Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Feast of St Malachy

Today, 3 November is the feast day of St Malachy.

Here's a snippet from the very first entry on this blog:

Malachy born in Armagh in 1094 and was bapised Maolmhaodhog Ua Morgair, usually Anglicised as Malachy O'More. He was successively vicar-general to St Cellach, abbot of Bangor, then bishop of Connor before becoming archbishop of Armagh in1094. His primary achievement as a bishop may well have been his success at replacing the Celtic liturgy with the Roman.

In 1138, Malachy resigned as archbishop of Armagh to go on pilgrimage to Rome, meeting and staying with St Bernard at Clairveaux for a time.

Malachy attempted a second Rome pilgrimage in 1148 but only made it as far as Clairveaux where he died in the arms of St Bernard. He was formally canonised by Pope Clement III in 1190.

No doubt most people know of Malachy because of his "prophecies of the popes". These prophecies are a list of 112 short Latin phrases supposedly describing 112 popes, beginning with Celestine II (1143) and ending with Peter II, who is of course, yet to be elected. After the election of Peter II or Petrus Romanus will come the destruction of Rome and the final judgement.
Malachy died in the arms of St Bernard of Clairveaux on 2 November 1148. His feast day is celebrated on 3 November so that it doesn't clash with All Souls Day.