St. Norbert | June 6
Born to nobility, St. Norbert of Xanten, was ordained as a subdeacon and served in the court of Henry V, Emperor of Germany, however, at court it was easy to be distracted by wealth, power and luxury and he lived a worldly and corrupt life there. By the grace of God while traveling in a storm he was nearly struck by lightning and almost killed. This experience changed St. Norbert and he became penitent, left his court post, and after a period of discernment in a monastery, felt called to be a priest.
Norbert became an itinerant preacher, preaching against worldly attitudes but at the Pope’s request finally settled in northern France and founded the Norbertine order established according to the rule of St. Augustine. The order grew rapidly and soon founded women’s branch. Norbert traveled and preached across Germany where he also founded a lay branch of the Norbertines. In Belgium he preached against heresies which denied the Blessed Sacrament.
Eventually he was made Archbishop of Magdeburg, Germany, and later he traveled to Rome in support of Pope Innocent II, against the antipope. Afterward he returned to Germany to court of Emperor Lothar as advisor, at end of life, in failing health, St. Norbert was carried back to Magdeburg where he died. © LPi