+ Egbert (or Ecgberht) was born into a noble Anglo-Saxon family in Northumbria (England). After being educated in the famous monastery in Lindisfarne, he traveled to Ireland and settled in modern-day county Carlow.
+ After contracting the plague—which claimed the lives of many of his companions—Egbert vowed to become a perpetual pilgrim if he were cured. He did recover and he spent the final 65 years of his life in prayer and fasting. His journeys as a pilgrim helped to make him a prominent figure throughout Britain and Ireland.
+ After being ordained a priest, he organized groups of monks to travel into Frisia (modern-day Germany) and he supported the work of great missionary bishops, including Saint Adalbert, Saint Swithbert, and Saint Chad.
+ Egbert also worked to reform the life of the Church in Ireland, including supporting the adoption of the Roman way of calculating the date of Easter, helping to insure the unity of the Church. It is unsure if Egbert was consecrated as a bishop.
+ Saint Egbert died in Iona on Easter Sunday, April 24, 729.
For prayer and reflection
“Receive the joy of your glory, giving thanks to God,
who has called you into the heavenly kingdom, alleluia.”—Alternate entrance antiphon for the Second Sunday of Easter
On the Second Sunday of Easter—the Octave of Easter—the Church proclaims the story of the appearance of the Risen Lord to the Apostles, including Thomas, who comes to believe that the Lord has truly been raised. During the Jubilee Year in 2000, Pope Saint John Paul II designated the Second Sunday of Easter as the Feast of Divine Mercy.
God of everlasting mercy,
who in the very recurrence of the paschal feast
kindle the faith of the people you have made your own,
increase, we pray, the grace you have bestowed,
that all may grasp and rightly understand
in what font they have been washed,
by whose Spirit they have been reborn,
by whose Blood they have been redeemed.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal: Collect for the Second Sunday of Easter)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.