DAILY CATHOLIC    MONDAY     June 1, 1998     vol. 9, no. 105


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Monday, June 1, 1998

      First Reading: 2 Peter 1: 2-7
      Psalms: Psalm 91: 1-2, 14-16
      Gospel Reading: Mark 12: 1-12


          Born of pagan parents in 103 AD in the village of Neapolis in Samaria (today Sichem in Palestine), Saint Justin was afforded a good education and devoted his life to the study of philosophy with a growing hunger to know of this God these upstart Christians preached. Unsatisfied with the contending schools of philosophy, he relentlessly continued his search until God Himself quenched that thirst for knowledge which was Divinely inspired through an old Christian man who explained in the simplest, but most profound terms what Christianity was about. Convinced he had found what he had long been looking for, Justin enthusiastically embraced Christianity, realizing that Sacred Scripture and the zeal of the martyrs led to faith and it was in faith that one could come to know God. Once he was converted he threw himself into spreading this faith with the same zeal he had during his search for this faith. Justin carried the Gospel to Egypt, Greece and Italy, distributing his writings far and wide, eventually arriving in Rome where he established a school of Christian philosophy. In his efforts to defend the Jews against the Romans, Justin wrote the Dialogue of Trypho and, armed with the strength of the Spirit wrote two special Apologies to the Roman Senate and Emperor Marcus Aurelius. The second Apology was more than Aurelius could stand. His pride and lack of control raging out of control, Aurelius ordered Justin be put to death. Brought before the Prefect of Rome to be sentenced, Justin and the disciples with him feared no earthly death. When the Prefect provoked Justin by mocking him with the question "Do you think that by dying you will enter this heaven you talk about and be rewarded by this God of yours?" Justin replied, "I do not think; I know!" As Justin was so certain, so also the faith he embraced is a certainty - that by striving to do God's Will through all that Jesus asks within the framework of His One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church we can be assured of joining Justin someday in our everlasting reward.

Tuesday, June 2, 1998

    Tuesday, June 1:
    Ninth Tuesday in Ordinary Time and
    Feast of Saints Marcellinus and Peter, Martyrs

    Green or Red vestments

      First Reading: 2 Peter 3: 12-15,17-18
      Psalms: Psalm 90: 1-4, 10, 14,16
      Gospel Reading: Mark 12: 13-17


          These two saints were martyred for the faith in the early fourth century by beheading. Roman-born Saint Marcellinus died with his Egyptian-born counterpart Saint Peter who were both arrested and executed by the Emperor Maximin in Alexandria, the last to be martyred there by Roman authority. Peter was a learned scholar of the Scriptures and Catechism and fervently fought the Arians and followers of Origen who undermined the authority and teaching of Holy Mother Church. As Bishop of Alexandria Peter protected his flocks against the persecutions of the Emperor Diocletian but was eventually forced into hiding where both he and Marcellinus were captured when Maximin came into power. Peter detailed how lapsed Christians could be received back into the Church and these instructions were adapted by the Eastern Church. Both saints were forced to first dig their own graves in an out-of-the-way place before they were beheaded somewhere between 303 and 311 A.D. There was an unusual account that began in the sixth century when both of their bodies miraculously appeared together with their heads intact. They were buried together in the Catacomb of St. Tiburtius. Their relics were sent to Frankfort, Germany in 827 by Pope Gregory IV as a gift to the Holy Roman Emperor Louis, son of Charlemagne.

June 1, 1998       volume 9, no. 105


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