Monday thru Friday at
See why so many consider the
Daily CATHOLIC as the
"USA Today for CATHOLICS!"
January 15-17, 1999
SECTION TWO vol 10, no. 10
To print out entire text of Today's issue, print this section as well as SECTION THREE and SECTION ONE
Events this weekend in Church History
On Friday, January 15th New York's Archbishop Cardinal John J. O'Connor celebrates his 79th birthday. It's a shame he will be 80 next year for he is younger than his age and a steady, conservative influence on the College of Cardinals to which he was admitted during the Consistory of May 25, 1985. He is the most influential, ranking prelate in the United States who has long been a crusader for pro-life and human dignity within the scope of God's Divine Laws and Church doctrine. For other events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history this weekend, click on MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES
Historical Events in Church Annals for January 15:
Death of Saint Secundina, a Roman maiden who was martyred for her Christianity during the persecution of the Roman emperor Decius. The soldiers guarding her were so impressed with her zeal that upon her death they converted to the faith.
Death of Saint Maximus of Nola, the bishop who ordained Saint Felix of Nola who, in turn nursed Maximus back to health when he had fled to the mountains to evade his captors.
Death of Saint Ephysius of Sardinia, patron saint of Sardinia who was martyred for his faith on the Island of Sardinia during the persecution of the Roman emperor Diocletian.
Death of Saint Paul the Hermit, the Egyptian hermit from Thebes who, to escape the persecution of Decius, retreated to the desert to become one of the first anchorites.
Death of Saint Macarius the Elder, another hermit from upper Egypt who consulted often with the great hermit Saint Antony of Egypt. One of Macarius' greatest virtues was his humility.
Death of Saint Isidore of Alexandria, who is known for his caring of the sick. He also is said to have defended the faith against Arianism. There was a fued between Isidore and Saint Jerome who leveled the charges that Isidore was an Origenist, but Isidore appealed to Saint John Chrysostom who convinced Jerome of his sincerity and innocence.
Death of Saint John Calybytes, a fifth century hermit who is considered the patron saint of the homeless.
Death of Saint Deirdre of Limerick, who, born of royal blood, gave it all up to found a convent attracting many women. She is considered the foster-mother of the Irish saints.
Death of Saint Maurus, pupil of Saint Benedict at Subiaco who Benedict molded into the ideal role model for all monks to emulate.
Death of Saint Malard, bishop of Chartres in France.
Election of Pope Sisinnius as 87th successor of Peter. While he had wanted to reinforce the walls of Rome angainst the hordes of Lombards and Saracens, he would have little time to implement this project since his pontificate would only last twenty days.
Death of Saint Bonet of Clermont, chancellor to the Frankish king who was appointed bishop and then retired to a Benedictine abbey to live out his life in prayer.
Death of Saint Ceowulf, ruler of Northumbria in England who abdicated his thrown to become a monk, financing numerous monasteries from his treasury.
Death of Blessed Peter of Casteinau. This Benedictine monk who Pope Innocent III had appointed head Inquistor for the Albigensians was murdered by the latter while preaching a crusade with Saint Dominic.
Disgarding his interdict from Rome, England king Henry VIII declares himself head of the Church of England, giving rise to the Anglican church and forever putting a crimp on the hopes for a Catholic British Isles.
Birth of Cardinal John J. O'Connor in Philadelphia. He would go on to become a priest and the most influential, loyal red-hat from the United States as Archbishop of New York City.
Historical Events in Church Annals for January 16:
Death of Saint Priscilla, who is best known as providing quarters for Saint Peter to set up headquarters for the early Church in her home along the Via Salaria. In effect, her home was the first seat of Peter.
Death of Pope Saint Marcellus I, 30th successor of Peter. His pontificate began on May 27th, 308 after the throne had been vacant for four years. Because of this He had to deal with the difficult problem of pardoning those who had adjured during the persecutions. He decreed that a Council could not be held without the authorization of the Pope.
Death of Saint Honoratius of Arles, Archbishop of Arles in France and founder of numerous monasteries, most prominently on the Isle of Lerins.
Death of Saint James of Tarentaise, first bishop of Tarentaise who is considered the "Apostle of Savoy." He was a disciple of Saint Honoratus.
Death of Saint Valerius, a hermit saint who was chosen Bishop of Sorrento on the scenic bluffs overlooking the Mediterranean in southern Italy.
Death of Saint Fursa of Perrone, an early Irish monk and founder of numerous monasteries throughout the emerald isle. Also known as St. Fursey.
Death of Saint Henry of Coquet, Danish saint who fled to the Coquet Island to escape marriage so he could devote his life to God as a hermit.
Martyrdom of the first Franciscan martyrs dispatched by Saint Francis of Assisi to the preach the faith to the Moors in Morocco. Franciscan missionaries Accursio, Adjutus, Berard, Otto and Peter were murdered by the sultan after being beaten to a pulp by the pagan saladin.
Death of Blessed Gonzalez of Amarante, a holy Portuguese Dominican, also known as Gonsalvo,who prophesied his death. He is said to have received many messages from the Blessed Virgin Mary and there have been miraculous accounts after his death where people have mysteriously seen him.
Queen Elizabeth I instructs English parliament to pass laws against Catholicism which in retaliation for Pope Saint Pius V's excommunication of the English queen. Her actions caused a wider chasm between England and Holy Mother Church.
Historical Events in Church Annals for January 17:
Death of Saint Antony of Egypt, hermit and abbot who was born near Memphis in Egypt and died on Mout Kolzim at the age of 105. For more, see THIS WEEKEND'S LITURGY.
Death of Saint Sabinus, Bishop of Piacenza and disciple of Saint Ambrose. In fact, Sabinus was known as Ambrose' "ghost writer," editing many of his writings.
Cesare Borgia makes a triumphant entry into Rome from his conquests in Romagna which the Italians cheer, but the rest of Europe is leary of the favor Pope Alexander VI has bestowed on this man who does not have the Church in his best interest. The greed, graph, nepotism and Alexander's tawdry affair with his mistress Lucretia Borgia contribute to the growing unrest of dissenters who want reform in the Church.
Birth of Michele Ghislieri in Bosco, Italy. This shepherd of sheep would become one of the greatest shepherds of men, first as a Dominican and then cardinal and then as Pope Saint Pius V. He would turn the papacy around within eighty years of the shambles Alexander VI had left it. He would choose Pius in honor of Pope Pius III who was the pontiff when he was born on this date in 1504. This great Pope of the Counter-Reformation would live to be 68 years-old and be canonized by Pope Clement XI, the last Pope to be canonized until Pope Saint Pius X.
LITURGY FOR THE WEEKEND
At the end of the First Week in Ordinary Time we commemorate, for the first time in 1999, the Observance of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday. The regular Masses for Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday are all of Ordinary Time. For the readings, liturgy, meditations and vignette on the Observance of Mary on Saturday, click on LITURGY FOR THE DAY.
Friday, January 15, 1999
First Reading: Hebrews 4: 1-5, 11
Psalms: Psalm 78: 2, 4, 6-8
Gospel Reading: Mark 2: 1-12
Saturday, January 16, 1999
Saturday January 16:
First Saturday in Ordinary Time and
Observance of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday
Green or White vestments
First Reading: Hebrews 4: 12-16
Psalms: Psalm 19: 8-10, 15 and John 6: 63
Gospel Reading: Mark 2: 13-17
Observance of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday
Honoring the Blessed Virgin Mary is a custom first promoted by the Benedictine Monk Saint Alcuin back in the days of Charlemagne (see archives December 23, no. 25 issue, volume 7). He composed different formulas for Votive Masses for each day of the week, with two set aside to honor Our Lady on Saturday. This practice caught on with great enthusiasm and eventually the Mass of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday became the Common of the Blessed Virgin. This Mass was a favorite with retired priests and those whose sight was failing for most had memorized this Mass and were able to say it by heart without having to read the Lectionary or Sacramentary. One reason Saturday was dedicated to Mary was that Saturday held a special meaning in Mariology. First of all, as Genesis accounts for, God rested on the seventh day. In the Old Testament, the Sabbath was Saturday. Jesus, Son of God rested in the womb and then, when He became incarnate, in the loving arms of Mary from birth until she held His lifeless body at the foot of the Cross. Thus the God-head rested in Mary. It was also on Saturday after Good Friday that Jesus gave His Mother a special gift and reward for keeping her faith in His Divinity intact by making an exceptional appearance to her. Thus, because of these reasons, the devotion spread by St. Alcuin and other liturgies that evolved within the Church, Saturday took on a special Marian significance. Saturday took on even more significance in honoring Mary when Our Lady imparted to visionary Lucia in her third apparition at Fatima on July 13, 1917, "Our Lord wishes that devotion to my Immaculate Heart be established in the world. If what I tell you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace; the war will end...I ask the consecration of the world to my Immaculate Heart and Communion of reparation on the First Saturday of each month...If my requests are granted, Russia will be converted and there will be peace...In the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph, and an era of peace will be conceded to humanity." As we draw nearer to that wonderful event, it is more important than ever to honor Mary's request on the First Saturday as well as each Saturday that her feast is commemorated in the Church calendar, not to mention responding to her call daily with the Rosary and attending Daily Mass, nourished by her Divine Son present body and blood, soul and Divinity in the Blessed Sacrament. It is in the Mass of the Blessed Virgin Mary where she remains in the background in the liturgy of the Word so that her Divine Son's words and His Presence take the spotlight as He should while Mary remains the chief intercessor before the Holy Trinity as she should and serves as the ideal for all Catholics to strive for, as we should. The Dictionary of Mary states quite succinctly, "Through these liturgical acts, (honoring Mary on Saturday) Christians exalt the person of Mary in the action that renews the sacrifice of Christ and in the action that prolongs His prayer."
SUNDAY, January 17, 1999
First Reading: Isaiah 49: 3, 5-6
Psalms: Psalm 40: 2, 4, 7-10
Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 1: 1-3
Gospel Reading: John 1: 29-34
Today's feast of Saint Antony of Egypt is superseded by the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time. Nevertheless, January 17th is the traditional feast of this early anchorite who laid down the foundations for monasticism.
Saint Antony of Egypt, Abbot and hermit
St. Antony of Egypt was born in the middle of the 3rd Century and decided to become a mendicant hermit after hearing the Gospel reading at Mass: "If thou wilt be perfect, go sell what thou hast and give to the poor"(Matthew 19: 21). After searching for the perfect way to do this, he opted to serve God in the desert as a hermit. It was here that he was attacked by a legion of from hell as the devils physically wounded him. This happened so often that at one time even the devils thought they had beaten him to death. But his faith and perseverance won out and he grew to fear no one as he said to the avenging devils: "I fear you not; you cannot separate me from the love of Christ." Finally giving up, the legion of demons fled and Jesus Himself appeared to Antony. He was the epitome of what a poor monk should be, wearing sackcloth and sheepskin, eating only bread and water and kneeling in prayer throughout the night. It's interesting here to note how we sometimes complain about kneeling for one hour in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, or that we can't fast on bread and water on Wednesdays and Fridays as our Blessed Mother requests. St. Antony attracted countless souls who flocked to him for spiritual direction and finally, after 20 years of seclusion, he knew Our Lord was calling him to teach these eager souls so the Church would flourish in the future. Like Saint Hilary last week, St. Antony's feast has continued on the same date in the Church Calendar for any, many years
Monday, January 18, 1999
Monday January 18:
Second Monday in Ordinary Time
Beginning of: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
First Reading: Hebrews 5: 1-10
Psalms: Psalm 110: 1-4
Gospel Reading: Mark 2: 18-22
PRAYER & DEVOTIONS
Tying in with our editorial, we bring you the powerful Prayer of Saint Michael, essential in these times when we need to invoke his help the most:
Saint MIchael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, cast into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl throughout the world, seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.
"Soon the evils of the world shall allow the harvest to come no more"
Those words above from the Blessed Virgin Mary in Message #351 were imparted to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart in late May, 1993 in which Our Lady warns that if we reap what we sow and the pickings are pretty slim because we have chosen to till in the world rather than God's fields. She follows this up with Message #352 on the Solemnity of Pentecost two days later imploring all her children to look to her Divine Spouse the Holy Spirit and ask Him to infuse us with His love and gifts that will assure we can till the soil of souls, beginning with our own, and harvest rich graces. For the messages 351 and 352, click on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..."
Messages Three Hundred-Fifty-one and Three Hundred-Fifty-two
Message Three Hundred-Fifty-one, May 27, 1993
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)
Beloved Hidden Flower, how I love and bless you and give to you my
Divine Son's Peace.
Please tell all of my children that God loves them infinitely. It is man, who of his own free will, has chosen the path to perdition.
Dear children, I have spoken to you for many days. I have come to be among you to bring you back to God that you might be lifted up into the heavenly air of everlasting light.
Now must the world cry out for mercy, for the world has entered upon its summer - soon the evils of the world shall allow the harvest to come no more. Only bleakness shall cover mankind, who already lies suffocating beneath a blanket of spiritual darkness. Your world is ruled by the evil one. Everywhere my Divine Son's name is abused, and those who would give Him all reverence are ridiculed, persecuted and derided.
Woe to all who, in this Year of Tears, do not cry out for Mercy. Woe to any who seek to stop Divine Mercy from coming to all who seek it. The summer of mankind wanes. The Hour of Justice draws near. Prepare as I have directed and return your lives to God. Consecrate yourselves to the Holy Spirit, the Sanctifier, and leave behind the world.
I love and bless you. Heed my words. Pray! Pray! Pray! Thank you for responding to my Call!
Message Three Hundred-Fifty-two, May 30, 1993
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart)
(SOLEMNITY OF PENTECOST SUNDAY)
Beloved Hidden Flower, tell all of my children that on this day all Heaven rejoices, for the Holy Spirit, the Sanctifier, the Love of the Father and Son, comes to all hearts that call Him. Therefore, I urge all of my little ones: Do not cease calling upon the Holy Spirit, for it is He Who brings you to reflect my Divine Son, to be transformed into Him, and thus do you come to Love and seek only the Will of the Father.
Dear children, let this day be a beginning for each of you, to humble yourself and seek the in-pouring of the Holy Spirit. Every day, and throughout the day, call upon Him, my Holy Spouse. Then your hearts will know only Love and through this Love will seek and do the Will of the Father. Then will you understand all I have spoken to you, particularly your conversion of heart.
I am with you as your Heavenly Mother. I hear your cries, your pleadings, and when they rise from an open, trusting heart I am able to help you attain that which you seek.
Dear children, pray every day for more and more of the Holy Spirit, and do not let your voices diminish. For I solemnly tell you that unless you are filled with the Holy Spirit and guided by Him in all things, you shall become lost in the darkness of apostasy and schism which swamp my Divine Son's True Church.
The Holy Spirit will bring unity. Pray and ask for this unity which shall come when my Immaculate Heart triumphs. O! I shall intercede for all of you, for I love each of you and want to bring you into the eternal embrace of the Triune Divinity.
Heed my words which I impart by God's authority. Pray! Pray! Pray! The hour draws near. Justice comes on wings of angels who obey God's command. You do not yet comprehend all I have said to you, but the moment is at hand when, through the Holy Spirit, you will understand and your hearts will rejoice, being filled with peace and hope.
I love and bless you. Remain faithful to the Truth and God shall not abandon you.
Daily Dose of curious contents of the Church
Catholic Populations by continents:
Total Catholic Population: 995,128,000
(source: The 1999 Catholic Almanac, Our Sunday Visitor, Publishers)
WORD OF THE DAY
"Woe to the world because of scandals! For it must needs be that scandals come, but woe to the man through whom scandal does come!"
Matthew 18: 7
Click here to go to SECTION THREE or return to SECTION ONE or click here to return to the graphics front page of this issue.
January 15-17, 1999 volume 10, no. 10 DAILY CATHOLIC