ST WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ABBOT – MEMORIAL: JUNE 25
William, born of noble parents at Vercelli, had scarcely completed his fourteenth year when, with a wonderful spirit of penance and an ardour of piety, he undertook a pilgrimage to Compostella. Then, after attempting in vain another pilgrimage to the sepulchre of Christ the Lord, he remained two years on a lonely hill in constant prayer, vigils and fasts.
HE BUILT A MONASTERY
When he restored sight to a blind man, fleeing the praises of men, he built a monastery in a rugged and inaccessible spot on Monte Virgiliano, which thereafter was called Monte Vergine. He there admitted companions and molded them by certain rules, taken for the most part from the institutes of St Benedict, and by his words and by the example of his most holy life.
A MOST HOLY LIFE
When other monasteries were built later on, the holiness of William became more famous day by day and attracted men from all parts to him. They were also drawn by the fame of his frequent miracles. Finally, after predicting his death, he fell asleep in the Lord in the year of salvation 1142.
O God, who made your saints an example and a help for our weakness; grant us, as we walk the path of salvation, so to venerate the virtues of the blessed Abbot William that we may obtain his intercession and follow his footsteps. Through our Lord…
– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964 [bold titles added]