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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

St. Felix of Valois (1127 – 1212)

Ordinary Time: November 20th
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Felix, born in 1127, and John of Matha founded the Order of Trinitarians for liberating captured Christians from Saracen slavery. He belonged to the royal family of Valois. The breviary recounts several marvelous events from his life. As a boy, he frequently gave away his clothes to clothe the naked. He pleaded for the life of a murderer condemned to death, and foretold that he would reform and lead a highly edifying life, which prophecy proved true. With St. John of Matha, he journeyed to Rome at the bidding of an angel, and requested permission from Pope Innocent III to found a religious Order (1198). During holy Mass, the Pope was granted a revelation regarding the proposed foundation; an angel appeared to him clothed in white with a red and blue cross. At Innocent's bidding, the Order took the name of the Blessed Trinity.

In the newly-founded monastery at Cerfroi, Felix was favored with a visit by the Blessed Virgin. During the night preceding the feast of Mary's Nativity, all the brethren slept through Matins by a special divine dispensation. Felix alone appeared at choir, where he found the Blessed Virgin clothed in the habit of the Trinitarians, accompanied by a great throng of angels similarly dressed. United with them, with Mary as choir leader, Felix recited the Office, as usual. When he was about to leave the earthly choirs to join those of heaven, an angel foretold to him the day of his departure; he admonished his brethren to persevere in love toward captives and the poor, and died on November 4, 1212, mature in age and merit.

The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

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