dimanche 26 avril 2015

Saint PASCHASE RADBERT (PASCHASIUS RADBERTUS, PASCASIO RADBERTO), moine, abbé bénédictin et confesseur


Saint Paschase Radbert

Français né dans le Soissonais vers 790, Paschase entra au monastère de Corbie, sous Saint Adalard et fut ordonné diacre. Il assuma longtemps les charges de maître des novices et d'écolâtre, aussi bien à Corbie qu'à la Nouvelle Corbie (Corwey), où il avait accompagné son abbé en 822. En 844, il fut élu abbé de Corbie mais, se trouvant indigne, il abdiqua en 849. Auteur biblique prolifique, il est célèbre pour son traité sur l'Eucharistie : Le corps et le sang du Seigneur.


Saint Paschase Radbert

Abbé à Corbie, bénédictin ( 865)


Confesseur. 

Enfant abandonné sous le porche de la cathédrale de Soissons et recueilli par des religieuses, dont la mère abbesse n'était autre qu'une cousine de l'empereur Charlemagne, il fugua pour mener une vie dissolue, puis il revint pour entrer dans la célèbre abbaye de Corbie où "il se nourrit de la philosophie, de la Sagesse chrétienne et de l'Écriture Sainte" selon ses propres paroles. Il fut en effet un personnage important pour son époque, cherchant à "éclaircir" le mystère de la présence eucharistique de Jésus, ce qui le range parmi les grands témoins de la foi de l'Église sur ce mystère. Professeur aux écoles théologiques de Corbie, il leur donna un grand rayonnement et ses moines le choisirent comme Abbé. Mais quelque temps après, ses collègues théologiens l'obligèrent à partir et il se réfugia à l'abbaye de Saint-Riquier dans la Somme. Ce qui ne le fâcha pas, car il put ainsi davantage se consacrer à ses études. Les moines de Corbie finirent enfin par le rappeler. Il retourna dans son monastère et y vécut le reste de ses jours dans la plus grande humilité.


Au monastère de Corbie, au pays d’Amiens, en 865, saint Paschase Radbert, abbé, qui exposa de manière lumineuse la réalité du Corps et du Sang du Seigneur dans le mystère eucharistique.



Martyrologe romain



Saint Paschase Radbert, abbé de Corbie.

Paschase (prononcer passe-kase) Radbert naquit dans la région de Soissons vers la fin du VIIIème siècle. Orphelin d mère dès sa naissance, il fut receuilli par les religieuses de l'abbaye de Soissons, et fit ses études à l'école des moines de Saint Pierre.

A l'âge de 22 ans, il entra comme novice à l'abbaye de Corbie, près d'Amiens, et y fut rapidement chargé de l'enseignement dans l'école de l'abbaye. En 844 il fut élu abbé de cette abbaye. Il eut un grand rayonnement et fut mêlé aux questions politiques du royaume de France, sous Louis le Débonnaire et Charles le Chauve.

Paschase se démit de ses fonctions abbatiales au bout de 7 ans et se retira à l'abbaye de Saint Riquier. Les dernières années de sa vie, il les consacra à rédiger des oeuvres d'histoire et de théologie, qui l'ont placé au premier rang des écrivains de son temps.

Il nous a laissé des ouvrages aussi divers qu'un Traité sur l'Eucharistie, une Vie d'Adalard, une Histoire des origines de Corbie, et un Commentaire de l'Evangile de Saint Matthieu.

Paschase mourut à Corbie le 26 avril 865.




Une vie monastique

Paschase Radbert naquit dans la région de Soissons vers 790. Il entra comme moine dans le monastère bénédictin voisin de Corbie où il fut nommé abbé en 844 ; mais en 851, à cause d'une polémique dans la communauté monastique, il démissionna et se retira comme simple moine à S. Riquier. Plus tard il revint à Corbie, où il mourut en 865. Parmi ses oeuvres, celles qui offrent un contenu explicitement marial sont : le Libellus de nativitate sanctae Mariae, le De partu Virginis ; la lettre Cogitis me ; et trois homélies sur l'Assomption.

L'Incarnation, le Christ épouse l'Église Le Christ est l'époux.

Il prend une chair semblable à nous et désormais le Christ et l'Eglise ne font plus qu'une seule chair, et ces noces s'accompliront parfaitement quand l'Eglise suivra le Christ dans la résurrection et la vie éternelle. Cette pensée hérite de saint Augustin, Sermon 192, pour le jour de Noël. Ce grand texte de Pasquase Radbert est donné dans un article ci-dessous.

Le corps eucharistique de Jésus, né de la Vierge

Marie Paschase Radbert défend ouvertement l'identité entre le corps eucharistique de Jésus et son corps physique, conçu dans le sein de la Vierge Mère, marquant ainsi une étape importante dans l'histoire de la théologie eucharistique.

La vraie naissance de Jésus, et l'enfantement virginal

Dans la première moitié du IX° siècle, il semble qu'ait circulé dans certains milieux allemands une forme de néo-docétisme qui, en rappelant précisément la vérité de l'accouchement virginal de la Mère, niait au Fils une vraie nature humaine. Paschase Radbert réagit et, dans le De partu Virginis il insiste sur la vraie naissance de Jésus tandis que l'accouchement se produisit à ventre fermé de manière miraculeuse et surnaturelle.

Les véritables vierges pratiqueront l'humilité

Son sentiment de dévotion mariale s'exprime avant tout dans l'admiration pour sa personne et dans le besoin de louer Marie et l'auteur de sa grandeur et sainteté. Une preuve tangible de dévotion est l'imitation de la Vierge sainte, surtout de son humilité :

« Imitez la Mère du Seigneur et obéissez aux pères ; humiliez-vous parmi les fleurs virginales, parce que les dons et les engagements de la virginité viennent de la grâce de Dieu.... » [1]

« Vous aussi o filles, si vous voulez être de vraies vierges, pratiquez l'humilité et cherchez à imiter avec un sentiment d'amour la Mère du Seigneur qui s'est définie comme servante. » [2]

Parmi les autres vertus de Marie que doivent être proposée à l'imitation des fidèles le Paschase Radbert souligne l'esprit de prière et de méditation, les vertus théologales de la foi, de l'amour et de l'espérance.

J'ai vu ma toute belle...

Paschase Radbert fait une interprétation mariale du Cantique des Cantiques, par exemple :
 « Celui qui est habitué à contempler les secrets célestes, en observant avec un regard de grande admiration la montée de la Vierge au ciel, s'exprime ainsi dans le Cantique des Cantiques : "J'ai vu ma toute belle monter comme une colombe sur les flots des eaux." (Ct 5, 12) » [3]

[1] Sermo I, PL 96, 245 C

[2] Cogitis me, 7, PL 30, 144 D

[3] Cogitis me 14, PL 30, 141 D - 142 B Marianum (Rome)

Bibliographie :

W. COLE, Theology in Paschasius Radbertus' Liturgy-oriented Marian Works, in CongrZag III, 395-431;

L. GAMBERO, Maria nel pensiero dei teologi latini medievali, ed San Paolo, 2000

L. GAMBERO, Testi mariani del secondo milleno, vol III, Roma, 1996

H. PELTIER, Paschase Radbert, abbé de Corbie : contribution à l'étude de la vie monastique et de la pensée chrétienne aux temps carolingiens, Amiens 1938,190

A. RIVERA, La interpretación mariana del Cantar de los Cantares en Pascasio Radberto, in EphMar 14 (1964), 113-117.


R. ROSINI, Il culto della B. Vergine nella lettera "De Assumptione sanctae Mariae Virginis (Cogitis me) dello pseudo-Girolamo, ibid., 433-459.
Gambero (Père Luigi Gambero) –
Prêtre marianiste italien, il est né à Robbio (PV) le 7 janvier 1930;

Il a passé la maîtrise en littérature chrétienne ancienne à l'université de Turin.



Il a étudié la philosophie et la théologie à l'université de Fribourg en Suisse, et à la « Pontificia Università Lateranense » à Rome, où il a obtenu la « Licenza » en théologie.


Il s'est spécialisé en mariologie à la « Pontificia Facoltà Marianum » de Rome, où il a obtenu le Doctorat en théologie en 1980.

Professeur de théologie patristique et de mariologie patristique et médiévale au Marianum et l'I.M.R.I. de Dayton (USA).

Membre de la P.A.M.I, Pontificia Academia Mariana Internationalis (Vatican),



Membre de l'Association Mariologique Interdisciplinaire Italienne


Membre du « Mariological Society of Amérique » (Dayton, Ohio).

Le 9 octobre 2009, il reçoit le prix René Laurentin « Pro ancilla Domini ».
Il est décédé en 2013.
Il a publié:
L'omelia sulla Generazione di Cristo di Basilio di Cesarea. Il posto della Vergine Maria, Marian Library Studies, a new series 13-14, University of Dayton, Dayton (Ohio) 1981-82, pp, 220.
Maria nel pensiero dei Padri della Chiesa, Edizioni Paoline, Cinisello Balsamo 1991, pp. 496.

Edizione inglese: Mary and the Fathers of the Church. The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Tradition, Ignatius Press, San Francisco (California) 1999 pp. 439.

Maria nel pensiero dei teologi latini medievali, Edizioni San Paolo, Cinisello Balsamo 2000, pp. 443.
Testi Mariani del Primo Millennio, a cura di Georges Gharib, Ermanno Toniolo, Luigi Gambero, Gerardo Di Nola, 4 volumi, Città Nuova Editrice, Roma 1988-1991.
Testi Mariani del Secondo Millennio, a cura di Luigi Gambero, vol. 3°, autori dei secoli XI-XII; vol. 4°, autori dei secoli XIII-XV, Città Nuova Editrice, Roma 1996.


Saint Paschase Radbert, abbé et confesseur (+865)

Commun des moines, p. 1794 de la Liturgie monastique (bénédictine) des Heures.

Enfant abandonné sous le porche de la cathédrale de Soissons et recueilli par des religieuses, dont la mère abbesse n'était autre qu'une cousine de l'empereur Charlemagne, Paschase fugua pour mener une vie dissolue, puis il revint pour entrer dans la célèbre abbaye de Corbie où "il se nourrit de la philosophie, de la Sagesse chrétienne et de l'Écriture Sainte" selon ses propres paroles. Il fut en effet un personnage important pour son époque, cherchant à "éclaircir" le mystère de la présence eucharistique de Jésus, ce qui le range parmi les grands témoins de la foi de l'Église sur ce mystère. Professeur aux écoles théologiques de Corbie, il leur donna un grand rayonnement et ses moines le choisirent comme Abbé. Mais quelque temps après, ses collègues théologiens l'obligèrent à partir et il se réfugia à l'abbaye de Saint-Riquier dans la Somme. Ce qui ne le fâcha pas, car il put ainsi davantage se consacrer à ses études. Les moines de Corbie finirent enfin par le rappeler. Il retourna dans son monastère et y vécut le reste de ses jours dans la plus grande humilité.



00 Chapitre 68 SI L'ON ENJOINT A UN FRERE DES CHOSES IMPOSSIBLES 

01 Si l'on enjoint à un frère des choses difficiles ou impossibles, il recevra en toute mansuétude et obéissance le commandement qui lui est fait.  

02 Cependant, s'il estime que le poids du fardeau dépasse entièrement la mesure de ses forces, il représentera au supérieur les raisons de son impuissance, avec patience et à propos,  

03 sans témoigner ni orgueil, ni résistance, ni contradiction.  

04 Que si après cette représentation le supérieur maintenait son ordre, l'inférieur se persuadera que la chose lui est avantageuse,  

05 et il obéira par amour, en mettant sa confiance dans l'aide de Dieu. 

Desiderius,
novice oblat bénédictin indigne.


Blog d'un postulant oblat bénédictin : http://mon-ami-le-figuier.over-blog.com

Un forum sur la liturgie des Heures  : http://liturgiedesheures.forumgratuit.org

Abbé et confesseur

Fête le 26 avril

Église de France

Soissons, Aisne, v. 786 – † Corbie v. 865

Nommé abbé de Corbie près d’Amiens, en 844, il démissionna et resta diacre. Il est l’auteur d’ouvrages théologiques et historiques qui s’inscrivent dans la Renaissance carolingienne.

Des religieuses le trouvèrent, nouveau-né, abandonné sur le parvis de Notre-Dame de Soissons. Les moines de Saint-Pierre lui firent faire des études, puis le tonsurèrent, mais trop tôt ou contre son gré. Après une première éclipse, il rentra au monastère de Corbie, près d’Amiens, où il devint un éminent professeur. Nommé abbé, en 844, il resta diacre, voulant, par humilité, continuer de pouvoir balayer. A la suite d’ennuis intérieurs au monastère, il arriva à Centule, près d’Abbeville, devenu Saint-Riquier, où il continua d’écrire son traité de théologie sur l’Eucharistie. Après une seconde interruption, il termina sa vie à Corbie. On l’enterra selon son désir, au milieu des serviteurs de l’abbaye.


PASCHASE RADBERT saint (790 env.-env. 865)

Moine, puis écolâtre de Corbie, Paschase Radbert fonde Corvey (Germanie) en 822 ; abbé de Corbie en 844, il part pour Saint-Riquier en 851, puis revient à Corbie comme simple moine et y meurt. Il a été mêlé à la lutte des grandes abbayes pour échapper aux scandales des familles du palais. Il a participé aussi aux combats menés contre Gottschalk et ses hérésies prédestinationistes (concile de Quierzy, 849) et fut envoyé par Raban Maur à Hincmar. Outre quelques Vies, on lui doit un commentaire de saint Matthieu en douze livres échelonnés tout au long de sa vie, où il met du sien au milieu des citations des Pères, un traité sur La Maternité de la Vierge (De partu Virginis), où il défend que le seul aspect miraculeux de la naissance du Christ est qu'elle ne rompt pas la virginité de sa mère, un commentaire du Psaume XLIV (Eructavit) fait de considérations sur la vie des moniales, plusieurs autres œuvres mariales, et surtout deux importants traités eucharistiques : le Livre du corps et du sang du Seigneur (Liber de corpore et sanguine Domini), écrit en 831, repris et présenté à Charles le Chauve en 844, connu et discuté âprement à partir de cette date, et la lettre à Frudegard sur le corps et le sang du Seigneur, qui est une réponse aux objections faites à son livre. La polémique entre Radbert et son frère en religion Ratramne de Corbie est fondamentale dans l'histoire du dogme eucharistique ; contre le mysticisme de Ratramne pour qui l'eucharistie nous donne une substance et une puissance divines, Radbert est réaliste : il n'y a dans le pain et le vin consacrés que le corps et le sang de Jésus, fils de Marie, mort sur la croix et ressuscité. Il considère que le Christ eucharistique est le Jésus personnel. Ce mystère est une réalité (res, veritas) qui s'exprime dans un symbole efficace, la consécration (sacramentum) ; il y a mutation substantielle du pain et du vin en vue d'une présence spirituelle du corps historique. Cette théologie, étape importante vers le dogme de la transsubstantiation (doctrine élaborée au XIIe siècle et développée jusqu'à la Contre-Réforme), est liée à l'idée de l'Église, corps mystique du Christ, unie à celui-ci comme à son époux pour ne faire qu'une seule chair dans la communion.

Jean-Pierre BORDIER


Paschase Radbert. C’est le nom d’un moine du IXe siècle, originaire de Soissons. Il fut un des premiers théologiens à dire que dans la messe, le pain et le vin se transformaient réellement en Corps et Sang du Christ. Ce que l’on appellera par la suite du nom technique de transsubstantiation. Avant que les évêques et les théologiens, dans l’Eglise, reconnaissent pleinement cette manière de parler de l’eucharistie, cette position sera critiquée ou réinterrogée tant elle semblait par trop réaliste et trop matérialiste ! C’est une réflexion qui a toujours eu cours.

Ceux qui vont à la messe mobilisent en eux intelligence, confiance et sens du mystère. Dans la foi, ils reconnaissent le Christ, Fils de Dieu, qui se rend présent sur l’autel, qui se donne en nourriture et qui s’offre à leur adoration. C’est le Christ qui vit pour nous ; le Christ qui nous fait revivre ; le Christ qui vit en nous !

Quand je porte plus loin la question de la « présence réelle », d’autres réflexions me viennent.

• Avouez que l’hostie consacrée, le saint Sacrement du Corps du Christ, cela semble dérisoire. Précaire. Vous direz forcément cela, si vous n’avez pas la foi. Mais même si vous l’avez, ne resterez-vous pas au moins un peu étonné que le Christ soit reconnu dans un signe aussi fragile qu’un petit morceau de pain ? Et pourtant, le Christ est bien venu à nous dans la fragilité : né comme tout petit enfant, mort dans la souffrance. Mais cette fragilité est sa force pour nous sauver.

• Le Saint Sacrement, l’hostie consacrée, est là, visible à nos yeux, reçue en notre corps, bel et bien présente. Visible aux yeux de chair. Reconnaissable aux regards du cœur. Or le Christ est venu parmi les hommes, se tenant au milieu d’eux, prenant tel et tel à l’écart, mangeant avec tels autres, pour rencontrer et pour parler.

• Le Saint Sacrement, l’hostie consacrée, remplit de sa présence ceux qui croient au Christ. Lui-même avait choisi douze apôtres « pour qu’ils soient avec lui et pour les envoyer prêcher » (Mc 3, 13). Il y a ici un acte missionnaire. C’est un acte de générosité qui entoure l’accueil et la présence au Christ.
La fête du Saint Sacrement nous dit : Christ est présent à votre vie. Christ est réellement présent ! Ne nous dit-elle pas en même temps : imitez-le ! Vous qui le recevez, soyez aussi réellement présent. Ne passez pas à côté de l’essentiel. « Recevez ce que vous êtes, et devenez ce que vous recevez », disait Saint Augustin pour parler de l’eucharistie.

• Assumez votre pauvreté et vos fragilités.

• Tenez-vous au milieu du monde, prenez votre place, sans fuir et sans désespérer.

• Soyez missionnaires. Osez voir toujours ailleurs ; vers les autres aussi, portant généreusement ce que vous êtes, vous qui vous laissez remplir de la présence du Christ.

Vous trouvez que cela semble compliqué de parler de la présence réelle du Christ dans le Saint Sacrement ? C’est vrai ; moi aussi ! Mais je crois que lorsque nous aurons enfin reçu cette grâce d’être réellement présents aux autres, à nous-même et à Dieu, c’est que nous aurons compris Celui à qui nous le devons.


Le Seigneur guérit chaque jour l’âme de tout homme qui l’implore, l’adore pieusement et proclame avec foi ces paroles : « Seigneur, si tu le veux, tu peux me purifier », et cela quel que soit le nombre de ses fautes. « Car celui qui croit du fond du cœur devient juste » (Rm 10,10). Il nous faut donc adresser à Dieu nos demandes en toute confiance, sans mettre nullement en doute sa puissance… C’est la raison pour laquelle le Seigneur répond aussitôt au lépreux qui le supplie : « Je le veux ». Car, à peine le pécheur commence-t-il à prier avec foi, que la main du Seigneur se met à soigner la lèpre de son âme…

Ce lépreux nous donne un très bon conseil sur la façon de prier. Il ne met pas en doute la volonté du Seigneur, comme s’il refusait de croire en sa bonté. Mais, conscient de la gravité de ses fautes, il ne veut pas présumer de cette volonté. En disant que le Seigneur, s’il le veut, peut le purifier, il affirme que ce pouvoir appartient au Seigneur, en même temps qu’il affirme sa foi… Si la foi est faible, elle doit d’abord être fortifiée. C’est alors seulement qu’elle révélera toute sa puissance pour obtenir la guérison de l’âme et du corps.

L’apôtre Pierre parle sans aucun doute de cette foi quand il dit : « Il a purifié leurs cœurs par la foi » (Ac 15,9)… La foi pure, vécue dans l’amour, maintenue par la persévérance, patiente dans l’attente, humble dans son affirmation, ferme dans sa confiance, pleine de respect dans sa prière et de sagesse dans ce qu’elle demande, est certaine d’entendre en toute circonstance cette parole du Seigneur : « Je le veux ».

SAINT PASCHASE RADBERT (v. 849), moine bénédictin

Commentaire sur l’évangile de Matthieu, 5, 8; CCM 56 A, 475-476 (trad. Delhougne, Les Pères commentent, p. 243)



SOURCE : http://www.associationdemarie.org/blog/?tag=st-paschase-radbert

Paschasius Radbertus, OSB Abbot (AC)

Died April 26, 860. Radbertus was a monk who thought about the future, about eternity, to be sure, and equally about the time that would follow his death. He dictated a last will and testament that is considered precious. He had no possessions to bequeath. Instead, he requested only that no one write the story of his life. He asked to be forgotten, which makes him an original in a Church that forgets nothing. Radbertus simply asks for prayers to God.


Radbertus, who allowed himself to be called Paschasius, was probably born in Soissons, France, without a known father or mother. He was found one day on the doorstep of Notre Dame Convent in Soissons. He was a little baby who was waiting for someone to take him in. Thus, he was raised by the good sisters, educated by the monks at nearby Saint Peter's, received the Benedictine habit at an early age, and was ordained a deacon.

But he, thinking that the community was exaggerating the nature of the world, left the monastery to live his own life. He tried an easy lifestyle and was very uncomfortable with it, so, when he was about 22, he returned to the monastery of Corbie and began to pray, read, and write.

The abbot of the monastery was named Adebard (Adalard), the brother of Theodrade, the abbess who had given a home to the abandoned infant. Both of them were first cousins to Charlemagne and belonged to the fashionable world.

Being educated--Radbertus knew Greek and Hebrew--he was involved in the Carolingian Renaissance. He was sent to Saxony on his first assignment, where Charlemagne spent 30 years trying to subdue the people. Charlemagne had organized 18 expeditions and beheaded 4,500 hostages in order to baptize the rest by force and in order to issue edicts, for example, mandating observance of fasts under pain of death. During this period, Radbertus and Adalard founded monasteries in Saxony.

After Charlemagne it was the turn of Louis the Pious to have recourse to Radbertus: it wasn't easy to get along with a man like Louis. He was big, strong, and trembled like a leaf; he was lost in pater nosters, and on the lookout for cosmic events. Louis had hesitated to become a monk and to the detriment of his country, he did not follow his vocation. It was a difficult assignment to engage in missionary and political activities with a man of this kind, in perpetual conflict with his children who several times amused themselves by degrading him in public. It required an uncommon dose of common sense to attempt to calm down all these people.

Radbertus did not grow vain over his successes; although a simple deacon, in 822, he was sent to help found New Corbie in Westphalia. Radbertus considered himself as dishwater, scrapings, or as the scum of monastic life: it is the translation of the word "Peripsema" which he used, the same word used by Paul in his splendid tirade addressed to the pride of the Corinthians.

Radbertus preached to the monks on Sundays and holidays, and gave public lectures daily on the sacred sciences. Under his direction the schools of Corbie became famous. Among his scholars were Blessed Adalard the Younger, and Saints Anscharius, Hildemar, and Odo, who were successively bishop of Beauvais. His busy schedule never prevented him from assisting at the public office in the choir, and all other general observances of the rule.

Humble though he was, Radbertus helped make the Corbie schools famous while he served there as master of novices. He then accepted the uncomfortable position as abbot in 844. The distractions of this station made him earnestly endeavor to resign, but he could not do so until seven years later, in 851. Being freed from administrative tasks, he retired to the abbey of Saint- Riquier to finish some of his works; but after some time he returned to Corbie to die.

When Radbertus was not busy pacifying the kings of France, he was engaged in writing. He had finished a treatise on the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist (De Corpore et Sanguine Christe), which raised some questions about 15 years after its initial publication. Some took offense at certain expressions, chiefly taken from the writings of Saint Ambrose, in which the author so strongly affirmed the body of Christ present in the Eucharist to be the same flesh which was born of the Virgin Mary and nailed to the cross that they imagined Radbertus taught a heresy. They thought he meant that Christ in the Eucharist is in the same mortal state in which he suffered, and that he understood this sacred mystery in the carnal sense of the Capharnaits. In a letter the Brother Frudegard at New Corbie, Radbert defended the manner in which he had expressed himself and showed his orthodoxy. Radbertus left other works dealing with the body and blood of Christ.

His principal work is a commentary on Saint Matthew's Gospel (12 volumes), which was preached before it was read. In it he refutes the errors assumed by Felix of Urgel, Claudius of Turin, Gotteschalk, and, especially, John Scotus Erigena against mystery of the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. He also composed a treatise on the Virgin to defend her perpetual virginity, a long exposition on Psalm 44, and another on the Lamentations of Jeremiah, in order to practice crying over his own miseries. In general this last is a long, rather overly detailed and boring work, but very well documented. He also wrote biographies of two abbots of Corbie: Adalard and his brother Wala, who had been Radbertus's friend and confidant.

In subscribing to the council of Paris, in 846, he took only his own name, Radbert; but in the works which he composed after that time, he always prefixed to it that of Paschasius. This he took according to the custom which then prevailed among men of letters in France, for every one to adopt some Roman or scriptural name. Thus, in his epitaph or panegyric on his second abbot, Wala, he styles him Arsenius.

Radbertus was buried in Saint John's Chapel. His body was translated into the great church, in 1073, by authority of the Pope Saint Gregory VII. From that time he has been honored as a saint at Corbie, and in the Gallican and Benedictine Martyrologies (Benedictines, Delaney, Encyclopedia, Husenbeth).

In art, angels bring a monstrance to Paschasius Radbertus. There will be books on a table (Roeder).


SOURCE : http://www.saintpatrickdc.org/ss/0426.shtml

St. Paschasius Radbertus

Theologian, b. at Soissons, 786; d. in the Monastery of Corbie, c. 860 (the date 865 is improbable). As a child he was exposed, but was taken in and brought up by Benedictine Nuns at Soissons. He entered the Benedictine Order at Corbie under Abbot Adalard, and was for many years instructor of the young monks. In 822 he accompanied abbot Adalard into Saxony for the purpose of founding the monastery of New Corvey (Westphalia). He saw four abbots, namely Adalard, Wala, Heddo, and Isaac pass to their reward and on the death of abbot Isaac, Paschasius was made Abbot of Corbie, though only a deacon; through humility he refused to allow himself to be ordained priest. On the occasion of a disagreement he resigned his office after about seven years and was thus enabled to devote himself to study and literature.

He wrote a learned commentary on the Gospel of St. Matthew, "Commentarii in Matt. libri XII"; an exposition of the 44th Psalm, "Expos in Ps. 44 libri III" and a similar work on Lamentations, "Expos. In Lament. Libri V"; and a life of Abbot Adalard (cf. Bolland., 2 Jan.). His biography of the Abbot Wala is a work of greater usefulness as an historical source (cf. Rodenburg, "Die Vita Walae als historische Quelle", Marburg, 1877). He revised the "Passio Rufini et Valerii". His earliest work in dogmatic theology was a treatise, "De fide, spe et caritate" (first published in Pez, "Thesaur. Anecdot.", I, 2, Augsburg, 1721); he next wrote two books "De Partu Virginis", in which he defended the perpetual virginity of Mary, the Mother of God.

The most important of his works is: "De corpore et sanguine Domini", in Martene, "Vet. scriptor. et monum. amplissima Collectio", t. IX, written in 831 for his pupil Placidus Varinus, Abbot of New Corvey, and for the monks of that monastery, revised by the author and sent in 844 to Emperor Charles the Bald. The emperor commissioned the Benedictine Ratramnus of Corbie to refute certain questionable assertions of Paschasius, and when Rabanus Maurus joined in the discussion (cf. Ep. Iii ad Egilem, P.L., CXIII, 1513) there occurred the first controversy on the Eucharist, which continued up to the tenth century and even later, for both the followers of Berengarius of Tours in the eleventh century and the Calvinists in the sixteenth century vigorously assailed the work, because they thought that they had found the real source of doctrinal innovations, especially in regard to the Catholic dogma of Transubstantiation. His primary object herein was to give in accordance with the doctrine of the Fathers of the Church (e.g. Ambrose, Augustine, and Chrysostom), the clearest and most comprehensible explanation of the Real Presence. In carrying out his plan he made the mistake of emphasizing the identity of the Eucharistic Body of Christ with His natural (historical) Body in such exaggerated terms that the difference between the two modes of existence was not sufficiently brought out.

In opposition to his assertion that the Eucharistic Body of Christ is "non alia plane caro, quam quae nata est de Maria et passa in cruce et resurrexit de sepulchro" (loc. cit.), Ratramnus thought it necessary to insist that the Body of Christ in the sacred Host — notwithstanding its essential identity with the historical Body — is present by a spiritual mode of existence and consequently as an "invisible substance", and hence that our eyes cannot immediately perceive the Body of Christ in the form of bread. It is difficult to admit that Paschasius really believed what is here inferred: his narration, however, of certain Eucharistic miracles may have given some foundation, for the suspicion that he inclined towards a grossly carnal, Capharnaite-like apprehension of the nature of the Eucharist. His opponents also reproached him with having, in direct contradiction to his fundamental viewpoint, simultaneously introduced the notions of a figura and a veritas, thus placing side by side without any reconciliation the symbolic and the realistic conceptions of the Eucharist. The accusation seems altogether unwarranted; for by figure he understood merely that which appears outwardly to the senses, and by veritas, that which Faith teaches us. At bottom his doctrine was as orthodox as that of his opponents. He defended himself with some skill against the attacks of his critics, especially in his "Epistola ad Frudegardum". But a more thorough vindication of St. Paschasius was made by Gerbert, afterwards Pope Sylvester II (d. 1003), who, in a work bearing the same title "De corpore et sanguine Domini", contended that the doctrine of St. Paschasius was correct in every particular. The scientific advantage which accrued to theology from this first controversy on the Eucharist is by no means unimportant. For, through the accurate distinction made between the Eucharistic Body of Christ and its exterior sensible appearances, the way was cleared for a deeper understanding of the Eucharistic species or accidents in distinction from, and in opposition to, the invisible body of Christ hidden under them. Hence also the difficult notion of Transubstantiation gained much in clearness, distinctness, and precision.

St. Paschasius was first buried in the Church of St. John at Corbie. When numerous miracles took place at his grave under Abbot Fulco, his remains were solemnly removed by order of the pope, 12 July, 1073, and interred in the Church of St. Peter, Corbie. His feast is on 26 April.

Sources

The collected Opera Paschasii were first published by SIRMOND (Paris, 1618); these were republished with numerous additions in P.L., CXX. His letters are in PERTZ, Mon. Ger. Hist.: Epist., VI, 132 sq.; his poems in PERTZ, Poet. Lat., III, 38 sqq., 746 sq.; Das Epitaphium Arsenii (pseudonym for WALA), ed. DUMMLER in Abhandlungen der Berliner Akademie (1900); Vita Paschasii is given in MABILLON, Acta SS. O.S.B., IV (Lucca, 1735), 2, 122 sq.; and in PERTZ, Mon. Germ. Hist.: Script, XV, 452 sq.; HAUSHERR, Der hl. Paschasius Radbertus (Mainz, 1862); SADEMANN, Der theol. Lehrgehalt der Schriften des Paschasius (Marburg, 1877); ERNST, Die Lehre des Paschasius Radbertus von der Eucharistic mit besonderer Rucksicht der Stellung des Rabanus Maurus und des Ratramnus (Frieburg, 1896); CHOISY, Paschase Radbert (Geneva, 1889); NAGLE, Ratramnus und die hl. Eucharistie, zugleich eine dogmatisch-historische Wurdigung des ersten Abendmahlstreites (Vienna, 1903); SCHNITZER, Berengar von Tours (Stuttgart, 1892), 127 sq.; BACH, Dogmengeschichte des Mittelalters, I (Vienna, 1873); EBERT, Allgemeine Geschichte der Literatur des Mittelalters, II (Leipzig, 1880), 230 sq.: GOTZ, Die heutige Abendmahlsfrage in ihrer geschichtlichen Entwickelung (2nd ed., Leipzig, 1908).

Pohle, Joseph. "St. Paschasius Radbertus." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 11. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 25 Apr. 2015 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11518a.htm>.

Transcription. This article was transcribed for New Advent by Marcia L. Bellafiore.


Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. February 1, 1911. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.


April 26

St. Paschasius Radbert, Abbot and Confessor

RADBERT, pronounced Rabert, was born in the territory of Soissons. The death of his mother having left him an orphan in his infancy, the nuns of our Lady’s at Soissons, took care of his education, which they committed to the monks of St. Peter’s, in the same town. Having made some progress in his studies and in piety, he received the clerical tonsure; but soon after returned into the world, and led some years a secular life, till, powerfully touched by divine grace, he retired to the monastery of Corbie, and made his monastic profession under St. Adalhard, the founder and first abbot of that house. This state he looked upon as the school of perfect virtue, and all its exercises as the means by which he was to attain to it: he therefore dreaded the least sloth or remissness in any of the regular observances of his vocation. By the fervour and exactitude with which he acquitted himself of them, he made his whole life in every action and every moment a continued holocaust to the divine glory and love. Having in his youth made a considerable progress in his studies, particularly by reading Terence and Cicero, in the monastery he applied himself, with wonderful success, to sacred studies. St. Adalhard and Wala, his brother and successor in the abbacy, made him their companion in their journeys, and their counsellor in all affairs of importance. In 822, they took him with them into Saxony, when they finished the establishment of Corwei, or New Corbie, there. The Emperor, Lewis Debonnaire, employed him in several public affairs; and he discharged all these commissions with honour. In his own monastery he preached to the monks on Sundays and holidays, and gave every day public lectures on the sacred sciences. Under his direction the schools of Corbie became very famous. Amongst his scholars were Adalhard the Younger, (who governed the abbey in quality of vicar during the absence of St. Adalhard the Elder,) St. Anscharius, Hildeman, and Odo, successively bishops of Beauvais, and Warn, abbot of New Corbie, in Saxony. These occupations and studies never seemed to him a sufficient reason to exempt him from assisting at the public office in the choir, and all other general observances of the rule. In subscribing the council of Paris, in 846, he took only his own name, Radbert; but in the works which he composed after that time, he always prefixed to it that of Paschasius. This he took according to the custom which then prevailed among men of letters in France, for every one to adopt some Roman or scriptural name. Thus in his epitaph or panegyric on his abbot, Wala, he styles him Arsenius.

St. Adalhard died in 826, and Wala, the second abbot, in 836. Isaac succeeded him, and upon his demise, in 844, Radbert was chosen the fourth abbot. The distractions of this station made him earnestly endeavour to resign his dignity: which however he could not effect till seven years after, in 851. Being restored to his liberty, he retired to the abbey of St. Riquier to finish some of his works; but after some time he returned to Corbie. In all his writings he takes those of the fathers, in which he was extremely well versed, for his guide. 1 His long commentary on St. Matthew’s gospel, a learned and useful work, he began before he was chosen abbot, as appears from his dedication of the four first books to Gontland, a monk of St. Riquier’s; but in the latter he speaks of himself as very old, so that Mabillon thinks he only finished his twelfth or last book about the year 858. The errors of Felix of Urgel and Claudius of Turin, those of Gothescalc, 2 whom he had condemned with the prelates assembled at Quiercy, in 849, and especially those of John Scotus Erigena, against the mystery of the real presence of the body of Christ in the eucharist, 3 are solidly confuted in this commentary. Radbert dedicated to Emma, abbess of our Lady’s at Soissons, about the year 856, his prolix commentary on the forty-fourth psalm. 4 To stir himself up to compunction, he wrote an exposition of the Lamentations of Jeremy, which he applies both to the two destructions of Jerusalem, by Nabuchodonosor and Titus, and to the fall of a soul into sin. The mention he here makes of the sacking of Paris, shows that he wrote this book after the plunder of that city by the Normans, in 857. The most famous work of Radbert was his book, On the Sacrament of the Altar, or On the Body and Blood of Christ, which he dedicated to Warin, abbot of New Corbie; to which dignity he was only raised in 826. He mentions in it the banishment of Arsenius, that is, of the abbot Wala, which happened in 831, not of St. Adalhard, as some mistake, who thence imagine that he first published this book in 818. Fifteen or twenty years after this first edition, the author, when he was abbot, consequently after the year 844, gave a second more ample than the former, and dedicated it to King Charles the Bald, who had desired to see it. During this interval, no one had raised any clamours about it. But some afterwards took offence at certain expressions, chiefly taken from St. Ambrose, in which the author affirmed the body of Christ present in the eucharist to be the same flesh which was born of the Virgin Mary, and nailed to the cross, in terms so strong, that these writers imagined he taught it to be in the eucharist in the same mortal state in which he suffered, and that he understood this sacred mystery in the carnal sense of the Capharnaits. 5 Radbert defends the manner in which he had expressed himself, in a letter to Frudegard, a monk of New Corbie. He wrote the life of St. Adalhard soon after his death: also that of the abbot Wala, under the title of his epitaph, 6 and the acts of the martyrs Rufinus and Valerius, who suffered in the territory of Soissons. The foregoing works of St. Radbert were published in one volume by F. Sirmond, in 1618, and in the Library of the Fathers. His treatise to defend the perpetual virginity of Mary, in bringing forth the Son of God, was printed by the care of D’Achery. 7 His book On Faith, Hope, and Charity, was first published by Dom. Bernard Pez, 8 and soon after much more correctly by Dom. Martenne, 9 who in the same place has favoured us with a much more correct and complete edition of Radbert’s book, On the Body and Blood of the Lord, than that of F. Sirmond, with a collection of various readings compiled by Dom. Sabbatier.

St. Paschasius Radbert has given us several remarkable instances of his modesty and humility, styling himself frequently in his writings, The Outcast of the Monastic Order. 10 He died at Corbie on the 26th of April, about the year 865. He was buried in St. John’s chapel, but his body was translated into the great church, in 1073, by the authority of the holy see, under the pontificate of Gregory VII., the ceremony being performed by Wido, bishop of Amiens; 11 from which time he is honoured at Corbie, and in the Gallican and Benedictin Martyrologies among the saints. In his last sickness, he laid so strict an injunction on all his disciples and brethren, forbidding any one to write his life, that his humility has robbed us of the edification which such a history would have afforded us. See his short life compiled by F. Sirmond, and prefixed to his edition of this holy man’s works: also another collected from the archives of Corbie, by Hugh Menard, in his notes on the Benedictin Martyrology: also Ceillier, t. 19, p. 87, and Legipont, Hist. Liter. Bened. t. 3, p. 77.

Note 1. Radb. Comm. in Matt. l. 1, præf. [back]

Note 2. Ib. l. 8, p. 746. [back]

Note 3. Ib. l. 11, c. 26, p. 1093. [back]

Note 4. Ps. xliv. Eructavit cor meum. [back]

Note 5. On the works of Ratramnus, a monk of Corbie, on this subject, see Ceillier, t. 19, p. 137, and on that which F. Cellot published anonymous, and is proved by Dom. Bern. Pez, (t. 1, Anecd.) Ceillier, &c. to be the production of Gerbert, archbishop of Rheims, afterward pope Sylvester II., see Ceillier. ib. p. 727, also on Ratramnus, see Hist. Litér. de la France, t. 5, p. 334, 335, and on that work of Gerbert, ib. t. 6, p. 587. [back]

Note 6. Published by Mabillon, Act. Ben. t. 6, p. 139. [back]

Note 7. De Partu Virginis, apud D’Achery, t. 12, Spicilegii, p. 1. [back]

Note 8. Anecdot. t. 1. [back]

Note 9. Ampl. Collect. t. ult. seu 9. [back]

Note 10. Monachorum Peripsema. [back]

Note 11. Hugo Menard, ex Veteribus Monumentis Corbeiens, and Bened. XIV. Do Canoniz. l. 1, c. 8, n. 11, p. 65. [back]

Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume IV: April. The Lives of the Saints.  1866.


St. Paschasius Radbertus

April 26

Radbertus began life as an abandoned baby left on the doorsteps of a convent in Soissons, France, about the year 785. When he was old enough, he was sent to the monks of St. Peter at Soissons to be educated. He became engrossed in the Latin classics and apparently spent some time perhaps teaching or traveling, before entering the Benedictine monastery at Corbie.

After entering the monastery he turned his attention to sacred studies. He became the confidant and traveling companion of the abbot, Adalhard, whose biography he later wrote. In 822 he was sent to aid in the foundation of a monastery at New Corbie, in Westphalia. Here he was the instructor of the novices and his administrative abilities and scholarly acumen made the Corbie Schools famous.

Radbertus took the name of Paschasius because of the French tradition of adopting a Scriptural or classical name. He had been ordained a deacon, but always refused ordination to the priesthood because he felt himself unworthy of such an honor. In spite of this he was elected abbot about the year 843. He found this a very difficult position because of so much opposition to the necessary reforms he tried to encourage. After about seven years he was able to resign and he retired to the abbey of Saint-Riguier for a time.
Paschasius was a prolific writer. He is best known for his treatise on the Eucharist entitled, "De Corpore et Sanguine Christi." He also wrote Scripture commentaries on Psalm 44, the Gospel of Matthew and the Book of Jeremias, as well as several letters and poems. The exact date of his death is unknown, but he returned to Corbie and it is believed he died about the year 860.

Paschasius is an obscure and rather unexpected saint. He started life with absolutely nothing, abandoned on a doorstep. He was an intelligent man and fortunately was given the opportunity to become well educated. We don't know how he came to choose to enter the Benedictine Abbey at Corbie, but he did choose to follow Christ. He then went on to use his God given abilities to make God known through his writings. He didn't do anything spectacular, but remained a humble man doing the best he could with the talents God gave him to bring goodness to his world. A task we are all called to.

© 1998 The Monastery of Christ in the Desert


Saint Paschasius Radbertus was born in the region of Soissons and was raised in a women's monastery there by Theodrada, sister of Adalard and Wala of Corbie and cousin of Charlemagne. He entered as a monk in the nearby Benedictine monastery of Corbie, assisted the founding of Corvey in Saxony in 822, and was ordained deacon. He was elected abbot of Corbie in 844. An active church leader, St Radbertus attended the councils of Paris (847) and Quierzy (849), where he signed the condemnation of Gottschalk. Following a dispute in the abbey of Corbie, he resigned the abbacy and moved to Saint Riguier (Centula) in 851, but returned to Corbie before his death. Among his works, those that provide explicitly Marian content are: Sanctae Mariae Libellus de Nativitate, De partu Virginis; and three homilies on the Assumption. He is most famous today for De corpore et sanguine Domini, the first Latin treatise on eucharistic theology. The work was written (831) for the Saxon novices of Corvey and revised (844) for Charles the Bald. The second edition is in direct response to his fellow monk, Ratramnus, as is the defense of Mary's perpetual virginity in De partu Virginis. The most popular work of Paschasius Radbertus in medieval France was Cogitis me, a letter on the Assumption of the Virgin Mary written under the name of Jerome. In other sermons on the Assumption and in his life of the Virgin Mary, Radbertus shows the importance of the influence of apocryphal literature, such as the Protevangelium of James, on the development of medical Christian thought.
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Taken from Paschasius Radbertus, E. Ann Matter Editions, Turnhout, Brepols, 1969. - See more at: 



THE MARIAN PRAYER OF
SAINT PASCHASIUS RADBERTUS (A.D. 865)

Deign, O Immaculate Virgin, 
Mother most pure, 
to accept the loving cry of praise 
which we send up to you
from the depths of our hearts. 
Though they can but add little to your glory, 
O Queen of Angels, 
you do not despise, in your love, 
the praises of the humble 
and the poor. 
 
Cast down upon us a glance of mercy, 
O most glorious Queen; 
graciously receive our petitions. 
Through your immaculate purity of body and mind, 
which rendered you so pleasing to God, 
inspire us with a love of innocense and purity. 
 
Teach us to guard carefully the gifts of grace, 
striving ever after sanctity, so that, 
being made like the image of your beauty, 
we may be worthy to become the sharers 
of your eternal happiness.
 
Amen.

Also known as
  • Radbertus
  • Paschasius Radbert
Profile

A foundling whose background is completely unknown. Raised by monks after being found by nuns on the steps of Notre Dame of Soissons. Unruly in his youth, even with the brothers. Benedictine monk under Saint Adalard of Corbie. Deacon. Teacher. Moved to Corbie Abbey in 822, and helped make its school at one of the most famous places of learning in its day. Spiritual teacher of Saint Ansgar. Paschasius travelled Europe, speaking at councils, negotiating political and religious conflicts.

Against his will he was elected abbot of the Corbie in 844. During undescribed trouble in the monastery in 851, he resigned his position to settle the dispute. He retired as a hermit to the Saint Riquiet monastery in Cenula where he spent the rest of his life writing on history, philosophy, and theology. His The Body and Blood of Christ started the first controversy on the Eucharist, and cleared the way for a precise understanding of Transubstantiation.

Born