Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, DOMINICAN OP, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 15 November – St Albertus Magnus / Albert the Great OP (1200-1280) Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church

Saint of the Day – 15 November – St Albertus Magnus / the Great OP (1200-1280) Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church – Doctor Universalis (Universal Doctor) – Priest and Friar of the Order of Preachers, Theologian, Scientist, Philospher, Teacher, Writer. St Albert was Beatified in 1622 by Pope Gregory XV and Canonised and created a Doctor of the Church in 1931 by Pope Pius XI.   St Albert was known during his lifetime as Doctor Universalis and Doctor Expertus and, late in his life, the Sobriquet “Magnus” was appended to his name. He is the Patron of • Medical Technicians, Natural Sciences, Philosophers, schoolchildren, Scientists (proclaimed on 13 August 1948 by Pope Pius XII). Theology students. Scholars have referred to him as the greatest German Philosopher and Theologian of the Middle Ages.

St Albert the Great,
Doctor of the Church
From Saint Albert le Grand, 1942

Saint Albert the Great was born in the region of Augsbourg, Germany, of parents rich in the goods of fortune. From the time he was a child, he manifested in his studies, an unusual aptitude for the exact sciences. While he was still a boy, he had himself let down the side of a cliff to examine, at close range, an eagle’s nest which interested him. At the age of fifteen he was already a student of the natural sciences and the humanities, at Bologna. Saint Dominic had died in that City the preceding year, 1221 and was buried in the Dominican Convent there. Their house, in a suburban area of Bologna, was closely associated with the activities at the University and students in large numbers were requesting admission to the Order.

Blessed Reginald of Orleans, Dominican, a former Professor in Paris, came to preach there in the streets. The second Dominican General, Blessed Jordan of Saxony, a compatriot of Albert and a very eloquent Preacher, was in Padua and when the students of Bologna were transferred there, Albert heard him at the Padua Dominican Church. He had already desired to enter the Order, but his uncle, opposed to that plan a very vigorous opposition and Albert was still very young. He dreamed one night that he had become a Dominican but left the Order soon afterwards. The same day he heard Master Jordan preach and the Dominican General spoke of how the demon attempts, to turn aside those who want to enter into religion, knowing that he will suffer great losses from their career in the Church – he persuades them in dreams that they will leave it, or else they see themselves on horseback, or clothed in purple, or as solitaries in the desert, or surrounded by cordial friends; thus he makes them fear entering because they would not be able to persevere. This was precisely Albert’s great concern, faced as he was with his uncle’s opposition. Afterwards the young student, amazed, went to Blessed Jordan, saying: “Master, who revealed my heart to you?” And he lost no time then in entering the Order at the age of sixteen, in 1223, having heard the same Preacher remark, to him personally, that he should consider what a pity it would be, if his excellent youthful qualities became the prey of eternal fires!

When he had earned the title of Doctor in Theology, he was sent to Cologne, where for a long time his reputation attracted many illustrious disciples. The humble Albert, filled with the love of God, taught also in Padua and Bologna, in Saxony, at Freibourg, Ratisbonne and Strasbourg and when Blessed Jordan of Saxony died in 1237, he occupied his place and fulfilled his functions, until 1238, when the election of his successor was held. He returned then to Cologne, where he would encounter a disciple, who alone among all of them, would suffice for his glory — Saint Thomas Aquinas. This young religious, already steeped in the highest theological studies, was silent among the others, to the point of being called by his fellow students “the Mute Ox of Sicily.” But Albert silenced them, saying, “The bellowings of this ox will resound throughout the entire world!”

From Cologne, Saint Albert was called to the University of Paris, with his dear disciple. There, his genius appeared in all its brilliance and there, he composed a large number of his writings. Later, obedience took him back to Germany as Provincial of his Order. Without a murmur, he said farewell to his cell, his books and his numerous disciples and as Provincial, thereafter, journeyed with no money, always on foot, visiting the numerous Monasteries under his jurisdiction, throughout an immense territory, in which were included Austria, Bavaria, Saxony and other regions even to Holland.

He was no longer young when he had to submit to the formal order of the Pope and accept, in difficult circumstances, the Episcopal See of Ratisbonne. There, his indefatigable zeal was rewarded, only by harsh trials, in the midst of which, his virtue was perfected. When, in response to his persevering requests to be relieved of the responsibilities of a large See, Pope Urban IV restored to him the conventual peace of his Order, he was nonetheless, obliged to take up his apostolic journeyings again. Finally, he could enter into a definitive retreat, to prepare for death. One is astonished that amid so many labours, journeys and works of apostolic zeal, Albert could find the time to write on the natural sciences, on philosophy and theology, works which form from twenty-one to thirty-eight volumes, depending on the edition — and one may ask, in which of his titles, he most excelled, that of scholar, of Saint, or of Apostle?

He died, apparently of fatigue, at the age of seventy three, on 15 November 1280 and his body was buried in Cologne in the Dominican Church. He had to wait until 16 December 1931 for the honours of Canonisation and the extension of his cult to the Universal Church. Proclaiming his holiness, Pope Pius XI added the glorious title, so well merited, of Doctor of the Church. From time immemorial, he has been known as the glorious Saint Albert the Great, [Albertus Magnus, most worthy indeed, is this holy child of St Dominic!]

Author:

Passionate Catholic. Being a Catholic is a way of life - a love affair "Religion must be like the air we breathe..."- St John Bosco Prayer is what the world needs combined with the example of our lives which testify to the Light of Christ. This site, which is now using the Traditional Calendar, will mainly concentrate on Daily Prayers, Novenas and the Memorials and Feast Days of our friends in Heaven, the Saints who went before us and the great blessings the Church provides in our Catholic Monthly Devotions. "For the saints are sent to us by God as so many sermons. We do not use them, it is they who move us and lead us, to where we had not expected to go.” Charles Cardinal Journet (1891-1975) This site adheres to the Catholic Church and all her teachings. PLEASE ADVISE ME OF ANY GLARING TYPOS etc - In June 2021 I lost 95% sight in my left eye and sometimes miss errors. Thank you and bless you 🙏

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