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St. William of Dijon

Facts

Feastday: January 1
Birth: 962
Death: 1039

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Image of St. William of Dijon

William of Dijon is also known as William of St. Benignus. He was the son of Count Robert of Volpiano. William was born in the family castle on San Giuglio island in lake Orta near Nocera while his father was defending the island against the attacking Emperor Otto, who became his sponsor when he captured the island. William was entered into the Benedictine Abbey of Locadio when he was seven, became a monk there, and joined St. Majolus at Cluny in 987. He reorganized St. Sernin Abbey on the Rhone, was ordained in 990, named abbot of St. Benignus at Dijon, and built the Abbey into a great center of spirituality, education, and culture, and the mother monastery of some forty monasteries in Burgundy, Lorraine, Normandy, and Northern Italy. He traveled widely, spreading the Cluniac reform. He died at Fe'camp Monastery in Normandy which he had rebuilt on January 1. His feast day is January 1st.

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