Monday, February 14, 2011



            Born near Wroclaw in upper Silesia, Poland around 1183, Saint Hyacinth came from the noble family of  Odrowatz.  He was ordained to the priesthood, becoming Canon of the Cathedral at Krakow.

                   In the course of a jouirney to Rome in 1221, he was attracted to the Order of Preachers by the holiness and preaching of Saint Dominic and received the habit from his hands.  That same year, the General Chapter held at Bologna commissioned him, along with his kinsman Celsius and two other companions, Henry of Moravia and Herman the Teutonic, to return to Poland, thus beginning the Dominican evangelization of Eastern Europe.

Saint Hyacinth is known to have preached and founded priories in Bohemia, Moravia, Russia and Prussia, at a time when the Tartar invasions were at their height, and when missionaries of other Orders who had arrived there first were jealously striving to protect their rights.  Through it all he maintained a reputation for gentleness, humility and courtesy.  He also had, in common with many other saints of the Order a tender devotion to Our Lady.  On every occasion of his life, the Virgin Mary was to lighten the load for him.

Venerated as an Apostle of Poland and credited with numerous miracles, Saint Hyacinth had a vision of the Mother of God and revealed to him that he would die on the Solemnity of the Assumption the 15th of August, 1257.  Pope Clement VIII canonized him in 1594.

          Almighty and eternal God, you chose Saint Hyacinth so that through the assiduous preaching of your word, the peoples of many nations could be renewed and confirmed in the faith; we beseech that, through his intercession, our faith may be increased and work for the promotion of your glory and the salvation of men.  This we ask you through Christ our Lord.  Amen.


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