Saint of the Day – 11 January – Saint Salvius of Amiens (Died c 625) Bishop, Monk, miracle-worker. St Salvius was the fifth Bishop of the French city of Amiens . He lived in the 6th century and 7th century. He is often confused with Salvius of Albi and Salvius of Valencijn. Patronages – against speech impediments, of Montreui, the Frisian town of Dronrijp and of the town of Saint-Sauflieu, in France. He is also known as – Sauve or Saulve (also of Montreuil).
Salvius came from a wealthy Amiens family. He chose an ascetic lifestyle as a hermit but a group of followers gathered around him. One of these followers was St Ingoald (died around 600, memorial on 29 October). The Montreuil Monastery was created from this group of followers. Salvius himself was the first Abbot.He lived a frugal life and was very kind to his fellow man.
According to legend, Salvius was miraculously elected Bishop of Amiens . The miracle is that Salvius had died after a holy life and his fellow monks had entombed his corpse and then watched around the Coffin that night as is the custom, in the “Wake.” In the morning, the coffin opened with a big bang and Salvius opened his eyes from his sleep. He told the monks that he was indeed on his way to the heavenly world but God had sent him back to continue to serve on earth. As a result of this amazing experience, he was elected Bishop to succeed Bishop Ado.
As the Bishop, Salvius was gracious and lived a life of great care and mercy to the poor. By the grace of God, Salvius was able to perform many miracles, curing the blind, the deaf and those with other ailments. On one of his journeys as a Bishop, he healed a deaf and dumb child. He is, therefore, named as patron, for those suffering from speech impediments.
He built a church dedicated to the apostle Peter at Montreuil and also discovered the place where the body of St Firmin of Amiens was buried. St Firmin, who died in c 303 as a Martyr, was the first Bishop of Amiens. Salvius came to the right place with the help of the Holy Spirit. Here he glanced up into the sky, in prayer and a ray of sunshine brought about a shaking of the earth precisely at the site of Firminius’ tomb. Salvius commissioned the remains of Firminius to be taken to Notre-Dame of Amiens. The image below shows our Saint as the 3rd from the left in the St Firmin (in the middle) portal of the Notre-Dame of Amiens.
Miraculous cures continued at his grave. His relics rest at Montreuil, in Picardy, in the Benedictine Abbey which bears his name, whither they were translated from the Cathedral of Amiens, several years after his death, as is related in his anonymous life. A relic of this saint was formerly kept with great veneration in the Cathedral of Canterbury, mentioned in the history of that church.