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St. Fulcran

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Bishop of Lodève; d. 13 February, 1006. According to the biography which Bernard Guidonis, Bishop of Lodève (d. 1331), has left us his saintly predecessor, Fulcran came of a distinguished family, consecrated himself at an early age to the service of the Church, became a priest, and from his youth led a pure and holy life. When in 949 Theoderich, Bishop of Lodève, died, Fulcran, notwithstanding his unwillingness, was chosen as his successor and was consecrated by the Archbishop of Narbonne on 4 February of the same year. He was untiring in his efforts to conserve the moral life within his diocese, especially among the clergy and the religious orders; he rebuilt many churches and convents, among them the cathedral dedicated to St. Genesius and the church of the Holy Redeemer with the Benedictine monastery attached to it. The poor and the sick were the objects of his special care; for their support he founded hospitals and endowed others already existing. The following anecdote from his life is worthy of mention. A bishop of Gaul had fallen away from the Faith and had accepted Jewish teachings. When the news reached Fulcran, he exclaimed in an excess of zeal : "This bishop should be burned!" Shortly afterwards the renegade prelate was actually seized by his incensed flock and delivered up to death by fire. Fulcran was then filled with remorse that by his utterance he should have been the cause of the apostate's death, and after doing severe penance, he made a pilgrimage to Rome, there to receive absolution for his supposed guilt. After his death he was buried in the cathedral of Lodève and honoured as a saint. His body, which had been preserved intact, was burned by the Huguenots in 1572, and only a few particles of his remains were saved. He is the second patron of the Diocese of Lodève, and his feast falls on 13th February.

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