Mass of the Preceding Fourth Sunday after Epiphany
Commemoration of Saint Blaise, Bishop and Martyr
Missa "Adorate Deum"
In the theme for the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany, Jesus Our Lord
commands the ungovernable forces in nature; the fury of the sea and the violence of the winds. He manifests in this act His Divinity and the Church takes a portion from St. Paul
's Epistle to the Romans, where he teaches that Christ came to save all men, for all are called to enter His kingdom and to be incorporated into His mystical Body.
Further, the Apostle shows that this precept of the Gospel is not at variance with the Mosaic law, which was already contained in the double commandment to love God and one's neighbor. The fulfillment of this commandment is the surest way to secure a merciful judgment at the end of the world.
To command the waves is regarded in Holy Scripture as a property of the divine power: "Thou who stillest the waves thereof," for man is powerless in the face of angry waters and stormy winds. "But He Himself slept," says St. Jerome, and the disciples drew near and roused Him, saying, "Lord, save us." In the story of Jonas we see a type of this miracle, when in the midst of danger and of general fear while, sleeping peacefully he was awakened, and by the mysterious secret of his "passion" delivered those who roused him" (Second nocturn). In the same way Jesus, risen from the sleep of death frees all who turn to Him and who, as St. Gregory says, "overwhelmed by the consequences of their sins, crushed beneath the weight of morality, find themselves beyond their own control, at the mercy of change and corruption. The elect now weighed down by suffering and shame shall be delivered, and rising one day with Christ they will see their human nature now liable to corruption, raised to the glory of the sons of God. It is with reason that St. Paul fervently longing for eternal joys, though still laden with the burden of mortality cries:" I long to be dissolved and to be with Christ" (Third nocturn).
"Whether He chides His creatures or commands them," says St. Jerome, "they all feel the effects of His rule and own Him as their Creator; for those creatures which to us are inanimate under the sovereignty of their Maker are responsive to Him" (Third nocturn).
There is a commemoration of the holy Bishop and Martyr Saint Blaise. He was elected Bishop of Sebaste in Armenia and had part in the redemption of the Saviour "The sufferings of the Savior abounded in him": and after a life of severe penance passed among wild beasts in a cave on Mount Argeus, "he gave his life for Jesus". Having suffered the most atrocious torments under Licinius, he was beheaded in 316.
Go to the ORDINARY OF THE HOLY MASS THE MASS OF THE CATECHUMENS
INTROIT: Psalm 96: 7, 8
Like the Redeemer, St. Blaise healed bodies while healing souls, wherefore his intercession was often prayed for. In consequence of his having saved the life of a child who was dying, choked by a bone which had stuck in his throat, the Church recognizes his "prerogative for healing all diseases of the throat". She blesses two candles to this effect and asks God for all those, whose necks the candles shall touch, that they may be delivered from throat disease or from any other ill through the merits of this holy martyr's passion. He is one of the fourteen "Auxiliary Saints." Let us with St. Blaise take part in the sufferings of the Redeemer so as to be with him to take part in His triumph.
We want to thank the Friends of Our Lady of Fatima for expediting these resources of the Propers. Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945