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St. Rigobert (Robert)

Facts

Feastday: January 4
Death: 743

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As archbishop of Reims, France, Rigobert lived in a chamber atop the city gate. While in his room he would pray at a window facing the city’s basilica of Saint Remigius. Desirous to pray frequently in a church closer at hand, Rigobert had a passageway carved through the turret of a church adjoining the city gate, thereby giving him easy access by means of a ladder. He was later unjustly exiled from Reims by the Frankish sovereign Charles Martel. Eventually the archbishop settled in a nearby village. When on one occasion he had been given a live goose to take home for his dinner, Rigobert put the bird in the arms of a servant-boy accompanying him. Along the way, as Rigobert was reciting the divine office, the bird broke free and flew away. The boy deeply grieved this mishap, but Rigobert comforted him, urging him to trust in God. When Rigobert resumed his prayers, the goose flew back to them. Thereafter, the archbishop kept the bird as a pet. The goose would walk with him to a church where, as the tame bird patiently waited for him, he celebrated Mass at an altar dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

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