William Benedict Fytch
An English Franciscan friar of the Capuchin Reform, whose family name was Filch; b. at Canfield, Essex, in 1563; d. 1610
Fytch, WILLIAM BENEDICT, an English Franciscan friar of the Capuchin Reform, whose family name was Filch; b. at Canfield, Essex, in 1563; d. 1610. His parents were of the Puritan party, and he himself professed Calvinism until he was sent to study in London, where he embraced the Catholic faith. He went over to Paris and entered the Capuchin Order. In 1599 he was at his own request sent to England; he had hardly landed when he was seized and cast into Wisbeach prison. Here he remained for three years, and whilst there held conferences with the heretics concerning the true Faith. He was at length released through the intervention of the French Ambassador and sent back to France, where he was appointed master of novices. He was held in great reverence at the French Court, and amongst the people on account of his gift of miracles and spirit of prophecy. He wrote several ascetical works, the most famous being his treatise “The Will of God“, which was written in English, but speedily translated into various European languages. In 1625 this treatise was translated into Latin by order of the Minister General of the Order.