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Thomas Hélye, Bl.


Preacher and teacher; b. Biville, Normandy, France, 1187; d. Vauville, France, Oct. 19, 1257. Thomas dedicated himself first to teaching school and catechism in his native town. He was invited to teach in the nearby town of Cherbourg, but illness later forced him to return home. Here he observed the strictest regularity in his life and was early ordained a deacon by the bishop of Coutances. After pilgrimages to Compostela and Rome, he went to the University of Paris, where he studied theology and four years later was ordained a priest. More austere than ever, Thomas continued his mission of catechizing, preaching, and pastoral care in regions surrounding his native district. There is no reliable evidence, however, that he was a chaplain to (St.) louis ix. His cult was confirmed in 1859, and his relics are in the church at Biville.

Feast: Oct. 19.

Bibliography: Acta Sanctorum Oct. 8:592622. a. mercati and a. pelzer, Dizionario ecclesiastico, 3 v. (Turin 195458) 3:1148. "Thomas Hélye," Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 195765); suppl., Das Zweite Vatikanische Konzil: Dokumente und Kommentare, ed. h. s. brechter et al., pt. 1 (1966) v.10. a. butler, The Lives of the Saints, rev. ed. h. thurston and d. attwater (New York, 1956) 4:151152. Analecta Bollandiana 22:505.

[f. d. lazenby]

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