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Piligrim

Bishop of Passau, date of birth unknown; d. May 20, 991

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Piligrim, Bishop of Passau, date of birth unknown; d. May 20, 991. He was educated at the Benedictine monastery of Niederaltaich, and was made bishop in 971. To him are attributed some, if not all, of the “Forgeries of Lorch”, a series of documents, especially Bulls of Popes Symmachus, Eugene II, Leo VII, and Agapetus II, fabricated to prove that Passau was a continuation of a former archdiocese named Lorch. By these he attempted to obtain from Benedict VI the elevation of Passau to an archdiocese, the reerection of those dioceses in Pannonia and Mcesia which had been suffragans of Lorch, and the pallium for himself. While Piligrim was ambitious, he also had at heart the welfare of the captive Christians in Hungary and the Christianization of that country. There is extant an alleged Bull of Benedict VI granting Piligrim’s demands; but this is also the work of Piligrim, possibly a document drawn up for the papal signature, which it never received. Apart from these forgeries, common enough at the time, Piligrim was a good and zealous bishop, and converted numerous heathens in Hungary, built many schools and churches, restored the Rule of St. Benedict in Niederaltaich, transferred the relics of St. Maximilian from Oetting to Passau, and held synods (983-91) at Ennsburg (Lorch), Mautern, and Mistelbach. In the “Niebelungenlied” he is lauded as a contemporary of the heroes of that epic.

MICHAEL OTT


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