Pictorial Half Hours with the Saints – Saint Severinus

painting of Saint Severin of Noricum; detail from the altar in the church of San Severin in Naples, Italy; c.1470 by the Master of San Severino; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsDo Penance

Saint Severinus quitted the solitudes of the East, where he had been devoting himself to the exercises of the coenobitic life, in order to evangelize the population of Norica, a province which comprised the greater part of Austria and the Tyrol. He at first encountered great resistance, but soon effected wonders of conversion, as well by reason of his humble and mortified life, as because he announced to his hearers the calamities wherewith the rebellious nations would be afflicted. “Do penance,” exclaimed he, “sin is the cause of all the woes that God scatters upon the earth!” Before consenting to pray for those who were afflicted, and before releasing them from their infirmities, he required that they should do penance. His own life showed forth the constant example thereof. He foretold to Odoacer, king of the Herules, that he was to lay waste Italy, by way of punishment for its crimes; and the prophecy was amply verified. Hence kings and nations and rulers ended by holding him in singular veneration, regarding him as the envoy of Heaven. He yielded up his spirit on the 9th January 482.

Moral Reflection

If not out of tenderness towards Ood, let us, at least from charity for ourselves, repair our past guilt, and avoid committing fresh offences; for, “As by one man sin entered into the world, 80 death passes by sin.” – Romans 5:12

– from Pictorial Half Hours with the Saints, by Father Auguste Fran├žois Lecanu, 1865