St Paulinus was Bishop of Nola in Southern Italy. So great was his charity that he sold himself into slavery in order to ransom the son of a poor widow, who had been carried off by the Vandals of Africa.
He was afterward set free, and returned to Nola, where he died in 431. Pope Pius X had his remains carried back in triumph to his Episcopal city at Nola, and ordered a new Mass in his honor to be inserted in the Missal and his feast raised to a double in the Universal Church. His figure is one of the most attractive of ancient times.
Without leaving his monastic retreat he exerted great influence on his times; he was not a man of action, but of prayer, given to solitude and a lover of poetry and fine arts.
(Adapted from The New Roman Missal by Father Lasance)