St. Magloire, Bishop and Confessor. Born in south Wales and educated under Saint Iltutus – October 24
He was a cousin of Saint Samson (f.d. July 28), with whom he crossed over to Brittany, where they became abbots of two monasteries. Saint Samson became bishop of Dol, and on his death he is said to have been succeeded by Saint Maglorius, who finally retired to the Channel Islands and built an abbey on Sark, where he died (Benedictines), Encyclopaedia.
He is represented in art giving Holy Communion to an angel and is sometimes shown with Saint Samson of Dol. Venerated at Sark (Roeder).
Saint Magloire was born in Brittany, or northwestern France, towards the end of the fifth century. His noble and pious parents placed him while young under the tutelage of Saint Samson, his first cousin, who had become an abbot in England, but had later returned to Brittany and become bishop for his monastery of Dol, south of Saint Malo in that region. Under this excellent master the young man made great progress in the various branches of learning and in virtue.
Saint Magloire, after his ordination, was first made Abbot of a monastery at Lanmeur. He governed that monastery with prudence and holiness for fifty-two years. When Saint Samson died, he was elected to replace him at Dol as its Abbot. Despite his hesitation, based on his sentiments of unworthiness and incapacity, he accepted, but remained for only two or three years; he was already septuagenarian. Then, with the consent of his people, he retired to a desert, where he built a cell. But soon his solitude was interrupted by souls who came seeking his prayers for their cure or deliverance from evil spirits. A wealthy man cured of leprosy, which had afflicted him for seven years, gave him at first half, then the entirety of the Island of Jersey, which was his property. There Saint Magloire built a new monastery, in which sixty-two religious served God, and in their arms he died a few years later. In the church he received the Viaticum from the hand of an Angel, and refused afterwards to leave it, repeating constantly the words of David, the royal psalmist: “I have asked but one thing of the Lord, and will not cease to ask it of Him – that I may dwell in His house all the days of my life.” Great miracles were effected at his tomb, placed in the same church. (more) (more still)
He was fellow-disciple of St. Sampson under St. Iltutus in Wales, his cousin and his zealous companion in his apostolical labours in Armorica or Brittany, and he succeeded him in the abbey of Dole, and in the episcopal character. His labours were attended with a great harvest of souls. After three years, he resigned his bishopric, being seventy years old, and retired into a desert on the continent, and sometime after into the isle of Jersey, where he founded and governed a monastery of sixty monks. He lived on barley-bread and pulse, ate only after sunset, and on Wednesdays and Fridays took no nourishment at all: on Sundays and festivals he added to his bread a little fish. For six months before he died he never stirred out of the church, but when he was obliged by some necessity; and he frequently repeated with sighs: One thing I have asked of the Lord: this will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. 1 He died about the year 575, and is honoured on the 24th of October. His relics were removed to Paris for fear of the Normans, with those of St. Sampson, in the tenth century, and are there kept in the church of St. James, 2 which now bears his name, was a Benedictine monastery, but now belongs to the great seminary of the French Oratorians, and the abbacy is united to the archbishopric. See Lobin. Hist. Ecc. de Paris, t. 1. l. 3. pp. 119, 548. et Vies des SS. de Bretagne, p. 144. Baillet and the new Paris Breviary. 1
Note 1. Ps. xxvi. 4.
Note 2. The relics of St. Magloire, in 857, were translated from Jersey to the abbey of Lehon near Dinan, in the diocese of St. Malo, then lately founded by Nominoë, a British prince, at present a priory subject to Marmontier near Tours. In the incursions of the Normans in the tenth century, the relics of St. Magloire, St. Sampson, St. Malo, St. Senator or Sinier, (bishop of Avranches in the sixth century, honoured the 18th of September,) St. Levien, and some others were conveyed to Paris by Salvator bishop of Quidalet, now St. Malo’s, and several British monks, and deposited in the collegiate royal church of St. Bartholomew, which was the church of the palace and kings. When the British monks returned home, Hugh Capet, the powerful count of Paris, afterwards king, kept the body of St. Magloire with some portions of those of SS. Sampson, Malo, Sinier, &c. and erected a rich Benedictin abbey in the church of St. Bartholomew. The neighbourhood of the court was such a continual occasion of distraction to the monks, that in 1138, leaving the church of St. Bartholomew, which has ever since remained parochial, they removed to a chapel of St. George their cemetery, without the walls of the city, which from that time was called the monastery of St. Magloire. In 1572, this house was conferred on the nuns, called the Penitents, at St. Magloire’s in the street of St. Denys, and the monks were translated to the community of St. James du Haut-pas. This house and church were afterwards settled on the Oratorians to serve for the great seminary of the diocese, called St. Magloire; and the revenues and privileges of the abbot granted to the archbishop of Paris. All these churches, that of the priory of Lehon in Brittany, and many others, honour St. Magloire, some as first, others as second titular. See Le Fevre, Calen. de l’Eglise de Paris, p. 464, the new Paris Breviary, and Lobineau, Vies des SS. de Bretagne, p. 117.
The relics of nineteen saints were brought at that time from Brittany to Paris; viz. of St. Sampson of Dole, of St. Magloire, St. Malo, St. Sinier bishop of Avranches, St. Leonore bishop, St. Guenau priest, St. Brieu, St. Corentin, St. Leuthern regionary bishop, St. Levien bishop, St. Ciferien bishop; parts of the bodies of St. Meloir, (count of Cornouaille, a pious young prince, murdered in the sixth century, honoured on the 2nd of October, with the title of martyr at Quimper, Vannes, Leon, and in the English litany of the seventh century, in Mabillon, Anal. t. 2,) of St. Trimore, (or Gildas, surnamed Treuch-meur, a prince murdered in his childhood by Conomor, count of Cornouaille, honoured on the 8th of November,) of St. Guinganton abbot, of St. Escuiphte abbot, of St. Paternus bishop of Avranches, of St. Scubilion, and of St. Buzeu, a native of Great Britain, disciple of St. Gildas in Armorica, and martyr (24th of November.) These saints are honoured at St. Magloire’s on the 17th of October, the day of the reception of their relics: though they have all particular days assigned for their festivals, except four, viz. St. Leuthern, St. Levien, St. Escuiphte, and St. Guinganton, abbot in the diocess of Vannes. Count Hugh Capet having suffered the Britons to carry away only part of these relics, kept portions of those of each. Those of St. Magloire are kept in a case of silver gilt, those of St. Leuthern in one of wood gilt, those of St. Meloir were carried to Meaux, of St. Paternus to Orleans and Issoudun; part of those of St. Brieu and St. Corentin were afterwards given to a nunnery, founded by Philip Augustus in the diocess of Chartres on the Seine, called St. Corentin’s. Part of St. Sampson’s was left by the Britons, in their return at Orleans, in the church of St. Symphorian, now called St. Sampson’s. The Britons in return for those they received back, sent to St. Magloire’s in Paris, portions of the relics of St. Paul of Leon, of SS. Maimbeuf and Apotheme, bishops of Angers, of St. Gurval, St. Briach, St. Golvein, &c. See Chatelain, Mart. Univ. p. 802.