Saint William of York, also known as William Fitzherbert, was an English bishop and theologian who lived in the 12th century. He is venerated as a saint in the Catholic Church and is the patron saint of craftsmen, prisoners, and bachelors. He was known for his charitable works, his zeal for the faith, and his remarkable holiness of life.
William was born in York, England. His birth date is not clear and not much is known about his early life, but he entered the Church at a young age and quickly rose through the ranks. He was ordained a priest and eventually became the Archbishop of York in the year 1143.
As archbishop, William was known for his devotion to the poor and his tireless efforts to promote the spread of the gospel. He was a champion of the faith, and spent much of his time traveling the country, preaching to the people and establishing new churches and monasteries. He was a great advocate of the monastic life.
William was known for his piety and devotion to the Church. He was known to fast often, and to pray for hours in the night.
William died on June 8th, 1154, allegedly due to poison administered in the chalice at Mass. One of William's clerks accused Osbert de Bayeux, an archdeacon of York, of the murder, and Osbert was summoned before the king to be tried at the royal court. Stephen died before the trial could take place. William was buried in York Minster Cathedral and within a few months of his death, miracles were attributed to his intervention and a sweet smell came from his tomb when it was damaged during a fire. His body was not decayed or burnt.
Saint Williams College, which was named for him is next to York Minster Cathedral. It was established between 1465 and 1467 with the permission of King Edward IV as the home for chantry priests of the Cathedral.
He was canonized in 1227 and his is feast day is celebrated on September 8th. He is remembered as a man of great faith, charity, and courage.
In addition to his charitable works, Saint William was also known for his interest in the arts and crafts. He is the patron saint of craftsmen, and it is said that he encouraged the development of the arts in England during his lifetime. Saint William of York is remembered as a great patron of the Church and of York, England. His legacy can still be seen in the city today.