Paulinus of York

Feast day: October 10

Archbishop of York, died at Rochester, 10 October, 644.

He lived between 584-644. He was a Roman monk in St. Andrew’s monastery at Rome, and was sent by St. Gregory the Great in 601, with St. Mellitus and others, to help St. Augustine of Canterbury.

He laboured in Kent – with the possible exception of a mission to East Anglia before 616 – till 625, when he accompanied Ethelburga (Aethelburh), the sister of King Eadbald of Kent, when she went to the Northumbrian Court to marry King Edwin (later Saint Edwin), then a pagan. Before leaving Kent, he was consecrated bishop by St. Justus, Archbishop of Canterbury. He was successful in converting Edwin and large numbers of his people. With the assistance of St. Edwin, he established his see at York.

Following the defeat and death of Edwin by pagan Mercians at the Battle of Hatfield in 633, Paulinus was driven from his see, and he returned to Kent with Edwin’s widow Ethelburga, her two children, and Edwin’s grandson Osfrid. Paulinus then took up the see of Rochester, which he headed until his death.