Saint Benedict leaves Rome for solitude.
The Fifth Century brings us not one but two future Saints. It is 480 A.D. and a little voice cries out, Here I am world! But no sooner heard, than another tiny cry fills the air. Not one, but two babies will be born to the parents of the future Saint Benedict and his twin sister Saint Scholastica.
Now, Norcia is not easy to get to, as we well know. We often wonder why God chooses the most remote places in the world for apparitions by Mother Mary, by the Archangel Michael, for Miracles of the Eucharist and the birth of great Saints. Could it be, because we are too busy to hear or see God working in our midst? I don't know.
What do you think?
Now Rome of his day had become nothing but a barbaric cesspool, filled with pagan tribes, who had invaded her shores, spreading heresy and immoral behavior the likes of which was leading to a widespread depraved and decadent culture infecting all, but especially the intelligentsia, as usual the students.
As goes the world, sadly, often follows the Church. Poor Mother Church was reeling from the attacks within and without - with schisms threatening to tear down all that the Early Church Fathers had built. Immoral and amoral behavior soon became the accepted norm of the day with Christians accepting and adopting the culture of the hordes of heathens who had stormed their land. With permissiveness, war and rampant widespread plundering are sure to follow. There was not a ruler or king who was not either a pagan, or an atheist, or a heretic.
Saint Benedict moves on
Holiness begets holiness, as well as sin begets sin. As sheep willingly follow a goat to slaughter, so it was with this scourge which covered society. It was such a deadly epidemic no one was exempt from its poisonous infection. The wholesale evil and totally immoral behavior of the parents soon cascaded down to the youth, who willing followed and consequently mimicked their example. By the grace of God, the young Benedict was repulsed by all the evil and scandalous behavior he could see permeating not only Rome, but the schools. Not prideful, and totally devoid of the brash opinion of youth, and society as well, that they can handle anything, Benedict made the decision to leave Rome. The only one he told was his nurse, who accompanied him.
The path was clear for him. Having completed all that higher education of his day could offer, he left behind his books; andrejecting all the trappings of the world, his parents’ wealth and comforts of home and estate, departed for a life centered in God. It is fairly certain Benedict left Rome at age twenty, as he was mature enough to discern the decadency and immorality of his friends and class mates.
First small step to a holy life
Saint Benedict and his nurse made their way to Affile, a small towndeep into the mountains, about thirty miles from Rome. There he would start a new life, with possibly others who desired a life centered in God. This was not to be. Try as he may, he soon realized he could not achieve here the closeness with God he so dearly desired. Leaving the temptations of Rome had not been enough. If he was to know God, he would have to lead a solitary life - away from the world.
The anonymity he so desperately sought was not to be his in this small village, especially once he miraculously mended an earthenware vessel, which his nurse had borrowed and broken. He pleaded with her to not share the miraculous happenings. Did she comply? No! She went about the village broadcasting the miracle that had come about. The locals even put up a sign on the church, detailing the miracle and the young man who had brought it about. Enough said, that was to be the end of any possible inner peace andquiet meditative reflection he could hope for. The only way was to leave Affile and any friends he had made there, sympatico as they might have been. He found he could no longer have the comfort of having his pious nurse with him. He made the decision to make it alone, with only God as his Comfort and Shield.
From Bob and Penny Lord's Chapter on Saint Benedict.
Saint Benedict DVD
Based on Bob and Penny Lord’s latest
Come with us to Subiaco, Italy, the first
Visit also the Convent of Saint Scholastica, sister of Saint Benedict.
Come to Monte Cassino, the famous Abbey founded by Saint Benedict.
Scenes from Subiaco Abbey, Arkansas.
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The Lives of the Saints often seem very romantic and idyllic. However, many of our brothers and sisters who have reached the Communion of Saints have paid dearly for the glory the Lord has bestowed on them. Join us as we share in the lives of just some of our Heavenly Family who have suffered greatly, sometimes at the hands of their own families or communities.
Saint Benedict - Click here to see VHS/DVD
Father of Western Monasticism &Founder of Benedictines
Saint Alphonsus Ligouri - Click here to see VHS/DVD
Lawyer, Founder, Religious Superior & Doctor of the Church
Saint Gerard Majella - Click here to see VHS/DVD
Patron of Expectant Mothers
Saint Joan of Arc - Click here to see VHS/DVD
Heroine & Co-Patroness of France
Saint Elizabeth of Hungary
Patroness of Widows, Young girls & the Poor
Saint Basil the Great
Doctor of the Church & Defender of the Faith
Saint Bernardine of Siena - Click here to see VHS/DVD
Apostle of Italy & Friar Minor Missionary
Doctor of the Church & Second Founder of Franciscan Order
Blessed Angela Foligno
Thirteenth Century Mystic & Passionate Lover of Jesus
Saint Peter Claver
Patron Saint of African Slaves
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux
Doctor of the Church & Last Father of the Early Church
Pope Pius XII
Man of Peace, Prophet, & Protector of Victims of War
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