ST. ODULPH, CANON OF UTRECHT, C.
HE was born of noble French parents, and
distinguished in his youth by the innocence of his manners, and his
remarkable progress in learning and piety. Being ordained priest, he
was made curate of Oresscoth in Brabant. St. Frederic afterward, by
urgent entreaties, engaged him, for the greater glory of God, to be
his strenuous assistant in reforming the manners of the fierce
Frisons; in which undertaking it is incredible what fatigues he
underwent, and what proofs he gave of heroic patience, meekness,
zeal, and charity. Contemplation and prayer were the support and
refreshment of his soul under his continual labors and austerities.
Several wonderful predictions of things which happened long after his
death, are recorded in his life. In his old age he resided at
Utrecht, and died canon of the cathedral. To his last moments he
allowed himself no indulgence, and never relaxed his fervor in labor;
but rather redoubled his pace the nearer he saw his end approach,
knowing this to be the condition of the Christian’s hire, and
fearing to lose by sloth and for want of perseverance the crown for
which he fought. His fasts, his watchings, his assiduity in prayer,
his almsdeeds, his zeal in instructing the people, and exhorting all
men to the divine love and the contempt of all earthly things, seemed
to gather strength with his years. Being seized with a fever, he with
joy foretold his last moment, and earnestly exhorting his brethren to
fervor, and commending himself to their prayers, he promised, by the
divine mercy, never to forget them before God, and happily departed
this life in the ninth age, on the 12th of June, on which day his
festival was kept with great solemnity at Utrecht and Staveren.
Several churches and chapels bear his name; but the chapel at the New
Bridge in Amsterdam, called Olofs-Kapel, was erected by the Danish
sailors in memory of St. Olaus, king of Norway and Martyr, not of St.
Odulph, as the Bollandists and some others have mistaken. See the
life of St. Odulph in the Bollandists, Junij, t. 2, and Batavia
Sacra, p. 106.