vendredi 13 mars 2015

Bienheureux AGNEL (AGNELLUS) de PISE, religieux franciscain


Bienheureux Agnel de Pise, religieux

Né à Pise vers 1194, compagnon de saint François d'Assise en 1212, envoyé par lui en France en 1217 comme provincial puis en Angleterre en 1224 pour créer la nouvelle province, il a assisté au chapitre général à Assise en 1230. Il meurt à Oxford en 1235/1236.

Saint Frère Ange

Un des six premiers compagnons de saint François d'Assise ( v. 1235)

Bienheureux Agnel de Pise ou saint Ange. 

Né à Pise en Toscane, il est reçu chez les franciscains et chargé d'implanter l'Ordre en Angleterre. Avec huit compagnons, il fonde des couvents à Londres, à Cantorbery et à Oxford. Ils sont si pauvres que l'un d'entre eux faillit mourir de froid, faute de bois de chauffage. De nombreux étudiants d'Oxford se joignent à eux, dont le célèbre Roger Bacon. Angelo devint même le conseiller du roi Henri III et le porte-parole des évêques, ce qui lui permit de les réconcilier avec le Pape.

Né à Pise vers 1194, compagnon de saint François d'Assise en 1212, envoyé par lui en France en 1217 comme provincial puis en Angleterre en 1224 pour créer la nouvelle province, il a assisté au chapitre général à Assise en 1230. Il meurt à Oxford en 1235/1236. Culte confirmé par le pape Léon XII.

À Oxford en Angleterre, le bienheureux Agnel de Pise, qui fut envoyé par saint François en France, puis en Angleterre, où il établit l’Ordre des Mineurs et promut les sciences sacrées.


Martyrologe romain


Bl. Agnellus of Pisa

Friar Minor and founder of the English Franciscan Province, born at Pisa c. 1195, of the noble family of the Agnelli; died at Oxford, 7 May, 1236. In early youth he was received into the Seraphic Order by St. Francis himself, during the latter's sojourn in Pisa, and soon became an accomplished model of religious perfection. Sent by St. Francis to Paris he erected a convent there and became custos. Having returned to Italy, he was present at the so-called Chapter of Mats, and was sent thence by St. Francis to found the Order in England. Agnellus, then in deacon's orders, landed at Dover with nine other friars, 12 September, 1224, having been charitably conveyed from France by the monks of Fecamp. A few weeks afterwards they obtained a house at Oxford and there laid the foundations of the English Province, which became the exemplar for all the provinces of the order. Though not himself a learned man, he established a school for the friars at Oxford, which was destined to play no small part in the development of the university. But his solicitude extended beyond the immediate welfare of his brethren. He sent his friars about to preach the word of God to the faithful, and perform the other offices of the sacred ministry. Agnellus wielded considerable influence in affairs of state and in his efforts to avert civil war between the King and the Earl Marshal, who had leagued with the Welsh, he contracted a fatal illness. Eccleston has left us a brief account of his death. Agnellus's body, incorrupt, was preserved with great veneration at Oxford up to the dissolution of the religious houses in the time of Henry VIII. The cultus of Blessed Agnellus was formally confirmed by Leo XIII in 1882, and his feast is kept in the Order on 7 May.

Donovan, Stephen. "Bl. Agnellus of Pisa." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 13 Mar. 2015 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01212c.htm>.


Blessed Agnellus of Pisa, OFM (AC)

Born in Pisa, Italy, in 1194; died at Oxford, England, 1236; cultus confirmed in 1892. Saint Francis of Assisi himself received Agnellus as a Friar Minor and sent him to Paris to open a new house. Francis later appointed him the first Franciscan provincial in England. Agnellus landed in Dover in 1224 and founded houses at Canterbury and Oxford. He also spent time in London. He established a famous school at Oxford (Benedictines).



Blessed Agnellus of Pisa

(Benedetto Agnello di Pisa)


Feast Day - March 13
It was the privilege of Blessed Agnellus to have been received into the order by St Francis himself. He descended from an ancient noble family at Pisa. The government of the Parisian province of the order was entrusted to him. Later on the holy Founder sent him to England with eight companions. Here Agnellus found it possible to establish several convents of his order and to unite them into a province. Due to his zeal and to his virtuous life, many young men, some from the most prominent families in England, took the habit of the Poor Man of Assisi.

In order to provide the young clerics with a thorough education he established a school of theology at Oxford. Meanwhile, however, he infused into them a great desire for perfection and a holy fidelity to the rule of the order, in all of which he led them by his own good example.

His humility was so profound that under no circumstances could be be prevailed upon to receive holy orders. Finally, however, he yielded in obedience to the general chapter. A great part of his time was devoted to meditation. At holy Mass and in choir he was so overcome with interior affections that he was frequently found weeping

Blessed Agnellus died the death of the saints in the year 1232, when he was but thirty-eight years old. His grave and the church in which he was buried were destroyed during the persecution of the Catholics in the reign of Henry VIII. Pope Leo XIII solemnly confirmed the uninterrupted veneration that had been accorded to Blessed Agnellus of Pisa.

Blessed Agnellus of Pisa knew that while the ambitious are always ill at ease as to whether or not they will be properly esteemed, or whether their dignity will be duly acknowledged, the humble live in continual peace of soul. They do not wait for approval and do not fear ill success. Their will is directed solely to the honor of God. They expect a reward from Him alone.

from: The Franciscan Book Of Saints, ed. by Marion Habig, OFM


Blessed Agnellus of Pisa is remembered as the founder of the English Franciscan province, credited with bringing the Franciscan rule to Great Britain in 1224. Admitted into the Order by Saint Francis himself, Agnellus was a tireless missionary of God’s love, going wherever he was asked, enduring harsh and inhospitable conditions.

Born in Pisa of noble family, as a youth he encountered Saint Francis, and was admitted directly into the Seraphic Order, where he became known for his pursuit of holy perfection. Saint Francis, recognizing in this young man not only zeal for God’s law, but also the meekness and humility required to counsel great leaders, mediate misunderstandings, and secure the spread of the order. Saint Francis first dispatched Agnellus to Paris, where he erected a convent, and upon success was ordered to England to establish the province. Along with nine companions, Agnellus traveled to Dover in the winter of 1224, subsisting on the alms and kindness of those they encountered, truly living the rule of poverty. They survived the winter, eating little but bread and fermented beer. Within months, Agnellus had secured a house in Oxford, which eventually became the examplar for all Franciscan provinces. Agnellus, despite his lack of personal schooling, established a school for friars at Oxford, which led to the development of the university there.

Blessed Agnellus sent his brothers across the region, and throughout Europe, spreading the word of God. He was counselor to Kings and Prices, and worked tirelessly to assist these leaders in finding political options in avoidance of war and suffering. Given his strict observance of the rule of poverty, his frequent fasting and mortification, and his travels, is was not surprising when he contracted a fatal disease. Upon returning to Oxford, he eagerly awaited death, crying out repeatedly for three days, “Come, Sweetest Jesus, Come!” His body, incorrupt, was buried in Oxford.



St. Agnellus of Pisa

Franciscan founder and diplomat. He was born in Pisa, a member of the noble Agnelli clan. St. Francis of Assisi personally received Agnellus into his order and sent him to Paris to start a Franciscan mission there. Agnellus also attended the "Chapter of Mats" and was then sent by St. Francis to England. Agnellus was only a deacon at the time. He and nine other Franciscans landed in Dover on September 12, 1224. They obtained a house in Oxford and began the Franciscan English Province. He became a friend of King Henry Ill (r. 1216-1272), who admired the saint's purity and holiness, calling upon Agnellus to avert a civil war between the throne and the Earl Marshal. Agnellus worked to calm the situation, contracting a serious illness in the process. He died in Oxford on May 7, 1236, and the body remained incorrupt, venerated in Oxford until the reign of King Henry VIII (r. 1509-1547) and the dissolution of the English religious houses. Pope Leo XIII declared Agnellus' beatification in 1882.