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St. Benedict was born at Nursia in central Italy. Leaving the advantages of wealth, he sought God above all else. Benedict lived in solitude in a cave above Subiaco for three years. Accounts of sanctity and miracles preceded his isolation. His wisdom was sought by local people as well as monks. He founded twelve monasteries in the region.
The Life of St. Benedict by Pope Gregory the Great recounts many astonishing and miraculous resolutions effected through Benedict's intercession. One narrative involves a raven which frequented the refectory hospitality. Following Benedict's instruction, the raven disposed of a poisoned loaf of bread and returned to the dining hall for its dinner. The raven is often depicted in images of Benedict.
The Rule of St. Benedict for monastic communities and the foundation of the monastery at Monte Cassino represent Benedict's most notable legacies. The church façade in the icon depicts the one found at Monte Cassino today. St. Benedict's crypt is below the main altar along with that of his sister St. Scholastica, patroness of Benedictine women.
(This narrative is printed on the back of Note Cards. A copy is included with each plaque.)
Prayer of St. Benedict
Gracious and holy Father,
grant us the intellect to understand you,
reason to discern you, diligence to seek you,
wisdom to find you, a spirit to know you,
a heart to meditate upon you.
May our ears hear you, may our eyes behold you,
and may our tongues proclaim you.
Give us grace that our way of life may be pleasing to you,
that we may have the patience to wait for you
and the perseverance to look for you.
Grant us a perfect end – your holy presence,
a blessed resurrection and life everlasting.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(This prayer is printed on the back of Prayer Cards only.)
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