Albert was born around the end of the 12th c. And in 1232 he became Abbot of the Benedictine Monastery of the Holy Virgin Mary of Stade, then an important Hansa port situated in the estuary of the river Elbe, in Germany.
In this monastery, very influential by virtue of its vast possessions. Albdert the Abbot realized the need of imposing a stricter ecclesiastical discipline having in mind the Cistercian rule.
In order to enforce such rule he needed the agreement of Pope Gregory IX in Rome, the centre of Christendom.
The Pope gave his consent to the desired reform, however Albert’s brothers and his superior, the Archbishop of Bremen, refused, being more interested in balance of power with the house of Welfen, rather than in a complex reform of the monastery.
Albert, feeling let down, resigned his position and entered the Minors’ convent of St John of Stade making a Franciscan vow of poverty.
Here we engaged in the writing of some theological works, and the so-called Annales , a Chronicle in Latin of the most important ecclesiastical and political events to his days. A chapter in this work is a fictional dialogue between two monks, Tirri and Firri, regarding the best pilgrimage routes to Rome. In this dialogue, told as a story, as it was customary in the Middle Ages, the abbot suggests various routes with precise information on places and distances to be covered, on the conditions of roads, and the length of the various stages in German miles. The original manuscript is preserved in the Herzog August Library of Wolfenbuttel in Germany. Today, the journey of Abbot Albert is the official route of the Via Roma Germanica.