Blessed Clement of Osimo was a contemporary of Saint Nicholas of Tolentino
and shared Saint Nicholas’ love of the poor.
Clement, called of Osimo, Italy, his birthplace, or called of Sant’
Elpidio, where he became an Augustinian, was prior provincial of the Province
of the Marches in 1269. It is likely that he already belonged to the Congregation
of Hermits of Brettino when this group joined with several others to form
the Grand Union in 1256. This was the region of the Augustinian Order which
produced Saint Nicholas of Tolentino.
On Pentecost Sunday, 1271, Clement was elected the Augustinian Order’s
third prior general. During his term of office he visited many houses of
the Augustinian Order, not only in Italy but also in France, and participated
in the Second Council of Lyons in 1274. At the general chapter held that
same year he resigned from office. In 1284, however, he was once again elected
prior general and continued as such until his death. It was at the chapter
of 1284 that Clement was given the task of overseeing a revision of the
Augustinian Order’s Constitutions or book of laws. In this task he
relied upon the assistance of Blessed Augustine of Tarano, with whom his
name has been associated ever since. The results of their combined efforts
were the Constitutions of Regensburg (Ratisbon), which guided the Augustinian
Order in its legislation until the Council of Trent.
Clement was a great promoter of studies in the Augustinian Order, and
did much to foster a spirit of unity and universality among the still newly
united congregations. He was described by the Augustinian, Henry of Friemar,
as “a man of admirable clemency, piety, prudence, and holiness of
life through whom God worked many miracles in the chapter of Ratisbon, at
which I was present.”
Clement died at Orvieto on 8 April 1291. The fame of his sanctity and
the extraordinary numbers of people who came to pay their respects caused
Pope Nicholas IV to order that his body remain unburied for several weeks.
Originally preserved in the church of Saint Augustine in Orvieto, his
remains were transferred to the church of Saint Augustine in Rome at the
beginning of the nineteenth century. On 4 May 1970 they were solemnly placed
in the chapel of the Augustinian General Curia in Rome.
The Augustinian Family celebrates his feast on 19 May together with Blessed
Augustine of Tarano.