Missionary and Bishop (658-739)
+ Willibrord was born in Northumbria and was educated by Saint Wilfrid at Ripon Abbey.
+ After professing monastic vows, he was ordained a priest and began working as a missionary in the Netherlands.
+ After receiving support for his mission from Pope Saint Sergius I, he was consecrated bishop and named “Archbishop of the Frisians.”
+ Willibrord dedicated the rest of his life to his mission and encouraged Saint Boniface in his early missionary endeavors.
+ Saint Willibrord died on November 7, 739, and was immediately honored as a saint. Devotion to the missionary-bishop was promoted by his friend Saint Boniface, as well as by Blessed Alcuin of York and Saint Bede the Venerable.
+ In addition to be honored as the patron saint of those suffering from epilepsy, Saint Willibrord is also honored as the patron saint of Luxembourg.
For prayer and reflection
“Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved.”—Mark 16:15b-16a
O God, who gave increase to your Church through the zeal for religion and apostolic labors of blessed Willibrord, grant, through his intercession, that she may always receive new growth in faith and in holiness. 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 Pastors—For Missionaries)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.