ST. LUPUS, OR LEU, ARCHBISHOP OF SENS, C.
HE was a saint from the cradle, and brought up in the sanctuary, like another Samuel, in learning and piety among the clergy of Orleans, his native city. It was always a favorite devotion with him to visit often the tombs of the martyrs, honoring God in his faithful servants who had glorified his divine name by the sacrifice of their lives. Studying to walk in their spirit, he subdued his flesh by austere fasts, watching in holy prayer, humiliations, and penance. Being extremely sensible of the sufferings and necessities of all that were in distress, he carried his hospitality and charity to a degree, which on any other occasion would have been esteemed profusion. Having succeeded Artemius in the archbishopric of Sens in 609, he signalized himself by the most zealous discharge of every branch of the pastoral duty, and showed that as no dignity could inspire him with pride, so no application to public employments could divert him from constant attention to God. When the safety of his country demanded his assistance, he was active in maintaining the public tranquility; and after the death of king Theodoric, he supported the party of his son Sigebert, to the utmost of his power. Afterward when king Clotaire was become master of Burgundy, he sent Farulph thither to take care of his affairs. This minister was exasperated against the saint because he did not bring him presents; accused him falsely to the king, and was seconded in his calumnies by Medigisil, abbot of St. Remegius’s in the suburbs of the Sens, whose aim it was to supplant St. Lupus in his archbishopric.
Clotaire had not yet learned how dangerous a thing it is in a prince to listen to, or encourage informers, those caterpillars of the state; and, being seduced by the artifices of flattering slanderers, banished St. Lupus, and gave orders to Landegesil, a pagan officer, to conduct him to Ausene, a village in Vimeu, not far from Lyons. The holy bishop being come thither, and finding profane temples in which the people of the country worshipped false gods, believed he was sent by God for their conversion, which he soon compassed by his zealous preaching and example. By restoring sight to a blind man he converted Landegesil, the duke or governor, and baptized him with several that were still pagans, in the armies of the Franks. In the mean time St. Vinebaud, abbot of St. Lupus at Troyes, and the citizens of Sens, solicited king Clotaire to recall St. Lupus. That prince, who was then near Rouen, was made sensible of the injury he had done the holy man, and of the slanders of his accusers. He therefore disgraced and detested them, sent for St. Lupus, prostrated himself at his feet to ask him forgiveness, caused him to eat at his table, and sent him back to his church loaded with presents. The saint never showed the least resentment against his enemies, sought no other revenge than by conferring the greatest benefits on his calumniators, and by the evenness of temper with which he bore his disgrace, gave the highest mark of true heroism and sincere virtue. He died happily about the year 623, on the 1st of September, at the manor of Brinon, which still belongs to his church. His body was carried back to Sens, and buried as he had ordered, out of humility, under the water-conduit pipe in the church of St. Columba. His name occurs in the Roman Martyrology, and in those of Ado and Usuard. See his life written soon after his death in Surius, and F. Velde the Bollandist, t. 1, Sept. p. 248. See also Cointe’s Annales Eccl. Franc. An. 613, n. 4, Fleury,1. 37, n. 16, t. 4. Rivet, Hist. Littér. t. 4, p. 192.