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Benedictine abbot and one of the foremost monastic leaders of his time. Born in Flanders, Poppo at first led a worldly life, joining the military and refusing an arranged marriage. After a pilgrimage to Rome and Jerusalem, he came back a changed person and entered the Benedictines at St. Thierry, Reims, in 1006. Transferred to Saint Vannes, he assisted the abbot, Blessed Richard, in restoring monastic discipline. He was named provost of St. Vaast, Arras, and Beaulieu, and then abbot of Stavelot Malmedy. The latter post was granted to him by Emperor St. Henry II, who considered Poppo to be one of his most trusted advisors. As abbot, Poppo was the head of a community of monasteries in which he labored to revive discipline and the spiritual perfections.
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