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St. Benedict

St. Benedict was a monk who founded a dozen monasteries in the 5th century. He was also the twin brother of St. Scholastica. (See the article on her for a good story about their relationship.)

Benedict is primarily known for writing a set of rules which monks follow. These foster a life of obedience and humility. The “Rule of St. Benedict” also lay out how monasteries should be managed. The rules specify that monks should devote themselves to prayer and work – Ora et Labora. Their days should be evenly divided, with 8 hours for sleeping, 8 hours for labor, and 8 hours for prayer. These rules are widely used in monasteries to this day.

His feast day is July 11.

Patron Saint of …

St. Benedict is the patron saint of Europe, monks, and people in religious orders.

Daily Mass Readings for the Memorial of Saint Benedict, Abbot

  • First ReadingProverbs 2:1-9: “He has counsel in store for the upright, he is the shield of those who walk honestly, Guarding the paths of justice, protecting the way of his pious ones.”
  • Responsorial PsalmPsalm 34: “I will bless the Lord at all times.”
  • Gospel Matthew 19:27-29: “And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life.”


This story begins in 480 with the birth of Saint Benedict.

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