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  Blessed Edmund

EdmundSchools.Org






      Born in Callan, County Kilkenny, in 1762, Edmund Rice received an education that was denied to a majority of Catholics in Ireland under the Penal Code of British law. First attending a "hedge school," an illegal school established by itinerant teachers, Edmund went on to attend a commercial academy in Kilkenny. Here he received a commercial and classical education which proved very beneficial in his business endeavors and in his career as an educator.
      At the age of eighteen, Edmund became an apprentice to his uncle, Michael Rice, who owned a prosperous business in Waterford. Edmund took over the business at the age of twenty-four, and was soon a well-known and well-liked figure in Waterford. He fell in love with Mary Elliott, and they were married. The young couple was soon blessed with the prospect of a child to complete their happiness.
      Then came the cross. Mary died in childbirth when the baby daughter, also called Mary, was born prematurely. The young Mary was of very frail health and was to need special care for the rest of her life.
      While caring for his daughter with the help of his stepsister Joan, Edmund engaged in much soul-searching trying to discover the future direction of his life. He attended daily Mass, spent much time in prayer and in the reading of Scripture, and performed charitable works for the poor, sick, and others in much need of his care.
      In 1802, when he was a 40-year-old widower and a successful business man, Edmund changed course radically. He sold off his business interests and started a school for poor boys in a converted stable. It is with these humble beginnings that Edmund founded two congregations of religious brothers.
      The Congregation of Christian Brothers, one of those founded by Edmund, serves in Ireland and England as well as in India, Australia, Africa, South America, and elsewhere. The approximately 300 brothers of the North American Province of the Christian Brothers work primarily in Catholic schools but also serve in various other ministries.
      Edmund Rice was beatified by Pope John Paul II on October 6, 1996. "Who will ever measure all the good that has come from the spiritual insight, warm heart, and determined faith of Blessed Edmund Rice?" said the pope.
      The Church celebrates the feast of Blessed Edmund Rice on May 5.

Visit here for more on the life of Edmund.

Also, request your own free copy of Overcoming Evil with Good; The Edmund Rice Story a very readable and personal account of the life of Blessed Edmund by Brother James A. Houlihan, CFC.





  • Images
    Click here for information on these and other images of Blessed Edmund.








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