Short Lives of the Saints – Saint Paternus

detail of a stained glass window of Saint Paternus of Vannes, 1878, artist unknown; Saint Peter cathedral of Vannes, Morbihan, France; photographed on 26 October 2012 by Fab5669; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsEntry

In the district of Vannes, in the year 490, was born Saint Paternus, who in his youth travelled into Britain to announce the Gospel of Christ. He there became a monk, was superior of the monasteries of Wales, and founded many religious houses. By a mission into Ireland he established peace among the inhabitants there, and quieted the bloody feuds which prevailed. He then made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem (with Saint David of Wales), where the patriarch, John III, consecrated Paternus bishop. Returning to his native place, the newly consecrated prelate was chosen bishop of Vannes; but finding that some dissension arose in consequence, among the bishops of the province, Saint Paternus meekly withdrew from his diocese, after some years of service. He retired to a solitary place in France, where he died a holy death about the year 557.

Though it break your heart in twain,
  Though the burden crush you down,
Close your lips and hide your pain:
  First the cross, and then the crown.
    – Father Ryan

Favorite Practice – Frequent reflection upon the beatitude: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.”

MLA Citation

  • Eleanor Cecilia Donnelly. “Saint Paternus”. Short Lives of the Saints, 1910. CatholicSaints.Info. 14 April 2021. Web. 5 August 2021. <>