18 Nov

St Felix of Valois, Memorial: November 20

Felix, once called Hugh, was born in France of the royal family of the Valois. When a youth, he began to think of withdrawing into solitude out of his desire for contemplation.

After being made priest, he retired into a place of solitude, where he lived for some years with St John of Matha.

Counseled by an angel of God

Then, counseled by an angel of God, both set out for Rome, where they obtained from Pope Innocent III, who had likewise been divinely counseled, approbation for a new Order for the ransom of captives.

An Order for the ransom of captives

He gave the Order a white habit marked with a cross of two colours, as it was worn by the angel, and he named the new foundation after the Most Holy Trinity.

Soon, in the diocese of Meaux, a place called Cerfroi, they built the first monastery of the Order. There Felix received an extraordinary favour from the Blessed Virgin Mary, when she appeared in the midst of the choir, wearing the habit marked with the cross of the Order. Full of years and merits, he died in the Lord in the year 1212.


O God, who by heavenly inspiration graciously called forth blessed Felix, your Confessor, from the desert to the work of ransoming captives; grant, we beseech you, that by his intercession, and liberated by your grace from the captivity of our sins, we may be led into our heavenly fatherland. Through our Lord.

– From: Roman Breviary, Burns & Oates, London, 1964


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