Sunday, 16 June 2013
June 17.--ST. AVITUS, Abbot. (butlers 1894 saint of the day)
ST. AVITUS was a native of Orleans, and, retiring into Auvergne, took the monastic habit, together with St. Calais, in the abbey of Menat, at that time very small, though afterward enriched by Queen Brunehault, and by St. Boner, Bishop of Clermont. The two Saints soon after returned to Miscy, a famous abbey situated a league and a half below Orleans. It was founded toward the end of the reign of Clovis I. by St. Euspicius, a holy priest, honored on the 14th of June, and his nephew St. Maximin or Mesnim, whose name this monastery, which is now of the Cistercian Order, bears. Many call St. Maximin the first abbot, others St. Euspicius the first, St. Maximin the second, and St. Avitus the third. But our Saint and St. Calais made not a long stay at Miscy, though St. Maximin gave them a gracious reception. In quest of a closer retirement, St. Avitus, who had succeeded St. Maximin, soon after resigned the abbacy, and with St. Calais lived a recluse in the territory now called Dunois, on the frontiers of La Perche. Others joining them, St. Calais retired into a forest in Maine, and King Clotaire built a church and monastery for St. Avitus and his companions. This is at present a Benedictine nunnery, called St. Avy of Chateaudun, and is situated on the Loire, at the foot of the hill on which the town of Chateaudun is built, in the diocese of Chartres. Three famous monks, Leobin, afterwards Bishop of Chartres, Euphronius, and Rusticus, attended our Saint to his happy death, which happened about the year 530. His body was carried to Orleans, and buried with great pomp in that city.