cardinal William Levada speak at More House of Yale University on a new apologetic for the new evangelization and it struck me that in addition to neglecting the role of suffering as part of framing this a new apologetic, he neglected to speak about personal and liturgical prayer. No doubt that he say you have to pray, but the absence of speaking about the place of prayer in apologetics and evangelization is telling.
Just as a priest who never prays the Divine Office, attend to the sacrament of love and Mercy, see a spiritual director, practice lectio divine, and do spiritual reading, theologians who likewise neglect these things aren’t really helping us to build a culture of prayer, study, service and community. That is, the proclamation of the gospel will be stunted.

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Novena of Prayer to Saint Benedict, Day 9

The order of prayer

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Let us rejoice in the Lord, celebrating the memory of the holy abbot, Benedict. (antiphon)
Pray Psalm 9
The prayer of petition to Saint Benedict may be found here, and then pray the following prayer.
Let us pray.
Almighty and everlasting God, You freed the man of God, Benedict, from the prison of the flesh and bore him up to heaven to enjoy the vision of Your glory. Grant us, through his merits, the spirit of penance, forgiveness of our sins, so that we may one day share the joys of eternal life with him and all the saints. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Novena of Prayer to Saint Benedict, Day 8

The order of prayer

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Those who offered him food for his body received from his lips the Word of God, the food of life. (antiphon)
Pray Psalm 19: 1-7
The prayer of petition to Saint Benedict may be found here, and then pray the following prayer.
Let us pray.
Lord God, it is Your will that the whole world look to You for salvation and deliverance from the slavery of sin. Grant us a sense of mission, such as Saint Benedict had, and fill us with an apostolic spirit that we may, by the example of our life, help to draw others to You. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Novena of Prayer to Saint Benedict, Day 7

The order of prayer

San Benedetto da Norcia2.jpg
The holy monk Benedict could not have lived differently from what he taught. (antiphon)
Pray Psalm 34: 11-16
The prayer of petition to Saint Benedict may be found here, and then pray the following prayer.
Let us pray.
God of wisdom and of counsel, raise up in Your Church the Spirit which guided the man of God, Benedict, so that, filled with that same Holy Spirit, we may seek to love what he did, and to practice what he taught. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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