Silvanus and Virna sit at the side of the dying Cerbonius.
He takes their hands and nods for some moments. “I have much I would wish to say to young people such as yourselves about the primal concerns and dangers of life.”
“Good Father, we are eager to learn whatever you think important.”
“First, let us remember that Almighty God created this earth for His pleasure and judged His work to be very good. Continue reading
Cerbonius again took a seat on his favourite boulder and Silvanus sat at his feet. Then the Bishop told him a parable, saying:
‘A certain farmer lived with his wife and two young sons on a small island. Their possessions consisted of little more than a simple hut, several hens, three goats, a few vines and an ancient olive tree. Although the family meticulously gathered most of the olives, fermenting them in clay pots using rock salt, some were found by the hens and wild birds. Continue reading
One day Cerbonius went up to his favourite boulder and sat down. When Silvanus took his place next to him, the Bishop told him a parable, saying:
‘A father asked his sons to follow him. Procius maintained he was old enough to decide for himself what to do. Gallus, hesitated, then decided to join his older brother. So the father went out alone. Continue reading
Aware that he was soon to die, Cerbonius bequeathed all the wisdom he had garnered over his long and colourful life to his spiritual son, Silvanus, in the form of a scroll of warnings and admonitions for young Christian believers.
Silvanus would have liked to read Cerbonius’s advice out loud and ask for explanations where necessary. But the aged Bishop was too weak. So I’ve taken the liberty of here reproducing the headlines of that catalogue, together with some comments the Saint would have voiced had he had the strength: Continue reading
Cerbonius was a colourful character — priest, refugee, hermit, bishop, bear-tamer, animal-lover, miracle-worker and sensational papal visitor — who was later canonised by the Roman Catholic Church. He is remembered for his intimate relationship with God, “a man with a venerable life, who gave evidence of great holiness”, as St. Gregory the Great wrote in his “Dialogues”. Continue reading