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Saint Cagnoald

Saint Cagnoald
  • Century: 7th Century
  • Patronage: Those in Exile
  • Feast Day: September 6th

St. Cagnoald was born in France, and the date of his birth is not certain.  Cagnoald became a monk after meeting with St. Columban.  We know he was the brother of St. Faro, and St. Burgundofara.  Cagnoald became the bishop of Laon, and attended the Council of Reims in 630.   

St. Cagnoald’s Family was known as the Faronids, named after his brother St. Faro, who was the Bishop of Meaux.  His sister was Saint Burgundofara, who founded the convent of Faremoutiers.  They were the children of the chancellor to Dagobert I, Chagneric.   

We know that Cagnoald became a monk at Luxeuil, and was later ordained the Bishop of Laon, and in that position he once angered the King, Theodoric II.  He criticized him for his immoral conduct, and that didn’t set well with the king.  Theodoric in response to the criticism exiled Cagnoald from his territories in 610.  Cagnoald left his see as a Bishop, finding refuge in the territory of Theuderic II, and working with Columbanus as a missionary in the area of Lake Constance.   

It wasn’t long, and Theodoric gained control of this territory as well.  Columbanus was banished, and left for Rome, with Cagnoald accompanying him.  On the death of Columbanus, Cagnoald returned to his old diocese, and resumed his duties as Bishop.  He participated in the Council of Reims in 630, according to the Church records.  He is venerated as a patron saint of those in exile, and his feast day is September 6th.   

Practical Take Away

While very little is known of St. Cagnoald, we do know that he had a brother St. Faro, and a sister St. Burgundofara, that were both canonized saints.  He was a missionary, that eventually was installed as the Bishop of Laon.  The King of his time didn’t live a moral life, and when this was pointed out to him, St. Cagnoald was exiled.  He was exiled several times, as the king won over more territories.  Eventually he was able to return back to his see and resume his role as Bishop.  We also know that he attended one of the early Church Councils, the one in Reims, 630.  Again we see through his life that he not only sacraficed all to be of service to the Church, but he also had to flee, sometimes more than once, to foreign lands.  What sacrifices they went through to assure our Church would grow, and our faith would never be lost.  We should be grateful, for their sacrifices.