St. Wolfgang

ST. WOLFGANG 

St. Wolfgang (934-994), also known as the Great Almoner, was a Benedictine monk, reformer, and Bishop of Regensburg, Bavaria (now Germany). He was from the noble class with an excellent education. As bishop he worked to reform the monasteries and convents in his diocese. He is remembered for his teaching abilities, his oratory skills, and his charity towards the poor. He was also integral to the evangelization efforts of the Magyars in what is today modern Hungary. Towards the end of his life he withdrew to a solitary spot to live as a hermit and build a church at what is now St. Wolfgang’s Lake in Austria. He prayed and threw and axe into the wilderness, and on the place where the axe fell he built his cell. The town of St. Wolfgang still exists on the spot. According to legend he tricked the Devil into helping him build the church, promising him the first soul that came through its doors. The devil agreed, and after the construction was completed, a wolf was the first to cross its threshold, thus tricking the devil. St. Wolfgang’s life was foundational to Bavarian and Austrian civilization. Many miracles occurred at his tomb, especially those related to stomach ailments. St. Wolfgang is the patron saint of carpenters, stroke victims, and the paralyzed. His feast day is October 31st.

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