Today we commemorate St Maglorius (Magloire, Maelor, Mannelier), Abbot and Bishop of Dol
Maglorius, in Welsh, Maelor, was born in Glamorganshire of a Breton father and a Welsh mother, and was a relative of S. Samson. The father of Maglorius was Umbrafel, brother of Amwn Ddu, father of S. Samson ; and his mother was the sister of Anna, daughter of Meurig ab Tewdrig, prince of Glamorgan.
At an early age he was sent to the monastery of Llantwit Major, under the government of St. Iltyt. After having finished his education there, he returned home. St. Samson ordained him deacon, and summoned him to Dol to assist him in his work, and take his place as abbot of Dol. [B-G leaves out that Magloire was in fact abbot of Lanmeur/Lammeur for many years, and only a few as abbot of Dol, after the death of St Samson.] He was abbot for a great number of years. On the death of S. Samson, in 565, Maglorius succeeded him. He ruled the diocese with great rigour; lived the life of a monk in the midst of his brethren, and went round every part of his see preaching and establishing ecclesiastical discipline. His abbey he confided to S. Budoc, son of Count Goelo, who had received the habit from his hands.
Maglorius was very old, and weary of governing, and he prayed God to relieve him of his charge. One night an angel appeared to him and bade him confer his pastoral staff on Budoc. He then retired to a lonely place near the shore, but was pursued by such crowds of people that he was weary of his life. An opportunity of escape soon occurred. A count, named Soiesco, who owned the island of Jersey, (Sargo in the Life, but not Sark. Jersey received later from the Normans the name it now bears.) was afflicted with leprosy. Maglorius healed him, and in gratitude the count gave him half the island of Jersey. As, however, the wild fowl and fish deserted the count’s portion for that of the saint, he made Maglorius change with him. All the fish and fowl at once followed Maglorius. Then the count abandoned the whole island to the monks. He died the year after the dreadful famine of 585, which Gregory of Tours describes.
The body of S. Maglorius was buried in his monastery in Jersey, but was removed in the 9th century to Lepon, near Deissant. Thence, for fear of the Normans, the relics were translated to Paris. They were buried in the garden of the superior of S. Magloire in 1793, but were exhumed again in 1797, and placed in the church of Saint-Jacques-du-Haut-Pas.
It seems to me that the troparion should say Jersey, not Sark. But there we are – I have had enough of messing about with liturgical texts.
Troparion (tone 8)
Tu quittas ton pays de Galles natif à la prière de notre père Samson
Pour servir Dieu dans le monastère de Lammeur, O père Maelor.
Ayant plut à Dieu par le doux parfum de la lutte monastique,
Tu gratifias l’île de Sark de ton divin repos.
Prie Dieu pour nous, O saint, afin qu’Il nous épargne
D’une mort soudaine et non-préparée et qu’Il nous accorde le Salut.
At the bidding of our Father Samson thou didst leave thy native Wales
to serve God in Lammeur’s Monastery, O Father Maelor.
Having pleased God with the sweet fragrance of monastic struggle,
thou didst grace the island of Sark with thy godly repose.
Pray to God for us, O blessed one, that He will spare us
from sudden and unprepared death and grant salvation to our souls.