Last night, the Newman Center had their annual All Saints Day party. I wanted to go as a Saint that few people knew much about, so I picked St. Hubert. He has an interesting story, so I decided I would share it with you.
St. Hubert was born around 656 as the heir to the Duchy of Aquitaine. As a youth he was sent to the Neustrian Court in Paris, where his charisma led him to be invested as “count of the palace.” He, like many nobles of the time, became addicted to the chase in hunting. He eventually married Floribanne, the daughter of the the Count of Leuven. Their son, Floribert, would later become Bishop of Liege. Unfortunately, Floribanne died while giving birth, and the distraught Hubert withdrew from the court and retreated into the forest of the Ardennes and gave himself up entirely to hunting. On Good Friday, while the faithful were crowding the Churches, Hubert decided to go hunting and was chasing a stag, a stag that would change his life.
As Hubert was about to shoot the stag, it turned and looked at him. Hubert was astounded at what he saw, a crucifix standing between the stag’s horns. The stag then opened its mouth and spoke: Hubert, unless thou turnest to the Lord, and leadest an holy life, thou shalt quickly go down into hell. Hubert prostrated himself and asked the stag what he should do, and he was directed to go seek Lambert, Bishop of Maastricht. Lambert became Hubert’s spiritual director, and Hubert sold all he had, gave up his birthright to the duchy of Aquitaine to his younger brother, also appointing him guardian of his infant son. Hubert studied for the priesthood and was ordained. He succeeded Lambert to the episcopal see of Maastricht upon the latter’s assassination. He distributed his income from the episcopacy to the poor and he is said to have converted many to the faith, especially the pagans of the Ardennes and the surrounding areas. He died around 727 and was widely venerated in the Middle Ages. He is the patron of archers; dog; forest workers; hunters; Liege, Belgium; mathematicians; metal workers; Saint-Lamberge, Belgium; smelters; and trappers. His feast day is November 3.