Abbot: d. ca. 556
+ Hervé (or Harvey) was born in Wales. His father was a bard (a professional singer and story-teller) who died while Hervé, who had been born blind, was still an infant.
+ His mother entrusted him to the care of his uncle, Urzel, who had opened a school in Plouvein. In time, Hervé was made superior of the school and small monastery. He later moved the monastery to Lanhorneau.
+ Hervé died around 556 and was celebrated for his holiness, powerful preaching, and love of music. He is honored as one of the patron saints of the blind.
Saint Hervé is said to have had a special power over animals. One legend relates that he had a domesticated wolf as a pet. One day Hervé’s wolf attacked and killed the ox that the monks relied on to pull the plow in the fields. Hervé preached a powerful sermon and the wolf was so contrite it asked to be allowed to serve in place of the ox. For this reason, Hervé is often depicted with a wolf wearing a yoke.
“The mouth of the just man utters wisdom, and his tongue tells forth what is right. The law of his God is in his heart.”—Psalm 37:30-31
Grant us, O Lord, that amid the uncertainties of this world we may cling with all our heart to the things of heaven, for through the Abbot blessed Hervé you have given us a model of evangelical perfection. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Holy Men and Women—For an Abbot)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.