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Benedict of Nursia

262 bytes added, 14:14, August 23, 2008
St. Benedict was born at Nursia, in Italy, around 470 A.D. Sent to school in Rome, he soon fled the worldliness of life in the city, abandoning his secular studies to become a [[monk]]. Although he first lived with a "company of virtuous men," soon a [[miracle]] the holy man performed , fixing a broken vessel, attracted attention. He fled once again and took up residence in a mountain cave at Subiaco, near the site of a villa built by Nero. Here St. Benedict lived in continual [[prayer]] and asceticism for three years. Eventually, God allowed his fame to spread once again, and he was asked by a nearby community of monks to become their [[abbot]]. The saint reluctantly agreed but eventually returned . However, the men rebelled against his ascetic directions and attempted to his cave poison him. St. Benedict was unharmed, because as he made the sign of the resistance of cross over the poisoned drink, the monks cup shattered. He returned to his spiritual guidancecave. Gradually, however, individuals began to come to live near him at Subiaco, and in the end St. Benedict built twelve [[monastery|monasteries]] for these spiritual children, living himself at a thirteenth. St. Gregory notes a tradition that St. Benedict had a sister, [[St. Scholastica]], who became a [[nun]] at one of his communities, and a famous story has her praying for a rainstorm on one occasion so as to enjoy more time in spiritual fellowship with her brother. Three days later, she died. St. Benedict saw her soul rising to heaven "in the likeness of a dove," and had her buried in his own tomb. (St. Scholastica is remembered on [[February 10]].) After receiving the [[Eucharist|Holy Mysteries]], St. Benedict reposed in the oratory of his monastery, his arms lifted in prayer, in the year 543.

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