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OPTIONAL MEMORIAL OF ST. ALBERT THE GREAT, BISHOP AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH


Reading 1 Sir 15:1-6

He who fears the LORD will do this; he who is practiced in the law will come to wisdom. Motherlike she will meet him, like a young bride she will embrace him, Nourish him with the bread of understanding, and give him the water of learning to drink. He will lean upon her and not fall, he will trust in her and not be put to shame. She will exalt him above his fellows; and in the midst of the assembly she will open his mouth and fill him with the spirit of wisdom and understanding, and clothe him with the robe of glory. Joy and gladness he will find, an everlasting name he will inherit.


REFLECTION


St. Albert the Great was a great theologian and philosopher. He was born in Germany and his family was wealthy enough to send him to the best schools. As a student Albert would ask his teachers challenging questions which made them prepare better. He was a brilliant student.


After he graduated, he had a vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This encounter with the Virgin Mary convinced him to join the Dominican Order. He became a teacher and taught at the Universities of Cologne and Paris. Thomas Aquinas was one of Albert's students. It was Albert who helped Thomas Aquinas overcome his shyness and encouraged him to use his intelligence which was God's gift.


In 1254, he became the provincial of the Dominican Order. Together with Thomas Aquinas and a few other Dominicans, they devised a program of study and developed a curriculum for philosophy. It was from this educational program that they started the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas, also known as the Angelicum. It became the most recognized theological University in the world.


St. Albert the Great was proceeded in death by his own student, Thomas Aquinas. He grieved Thomas' early death. He defended Thomas' work after his death. Albert died six years after his beloved student in 1280.


"The surest and quickest way to attain perfection is to strive for purity of heart. Once the obstacles have been removed God finds a clear path and does wonders both in and through the soul." St. Albert the Great


"Mary is the Divine Page on which the Father wrote the Word of God, His Son."

St. Albert the Great


St. Albert pray for us!




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