ST. REMBERT, ARCHBISHOP OF BREMEN, C.
HE was a native of Flanders, near Bruges, and a
monk in the neighboring monastery of Turholt. St. Anscharius called
him to his assistance in his missionary labors, and in his last
sickness recommended him for his successor, saying: “Rembert is
more worthy to be archbishop, than I to discharge the office of his
deacon.” After his death, in 865, St. Rembert was unanimously
chosen archbishop of Hamburg and Bremen, and superintended all the
churches of Sweden, Denmark, and the Lower Germany, finishing the
work of their conversion. He also began the conversion of the Sclavi
and the Vandals, now called Brandenburghers. He sold the sacred
vessels to redeem captives from the Normans; and gave the horse on
which he was riding for the ransom of a virgin taken by the Sclavi.
He was most careful never to lose a moment of time from serious
duties and prayer; and never to interrupt the attention of his mind
to God in his exterior functions. He died on the 11th of June, in
888, but is commemorated in the Roman Martyrology on the 4th of
February, the day on which he was chosen archbishop. His life of St.
Anscharius is admired, both for the author’s accuracy and
piety, and for the elegance and correctness of the composition. His
letter to Walburge, first abbess of Nienherse, is a pathetic
exhortation to humility and virginity. The see of Hamburg being
united to Bremen by St. Anscharius, this became the metropolitan
church of all the north of Germany: but the city becoming Lutheran,
expelled the archbishop in the reign of Charles V. This see and that
of Ferden were secularized and yielded to the Swedes by the treaty of
Westphalia, in 1648. See his life written soon after his death, in
Henschenius, p. 555. Mabillon, Act. Bened., &c.