Today’s Saint

Daily Journey with the Saints

April 6 | Spiritual Companions

Saint William of Eskilsoe

A.D. 1125–1203

Saint William of Eskilsoe didn’t find the best of spiritual companions on earth.

Born in Paris, William became known as a holy young man. Instead of attracting friends, however, he attracted gossip by priests who envied William’s reputation for holiness. They didn’t want him to become their peer and even tried to sabotage his ordination. They failed, however, and William was ordained a priest.

These attempts of sabotage and abandonment continued to follow William. His biggest challenge came in 1165, when he was ordered to travel to Denmark with two others and become the abbot of a monastery that was in shambles. French priests at the time were terrified of Denmark, which they closely associated with Vikings. William went on with his companions, but when they reached their destination, fear struck them and both William’s companions left him. 

William stayed, and did what the other two priests thought was impossible. He reformed the monastery, instituted a strict rule of conduct, and established channels of communication between Denmark and France.

How could Saint William of Eskilsoe do it all alone? He couldn’t. He needed spiritual companions, and he found them in the lives of the saints who had gone before him. He read their writings and the stories written about them, and received the encouragement he needed to keep going.

The saints are our spiritual companions too, if we engage with them, learn about their lives, and follow their examples. That is what we are doing in this daily journey with the saints.

The saints are such powerful spiritual companions because they have made the journey we are called to explore for ourselves.

They serve as extraordinary examples of the Christian life, and after Christ, they are the best role models, guides, mentors, and coaches for those who truly desire to draw nearer to God and work out their salvation.

Some may object, saying that Christ is the only role model necessary. But the saints are living and practical proof that Christ's philosophy works. The saints show us that it is possible for a human person to be fully transformed in Christ.

Which saints are your spiritual companions?


The saints are my spiritual companions.

This reflection is brought to you from book title.

Also Known As: William of Æbelholt

Feast Day Shared By: Saint Galla and Saint Peter of Verona

Canonized: 1224

Canonized By: Pope Honorius III

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