Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Boniface, Archbishop of Mainz, Missionary to Germany, and Martyr, 754

An Englishman from Devonshire, Winifred was educated at Exeter and Nursling, Boniface was one of the "Makers of Europe". A professed monk and priest, he accepted a call as missionary to Frisia, with little success, returned to Rome, was commissioned by Pope Gregory, renamed Boniface, and sent to Germany where he spent his remaining years planting churches, reforming dioceses and monasteries; finally consecrated a bishop then archbishop and given a permanent see in Mainz.

As archbishop, Boniface worked to prepare the way for Charlemagne, and the unified Christian dominion of Europe.

He resigned his bishopric in 753, to spend his last years as a monk in Frisia, and was martyred, with a group of catechumens by pagans, and buried near at monastery he founded, Fulda, near Mainz.
Almighty God, who didst call thy faithful servant Boniface to be a witness and martyr in Germany, and by his labor and suffering didst raise up a people for thine own possession: Pour forth thy Hoy Spirit upon thy Church in eery land, that by the service and sacrifice of many thy holy Name may be glorifies and thy kingdom enlarged; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit, ond God, for ever and ever. Amen.
LF&F 1980, 239

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