March 6, 

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vol. 9
no. 47

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GOSPEL Reading and Reflections for the Mass of the day

March 6, 1998

Friday, March 6:
Weekday in the First Week of Lent

      First Reading: Ezekiel 18: 21-28
      Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 130: 1-8
      Gospel Reading: Matthew 5: 20-26

March 7, 1998

Saturday, March 7:
Weekday in the First Week of Lent and
Optional commemoration of Saints Perpetua and Felicity, Martyrs

      First Reading: Deuteronomy 26: 16-19
      Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 119: 1-2, 4-5,7-8
      Gospel Reading: Matthew 5: 43-48

    Saints Perpetua and Felicity
         These two women were martyred at Carthage on the northern coast of what is today Libya by the Romans. Though persecution and the slaughter of Christians was terrible in Rome itself, the senseless slaying of Christians was even worse in Africa and Egypt. Though Perpetua's father tried to intercede so that she would not embarass the family, her faith was more important to her than family and she would not renounce her belief in Jesus Christ as her Savior. Her refusal to adhere to the pagan wishes of her father moved servants under her father to join her in her faith, one of which was Felicitas or Felicity as she has come to be known. A covey of wild animals from leopards to bears to wild bulls were unleashed on the helpless Christians in the great arena of Carthage and to the sadistic delight of thousands both Perpetua and Felicitas were gored to death by the bulls. They are commemorated daily in the Canon of the Mass among the mentioned martyrs.

March 8, 1998

SUNDAY, March 8:

      First Reading: Genesis 15: 5-12, 17-18
      Responsorial Psalm: 27: 1, 7-9, 13-14
      Second Reading:Philippians 3: 17-21; 4: 1
      Gospel Reading: Luke 9: 28-36

March 9, 1998

Monday, March 9:
Weekday in the Second Week of Lent and
Optional commemoration of Saint Frances of Rome, wife, mother and religious founder

      First Reading: Daniel 9: 4-10
      Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 79: 8-9, 1, 13 and Psalm 103: 10
      Gospel Reading: Luke 6: 36-38

    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 6-8, 1998 volume 9, no. 47     LITURGY

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