Saint of the Day – 22 December – Saint Hungerus Frisus of Utrecht (Died 866) Bishop of Utrecht – born in the Low Countries, now the Netherlands and died in 866 at Prum, Germany of natural causes. Also known as Hunger.
St Hungerus was the Bishop of Utrecht from 854 to 866. We are not sure when he was born. After the death of his predecessor Luidger of Utrecht, Luidger’s nephew Craft, was offered the seat. However, Craft, a very wealthy person, refused because he was afraid that he would attract Viking raids.
Instead the Canon, St Hungerus was appointed. At first, his relations with the Vikings were peaceful but eventually Utrecht was threatened by the Vikings, at which the Bishop and the entire clergy of Utrecht fled to Saint Odilienberg, near Roermond. During this time of exile, Hungerus spent his time teaching the faith in the surrounding areas. In 858 King Lothair II made a Monastery available for them. Later, the Bishop settled in Prum and then in Deventer.
By all accounts, St Hungerus was a Godly and pious man, who unlike his predecessors, did not engage in nepotism. In the case of the childless marriage between King Lotharius and his wife, he defended the sanctity of their marriage on Biblical and theological grounds but against his counsel, to secure his succession, Lothair repudiated his wife and married Waldrada, with whom he had a son.
St Hungerus Died in Prum, Germany of natural causes and his feast is today 22 December.