Saint Chad, Brother of Saint Cedd

March 2 marks the Feast of Saint Chad (Old English: Ceadda; died 2 March 672), a prominent 7th century Anglo-Saxon churchman, who became Abbot of several monasteries, Bishop of the Northumbrians and subsequently Bishop of the Mercians and Lindsey People.
He was the brother of Cedd, Cynibil and Caelin, and on the death of Saint Cedd succeeded him as Abbot of Lastingham. He had been a student of Saint Aidan at the Celtic monastery at Lindisfarne, as had his brother, Cedd. Chad was educated in an entirely distinct monastic tradition, indigenous to Western Europe itself, and tending to look back to the saint and monastic founder Martin of Tours as an exemplar, although not as founder of an order. As Bede’s account makes clear, the Irish and early Anglo-Saxon monasticism experienced by Chad was peripatetic, stressed ascetic practices and had a strong focus on Biblical exegesis, which generated a profound eschatological consciousness. Egbert recalled later that he and Chad “followed the monastic life together very strictly – in prayers and continence, and in meditation on Holy Scripture”.
relics of chad
Chad was venerated as a saint immediately after his death, and his relics were translated to a new shrine. He remained the centre of an important cult, focussed on healing, throughout the Middle Ages. His relics, lost during the Reformation, were relocated in 1847 and were enshrined in the new St. Chad’s Cathedral, Birmingham, opened in 1841, in a new ark designed by Augustus Pugin.

Saint Chad, brother of our Patron Saint Cedd, pray for us!


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