Cloistered Dominican Nuns Corpus Christi Monastery

Peace Founded on Truth and Justice: Blessed Pope Benedict XI, O.P.

Pope Benedict_XI

This religious was received into the Order out of charity at the age of fourteen; being an industrious scholar, he rose by degrees to be Master of the Order.

Then having been made a cardinal and afterwards Pope, he showed much zeal in maintaining the rights of the Church, together with cleverness and great gentleness in his way of making them respected.  He was able to re-establish religious and civil peace in Italy, France, England, Germany and Hungary.

But he desired that this peace should be founded on truth and justice towards the Church, as he says in one of his letters:  “Is it possible that we should allow the wicked to rest in peace while the good are oppressed?  Should we allow the innocent to perish?  No, a thousand times, no, please God, the Roman Pontiff, the Pastor of all Christians in the world shall never be chargeable with this laxity.”

He was planning a new crusade for the liberation of the Holy Land when God called him to a better life in 1304, the victim of a mysterious malady after having eaten some fruit presented by an unknown person.  It was this Pope who permitted to the Friars Minor the use of the Office of the Stigmata of St. Francis of Assisi.

Prayer:  “O my God, give to the Sovereign Pontiff a new heart, that he may be unwearied in upholding the standard of the Cross” (St. Catherine of Siena).

Practice: Pray for pilgrims to the Holy Land, and for the good work instituted for the benefit of holy places.

Bl. Benedict XI, pray for us.

From “Saints and Saintly Dominicans: Daily Reflections on Their Lives”, edited by Rev. Thomas a Kempis Reilly, O.P. (1915).

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