Sant'Alberto
MAY
16-17
   
History of St Albert of the Normans (Planisio 1031- Monte Corvino end of 11th, beginning of 12th cent.) St Albert, Giovanni's son, descending from a noble Norman family was born in 1031 (or 1032) in Planisio, an ancient village, no longer existing, nearby Monte Corvino.
At the age of five, he moved to Montecorvino, a town founded by the Byzantines around 1015, in the modern province of Foggia, together with Civitate, Fiorentino and Troia, where he started to study literature and between 1059 and 1075 was appointed bishop of that diocese. Since very young, his life was dedicated to prayer and fast to the point that when the bishop Adeodato died, the clergy, the people and the count Gualtieri of Civitate who was administering the province at that time, appointed unanimously Albert as new bishop. Initially, he did not accept such a responsibility and was almost forced: he asked to be consecrated only after the enlargement and renovation of the Cathedral. Nevertheless, the reputation of his sanctity widespread rapidly, many local nobles among which Robert Guiscard went to him to be confessed.
Albert went on practising prayer, fast and ascetic meditation. Because of the constant privations, he underwent a strong physical decline and turned blind, to the point that the priest Crescenzo started supporting him and acting as his coadjutor. He tried to shorten his life by every means to take over him as bishop. According to the tradition, many were the miracles attributed to St Albert when still living. Pilgrims started to go to Monte Corvino from all over the Norman Kingdom to ask for mercies to the saint bishop. The last piece of evidence about his pastoral activity dates back to 1082 and confirms the presence of Albert and other bishops and counts of the towns nearby Civitate to ratify the decision of the abbot of Montecassino, cardinal Desiderio, to give up to all property rights over the abbey of St Maria di Tremiti. From that moment on, nothing new was known about his life not even the exact year of his death. Albert died on April 5th between the end of the 11th century and the beginning of the 12th century and was buried in his cathedral.
   
 



   
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