1390 Miracles

Those of you who are professing Catholics at least will be aware of the practise of gathering a portfolio of miracles to attest to the worth of a person to be made a saint.

In the mediaeval era, that practise applied to new liturgical orders. The worth of a new order of service and thereby its adoption for use by the faithful, would have more stature if miracles could be attributed to it.  So when Adam Easton wrote his liturgy for the Visitation of the Virgin Mary it was a natural part of the process to gather evidence that it was worthy of adoption by the Church. Not least because he had a rival who was also compiling a service for the Visitation!  Here we have just such a miracle noted down in the Vatican records. And of course in the end Adam’s Office of the Visitation was taken up by the Church:


In the year of our Lord 1390 the Reverend in Christ, Lord Adam, Cardinal of England, in the presence of the said Archbishop Raymond, master of the order aforesaid, and master Peter, universal collector of the apostolic seat and Archdeacon of Norwich and great Roman prelate. In the summer season, a single great fever with powerful heat raged and took possession of Hugh the clerk in Rome. And because of that burning type of heat and fever he was despairing of life, disposing of himself in sacrifice, he called to mind the festival of the Visitation of the Blessed Mary instituted by Lord Pope Urban VI of blessed memory, though not yet publicised to the world at large, he knew the story of the festival from other sources, and thus he let out a prayer to this festival willing the fever to end. And two of his loyal friends unmoved by life and death whose tender manner thought him unworthy of death, mercifully provided prayers to our Lady. And from piety Hugh himself had believed, that not without a miracle would the fever and all the heat be driven out. Nor was the fever pacified gradually but suddenly he overcame it and he was restored to full health. And it was at that time, when he emitted the prayer that it was extinguished.

Translated from Vatican Manuscript collection, Manuscript: Lat1122, Folio 161r, Miraculum XII