samedi 12 mars 2016

Saint PAUL AURÉLIEN de LÉON, évêque et confesseur




Saint Pol de Léon

Abbé dans le Finistère - Évêque et confesseur ( 573)

Paul Aurélien (Paulus Aurelianus). 

Originaire de Grande-Bretagne, il vécut la vie érémitique dès l'âge de quinze ans. Ordonné prêtre par l'évêque de Winchester à vingt-deux ans, il est appelé auprès du roi, mais il préfère traverser la Manche, espérant reprendre sa vie de solitaire. Le comte de Léon le voulait comme évêque. Il l'envoya donc à Paris où il fut consacré dans la cathédrale. Il donna à son diocèse une vive impulsion. Mais, sur le tard, il voulut revenir à sa vie d'ermite et c'est dans l'île de Batz qu'il rendit son âme à Dieu.



Saint Paul Aurélien, communément appelé saint Pol de Léon, est du nombre des sept fondateurs d'évêchés bretons... Saint Paul Aurélien - diocèse de Quimper et Léon



Au pays de Léon en Bretagne Armorique, au VIe siècle, saint Paul Aurélien, premier évêque de la cité.


Martyrologe romain




Saint Paul Aurélien

Fété le 12 mars
Saint Paul Aurélien, communément appelé saint Pol de Léon, est du nombre des sept fondateurs d'évêchés bretons. Il naquit au Pays de Galles vers 480, où il fut condisciple de Gildas et de Samson à l'école monastique d'Ildut. Avec douze compagnons il traversa le Cornwall et gagna l'Armorique : il débarqua à Ouessant. De là, il vint sur le continent, probablement à Lampaul-Plouarzel, séjourna à Lampaul-Ploudalmézeau, puis se dirigea vers le castel de Léon. Le comte Withur lui donna un évangéliaire et une cloche, la forteresse gallo-romaine en ruines et l'Ile de Batz. Pol établit deux monastères, l'un dans l'île, l'autre dans le Castel. C'est sur l'injonction de Childebert qu'il reçut l'épiscopat : l'oppidum du Castel devint le centre de son apostolat. Evêque préférant la vie érémitique, il laissa la ville épiscopale à saint Jaoua. Il reprit plus tard la charge épiscopale, puis nomma pour lui succéder un autre de ses disciples : Kétoméren. Il put alors se retirer dans son monastère de l'Ile de Batz, où il mourut très âgé. Son attribut iconographique est le dragon, en souvenir du dragon dont il aurait délivré l'Ile de Batz, symbole du "dragon invisible" qu'il avait chassé du pays.
  Sant Paol Aurelian, anvet aliesoc'h Pol a Leon, a zo unan euz ar zeiz eskob o-deus diazezet eskoptiou Breiz. Ganet eo bet e Bro-Gembre wardro ar bloavez 480. E studi a reas asamblez gand Gweltaz ha Samson e skol sant Iltud. Gand daouzeg kompagnun e treuzas Kerne-Veur hag e teuas da Vro-Arvorig. Dilestra a reas war Enez Eusa. Goudeze e teuas d'an douar braz. Ar Hont Withur a roas dezan eun aviel hag eur c'hloc'h, ar c'hastell roman hag Enez-Vaz.
Paol a zavas daou vanati, unan war an enezenn, egile er C'hastell. Evid senti ouz Childebert eo e teuas da veza eskob. War skeuden sant Paol e weler eun aerouant (dragon) ouz e dreid. Skarzet e-nefe an enezenn euz an aerouant, skeudenn ar c'hredennou faoz e-noa mouget er vro.
   Dix-sept édifices lui ont été consacrés, presque tous en Léon. Si l'église Saint-Pol de Batz est en ruines, par contre, six autres paroisses restent fidèles à son patronage : l'église cathédrale de Saint-Pol de Léon, les églises de Lampaul-Guimiliau, Lampaul-Plouarzel, Lampaul-Ploudalmézeau, Lampaul à Ouessant et Tréglonaou. Des chapelles dédiées à saint Paul subsistent encore à Brignogan, Garlan, Plouguerneau. Ont disparu les chapelles de Le Drennec, Le Faou, Guimaëc, Plougonvelin. En Cornwall, la paroisse de Paul, à l'extrême ouest de la péninsule, est dédiée à saint Pol depuis le 10e siècle. Son nom est comparable à celui de Paule, paroisse de haute Cornouaille, dédiée elle aussi à saint Pol. 


Paul Aurelian B (AC)

(also known as Paulinus or Pol of Léon)

Born in Cornwall; died March 12, c. 575. The vita of Saint Paul was finished in 884 by a monk of Landévennec, Brittany, named Wrmonoc. It is one of the few of British Celtic saints written prior to the late middle ages.


Saint Paul was a noble Briton, cousin of Saint Samson, and his fellow-disciple under Saint Illtyd. He was educated at Llantwit with Saints David and Gildas. We need no other proof of his wonderful fervor and progress in virtue, and all the exercises of a monastic life, than Illtyd's testimony, by whose advice Paul left the monastery to embrace a more perfect eremitical life.

Some time after, our saint sailing from Cornwall, passed into Armorica, and continued the same austere eremitical life on Caldey Island on the coast of the Osismians, a barbarous idolatrous people in Armorica, or Little Britain. Prayer and contemplation were his whole employment, and bread and water his only food, except on great festivals, in which he took with his bread a few little fish. The saint, mourning over the blindness of he pagan inhabitants on the coast, migrated with twelve companions to Brittany, and instructed them in the faith. Withur, count or governor of Bas, and all that coast, seconded by king Childebert, procured his ordination to the episcopal dignity, notwithstanding his tears to prevent it. His see is now called after him, Saint-Pol-de- Léon.

Count Withur, who resided in the Isle of Bas (Ouessant), bestowed his own house on the saint to be converted into a monastery; and St. Paul placed in it certain fervent monks, who had accompanied him from Wales and Cornwall. He was himself entirely taken up in his pastoral functions, and his diligence in acquitting himself of every branch of his obligations was equal to his apprehension of their weight. When he had completed the conversion of that country, he resigned his bishopric to a disciple, and retired into the isle of Batz, where he died in holy solitude at the age of nearly 100.

During the inroads of the Normans, his relics were removed to the abbey of Fleury, or St. Benet's on the Loire, but were lost when the Calvinists plundered that church. The story related by Wrmonoc is full of legendary material, but there is no doubt that Paul was a powerful evangelist in Finistère. The vita incorporates some traditions of Welsh and Celtic origin, and there are considerable traces of the saint in Wales, where, as in Brittany, he was sometimes called Paulinus. The ancient church at the village of Paul, near Penzance, is dedicated in honor of Pol de Léon. His festival occurs in the ancient breviary of Léon, on the 10th of October, perhaps the day of the translation of his relics. For in the ancient breviary of Nantes, and most others, he is honored on the 12th of March (Attwater, Benedictines, Husenbeth).



St. Paul, Bishop of Leon, Confessor

HE was a noble Briton, a native of Cornwall, cousin of St. Samson, and his fellow-disciple under St. Iltutus. We need no other proof of his wonderful fervour and progress in virtue, and all the exercises of a monastic life, than the testimony of Saint Iltutus, by whose advice St. Paul left the monastery to embrace a more perfect eremitical life in a retired place in the same country. Some time after, our saint sailing from Cornwall, passed into Armorica, and continued the same austere eremitical life in a small island on the coast of the Osismians, a barbarous idolatrous people in Armorica, or Little Britain. Prayer and contemplation were his whole employment, and bread and water his only food, except on great festivals, on which he took with his bread a few little fish. The saint, commiserating the blindness of the pagan inhabitants on the coast, passed over to the continent, and instructed them in the faith. Withur, count or governor of Bas, and all that coast, seconded by king Childebert, procured his ordination to the episcopal dignity, notwithstanding his tears to prevent it. Count Withur, who resided in the Isle of Bas, bestowed his own house on the saint to be converted into a monastery; and St. Paul placed in it certain fervent monks, who had accompanied him from Wales and Cornwall. He was himself entirely taken up in his pastoral functions, and his diligence in acquitting himself of every branch of his obligations was equal to his apprehension of their weight. When he had completed the conversion of that country, he resigned his bishopric to a disciple, and retired into the isle of Bas, where he died in holy solitude, on the 12th of March, about the year 573, near one hundred years old. 1 During the inroads of the Normans, his relics were removed to the abbey of Fleury, or St. Bennet’s on the Loire, but were lost when the Calvinists plundered that church. Leon, the ancient city of the Osismians, in which he fixed his see, takes his name. His festival occurs in the ancient Breviary of Leon, on the 10th of October, perhaps the day of the translation of his relics. For in the ancient Breviary of Nantes, and most others, he is honoured on the 12th of March. See Le Cointe’s Annals, the Bollandists on this day, and Lobineau in the Lives of the Saints of Brittany, from his acts compiled by a monk of Fleury, about the close of the tenth century.

Note 1. St. Paul was ordained priest before he left Great Britain, about the year 530. The little island on the coast of Armorica, where he chose his first abode in France, was called Medonia, and seems to be the present Molene, situated between the Isle of Ushant and the coast. The first oratory which he built on the Continent, very near this island, seems to be the church called from him Lan-Pol. [back]

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