Paulinus, was a member of the second company of missionary monks sent by Pope Gregory to England from Rome in 601 to assist Saint Augustine of Canterbury and his companions. For many years Paulinus stayed in the region around Kent but when the Kentish princess Ethelburga came north to Northumbria to marry the pagan king, Edwin, Paulinus was consecrated bishop and came north with her as her chaplain.
Paulinus was a tall, inspiring man and, by his persistent efforts, he won over King Edwin to the Christian faith in spite of the king’s original reluctance. Edwin was baptised at York by Paulinus himself on the eve of Easter Sunday in 627, along with many of the king’s family and nobles.
From this time onwards, Paulinus was able to make a series of missionary journeys over the whole region, converting and baptising huge numbers of people. He reached as far south as Lincoln, where he built a stone church. The success of his ministry was given recognition when he was appointed Archbishop of York by Pope Honorius I in 632.
Almost at the same time, his work was cut short by the death of King Edwin while fighting the pagan leader, Cadwallon. Paulinus was persuaded to take the widowed Queen Ethelburga and her children, by sea, to safety in her native Kent. He himself spent the remaining twelve years of his life as Bishop of Rochester. He died there in 644.
Collect: God, who sent the Bishop Saint Paulinus of York to build up your Church, grant, we beseech you, by his prayers and example that we may make known your wonders and tell of your truth, that with him we may receive the reward you prepare for all your faithful. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Sprit, one God, for ever and ever.
Prayer over the Offerings: Receive, O Lord, these offerings of your people on the feast day of blessed Paulinus, so that through them, according to our confident hope, we may experience the help of your loving kindness. Through Christ our Lord.
Prayer after Communion: Replenished by the sacred Body and the precious Blood of your Son, we pray, O Lord our God, that what we celebrate with loving devotion may be our sure pledge of redemption. Through Christ our Lord.