Saint of the Day – 25 July – Saint Magnericus of Trier (c 520-596) Bishop and Confessor. Born in c 520 and died on 25 July 596 of natural causes. Also known as – Magnerich, Magnerico, Magnerik, Meinrich. Magnericu. Magnericus was a friend and disciple of St Gregory of Tours, mentioned in his History of the Franks and ordained St Géry, one of his disciples, who became Bishop of Cambrai-Arras. St Venantius Fortunatus (c 530 – c 609) (his life here: https://anastpaul.com/2019/12/14/saint-of-the-day-14-december-saint-venantius-fortunatus-c-530-c-609/) described the Bishop as virtuous and charitable and an “ornament of bishops“.
Magnericus was born and grew up in Trier, Germany. Not much is known about his early life. Once installed as Bishop, he continued the work begun by his predecessor of restoring the City of Trier and its environs. He founded several clerical communities and Churches, including St.Eucharius and St Paulin. He had a great devotion to Saint Martin of Tours and built several Monasteries and Churches dedicated to him. He converted the Holy Cross Church in Trier into an Oratory in honour of St Martin; it later became the Abbey of St. Martin. Other Churches Magnericus dedicated to St Martin are in Ivois, Carden on the Moselle and a second one in Trier.
He lived in the residence of Bishop Nicetius,and accompanied the Bishop into exile when Nicetius was banished by King Clotaire I. This was an act of revenge for the King being excommunicated. Magnericus returned to Trier the next year. He was Ordained by Nicetius in 566.
He gave sanctuary to Bishop Theodore of Marseilles when he was exiled by Guntramnus of Burgundy in 585 and pleaded with King Childebert II on behalf of the Bishop.
Magnericus was close to the Merovingian Royal house and Childebert II, who made him Godfather of his son,Theudebert II. In 587 he attended a family congress of Kings Childebert and Guntram, which nearly cost him his life. At the meeting, Duke Boso, who had been condemned by the King, fled to his house and took the Bishop hostage. The house was set on fire at the King’s command but fortunately, Magnericus escaped with his life.
The proximity to the Merovingian family and his influence on the fortunes of Austrasia and the Gallic Church helped him maintain urban and regional domination until his death.
He was buried in the cemetery of St Martins. Around the year 1000 Abbot Eberwin wrote a hagiography of the Bishop, whereupon his veneration spread throughout Lorraine. In 1506 his grave was opened but after the destruction of the Church during the French Revolution, his remains disappeared.