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Monday, April 18th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St John 10:1-10.


Monday of the Fourth week of Easter

18 April 2016

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ

“The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice,

as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. “

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Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St John 10:1-10.

Jesus said: “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber.
But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.
The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice, as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
When he has driven out all his own, he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice.
But they will not follow a stranger; they will run away from him, because they do not recognize the voice of strangers.”
Although Jesus used this figure of speech, they did not realize what he was trying to tell them.
So Jesus said again, “Amen, amen, I say to you, I am the gate for the sheep.
All who came (before me) are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them.
I am the gate. Whoever enters through me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture.
A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy; I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.”

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

Image: From Biblehub

DAILY MASS – Monday 18 April 2016 

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Monday of the Fourth week of Easter

18 April 2016

Commentary of the day

Saint Clement of Alexandria (150- c.215),

theologian
The Instructor, 9,83 f.

“I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly”

      Sick, we truly stand in need of the Saviour; having wandered, of one to guide us;  thirsty, of the fountain of life; dead, we need life; sheep, we need a shepherd; we who are children need a tutor, while all of humanity stands in need of Jesus…

      You may learn, if you will, the crowning wisdom of the all-holy shepherd and tutor, who is all-mighty and the Word of the Father, when he presents himself using the image of the Shepherd of the sheep. He is also the tutor of little children. He says therefore through Ezekiel, in his discourse to our forefathers, setting before them a description of his solicitude: “The lame I will bind up, and those who are sick I will heal, and those that have wandered I will bring back; and I will feed them in the pastures on my holy mountain.” (Ez 34:16)…. Master, lead us to your own pastures of righteousness; you who are our tutor, feed us in the pastures on your holy mountain, the Church, which towers aloft above the clouds, which touches heaven. “And I will be their Shepherd and remain among them” he says, (Ez 34:12)… He wishes to save my flesh by enveloping it in the robe of immortality… “They shall call me,” he says, “and I will say, here I am.” (Is 58:9)…

      Such is our tutor, good and righteous. He says, ” I did not come to be served but to serve ” (Mt 20:28). That is why he is shown in the Gospel to be “wearied,” (Jn 4:5) because he toils for us, and promises “to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mt 20:28)  And he says that only the good shepherd acts in this way. Generous, therefore, is he who gives for us the greatest of all gifts, his own life; generous, and loving; when he might have been Lord, he wished to be our brother; and so good was he that he died for us.

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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Monday of the Fourth week of Easter

18 April 2016

Saints of the day

St. Apollonius,

Martyr (+ c. 186)

Sant_Apollonio_di_Roma_B

SAINT APOLLONIUS
Martyr
(+ c. 186)

        Marcus Aurelius had persecuted the Christians, but his son Commodus, who in 180 succeeded him, showed himself favorable to them out of regard to his Empress Marcia, who was an admirer of the Faith.

        During this calm the number of the faithful was exceedingly increased, and many persons of the first rank, among them Apollonius, a Roman senator, enlisted themselves under the banner of the cross. He was a person very well versed both in philosophy and the Holy Scripture.

In the midst of the peace which the Church enjoyed, he was publicly accused of Christianity by one of his own slaves. The slave was immediately condemned to have his legs broken, and to be put to death, in consequence of an edict of Marcus Aurelius, who, without repealing the former laws against convicted Christians, ordered by it that their accusers should be put to death.

        The slave being executed, the same judge sent an order to St. Apollonius to renounce his religion as he valued his life and fortune. The Saint courageously rejected such ignominious terms of safety, wherefore Perennis referred him to the judgment of the Roman senate, to give an account of his faith to that body.

        Persisting in his refusal to comply with the condition, the Saint was condemned by a decree of the Senate, and beheaded about the year 186.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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Monday of the Fourth week of Easter

18 April 2016

Saints of the day

Bl. Marie-Anne Blondin

Beata_Maria_Anna_Sureau_Blondin_A

Bl. Marie-Anne Blondin
Religious (1809 – 1890)

Esther Blondin, in religion “Sister Marie Anne”, was born in Terrebonne (Quebec, Canada) on April 18, 1809, in a family of deeply Christian farmers. From her mother she inherited a piety centered on Divine Providence and the Eucharist and, from her father, a deep faith and a strong patience in suffering. Esther and her family were victims of illiteracy so common in French Canadian milieux of the nineteenth century. Still an illiterate at the age of 22, Esther worked as a domestic in the Convent of the Sisters of the Congregation of Notre Dame, that had been recently opened in her own village. A year later, she registered as a boarder in order to learn to read and write. She then became a novice in the Congregation but had to leave, due to ill health.

In 1833, Esther became a teacher in the parochial school of Vaudreuil. Little by little, she found out that one of the causes of this illiteracy was due to a certain Church ruling that forbade that girls be taught by men and that boys be taught by women. Unable to finance two schools, many parish priests chose to have none. In 1848, under an irresistible call of the Spirit, Esther presented to her Bishop, Ignace Bourget, a plan she long cherished: that of founding a religious congregation “for the education of poor country children, both girls and boys in the same schools”. A rather new project for the time! It even seemed quite rash and contrary to the established order. Since the State was in favor of such schools, Bishop Bourget authorized a modest attempt so as to avoid a greater evil.

The Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Anne was founded in Vaudreuil on September 8, 1850. Esther, now named “Mother Marie Anne”, became its first superior. The rapid growth of this young Community soon required larger quarters. During the Summer of 1853, Bishop Ignace Bourget transferred the Motherhouse to Saint Jacques de l’Achigan. The new chaplain, Father Louis Adolphe Marechal, interfered in an abusive way in the private life of the Community. During the Foundress’ absence, Father changed the pupils’ boarding fees. Should he be away for a while, he asked that the Sisters await his return to go to confession. After a year of this existing conflict between the chaplain and the Foundress, the latter being anxious to protect the rights of her Community, Bishop Bourget asked Mother Marie Anne, on August 18, 1854, “to resign”. He called for elections and warned Mother Marie Anne “not to accept the superiorship, even if her sisters wanted to reelect her”. Even though she could be reelected, according to the Rule of the Community, Mother Marie Anne obeyed her Bishop whom she considered God’s instrument. And she wrote: “As for me, my Lord, I bless Divine Providence a thousand times for the maternal care she shows me in making me walk the way of tribulations and crosses”.

Mother Marie Anne, having been named Directress at Saint Genevieve Convent, became the target of attacks from the Motherhouse authorities, influenced by the dictatorship of Father Marechal. Under the pretext of poor administration, Mother Marie Anne was recalled to the Motherhouse in 1858, with the Bishop’s warning: “take means so that she will not be a nuisance to anyone.” From this new destitution and until her death on January 2, 1890, Mother Marie Anne was kept away from administrative responsibilities. She was even kept away from the General Council deliberations when the 1872 and 1878 elections reelected her. Assigned to mostly hidden work in the laundry and ironing room, she led a life of total self-denial and thus ensured the growth of the Congregation. Behold the paradox of an influence which some wanted to nullify! In the Motherhouse basement laundry room in Lachine, where she spent her days, many generations of novices received from the Foundress a true example of obedience and humility, imbued with authentic relationships which ensure true fraternal charity. To a novice who asked her one day why she, the Foundress, was kept aside in such lowly work, she simply replied with kindness : “The deeper a tree sinks its roots into the soil, the greater are its chances of growing and producing fruit”.

The attitude of Mother Marie Anne, who was a victim of so many injustices, allows us to bring out the evangelical sense she gave to events in her life. Just as Jesus Christ, who passionately worked for the Glory of His Father, so too Mother Marie Anne sought only God’s Glory in all she did. “The greater Glory of God” was the aim she herself gave her Community. “To make God known to the young who have not the happiness of knowing Him” was for her a privileged way of working for the Glory of God. Deprived of her most legitimate rights, and robbed of all her personal letters with her bishop, she offered no resistance and she expected, from the infinite goodness of God, the solution to the matter. She was convinced that “He will know well, in his Wisdom, how to discern the false from the true and to reward each one according to his deeds”.

Prevented from being called “Mother” by those in authority, Mother Marie Anne did not jealously hold on to her title of Foundress; rather she chose annihilation, just like Jesus, “her crucified Love”, so that her Community might live. However, she did not renounce her mission of spiritual mother of her Community. She offered herself to God in order “to expiate all the sins which were committed in the Community”; and she daily prayed Saint Anne “to bestow on her spiritual daughters the virtues so necessary for Christian educators”.

Like any prophet invested with a mission of salvation, Mother Marie Anne lived persecution by forgiving without restriction, convinced that “there is more happiness in forgiving than in revenge”. This evangelical forgiveness, guarantee of “the peace of soul which she held most precious”, was ultimately proven on her death bed when she asked her superior to call for Father Marechal “for the edification of the Sisters”.

As she felt the end approaching, Mother Marie Anne left to her daughters her spiritual testament in these words which are a resume of her whole life : “May Holy Eucharist and perfect abandonment to God’s Will be your heaven on earth”. She then peacefully passed away at the Motherhouse of Lachine, on January 2, 1890, “happy to go to the Good God” she had served all her life.

The Vatican, VA

 

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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Monday of the Fourth week of Easter

18 April 2016

Saints of the day

Bl. Savina Petrilli

Beata_Savina_Petrilli

Bl. Savina Petrilli
Religious (1851 – 1923)

At the age of ten, Savina Petrilli, of Siena, Italy, read a biography of Saint Catherine of Siena that instilled in her a lasting devotion to this saint. Savina thereafter aspired to imitate Catherine’s devotion to the Eucharist, the Passion of Christ, and the Church. Following her First Holy Communion at the age of twelve, Savina became a frequent communicant. As a teenager, she was a very active member of a Marian sodality, the Children of Mary. At the age of eighteen, she had the opportunity to meet (Blessed) Pope Pius IX, who, upon learning that she was a native of Siena, commented that she should walk in Saint Catherine’s footsteps. Savina saw in this remark a sign from heaven that inspired her to found a new religious congregation. She confided her plan to her dying sister Emilia, who in turn promised to assist in its accomplishment by her prayers in heaven. Savina’s congregation received papal approbation in 1877 with the title, the Sisters of the Poor, devoted to the care of the needy. Mother Savina died of cancer on April 18, 1923.

 

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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THANK YOU

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“Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.”

Mark 16:15-20

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“I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:20.

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He guides me in right paths
for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
with your rod and your staff
that give me courage.

Psalms 23(22):1-3a.3b-4.5.6. 

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Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful

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