Posted by: anna | March 21, 2010

St Felix of Burgundy

icon image from Western Saints Icon Project, no provenance given

Today (8 March) we commemorate St. Felix of Burgundy, bishop of Dunwich and Enlightener of East Anglia (ca. 648). From Dr Baring-Gould:

S. FELIX, B. (a.d. 654.) [Roman and Gallican Martyrologies. Salisbury Breviary, and more modern Anglican Martyrologies. Also Molanus and Greven, in their addition to Usuardus. Authorities : — Bede and Malmesbury.]

S. Felix was a native of Burgundy, where he made the acquaintance of Sigebert, prince of the East Angles, who had been banished by Redwald. This prince was instructed in the Christian faith, and was baptized by Felix, at that time a priest. Some time after this, upon the death of his half-brother, king Espenwald, the son of Redwald, who had been killed at the instigation of the cruel Penda, king of Mercia, Sigebert was called to England to succeed to the kingdom, and he made it his care to introduce Christianity among the East Angles, who occupied Norfolk, Suffolk, and Cambridgeshire. For this purpose he invited S. Felix to his court, and he, without demur, quitted country, friends, and home, to preach the faith to an uncivilized pagan people. But first he visited Honorius, archbishop of Canterbury, and from him he received his mission to the East Angles, and, as some say, his episcopal consecration. King Sigebert appointed Dunwich, on the Suffolk coast, as the headquarters of his mission. Felix went about, preaching, founding churches and schools, and, through his exertions, the Christian faith took deep root in the land. Some attribute to him the foundation of the first school at Cambridge.

S. Felix lived till after the year 650, and having discharged the duty of a most zealous pastor of souls for the space of seventeen years, he departed to the Lord, and was buried in his church of Dunwich, from which place his body was afterwards translated to Soham, near Ely, and thence to the abbey of Ramsey.

More:
Four Local Saints of Suffolk from orthodoxengland
Commemoration service, also from orthodoxengland

Holy St Felix, pray to God for us.
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