Our Beloved Reginald!

"I do not consider myself worthy of anything in this Order, for I have been nothing but pleased with it."

This same year, while Master Dominic was in Rome, Master Reginald, dean of St. Aignan in Orleans, arrived in the Eternal City enroute to a journey across the sea. He was a man renowned for his knowledge and celebrated for his authority, especially in Canon Law, which he had skillfully taught at Paris for five years. In Rome he fell gravely ill and was visited a number of times by Master Dominic, who persuaded him to imitate the poverty of Christ and join the Order. The result was that he freely and fully bound himself by vow to enter this religious state.

Blessed Reginald receives the scapular from our Lady. it is the only part of the habit that is blessed which happens at First Profession. (The veils of the cloistered nuns are blessed at Solemn Profession)

After that, he recovered from his serious illness, but only in virtue of a miracle occurring after his condition had become desperate. For during the height of one of his fevers the Queen of Heaven and Mother of Mercy, the Virgin Mary, visibly appeared to him and anointed his eyes, nose, ears, mouth, chest, hands, and feet with a soothing ointment and said these words, 'I anoint your feet with a holy oil in preparation for the gospel of peace." Then she showed him the complete habit of this Order. At once he became well and so sudden was his cure that the physicians, who had almost given up all hope, were at a loss to explain his evident recovery. This miracle was later revealed by Master Dominic to many who are still living, and I myself was present when he once related it to a group assembled for a conference in Paris.

After being restored to health, Master Reginald, although now bound to the Order by profession, was able to fulfill his desire and cross the sea. After his return, he went to Bologna on December 21, [1218], where he dedicated himself entirely to preaching. His was a burning eloquence and his talks so inflamed the hearts of all his hearers that even the most hardened could not escape his warmth. All Bologna was astir, because a new Elias seemed to have arisen. During these days he received many of its citizens into the Order and the number of disciples began to grow.

Accordingly, Brother Reginald, of happy memory, reached Paris and, by word and example, applied himself with unremitting zeal to preaching Jesus Christ and Him Crucified. But God soon took him from this life after a brief period of great accomplishment. He was suddenly lay low by a sickness which proved fatal, and he died in the Lord. While he lived, he showed himself a champion of poverty and lowliness, which he exchanged for the glorious riches of the house of God. He was buried in the Church of St. Mary of the Fields, since the brethren had not yet acquired a burial place of their own.

Even now I recall how Brother Matthew, who had known him as a renowned, but fastidious person in the world, once asked him, "Have you ever regretted putting on this habit, Master Reginald?" To this he gave the modest reply, "I do not consider myself worthy of anything in this Order, for I have been nothing but pleased with it."

From the account of the first days of the Order (the Libellus) by Bl. Jordan of Saxony who Bl. Reginald brought into the Order. His feast day is tomorrow, February 13th.

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