Vitalis of Salzburg, St.

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Abbot-bishop of sankt peters; d. Oct. 20, c. 730. Although the Liber vitae (Verbrüderungsbuch ) lists him as the third, the Conversio calls him the immediate successor of rupert of salzburg and also seminator verbi Dei. Supported by this evidence and by the fact that the bondmen of St. Peter's in Pinzgau annually paid a rent of bread and cheese on October 20, the feast and probable date of the saint's death, the legend of his missionary activity in Pinzgau has spread. Authentic sources are not extant. The cult of Vitalis, popular since the late Middle Ages, was approved for the abbey in 1519 and for the archdiocese of Salzburg in 1628; the canonization process, begun in 1459, was never completed. Vitalis is portrayed as a bishop with a white lily growing out of his heart.

Feast: Oct. 20.

Bibliography: Conversio Bagoariorum et Carantanorum, ed. m. kos (Laibach 1936) 128. Monumenta Germaniae Historica (Berlin 1826), Necrologia 2:18. p. karner, Die Heiligen und Seligen Salzburgs (Austria Sancta 12; Vienna 1913). m. shellhorn, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. m. buchberger, 10 v. (Freiburg 193038) 10:653, uncritical.

[h. wolfram]