March 8, 2001
volume 12, no. 67

Thursday, March 8th and 9th

Wednesday, March 7, 2001    Meditation

    Lenten Weekday and
    Optional Feast of Saint John of God, Religious Founder
      First Reading: Esther 12: 14-16, 23-25
      Psalms: Psalm 138: 1-3, 7-8
      Gospel Reading: Matthew 7: 7-12
Saint John of God, Religious Founder
           This saint, known for his work in the Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy, lived in the 16th Century in Portugal and Spain. One day while traveling he came across a small child with no shoes. Because his own shoes would not fit the child he lifted Him upon his shoulders and carried him, offering solace and help. While stopping to drink, the child revealed Himself as the Infant Christ Child and presented John a pomagranate, the fruit of the region which is sweet and stood for charity. It was crowned with a cross, representing sacrifice, which Jesus said would be the "Cross of Granada" where John, at the age of 42, would establish the Brother Hospitallers of St. John of God in the year 1537. John was given the name "John of God" by his own bishop who saw in John, a true saint. John died saving others. After many close calls rescuing people from the streets and burning hospitals, he dove into the River Xenil to save a drowning lad and succumbed of pneumonia from the cold, icy waters at the age of 55.

Friday, March 8, 2001    Meditation
    Lenten Weekday and
    Optional Feast of Saint Frances of Rome, Religious
      First Reading: Ezekiel 18: 21-28
      Psalms: Psalm 130: 1-8
      Gospel Reading: Matthew 5: 20-26
Optional Feast of Saint Frances of Rome
        Born in Rome in 1384, Saint Frances of Rome was married off by her parents at the age of 12 to Roman nobleman Lorenzo Ponziano. Though Frances had desperately wanted to become a nun, she succumbed to her parents' will and thus it was God's will that she be with her husband for 40 years during which time they never had an argument. Though the couple went through severe financial hardships, Frances always praised God for His providence. Frances had a large family and always felt her household duties were as much a prayer as kneeling in church as she often said, "A married woman must leave God at the altar to find Him in her domestic cares." After her husband died, she founded the Oblates and became a nun. She had many visions including often where her guardian angel would shine such a bright light that she was able to read her Divine Office at night via the Heavenly light. She promoted the concept of guardian angels and was also given the day she would die, March 9 and true to God's word, He took her home on that day in 1440 at the age of 56.

March 8, 2001
volume 12, no. 67
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