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Saint of the Day: St. Paschasius Radbertus

Theologian who wrote about the Eucharist


© José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro | CC BY-SA 4.0

Abbot (785-865)

His life

+ Paschasius was left abandoned on the steps of the convent of Notre-Dame de Soissons as an infant. He was raised by the nuns and, when he was old enough, he became a monk at Corbie, in Picardy, France.

+ A gifted theologian, he was also a dedicated monk and helped establish the abbey of New Corvey in Westphalia. He would be elected abbot of this community in 843. He resigned his office ten years later and, after a period of living in voluntary exile, he eventually returned to the abbey of Corbie.

+ Among Paschasius’ theological writings, the most influential was his treatise on the Eucharist, De Corpore et Sanguine Domini (“Concerning the Body and Blood of the Lord”). This was the first extended treatise on the Eucharist in the Western Church and became a foundational document in eucharistic and sacramental theology.

+ Saint Paschasius Radbertus died in 865 and was honored as a saint immediately following his death.

For prayer and reflection

“That in truth the body and blood are created by the consecration, no one doubts who believes the divine words when the Truth says: ‘For my flesh is truly food, and my blood is truly drink.'”—Saint Paschasius Radbertus


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 Paschasius Radbertus 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.

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