St. Cuthbert, March 20th

Dear Brethren,

Here is an excerpt regarding St. Cuthbert found in the Anglican Breviary.  Much more is said of him elsewhere, especially regarding many healings the Lord wrought at his hands, and dramatic answers to prayer.

Lenten blessings on this his day,

Fr. Wayne

 

Durham Cathedral

While Cuthbert was Prior, first of [the monasteries of]  Melrose, and then of Lindisfarne, he not only afforded to the monks a beautiful example of the monastic life, and admirable exhortations to the same, but would also go out of the monastery and preach to the people round about.  Such was his skill in teaching, such the persuasive power of his tenderness, such the light of his face, as it had been the face of an Angel, that all came to him, and openly confessed their deeds, and then by fruits meet for repentance, repaired their former iniquities.  It was afterwards whilst he was living as a hermit in the isle of Farne, that he was chosen Bishop of Lindisfarne. In this office he helped by unceasing prayer the people to him committed and taught them in instructions full of soul-saving doctrine.  And he did that which is the main help of a teacher, namely, whatsoever he bade others do, he did it first himself.  He loved warmly; he was long-suffering and lowly; he was constant in instant in prayer; he was very courteous to all men, so much so that he thought it better than prayer to go help a sick brother.  But when he had been bishop two years, he went back to Farne Island, to make himself readier to meet death.  Saith the priest Herefrid, who was present at the time of which he is speaking: When Cuthbert was come very near death, he gave some words of exhortation concerning peace and lowly-mindedness, short but sharp; and them passed the rest of the day quietly waiting for the blessedness which was coming.  When night came, he still continued in prayer, without sleeping  At the usual hour for the night prayers, he received from me the life-giving Sacraments, and provisioned himself for his departure by taking the Body and Blood of the Lord. Then he turned his eyes heavenward, and stretched up his hands, and so breathed forth, to rejoice for ever in the kingdom of heaven, a soul whose bent was already gone home to the praise-giving above. (He fell asleep on the 20th day of March, in the year of salvation 687.)

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