This calendar of saints is drawn from several denominations, sects, and traditions. Although it will no longer be updated daily, the index on the right will guide visitors to a saint celebrated on any day they choose. Additional saints will be added as they present themselves to Major.

Friday, June 1, 2012

June 1 -- Feast of Blessed Theobald Roggeri

Twelfth century reliquary for Theo's skull
Blessed Theobald Roggeri was born in northern Italy.  Even though he was born to a prosperous family, it remains unclear whether he came from Piedmont, Liguria, or Lombardy.   Of course, that's sort of like saying he came from New Hampshire, Maine, or Vermont -- it is an accident of geography that those are really three states instead of just one.  And you probably figured out he was from northern Italy, given his first name. The year of his birth is also just a guess since birth certificates from the eleventh century are tough to find.

Good slogan. 
Like Saint Walstan, Blessed Theobald interpreted the Gospels to mean that he should ditch his wealthy family to lead a life of toil and deprivation.  He worked for a while as an apprentice cobbler, but then his future got a little too promising again.  He had a knack for crafting shoes, and the cobbler figured Theobald might be a good match for his daughter.  It's a predictable path, right?  The promising young apprentice marries into the family, inherits the business, and he's set for life. 

Good title.
Theobald had already taken an oath of chastity, so he bolted once again.  This time, he took off for Santiago de Compostela, the biggest pilgrimage in Western Europe, and followed that up by working as a porter.  He spent nearly all his wages on alms for the poor.  He might also have donated some of the grain from each sack he handled to the poor.  His boss might have called it theft, but the needy called it generosity.  After his death in 1150, he was declared the patron saint of cobblers and porters, as well as those who clean churches.  He is also invoked against fever and sterility. 
Great beer. 

The beer style called porter is said to have been so called because its strong flavor and high alcohol content were preferred by the hard-working, unsophisticated porters of the London commercial district.  While I don't think a Wasatch Polygamy Porter is entirely consistent with Blessed Theobald's spirit, hefting a Geary's London Porter or a cleverly named Atlantic Coal Porter (get it?  How about with an audio clue?) might honor his Lombard roots nicely. 

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