April 17 – Saint Stephen Harding
Born in England, Stephen spoke English, Norman, French and Latin. He became a traveling academic and later wnet to the abbey in Molesme, in France. He later left this abbey, to avoid corruption and spiritual relaxation and Saint Alberic went with him as well as Saint Robert of Molesme. When another 21 monks left Molesme, Stephen, Alberic and Robert founded a new monastery. Stephen was the third abbot and guided the monastery to a period of growth. He served for 25 years. Even though no one is credited with the founding of the Cistercian Order, Stephen is recognized for molding much of the spirit of the Order. Stephen stepped down in 1133, for reasons of age and inabilities. He died the following year.
Are you capable of persevering from an act that you consider good, aside from the difficulties?