lundi 27 mars 2017

Saint GÉLASE d'ARMAGH, abbé et évêque

Saint Gélase

Abbé de Derry, évêque d'Armagh ( 1174)

Abbé de Derry en Irlande, il devint archevêque d'Armagh à la suite de saint Malachie et aurait été le premier évêque à recevoir le pallium. Primat d'Irlande jusqu'en 1174, il consacra saint Laurent O'Toole archevêque de Dublin. 

Prélat infatigable, il parcourut l'Irlande, réorganisa les monastères et organisa des synodes.

Gelasius of Armagh B (AC)
(also known as Giolla Iosa, Gioua-Mac-Liag)

Died March 27, 1174. Son of the Irish poet Diarmaid, Saint Gelasius (meaning `servant of Jesus') was the learned abbot of Derry for 16 years. He was consecrated bishop of Armagh c. 1138, when Saint Malachy resigned and served as primate of Ireland until 1174.

During his long episcopacy Gelasius had to deal with the events before and after the Norman invasion, including the alleged Donation of Ireland by Pope Adrian IV to Henry II of England, Henry's arrival in Ireland in 1171, and Pope Alexander III's confirmation of everything granted by Adrian IV.

He reconstructed the Cathedral of Armagh, and, in 1162, consecrated Saint Laurence O'Toole archbishop of Dublin, although the invasion and settlement of Dublin by Norsemen meant that the Christians of that see were looking more to Canterbury than Armagh. That same year, during the Synod of Clane in County Kildare, a uniform liturgy was ensured throughout Ireland by requiring that only Armagh-trained or Armagh-accredited teachers of divinity may teach in any school attached to the Irish Church.

Gelasius was an indefatigable prelate. He made constant visitations throughout Ireland, reorganized old monasteries, and convened synods. He is said to have been the first Irish bishop to whom the pallium was sent; Eugenius III's papal legate, Cardinal Paparo, brought four pallia with him to the Synod of Kells in 1152 for the archbishops of Armagh, Cashel, Dublin, and Tuam. The records of this synod include the firsts mention of tithes in Irish annals, which Cardinal Paparo proposed but none of the participants supported. The matter of tithes and the Peter's Pence was an important consideration in subsequent negotiations between Pope Adrian IV and Henry II of England.

Gelasius convened another synod at Armagh in 1170 in the hope of finding some means to expel the Anglo-Norman, who had invaded the country the previous year, before they became too entrenched. In 1171, Henry II arrived, lavishly entertained the civic and ecclesiastic Irish leaders, and requested the convening of the Synod of Cashel, during which he presented a plan for improving the Church of Ireland. At this time there was no mention of any claim of Canterbury or the Donation; however, the eighth canon of the synod decreed that the Irish Church would celebrate the Divine Office according to the usage of the Church of England (which was still Catholic).

The bishop of Armagh did not attend the Synod of Cashel. At that time he was occupied in a visitation of Connacht and Ulster in an attempt (in concert with the high king) to organize a defense of Ireland. He realized that Henry had duped many of Irish princes by masking his true intentions.

The following year Henry fell under interdict for his murder of Saint Thomas Becket. When news of Henry's penitential, bare-foot walk to the shrine of Saint Thomas and his plans for the `uplift' of the Irish Church reached Rome, Alexander III confirmed the Donation of Ireland made by Adrian IV. Shortly thereafter the Church of Ireland became English: the School of Armagh was closed (c. 1188) and the last native bishop of Armagh until the Reformation died in 1313 (Benedictines, D'Arcy, Encyclopedia, Healy, Husenbeth, Kenney, MacNeill, O'Hanlon, Stokes). 

Saint Gelasius of Armagh

Also known as
  • Giolla Iosa
  • Gioua-Mac-Liag
  • Gilla Meic Liac mac Diarmata

Son of the Irish poet Diarmaid. Abbot in Derry, Ireland for 16 years. Archbishop of Armagh, Ireland in 1138; he served for 36 years. First Irish bishop to receive the pallium. Rebuilt the cathedral of Armagh. As the primate bishop of Ireland, Gelasius travelled widely, preaching to the faithful, re-building old monasteries, convening synods, encouraging teachers. Ordained Saint Lawrence O’Toole as archbishop of Dublin in 1162. Convened a synod in Armagh in 1170 to look for a way to defend against invading Anglo-Normans.