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Tuesday, August 8th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 14:22-36.


Tuesday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time

In Australia & New Zealand: solemnity and feast of St Mary MacKillop, Virgin

8 August 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ

When the disciples saw Jesus walking on the sea they were terrified.

“It is a ghost,” they said, and they cried out in fear.

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 14:22-36.

After he had fed the people, Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and precede him to the other side of the sea, while he dismissed the crowds.
After doing so, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When it was evening he was there alone.
Meanwhile the boat, already a few miles offshore, was being tossed about by the waves, for the wind was against it.
During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea.
When the disciples saw him walking on the sea they were terrified. “It is a ghost,” they said, and they cried out in fear.
At once (Jesus) spoke to them, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”
Peter said to him in reply, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.”
He said, “Come.” Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus.
But when he saw how (strong) the wind was he became frightened; and, beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
Immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”
After they got into the boat, the wind died down.
Those who were in the boat did him homage, saying, “Truly, you are the Son of God.”
After making the crossing, they came to land at Gennesaret.
When the men of that place recognized him, they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought to him all those who were sick
and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak, and as many as touched it were healed.

 

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017
Image: From Bible Hub

__________________________________________

Tuesday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time

In Australia & New Zealand: solemnity and feast of St Mary MacKillop, Virgin

8 August 2017

Feast of St Mary MacKillop,

Virgin

 

 

Readings of the day in Australia (solemnity) and New Zealand (feast)

First book of Kings 17:8-16

And then the word of the Lord came to Elijah, ‘Up and go to Zarephath, a Sidonian town, and stay there. I have ordered a widow there to give you food.’ So he went off to Sidon. And when he reached the city gate, there was a widow gathering sticks. Addressing her he said, ‘Please bring a little water in a vessel for me to drink.’ She was setting off to bring it when he called after her. ‘Please’, he said, ‘bring me a scrap of bread in your hand.’ ‘As the Lord your God lives,’ she replied, ‘I have no baked bread, but only a handful of meal in a jar and a little oil in a jug; I am just gathering a stick or two to go and prepare this for myself and my son to eat, and then we shall die.’ But Elijah said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, go and do as you have said; but first make a little scone of it for me and bring it to me, and then make some for yourself and for your son. For thus the Lord speaks, the God of Israel: Jar of meal shall not be spent, jug of oil shall not be emptied, before the day when the Lord sends rain on the face of the earth.’ The woman went and did as Elijah told her and they ate the food, she, himself and her son. The jar of meal was not spent nor the jug of oil emptied, just as the Lord had foretold through Elijah.

Psalm 63, 1-8.

O God, you are my God, for you I long; for you my soul is thirsting. My body pines for you like a dry, weary land without water.
So I gaze on you in the sanctuary to see your strength and your glory. For your love is better than life, my lips will speak your praise.
So I will bless you all my life, in your name I will lift up my hands. My soul shall be filled as with a banquet, my mouth shall praise you with joy.
On my bed I remember you. On you I muse through the night for you have been my help; in the shadow of your wings I rejoice.

Letter of St Paul to the Colossians 3:12-17

As the chosen of God, the holy people whom he loves, you are to be clothed in heartfelt compassion, in generosity and humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with one another; forgive each other if one of you has a complaint against another. The Lord has forgiven you; now you must do the same. Over all these clothes, put on love, the perfect bond. And may the peace of Christ reign in your hearts, because it is for this that you were called together in one body. Always be thankful.
Let the Word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you. Teach each other, and advise each other, in all wisdom. With gratitude in your hearts sing psalms and hymns and inspired songs to God; and whatever you say or do, let it be in the name of the Lord Jesus, in thanksgiving to God the Father through him.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 27:55

Many women were there by the cross, watching from a distance, the same women who had followed Jesus and looked after him.

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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Tuesday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time

In Australia & New Zealand: solemnity and feast of St Mary MacKillop, Virgin

8 August 2017

Saints of the day

St. Dominic,

Priest

(1170-1221)

ST DOMINIC
Priest
(1170-1221)

        St. Dominic was born in Spain, in 1170. As a student, he sold his books to feed the poor in a famine, and offered himself in ransom for a slave.

        At the age of twenty-five he became superior of the Canons Regular of Osma, and accompanied his Bishop to France. There his heart was well-nigh broken by the ravages of the Albigenian heresy, and his life was henceforth devoted to the conversion of heretics and the defence of the Faith. For this end he established his threefold religious Order.

        The convent for nuns was founded first, to rescue young girls from heresy and crime. Then a company of apostolic men gathered around him, and became the Order of Friar Preachers. Lastly came the Tertiaries, persons of both sexes living in the world.

        God blessed the new Order, and France, Italy, Spain, and England welcomed the Preaching Friars. Our Lady took them under her special protection, and whispered to St. Dominic as he preached. It was in 1208, while St. Dominic knelt in the little chapel of Notre Dame de la Prouille, and implored the great Mother of God to save the Church, that Our Lady appeared to him, gave him the Rosary, and bade him go forth and preach. Beads in hand, he revived the courage of the Catholic troops, led them to victory against overwhelming numbers, and finally crushed the heresy.

        His nights were spent in prayer; and, though pure as a virgin, thrice before morning broke he scourged himself to blood. His words rescued countless souls, and three times raised the dead to life.

        At length, on the 6th of August, 1221, at the age of fifty-one, he gave up his soul to God.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

________________________________________

Tuesday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time

In Australia & New Zealand: solemnity and feast of St Mary MacKillop, Virgin

8 August 2017

Saints of the day

St. Mary of the Cross Mackillop,

Virgin

 

St. Mary of the Cross Mackillop,

Virgin

Mary of the Cross MacKillop was born on January 15, 1842 in Melbourne, Australia. Conditions in the mid-nineteenth century were still appallingly primitive. Poverty was rife especially in country areas, religious discrimination was widespread, the plight of the aboriginal people was deplorable, unemployment was common-place and communication was difficult in the extreme. Travel over any distance was for the fearless and tough. Many of the first settlers were of convict origin with little education and many were descendants of Irish Catholics much discriminated against because of their religion and place of origin. The Church had few priests to serve its people who were scattered around rural areas and, as a rule, experiencing poverty. Mary was the first of eight children of Scottish immigrants, Alexander MacKillop and Flora MacDonald. These Catholic parents imbued their children with a great love of their faith. The family was poor, the father often without work because he dabbled in business and politics.

Mary, in her teens, was called upon to assist the family finances by finding employment. At a young age, Mary had increasingly felt the call to live as a religious sister but she still had the obligation to care for her family. While working as a governess in Penola, she met Father Julian Tenison Woods who was parish priest of a large part of South East, South Australia. At that period of Australian history, schools, medical care and any form of social services were lacking, especially for the poor. The Catholic rural poor were especially disadvantaged. Blessed Mary’s dream of a free education for such children corresponded with the dream of Father Woods. He became her mentor and spiritual director and encouraged her vocation.

Together, they developed a plan for a congregation of sisters who would work wherever there was a need but especially in rural areas. They would live in small convents or in whatever style of dwelling that the local people had. It was a courageous plan. In January 1866 the plan was put into action. Mary and her two sisters began teaching in Penola, South Australia, in a stable refurbished by her brother. With the encouragement and mentoring of Father Woods, the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of the Sacred Heart was born. On the advice of Father Woods, Mary moved to the main South Australian city of Adelaide. On August 15, 1867 Mary and her companions professed the three vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Mary took the name Sister Mary of the Cross. She was joined by other young women, who responded to needsin rural areaswhere they provided, without payment, elementary teaching in religion and secular subjects to poor children who, otherwise had no hope of education. Soon afterwards Mary’s charitable heart opened to the destitute and elderly who were friendless and abandoned in a harsh society without any social welfare.

By 1869 there were sixty sisters working in schools, orphanages and refuges for women. Father Woods and Blessed Mary envisaged the sisters being governed centrally by one superior and being free to go wherever there was a need anywhere in the colonies. In a short time, therefore, the sisters could be found in the other colonies and in New Zealand. A complex set of circumstances led to the Bishop of Adelaide, who was once her friend and benefactor, excommunicating Mary in 1871 for supposed disobedience. Mary accepted the excommunication and the dismissal of many of her sisters with serenity and peace. The Bishop revoked the sentence before his death less than six months later. Mary returned to her work and the majority of the sisters, who had been sent away, returned to the Institute. They were dark days. Mary was advised to go to Rome to seek the help of Pope Pius IX. Crucial for the institute was the concept of central government, which would enable her to send the sisters anywhere there was a need, rather than be confined to a particular diocese.

While in Rome, Mary did not receive final approval for the institute—this came in 1888—but she did receive encouragement from many and especially from her three meetings with Pope PiusIX. She returned to Australia with support for central government. Back in Australia, further problems arose and Mary was ordered to leave Adelaide for Sydney where, in 1885 she was deposed as Mother General. It was not until 1899 that the sisters were free to elect her as their Mother General, an office she held until her death. She accepted these harsh changes and still retained respect for the bishops and priesthood and encouraged her sisters to do the same. Mary was untiring in her zeal for the poor. One of her favourite sayings was, “Never see a need without doing something about it.”

Her devotion to the Sacred Heart, the Blessed Sacrament and Saint Joseph impelled her to love God and His people. Her attention to the will of God enabled her to accept the joys as well as the difficulties that beset her so frequently. She wrote, “The will of God is to me a very dear book and I never tire of reading it.” Throughout her life Mary suffered from ill health and was often confined to bed with severe and debilitating headaches. But she used her illness to come closer to God. While visiting New Zealand when she was sixty years old she suffered a stroke. Her right side was impaired but she learned to write with her left hand and continued in the office of Superior General and even made several visitations to faraway convents. By 1905 deterioration was becoming evident and for the next years she suffered heroically and kept a cheerful, pleasant outlook on life, always speaking of God’s Will.

In 1909 her condition worsened and she died peacefully on August 8, 1909. Her last days were ones of sadness for those who were gathered around her. Cardinal Moran said when he left her, “I have this day attended the death-bed of a saint… Her death will bring many blessings.” One thousand sisters then in the Institute mourned her death. Mary’s remains were removed to the Memorial Chapel at the Motherhouse in North Sydney, NSW, Australia. Three popes, Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI, have prayed at her tomb as have thousands of pilgrims annually from all over the world. The lasting memory many sisters had of Mary was her kindness. It was not just the kindness reflected in all the works for which she had been responsible, nor the kindness of an isolated, aloof person but the kindness which St Paul describes in his first letter to the Corinthians: Love is patient and kind; it is never jealous; love is never boastful or conceited; it is never rude or selfish; it does not take offence and is not resentful. Love… elights in the truth; it is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, to endure whatever comes(1 Cor.13: 4-7).

During his visit to Sydney for World Youth Day in July 2008, Pope Benedict XVI, in speaking of Mary MacKillop, said “I know that herperseverance in the face of adversity, her plea for justice on behalf of those unfairly treated and her practical example of holiness have become a source of inspiration for all Australians”. The Holy Father spoke again, quoting Mary MacKillop, “Believe in the whisperings of God to your heart. Believe in him. Believe in the power of the Spirit of love”. Mary was so immersed in the presence of her God that she was well placed to hear His whisperings throughout her life.

– Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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Monday, August 7th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 14:13-21.


Monday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time

7 August 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ 

Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing,

broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds.

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 14:13-21.

When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself. The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns.
When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.
When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said, “This is a deserted place and it is already late; dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.”
(Jesus) said to them, “There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves.”
But they said to him, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.”
Then he said, “Bring them here to me,”
and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds.
They all ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the fragments left over –twelve wicker baskets full.
Those who ate were about five thousand men, not counting women and children.

 

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017
Image: From Bible Hub

_________________________________________

Monday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time

7 August 2017

Saint of the day

St. Cajetan,

Priest

(1480-1547)

SAINT CAJETAN
Priest
(1480-1547)

        St. Cajetan was born at Vicenza, in 1480, of pious and noble parents, who dedicated him to our blessed Lady. From childhood he was known as the Saint, and in later years as “the hunter of souls”. A distinguished student, he left his native town to seek obscurity in Rome, but was there forced to accept office at the court of Julius II. On the death of that Pontiff he returned to Vicenza, and disgusted his relatives by joining the Confraternity of St. Jerome, whose members were drawn from the lowest classes; while he spent his fortune in building hospitals, and devoted himself to nursing the plague-stricken.

        To renew the lives of the clergy, he instituted the first community of Regular Clerks, known as Theatines. They devoted themselves to preaching, the administration of the sacraments, and the careful performance of the Church’s rites and ceremonies. St. Cajetan was the first to introduce the Forty Hours’ Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, as an antidote to the heresy of Calvin.

        He had a most tender love for our blessed Lady, and his piety was rewarded, for one Christmas eve she placed the Infant Jesus in his arms. When the Germans, under the Constable Bourbon, sacked Rome, St. Cajetan was barbarously scourged, to extort from him riches which he had long before securely stored in heaven.

        When St. Cajetan was on his death-bed, resigned to the will of God, eager for pain to satisfy his love, and for death to attain to life, he beheld the Mother of God, radiant with splendor and surrounded by ministering seraphim. In profound veneration, he said, “Lady, bless me!” Mary replied, “Cajetan, receive the blessing of my Son, and know that I am here as a reward for the sincerity of your love, and to lead you to paradise.” She then exhorted him to patience in fighting an evil spirit who troubled him, and gave orders to the choirs of angels to escort his soul in triumph to heaven. Then, turning her countenance full of majesty and sweetness upon him, she said, “Cajetan, my Son calls thee. Let us go in peace.”

        Worn out with toil and sickness, he went to his reward in 1547.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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“This is my commandment:

love one another as I love you.”

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

“Stop judging, that you may not be judged.

###############################

May God have pity on us and bless us

##############################


Sunday, August 6th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 17:1-9.


The Transfiguration of the Lord – Feast

6 August 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ 

Jesus was transfigured before them; his face shone

like the sun and his clothes became white as light.

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 17:1-9.

Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother,  and led them up a high mountain by themselves.
And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light.
And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him.
Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.”
When the disciples heard this, they fell prostrate and were very much afraid.
But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and do not be afraid.”
And when the disciples raised their eyes, they saw no one else but Jesus alone.
As they were coming down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, “Do not tell the vision to anyone until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017
Image: From Bible Hub

__________________________________________

The Transfiguration of the Lord – Feast

6 August 2017

The Transfiguration of the Lord –

Feast

THE TRANSFIGURATION OF OUR LORD
Feast

        Our divine Redeemer, being in Galilee about a year before His sacred Passion, took with him St. Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, Sts. James and John, and led them to a retired mountain. Tradition assures us that this was Mount Thabor, which is exceedingly high and beautiful, and was anciently covered with green trees and shrubs, and was very fruitful. It rises something like a sugar-loaf, in a vast plain in the middle of Galilee. This was the place in which the Man-God appeared in His glory.

        Whilst Jesus prayed, he suffered that glory which was always due to his sacred humility, and of which, for our sake, He deprived it, to diffuse a ray over His whole body. His face was altered and shone as the sun, and his garments became white as snow. Moses and Elias were seen by the three apostles in his company on this occasion, and were heard discoursing with him of the death which he was to suffer in Jerusalem.

        The three apostles were wonderfully delighted with this glorious vision, and St. Peter cried out to Christ, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. Let us make three tents: one for thee, one for Moses, and one for Elias” Whilst St. Peter was speaking, there came, on a sudden, a bright shining cloud from heaven, an emblem of the presence of God’s majesty, and from out of this cloud was heard a voice which said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him” The apostles that were present, upon hearing this voice, were seized with a sudden fear, and fell upon the ground; but Jesus, going to them, touched them, and bade them to rise. They aimmediately did so, and saw no one but Jesus standing in his ordinary state.

        This vision happened in the night. As they went down the mountain early the next morning, Jesus bade them not to tell any one what they had seen till he should be risen from the dead.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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The Transfiguration of the Lord – Feast

6 August 2017

Saint of the day

St. Hormisdas,

Pope

(† 523)

SAINT HORMISDAS
Pope

(† 523)

        St. Hormisdas was bishop of Rome after Symmachus from July 26th, 514, to August 6th, 523, Anastasius and Justin being successively emperors of the East and Theodoric ruling the West as king of Italy. Hormisdas was a native of Frusino in Campania. Pope Silverius is said to have been his son.

      The memorable event of his pontificate was the restoration of communion between Rome and Constantinople, which had been interrupted since 484, in connexion with the Eutychian heresy.

        Hormisdas died early in 523, having held the see 9 years and 11 days. He, as well as all the popes during the schism with the East, except the too conciliatory Anastasius, has had his firmness acknowledged by canonization, his day in the Roman Calendar being August 6th. His extant writings consist of letters.

        Hormisdas had great administrative and diplomatic abilities, was singularly uncompromising and firm of purpose, and one of the most strenuous and successful assertors of the supremacy of the Roman see.

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

“Stop judging, that you may not be judged.

###############################

May God have pity on us and bless us

##############################


Sunday, July 30th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 13:44-52.


Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

30 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ  

The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls.

When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it”.

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 13:44-52.

Jesus said to his disciples: “The Kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls.
When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it”.
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind.
When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away.
Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous
and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.
Do you understand all these things? They answered, “Yes.”
And he replied, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.”

 

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017
Image: From Bible Hub

______________________________________

Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

30 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Peter Chrysologus,

Bishop and Doctor of the Church

(406-450)

SAINT PETER CHRYSOLOGUS
Bishop and Doctor of the Church

(406-450)

        Born in about 400, bishop of Ravenna. His preaching was famous, and more than 180 sermons, mainly on scripture and the liturgical year, have survived.

        He died in about 450.

The Weekday Missal (1975)

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

______________________________________

Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

30 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Germanus,

Bishop

(† 448)

ST. GERMANUS
Bishop
(† 448)

        In his youth Germanus gave little sign of sanctity. He was of noble birth, and at first practised the law at Rome. After a time the emperor placed him high in the army. But his one passion was the chase. He was so carried away as even to retain in his sports the superstitions of the pagan huntsmen. Yet it was revealed to the Bishop of Auxerre that Germanus would be his successor, and he gave him the tonsure almost by main force. Forthwith Germanus became another man, and making ever his lands to the Church, adopted a life of humble penance.

        At that time the Pelagian heresy was laying waste England, and Germanus was chosen by the reigning Pontiff to rescue the Britons from the snare of Satan. With St. Lupus he preached in the fields and highways throughout the land. At last, near Verulam, he met the heretics face to face, and overcame them utterly with the Catholic and Roman faith. He ascribed this triumph to the intercession of St. Alban, and offered public thanks at his shrine. Towards the end of his stay, his old skill in arms won over the Picts and Scots the complete but bloodless “Alleluia” victory, so called because the newly-baptized Britons, led by the Saint, routed the enemy with the Paschal cry. Germanus visited England a second time with St. Severus.

        He died in 448, while interceding with the emperor for the people of Brittany.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

“Stop judging, that you may not be judged.

#####################################

 


Saturday, July 29th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St John 11:19-27.


Saint Martha – Memorial

29 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ

“Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Messiah,

the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.”

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 11:19-27.

Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them about their brother [Lazarus, who had died].
When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat at home.
Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.
But even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you.”
Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise.”
Martha said to him, “I know he will rise, in the resurrection on the last day.”
Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live,
and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
She said to him, “Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.”

 

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017
Image: From Bible Hub

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Saint Martha – Memorial

29 July 2017

Saint of the day

St. Martha –

Memorial

 

SAINT MARTHA
Virgin
(1st century)

        St. John tells us that “Jesus loved Martha and Mary and Lazarus,” and yet but few glimpses are vouchsafed us of them. First, the sisters are set before us with a word. Martha received Jesus into her house, and was busy in outward, loving, lavish service, while Mary sat in silence at the feet she had bathed with her tears. Then, their brother is ill, and they send to Jesus, “Lord, he whom Thou lovest is sick.” And in His own time the Lord came, and they go out to meet Him; and then follows that scene of unutterable tenderness and of sublimity unsurpassed: the silent waiting of Mary; Martha strong in faith, but realizing so vividly, with her practical turn of mind, the fact of death, and hesitating: “Canst Thou show Thy wonders in the grave?” And then once again, on the eve of His Passion, we see Jesus at Bethany. Martha, true to her character, is serving; Mary, as at first, pours the precious ointment, in adoration and love, on His divine head.

According the tradition we find the tomb of St. Martha, at Tarascon, in Provence. When the storm of persecution came, the family of Bethany, with a few companions, were put into a boat, without oars or sail, and borne to the coast of France. St. Mary’s tomb is at St. Baume; St. Lazarus is venerated as the founder of the Church of Marseilles; and the memory of the virtues and labors of St. Martha is still fragrant at Avignon and Tarascon.

Reflection.-When Martha received Jesus into her house, she was naturally busy in preparations for such a Guest. Mary sat at His feet, intent alone on listening to His gracious words. Her sister thought that the time required other service than this, and asked our Lord to bid Mary help in serving. Once again Jesus spoke in defence of Mary. “Martha, Martha,” He said, “thou art lovingly anxious about many things; be not over-eager; do thy chosen work with recollectedness. Judge not Mary. Hers is the good part, the one only thing really necessary. Thine will be taken away, that something better be given thee.” The life of action ceases when the body is laid down; but the life of contemplation endures and is perfected in heaven.

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

_________________________________

Father,
your Son honoured Saint Martha
by coming to her home as a guest.
By her prayers
may we serve Christ in our brothers and sisters
and be welcommed by you into heaven, our true home.

 

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Thursday, July 27th, Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 13:10-17.


Thursday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

27 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ 

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”.

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

The disciples approached Jesus 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

27 July 2017

Saint of the day

St. Pantaleon,

Martyr

(† c. 303)

SAINT PANTALEON
Martyr
(† c. 303)

        St. Pantaleon was physician to the Emperor Galerius Maximianus, and a Christian, but, deceived by often hearing the false maxims of the world applauded, was unhappily seduced into an apostasy. But a zealous Christian called Hermolaus awakened his conscience to a sense of his guilt, and brought him again into the fold of the Church.

        The penitent ardently wished to expiate his crime by martyrdom; and to prepare himself for the conflict, when Diocletian’s bloody persecution broke out at Nicomedia, in 303, he distributed all his possessions among the poor. Not long after this action he was taken up, and in his house were also apprehended Hermolaus, Hermippus, and Hermocrates. After suffering many torments, they were all condemned to lose their heads.

        St. Pantaleon suffered the day after the rest. His relics were translated to Constantinople, and there kept with great honor. The greatest part of them are now shown in the abbey of St. Denys near Paris, but his head is at Lyons.

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

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Wednesday,July 26th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 13:1-9.


Wednesday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

26 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ

Jesus  spoke to them at length in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow.

And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up.

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 13:1-9.

On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea.
Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd stood along the shore.
And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow.
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up.
Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep,
and when the sun rose it was scorched, and it withered for lack of roots.
Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it.
But some seed fell on rich soil, and produced fruit, a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold.
Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

 

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Wednesday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

26 July 2017

Joachim and Anne,

parents of the Virgin Mary –

proper readings

 

Readings for the Feast in the Province of Québec

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to saint Matthew 13, 11.16-17

Jesus said to his disciples : “Knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you. 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.”

 

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

____________________________________________

Wednesday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time

26 July 2017

Saints of the day – Memorial

Sts. Joachim & Anne,

Parents of the Bl. Virgin Mary

SAINT JOACHIM and SAINT ANNE
Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Memorial

        These names are given to the mother and father of the Blessed Virgin by a tradition dating back to the second century.

 

By tradition Joachim and Anne are considered to be the names of the parents of Mary, the Mother of God. We have no historical evidence, however, of any elements of their lives, including their names. Any stories about Mary’s father and mother come to us through legend and tradition. We get the oldest story from a document called the Gospel of James, though this document is not a historical source, nor the Word of God. The legend told in this document says that after years of childlessness, an angel appeared to tell Anne and Joachim that they would have a child. Anne promised to dedicate this child to God (much the way that Samuel was dedicated by his mother Hannah — Anne — in 1 Kings).

As St. John Damascene wrote: “Joachim and Ann, how blessed a couple! All creation is indebted to you. For at your hands the Creator was offered a gift excelling all other gifts: a chaste mother, who alone was worthy of him.”

Whatever their names or the facts of their lives, the truth is that it was the parents of Mary who nurtured Mary, taught her, brought her up to be a worthy Mother of God. It was their teaching that led her to respond to God’s request with faith, “Let it be done to me as you will.” It was their example of parenting that Mary must have followed as she brought up her own son, Jesus. It was their faith that laid the foundation of courage and strength that allowed her to stand by the cross as her son was crucified and still believe.

Such parents can be examples and models for all parents.

Anne (or Ann) is the patron saint of Christian mothers and of women in labor.

Catholic Online

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Saturday, July 22nd. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St John 20:1-2.11-18.


Saint Mary Magdalene – Feast

22 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ

Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?

Whom are you looking for?”

 

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 20:1-2.11-18.

On the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark, and saw the stone removed from the tomb.
So she ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them, “They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him.”
But Mary stayed outside the tomb weeping. And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb
and saw two angels in white sitting there, one at the head and one at the feet where the body of Jesus had been.
And they said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken my Lord, and I don’t know where they laid him.”
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there, but did not know it was Jesus.
Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” She thought it was the gardener and said to him, “Sir, if you carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him.”
Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni,” which means Teacher.
Jesus said to her, “Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'”
Mary of Magdala went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and what he told her.

 

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Saint Mary Magdalene – Feast

22 July 2017

Saint of the day – Feast

St. Mary Magdalene

– Feast

SAINT MARY MAGDALEN
Feast

        Mary Magdalene, apostle of the apostles

 

Vatican City, 10 June 2016 – As expressly wished by the Holy Father, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments has published a new decree, dated 3 June 2016, Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, by which the celebration of St. Mary Magdalene, currently obligatory memory, will be elevated in the general calendar to the level of a feast day.

Archbishop Arthur Roche, secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, explains the meaning of the decree that will enable Mary Magdalene to be “celebrated” liturgically like the rest of the apostles. “The decision is situated in the current ecclesial context, which calls upon us to reflect more deeply on the dignity of women, the new evangelisation and the greatness of the mystery of divine mercy. It was St. John Paul II who dedicated great attention not only to the importance of women in the very mission of Christ and the Church, but also, and with special emphasis, to the peculiar function of St. Mary Magdalene as the first witness of the Risen Christ and the first messenger who announced to the apostles the resurrection of the Lord. This importance remains in today’s Church – as shown by the current commitment to a new evangelisation – which seeks to welcome, without distinction, men and women of any race, people, language and nation, to proclaim to them the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to accompany them on their earthly pilgrimage and to offer them the wonders of God’s salvation. St. Mary Magdalene is an example of true and authentic evangelisation, that is, an evangeliser who proclaims the joyful central message of Easter.”

“The Holy Father Francis has taken this decision precisely in the context of the Jubilee of Mercy to stress the importance of this women, who shows great love for Christ and was very dear to Christ, as confirmed by Rabano Mauro (“dilectrix Christi et Christo plurimum dilecta”: De vita beate Mariae magdalenae, Prologus) and St. Anselm of Canterbury (“electa dilectrix et dilecta Electrix Dei”, Oratio a LXXIII Sanctam Mariam Magdalenam). It is certain that the Christian tradition in the West, especially after St. Gregory the Great, identifies as the same person who poured perfume in the house of Simon the Pharisee, and the sister of Lazarus and Martha. This interpretation continued to influence the western ecclesiastical writers, Christian art and liturgical texts relating to the Saint. The Bollandists widely discussed the problem of the identification of the three women and prepared the way for the liturgical reform of the Roman Calendar. With the implementation of the reform, the tests of the Roman Missal, the Liturgy of the Hours and the Martyrologium Romanum, reference is made to Mary of Magdala. It is certain that Mary Magdalene formed part of the group of Jesus’ disciples, that she followed Him to the foot of the cross and in the garden in which she found the tomb, she was the first ‘testis divinae misericordiae’, as St. Gregory the Great affirmed. The Gospel of John says that Mary Magdalene wept, as she had not found the body of the Lord, and Jesus had mercy on her, allowing Himself to be recognised as the Master and transforming her tears into Paschal joy.”

The archbishop took the opportunity to highlight two ideas inherent in the biblical and liturgical texts of the new feast, which may contribute to a better understanding of the current importance of a saint such as Mary Magdalene.

“On the one hand, she has the honour of being the ‘prima testis’ to the resurrection of the Lord, the first to see the empty tomb and the first to hear the truth of His resurrection. Christ has a special consideration and mercy for this woman, who shows her love for Him, looking for Him in the garden with anguish and suffering, with ‘lacrimas humilitatis’, as St. Anselm says in the aforementioned prayer. In this sense, I would like to show the difference between the two women present in the garden of Paradise, and in the garden of the Resurrection. The first disseminates death where there was life, and the second proclaims Life from a tomb, the place of death. … Likewise, it is in the garden of resurrection that the Lord says to Mary Magdalene, ‘Noli me tangere’. It is an invitation not only to Mary, but also to all the Church, to enter into an experience of faith that overcomes any materialistic appropriation or human understanding of the divine mystery. It has ecclesial importance! It is a good lesson for every disciple of Jesus: do not seek human securities and worldly honours, but faith in the Living and Risen Christ.”

“Precisely since she was an eyewitness to the Risen Christ, she was also the first to testify before the apostles. She fulfils the mandate the Risen Christ gives her: ‘go to my brothers and say to them … Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”—and that he had said these things to her’. In this way she becomes, as is already known, an evangelist, or rather a messenger who announces the good news of the resurrection of the Lord; or, as Rabano Mauro and St. Thomas Aquinas said, ‘apostolorum apostola’, as she announces to the apostles what they in turn will announce to all the world. The Angelic Doctor is right to apply this term to Mary Magdalene: she is the witness to the Risen Christ and announces the message of the resurrection of the Lord, like the other apostles. Therefore it is right that the liturgical celebration of this woman should have the same level of festivity given to the apostles in the General Roman Calendar, and that the special mission of this woman be highlighted, as an example and model to every woman in the Church”, concluded Archbishop Roche.

__________________________________

************************************

She longed for Christ, though she thought he had been taken away

When Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and did not find the Lord’s body, she thought it had been taken away and so informed the disciples. After they came and saw the tomb, they too believed what Mary had told them. The text then says: The disciples went back home, and it adds: but Mary wept and remained standing outside the tomb.

We should reflect on Mary’s attitude and the great love she felt for Christ; for though the disciples had left the tomb, she remained. She was still seeking the one she had not found, and while she sought she wept; burning with the fire of love, she longed for him who she thought had been taken away. And so it happened that the woman who stayed behind to seek Christ was the only one to see him. For perseverance is essential to any good deed, as the voice of truth tells us: Whoever perseveres to the end will be saved.

At first she sought but did not find, but when she persevered it happened that she found what she was looking for. When our desires are not satisfied, they grow stronger, and becoming stronger they take hold of their object. Holy desires likewise grow with anticipation, and if they do not grow they are not really desires. Anyone who succeeds in attaining the truth has burned with such a great love. As David says: My soul has thirsted for the living God; when shall I come and appear before the face of God? And so also in the Song of Songs the Church says: I was wounded by love; and again: My soul is melted with love.

Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek? She is asked why she is sorrowing so that her desire might be strengthened; for when she mentions whom she is seeking, her love is kindled all the more ardently.

Jesus says to her: Mary. Jesus is not recognised when he calls her “woman”; so he calls her by name, as though he were saying: Recognise me as I recognise you; for I do not know you as I know others; I know you as yourself. And so Mary, once addressed by name, recognises who is speaking. She immediately calls him rabboni, that is to say, teacher, because the one whom she sought outwardly was the one who inwardly taught her to keep on searching.

Saint Gregory the Great (c.540-604),  Pope, Doctor of the Church  (Homily on the Gospel of John; PL 76, 1189-1193)

vatican

______________________________

Father,
your Son first entrusted to Mary Magdalene
the joyful news of his resurrection.
By her prayers and example
may we proclaim Christ as our living Lord
and one day see him in glory.

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Friday, July 21st. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 12:1-8.


Friday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

21 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ 

Jesus was going through a field of grain on the sabbath. His disciples

were hungry and began to pick the heads of grain and eat them.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 12:1-8.

Jesus was going through a field of grain on the sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick the heads of grain and eat them.
When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “See, your disciples are doing what is unlawful to do on the sabbath.”
He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he and his companions were hungry,
how he went into the house of God and ate the bread of offering, which neither he nor his companions but only the priests could lawfully eat?
Or have you not read in the law that on the sabbath the priests serving in the temple violate the sabbath and are innocent?
I say to you, something greater than the temple is here.
If you knew what this meant, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned these innocent men.
For the Son of Man is Lord of the sabbath.”

 

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Friday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

21 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Lawrence of Brindisi,

Priest and Doctor of the Church

(1559-1619)

SAINT LAWRENCE OF BRINDISI
Priest and Doctor of the Church
(1559-1619)

        At first glance perhaps the most remarkable quality of Lawrence of Brindisi is his outstanding gift of languages. In addition to a thorough knowledge of his native Italian, he had complete reading and speaking ability in Latin, Hebrew, Greek, German, Bohemian, Spanish and French.

He was born on July 22, 1559, and died exactly 60 years later on his birthday in 1619. His parents William and Elizabeth Russo gave him the name of Julius Caesar, Caesare in Italian. After the early death of his parents, he was educated by his uncle at the College of St. Mark in Venice.

When he was just 16 he entered the Capuchin Franciscan Order in Venice and received the name of Lawrence. He completed his studies of philosophy and theology at the University of Padua and was ordained a priest at 23.

With his facility for languages he was able to study the Bible in its original texts. At the request of Pope Clement VIII, he spent much time preaching to the Jews in Italy. So excellent was his knowledge of Hebrew, the rabbis felt sure he was a Jew who had become a Christian.

In 1956 the Capuchins completed a 15-volume edition of his writings. Eleven of these 15 contain his sermons, each of which relies chiefly on scriptural quotations to illustrate his teaching.

Lawrence’s sensitivity to the needs of people—a character trait perhaps unexpected in such a talented scholar—began to surface. He was elected major superior of the Capuchin Franciscan province of Tuscany at the age of 31. He had the combination of brilliance, human compassion and administrative skill needed to carry out his duties. In rapid succession he was promoted by his fellow Capuchins and was elected minister general of the Capuchins in 1602. In this position he was responsible for great growth and geographical expansion of the Order. Lawrence had a balance in his life that blended self-discipline with a keen appreciation for the needs of those whom he was called to serve.

Lawrence was appointed papal emissary and peacemaker, a job which took him to a number of foreign countries. An effort to achieve peace in his native kingdom of Naples took him on a journey to Lisbon to visit the king of Spain. Serious illness in Lisbon took his life in 1619.

Lawrence had a balance in his life that blended self-discipline with a keen appreciation for the needs of those whom he was called to serve.

 

 

Quote:

“God is love, and all his operations proceed from love. Once he wills to manifest that goodness by sharing his love outside himself, then the Incarnation becomes the supreme manifestation of his goodness and love and glory. So, Christ was intended before all other creatures and for his own sake. For him all things were created and to him all things must be subject, and God loves all creatures in and because of Christ. Christ is the first-born of every creature, and the whole of humanity as well as the created world finds its foundation and meaning in him. Moreover, this would have been the case even if Adam had not sinned” (St. Lawrence of Brindisi, Doctor of the Universal Church, Capuchin Educational Conference, Washington, D.C.).

The Roman Breviary (1964)

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Friday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

21 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Victor,

Martyr

(3rd century)

SAINT VICTOR
Martyr
(3rd century)

        The Emperor Maximian, reeking with the blood of the Thebæan legion and many other martyrs, arrived at Marseilles, where the Church then flourished. The tyrant breathed here nothing but slaughter and fury, and his coming filled the Christians with fear and alarm. In this general consternation, Victor, a Christian officer in the troops, went about in the night-time from house to house, visiting the faithful and inspiring them with contempt of a temporal death and the love of eternal life.

        He was surprised in this, and brought before the prefects Asterius and Eutychius, who exhorted him not to lose the fruit of all his services and the favor of his prince for the worship of a dead man, as they called Jesus Christ. He answered that he renounced those recompenses if he could not enjoy them without being unfaithful to Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, who vouchsafed to become man for our salvation, but who raised Himself from the dead, and reigns with the Father, being God equally with Him. The whole court heard him with shouts of rage. Victor was bound hand and foot and dragged through the streets of the city, exposed to the blows and insults of the populace. He was brought back bruised and bloody to the tribunal of the prefects, who, thinking his resolution must have been weakened by his sufferings, pressed him again to adore their gods. But the martyr, filled with the Holy Ghost, expressed his respect for the emperor and his contempt for their gods. He was then hoisted on the rack and tortured a long time, until, the tormentors being at last weary, the prefect ordered him to be taken down and thrown into a dark dungeon. At midnight, God visited him by His angels; the prison was filled with a light brighter than that of the sun, and the martyr sung with the angels the praises of God.

        Three soldiers who guarded the prison, seeing this light, cast themselves at the martyr’s feet, asked his pardon, and desired Baptism. Victor instructed them as well as time would permit, sent for priests the same night, and, going with them to the seaside, had them baptized, and returned with them again to his prison. The next morning Maximian was informed of the conversion of the guards, and in a transport of rage sent officers to bring them all four before him. The three soldiers persevered in the confession of Jesus Christ, and by the emperor’s orders were forthwith beheaded.

        Victor, after having been exposed to the insults of the whole city and beaten with clubs and scourged with leather thongs, was carried back to prison, where he continued three days, recommending to God his martyrdom with many tears. After that term the emperor called him again before his tribunal, and commanded the martyr to offer incense to a statue of Jupiter. Victor went up to the profane altar, and by a kick of his foot threw it down. The emperor ordered the foot to be forthwith chopped off, which the Saint suffered with great joy, offering to God these first-fruits of his body. A few moments after, the emperor condemned him to be put under the grindstone of a hand-mill and crushed to death. The executioners turned the wheel, and when part of his body was bruised and crushed the mill broke down. The Saint still breathed a little, but his head was immediately ordered to be cut off.

        His and the other three bodies were thrown into the sea, but, being cast ashore, were buried by the Christians in a grotto hewn out of a rock.

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

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Thursday, July 20th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Matthew 11:28-30.


Thursday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

20 July 2017

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ 

Jesus said to the crowds: 

“For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 11:28-30.

Jesus said to the crowds: “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”

 

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Thursday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

20 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Margaret of Antioch,

Virgin and Martyr

(3rd century)

SAINT MARGARET OF ANTIOCH
Virgin and Martyr
(3rd century)

        According to the ancient Martyrologies, St. Margaret suffered at Antioch in Pisidia, in the last general persecution. She is said to have been instructed in the Faith by a Christian nurse, to have been persecuted by her own father, a pagan priest, and, after many torments, to have gloriously finished her martyrdom by the sword.

        From the East, her veneration was exceedingly propagated in England, France, and Germany, in the eleventh century, during the holy wars.

        Her body is now kept at Monte-Fiascone in Tuscany.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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Thursday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time

20 July 2017

Saints of the day

St. Apollinaris,

Bishop and Martyr

SAINT APOLLINARIS
Bishop and Martyr
(c. 2nd-3rd century)

        St. Apollinaris was the first Bishop of Ravenna; he sat twenty years, and was crowned with martyrdom in the reign of Vespasian. He was a disciple of St. Peter, and made by him Bishop of Ravenna.

        St. Peter Chrysologus, the most illustrious among his successors, has left us a sermon in honor of our Saint, in which he often styles him a martyr; but adds, that though he frequently suffered for the Faith, and ardently desired to lay down his life for Christ, yet God preserved him a long time to his Church, and did not allow the persecutors to take away his life. So he seems to have been a martyr only by the torments he endured for Christ, which he survived at least some days.

        His body lay first at Classis, four miles from Ravenna, still a kind of suburb to that city, and its seaport till it was choked up by the sands. In the year 549 his relics were removed into a more secret vault in the same church. St. Fortunatus exhorted his friends to make pilgrimages to the tomb, and St. Gregory the Great ordered parties in doubtful suits at law to be sworn before it.

        Pope Honorius built a church under the name of Apollinaris in Rome, about the year 630. It occurs in all martyrologies, and the high veneration which the Church paid early to his memory is a sufficient testimony of his eminent sanctity and apostolic spirit.

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

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2017

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