May 16, 2020: ST. UBALD
May 16, 2020: ST. UBALD, BISHOP AND CONFESSOR
Thy power, O Ubaldus, has often manifested itself, by rescuing unhappy victims of the devil's jealousy; and holy Church, on this day, celebrates the special prerogative conferred on thee by our Heavenly Father. Relent not in the exercise of thy charitable office. And yet, O holy Pontiff, thou knowest that the snares of the wicked spirits are more injurious to the souls than to the bodies of men. Have pity, then, on the unhappy slaves of sin, who, though the divine Sun of the Pasch has risen upon them, are still in the darkness of guilt.
Help us, O Lord, we beseech thee, in thy mercy; and grant, by the intercession of blessed Ubaldus, thy Bishop and Confessor, that we may be defended, by thy right hand, against all the snares of the Devil. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee, in unity of the Holy Ghost, God, World without end. Amen.
In order to honour her Eternal High Priest, the Church presents to him, this day, the merits of a Pontiff, who, after his mortal career, was admitted into a happy Immortality. Ubaldus, here on earth, was the image of our Lord Jesus Christ. Like his Divine Master, he received the holy Anointing of Priesthood; he was a Mediator between God and man; he was the Shepherd of a flock; and, now, he is united with our Risen Jesus,—the great Anointed, the Mediator, the Shepherd. In proof of his influence in heaven, our Ubaldus has had given to him a special power against the wicked Spirits, who lay snares for our perdition. It has frequently happened, that the simple invocation of his name has sufficed to foil their machinations. It is with the view of encouraging the Faithful to have recourse to his protection, that the Church has fixed this day as his Feast.
Let us now read the account she gives of the virtues of the saintly Bishop.
Ubaldus was born at Gubbio in Umbria, of a noble family. He was, from childhood, formed, in the most admirable way, to piety and learning. When grown up, he was frequently urged to marry; but nothing could shake his resolution of leading a life of celibacy. On being ordained Priest, he divided his fortune between the poor and the Churches, and entered among the Canons Regular of the Order of St. Augustine. He established that Institute in his own country, and was for some time a most fervent observer of all its regulations. The fame of his virtue spread far and wide. Pope Honorius the Second compelled him to accept the charge of the Church of Gubbio; and, accordingly, he was consecrated Bishop.
Having taken possession of his See, he changed little or nothing of his mode of life; but he began to apply himself more than ever to the practice of every virtue, in order that he might the more effectually, both by word and example, procure the salvation of souls, for he was a pattern of the flock in all earnestness. His food was scanty, his dress unpretending, his bed hard and most poor. Whilst always bearing about, in his body, the mortification of the Cross, he every day refreshed his spirit with prayer, in which he seemed insatiable. The result of such a life was meekness of so admirable a nature, that he not only bore the worst injuries and insults with patience, but he even treated his persecutors with surprising affection, and showed them all possible kindness.
During the last two years of his life, he suffered much from sickness. In the midst of the most acute pains, whereby he was made pure as gold that is cleansed in the furnace, he ceased not to give thanks to God. Finally, on the holy Feast of Pentecost, after governing for many years, and in a most laudable manner, the Diocese that had been intrusted to him, he slept in peace, venerated for his holy life and miracles. He was canonised by Pope Celestine the Third. God has given him a special power for driving away unclean spirits. His body, which has remained incorrupt for several centuries, is honoured with much devotion, by the Faithful of the city of Gubbio, which he has more than once rescued from the calamities that threatened it.
Taken from: The Liturgical Year - The Paschal Time, Vol. II, Dublin, Edition 1871; and
The Divine Office for the use of the Laity, Volume II, 1806.
St. Ubald, pray for us.