Erkembodo, St.

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Benedictine abbot; d. Thérouanne, April 12, 734. He was received into the abbey of Saints. Peter and Paul (saint-bertin) before 709, and was elected fourth abbot of the monastery in 717. The benedictine rule had already replaced the earlier usages of St. columban. Erkembodo developed his abbey's liturgical practices and intensified its life of prayer. He increased the property of the monastery by buying neighboring lands, and from Chilperic II and Theodoric IV he obtained confirmation of the privilege of immunity granted by Clovis III. In 720, upon the death of Ravenger, he became fifth bishop of Thérouanne. He was buried in the church of Saint-Omer beside the first bishop of Thérouanne and became the object of a popular cult, which continues to this day. A Romanesque church was built there in the mid-11th century. His present tomb is a monolithic sandstone sarcophagus, with concentric carvings, after the manner of those in Ravenna.

Feast: April 12.

Bibliography: Acta Sanctorum April 2:9395. m. coens, "L'Auteur de la Vita Erkembodonis, " Analecta Bollandiana 42 (1924) 126136. l. van der essen, Étude critique des saints mérovingiens de l'ancienne Belgique (Louvain 1907). g. coolen, "La Mort de S. E.," Bulletin trimestriel de la société académique des antiquaires de la Morinie 18 (1957) 641643.

[g. coolen]