Tuesday, May 05, 2009

St Angelus, Carmelite Friar and Martyr

St. Angelus was one of the first Carmelite to come to Sicily form Mount Carmel about the year 1217. He preached at Palermo and Messina. He was martyred by a certain Count Berenger, a powerful lord of that country, who for several years had lived openly in unhallowed union with his own sister. St. Angelus rebuked him severely, as St John the Baptist had formerly rebuked Herod, and found the same recompence. By command of Berenger he was hung upon a tree and shot with arrows. Only in 1632 were his relics transferred to the Carmelite Church. Veneration of St. Angelus spread throughout the Carmelite Order as well as among the Universal Church. He has been named patron of many places in Sicily and up to this day many Catholics invoke his intercession faithfully in their needs.

Hymn in honour of St Angelus
(fragments from Thaditional Carmelite Propers of Divine Office)

Hail, happy Angelus of blest renown!
Hail, in the beauty of thy martyr's crown!
Rejoice, O Carmel, at his heavenly birth,
Rejoice to greet thy favoured child, O Earth!

This chosen son, as presage of his fame,
Hears from the Virgin's lips his angel name,
Sweet pledge and token Heaven doth bestow,
his kinship with the Blessed to foreshow.

Sing glory to the Father and the Son
And to the Holy Spirit, Three in one!
Then haste to join the glad angelic lay,
And praise our glorious Mother on this day.

O Lord, let Thy people glorify Thee by honouring the Blessed Angelus, Thy Priest and Martyr, and through his intercession, may they deserve to be led by Thee. Through our Lord.