Wolfgang of Regensburg, St.

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Bishop, patron saint of Regensburg, popular saint in southern Germany during the late Middle Ages; b. probably in Pfullingen (Swabia), Germany, c. 924; d. Pupping (near Linz, Upper Austria), Oct. 31, 994. He was educated in reichenau with Henry, brother of Bp. Poppo of Würzburg, and went to Würzburg with him to study under the Italian grammarian Stephen. When Henry became archbishop of Trier (956), he made Wolfgang dean and head of the cathedral school. After Henry's death (964), Wolfgang became a monk in einsiedeln and was ordained by ulric of augsburg (968). His missionary activity in Hungary was cut short when Bp. pilgrim of passau had him named bishop of Regensburg (972). There, Wolfgang became the teacher of the future Emperor Henry II, and Gisela, later wife of stephen i of Hungary, as well as of several future archbishops and bishops. The Diocese of Prague, formed from his diocese (973975), had as its first resident bishop (St.) adalbert of prague (983997), Wolfgang's disciple in Trier. Wolfgang loyally supported Emperors otto ii and otto iii. His greatest merits, however, lay in his pastoral care. He separated the bishop's office from that of abbot of sankt emmeram, calling on his friend, Ramwold of St. Maximin in Trier to introduce gorze customs there. Abbots Ramwold (9751000) and Godehard of niederaltaich proved his best helpers in renewing the spiritual life in monasteries throughout his diocese. The Regensburg convent for nuns, Mittelmünster, founded by him c. 974, became the model for his reform of the convent of Obermünster. His reform spread to other Bavarian dioceses; he reformed also Mondsee (c. 976) in the Diocese of Salzburg (but property of Regensburg) and lived there as a hermit during the duke of Bavaria's rebellion aginst Otto II. Hence arose the legend that he had lived on the Abersee, now called Sankt Wolfgangsee in Upper Austria. He was buried in Sankt Emmeram and was canonized by Leo IX (1052).

Feast: Oct. 31.

Bibliography: a. zimmerman, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. m. buchberger (Freiburg 193038) 10:960962. w. wattenbach, Deutschlands Geschichtsquellen im Mittelalter. Deutsche Kaiserzeit, ed. r. holtzmann (Tübingen 1948) 1.2:265268. r. bauerreiss, Kirchengeschichte Bayerns, 5 v. (St. Ottilien 194955) v.2. a. burkhard, The St Wolfgang Altar of Michael Pacher (Munich 1971). Regensburg und Böhmen. Festschrift zur Tausendjahrfeier des Regierungsantrittes Bischof Wolfgangs von Regensburg, ed. g. schwaiger and j. staber (Regensburg 1972). Auf den Spuren des Heiligen Wolfgang (Kallmünz 1973). r. zinnhobler, Der heilige Wolfgang: Leben, Legende, Kult (Linz 1975). Das Leben des heiligen Wolfgang, ed. h. bleibrunner (Landshut 1976). Der Hl. Wolfgang in Geschichte, Kunst und Kult, ed. m. mohr (Linz 1976). Das Sakramentar-Pontifikale des Bischofs Wolfgang von Regensburg, eds. k. gamber and s. rehle (Regensburg 1985). Liturgie zur Zeit des Hl. Wolfgang, proceedings of Bistumspatrons St. Wolfgang in der Bischöflichen Zentralbibliothek Regensburg, June 17 to Sept. 16, 1994, ed. s. acht, (Regensburg 1994). w. preiss-john, Wolfgang von Pfullingen: Bischof im Mönchsgewand (Ostfildern 1994). m. koller, Der Flügelaltar von Michael Pacher in St. Wolfgang (Vienna 1998).

[a. a. schacher]