Monk (ca. 1115-1160)
+ Rainier (who is also known as Rainerius and Regnier) was born to a prosperous merchant in Pisa. In his youth, he worked as a traveling musician. Early accounts of his life stress that this was a particularly “worldly” period in his life.
+ During his travels Rainier had an encounter with a man named Alberto, a nobleman from Corsica who had become a monk in the monastery of San Vito in Pisa. This meeting marked the beginning of a conversion of life for the young musician.
+ In 1146, Rainier set out on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. While there, it is related that he had a vision in which he was directed to give himself entirely to God. He resolve to give up his wealth and live in poverty. He spent seven years living as a beggar in the Holy Land, relying on alms as he prayed in the holy shrines.
+ Rainier returned to Pisa in 1153 and entered the monastery of Sant’Andrea; he later transferred to the Monastery of San Vito.
+ Celebrated as a preacher and for his personal holiness and miracles, Blessed Rainier died around the year 1160. His remains are enshrined in the cathedral in Pisa. He is honored as one of the patron of travelers and as a patron of the city of Pisa.
For prayer and reflection
“Lord, my heart is not exalted,
nor are mine eyes lifted up;
neither have I walked in great matters,
nor in wonders above me.”—Psalm 130:1
O God, who in your kindness called your servant blessed Rainier to the following of Christ, grant, we pray, through his intercession, that, denying ourselves, we may hold fast to you with all our heart. 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.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Holy Men and Women—For a Monk)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.