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Thursday, July 23rd. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 13:10-17.


Thursday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

23 July 2015

Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it.

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Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 13:10-17.
 

The disciples approached him and said, “Why do you speak to them in parables?”
He said to them in reply, “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted.
To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away.
This is why I speak to them in parables, because ‘they look but do not see and hear but do not listen or understand.'”
Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled in them, which says: ‘You shall indeed hear but not understand you shall indeed look but never see.
Gross is the heart of this people, they will hardly hear with their ears, they have closed their eyes, lest they see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart and be converted, and I heal them.’
But blessed are your eyes, because they see, and your ears, because they hear.
Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it”.

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 Thursday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

23 July 2015

Commentary of the day

Saint Hilary

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Saint Hilary (c.315-367), Bishop of Poitiers, Doctor of the Church
Treatise on the mysteries, Preface

“Knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you”

The whole work contained in the holy books announces by word, reveals by deeds and sets forth by examples, the coming of Jesus Christ our Lord who, sent by the Father, became man by being born of a virgin through the action of the Holy Spirit. Indeed, throughout the whole course of creation, it is he who, by means of true and manifest prefigurations, begets, washes, sanctifies, chooses, sets apart or redeems the Church in the patriarchs: through Adam’s sleep, Noah’s flood, Abraham’s justification, Isaac’s birth, Jacob’s servitude. In a word, through the whole unfolding of time, all the prophecies, those demonstrations of God’s secret plan, were given to us in his kindness so that we might know his coming incarnation…

In every person, every period, every deed, the prophecies in their entirety display as though in a mirror the image of his coming, his preaching, his Passion, his resurrection and our gathering together in one Church… Starting from Adam, the point of departure for our knowledge of humankind, from the beginning of the world we find announced in numerous prefigurations everything that has received its complete fulfilment in the Lord.

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2015

Image: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Thursday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

23 July 2015

Saints of the day

St. Bridget of Sweden (1304-1373)

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SAINT BRIDGET OF SWEDEN
Patron saint of Sweden and co-patron of Europe
(1304-1373)

        St. Bridget was born of the Swedish royal family, in 1304. In obedience to her father, she was married to Prince Ulpho of Sweden, and became the mother of eight children, one of whom, Catherine, is honored as a Saint.

        After some years she and her husband separated by mutual consent. He entered the Cistercian Order, and Bridget founded the Order of St. Saviour, in the Abbey of Wastein, in Sweden.

  In 1344 she became a widow, and thenceforth received a series of the most sublime revelations, all of which she scrupulously submitted to the judgment of her confessor. By the command of Our Lord, Bridget went on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and amidst the very scenes of the Passion was further instructed in the sacred mysteries.

        She died in 1373.

Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. [1894]

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2015

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Thursday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

23 July 2015

Saints of the day

Bl. Vasil’ Hopko, Bishop and martyr († 1976)

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Blessed Vasiľ Hopko
(1904-1976)
Bishop and martyr

        Vasil’ Hopko was born on April 21, 1904 in Hrabské, a small village in eastern Slovakia. His father died when he was 1 year old, leaving his mother alone to care for the child. Vasil’s mother left for the United States in 1908 to find work, putting Vasil’ under the care of his grandfather. When the boy was 7, he went to live with his uncle, Demeter Petrenko, a Greek-Catholic priest.

His uncle’s example awakened in Vasil’ a call to the priesthood, and in 1923 he decided to enter the Greek-Catholic Seminary of Presov. He was ordained a priest on February 3, 1929 and was entrusted with the pastoral care of the Greek-Catholic faithful in Prague. Here, he was involved in many different activities:  work with youth, the elderly, the unemployed and orphans. Fr Vasil’ founded the Movement of Greek-Catholic Students and the Greek-Catholic Youth Union, and contributed to the building of the city’s Greek-Catholic parish, becoming its priest. It was also in Prague that, after 22 years, the young priest met his mother who had returned from the United States.

In 1936, Fr Vasil’ returned to Slovakia where he served as spiritual father in the Greek-Catholic Seminary of Presov. In 1941, he was appointed as secretary of the Bishop’s Curia, and he became professor of moral and pastoral theology at the Theological Faculty in Presov in 1943. He also found free moments to write and publish various works and became the first editor of the magazine Blahovistnik (The Gospel Messenger).

 After World War II, the Czechoslovakian Republic fell under a growing Soviet Bolshevik and atheist influence. Foreseeing a systematic “Sovietization” and the resulting totalitarian-atheistic Marxism, Bishop Gojdic of Presov asked the Holy See for an Auxiliary Bishop to help him defend against the attacks on the Greek-Catholic faithful and the Church. Fr Vasil’ became the newly-appointed Auxiliary Bishop and was ordained on May 11, 1947. He helped the Bishop greatly, preparing the people for hard times on the horizon.

    Little by little the Czechoslovakian Communist Party prepared for the violent elimination of the Greek-Catholic Church in its nation. On April 28, 1950, the Communists carried out their work of “liquidation” during the so-called “Council of Presov”, held without the presence of Bishops. Here they declared that the Greek-Catholic Church of Czechoslovakia no longer existed and that all its priests, faithful and churches were to be transferred over to the Orthodox Church. Bishops Gojdic and Hopko were arrested.

Following the arrest, Bishop Hopko underwent drastic interrogation and torture so he would deny his faith and confess to fabricated accusations. On October 24, 1951, after more than a year of cruel and diabolic interrogation, he was condemned by the State Court to 15 years in prison and a loss of all civil rights for 10 years. While in prison, in addition to the torture he received, he was given small doses of arsenic which caused a chronic poisoning, which was later verified by an analysis of his bones.

On May 12, 1964 he was released from prison for health reasons. After years of mistreatment, the Bishop suffered from grave physical ailments and mental depression caused by the constant torture and inhuman treatment. Notwithstanding all this, he continued to contribute actively to the resurgence of the Greek-Catholic Church.

        On June 13, 1968, the renewal of the Greek-Catholic Church of Czechoslovakia was re-estabilized after 18 years of open persecution. From 1968, Bishop Hopko began living in Presov; on December 20, 1968, Pope Paul VI confirmed his appointment as Auxiliary Bishop for all Greek-Catholic faithful in Czechoslovakia. He carried out this responsibility with great care, encouraging the faithful and ordaining priests.

Bishop Hopko died on July 23, 1976 in Presov. He made his own the words of Bishop Gojdic:  “For me, it is not important if I die in the Bishop’s Palace or in prison; what matters is entering into Paradise”.

        He was beatified by Pope John Paul II on September 14, 2003 at Bratislava.

– Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2015

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