July 20, Bl Ceslaus (Czesław)

July 20
BLESSED CESLAUS, PRESBYTER
Obligatory memorial

Ceslaus (Czesław) was born ca 1180. Being already a priest, he entered the Order of Preachers and was invested with a habit by St Dominic. He proclaimed the Word of God in Bohemia and Poland. He founded monasteries in Prague and Wrocław. He died on 15 July 1242. He is patron saint of the Archdiocese of Wrocław and Diocese of Opole.

Common of Religious.

[PDF Version]

OFFICE OF READINGS

SECOND READING

From the work entitled “Tutelaris Silesiae”
(Commentarius F. Abraham Bzovii 1608, Cracoviae)
He drew people to God with his flawless life

Ceslaus of Polish origin was invested in a religious habit in Rome by St Dominic himself together with St Hyacinth and became known in Poland, and especially in Silesia, for his numerous signs and miracles. It was he who, staying in the famous town of Wrocław with other Christians, when around 1241 the onslaught of Tatars were wreaking havoc in Poland and Silesia, wondrously defended the city with his prayers from the enemy’s frenzy. By his venerable tomb, the afflicted regain health thanks to his merits when they call his name, showing gratitude in various ways.

Silesia fully deserved this God’s gift of possessing Ceslaus, the glorious confessor of Christ. Silesia could not have been given nothing more pleasant, necessary and divine. In the same way as the sun is said to be rising from the ocean, Ceslaus in a form of a shining star rose from Poland to shine not only over Wrocław but over entire Silesia. He drew lost people to decent and good customs with his flawless and celestial life, and spurred pious ones with his sermons. He did a lot of good to Wrocław with his prayers.

He is the paragon of all virtues. With the goodness of his life and proclamation of the Gospel, he dissuaded quite a number of immoral and vile people from illicitness and crime, inducing them to the love of Christ and zeal of pious life. He also drew a lot of men to the religious life. When he would admonish, his words emanated mildness. When he would extol virtues,  great wisdom and eloquence radiated from his mouth. Thus, not only did he work for his own salvation, but also, thanks to his words and examples, for the salvation of a great number of other people. He is the herald of salvation and witness to Christ – the one who “bore witness to the truth.”

If a monk is befitted to be distinguished by virtues, mature deeds and heavenly grace, then all this could be found in Blessed Ceslaus who is in fact worthy of great renown. Omnipotent God has not ceased to adorn him with great miracles that are multiplying every day. [1]

RESPONSORY 

This is the man who did what was just before God.
 He called the Supreme Ruler in face of enemies, and the Lord heard him.

This is the friend of our brothers who prayed a lot for the nation.
He called the Supreme Ruler in face of enemies, and the Lord heard him.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

O endlessly merciful God,
you entrusted Blessed Ceslaus with the proclamation of Christ’s riches,
grant through his intercession that we may know you better and, living in your presence according to the Gospel, bear fruit of good deeds.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

[1] Translated by DChojnacki (2016).

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