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                          Pope John Paul II


 
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Exonerating God


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Today's Martyrology
 


THE SACRED RULE

The Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass: A Primer for Clueless Catholics

for Celebrating the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass

Do not do at Mass what you would not do were you standing at the foot of Christ hanging on the Cross before you.

Do at the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass what you would do were you standing at the foot of Christ hanging on the Cross — for at Holy Mass you are at the crucifixion of Christ on the Cross, really and truly. Had you closed your eyes for a moment while standing before Christ on the Cross, you would be where you are this day at the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Do what you would have done. Do not do
what you would never have done.

This is the proper disposition of the soul at every single Mass.

 

 


New Series:

"From a Monastery Garden"
 

A Consecrated and Cloistered Nun in a Monastery Garden

Reflections on our Life in Christ through the Heart of a Consecrated and Cloistered Nun

Each day we bring you reflections from a Consecrated and Cloistered Nun which help us to see our way forward though difficult — and even wonderful — occasions in our lives. She is the Bride of Christ — We suggest that you listen to her carefully. It may be the very reason that you have come to this page ... although you could not have possibly foreseen it — but God did.
 

Dear Little Hearts,

Thistles! Every garden has them, thistles in one way or another — and every life has them. In order to reach and pick that which is beautiful we often have to fight our way through thistles, thickets and thorns. But it is worth the effort when we attain our sought for prize: the bloom of beauty, His love and truth.

We all know how tenacious thorns and thistles can be; like sin it can cling and impede our way forward. But if we take up the hoe, if we take up the sword of the Spirit, His Word, we can with His grace penetrate through all barriers into the Light. God may leave the thistles in the gardens of our souls for a time, and they too can serve His purpose, it means we have to fight, make an act of the will to chose HIM ...

Jesus and Mary our Mother have gone before us through the tangled thorns of this world. Let us follow in their footsteps.

In humility and love,

Sister MM

 

 Boston Catholic Journal


 

"What is Holiness?"

Holiness — sanctity — is simply the conformity of the will to the will of God.

 
Archbishop Fulton Sheen on the Law of Love If you listen to no other homily on being a Catholic and your obligation to love God and your neighbor ... listen   to this: The Law of Love by Venerable Servant of God Fulton Sheen


Complete Roman Martyrology in English

The Complete Martyrology in

 English

for Daily Reflection

Semen est sanguis Christianorum— The blood of Christians is the seed [of the Church], Tertullian, Apologeticum, 50

 

ROMAN MARTYROLOGY

Tuesday July 29th in the Year of Grace 2014

SEASON AFTER PENTECOST


This Day, the Twenty-Ninth Day of July

At Tarascon, in France, St. Martha, virgin, the hostess of our Saviour, and sister of blessed Mary Magdalen and St. Lazarus.

At Rome, on the Aurelian road, St. Felix II, Pope and martyr. Being expelled from his See by the Arian emperor Constantius for defending the Catholic faith, and being put to the sword privately at Cera, in Tuscany, he died gloriously. His body was taken away from that place by clerics, and buried on the Aurelian road. It was afterwards brought to the Church of the Saints Cosmas and Damian, where, under the Sovereign Pontiff, Gregory XIII, it was found beneath the altar with the relics of the holy martyrs Mark, Marcellian, and Tranquillinus, and with these was put back in the same place on the 31st of July. In the same altar were also found the bodies of the holy martyrs Abundius, priest, and Abundantius, deacon, which were shortly after solemnly transferred to the Church of the Society of Jesus, on the eve of their festival.

Also at Rome, on the road to Porto, the holy martyrs Simplicius, Faustinus, and Beatrix, in the time of the emperor Diocletian. The first two, after being subjected to many different torments, were condemned to suffer capital punishment; Beatrix, their sister, was smothered in prison.

Again, at Rome, the holy martyrs Lucilla and Flora, virgins, Eugenius, Antoninus, Theodore, and eighteen companions, who underwent martyrdom in the reign of the emperor Gallienus.

At Gangra, in Paphlagonia, St. Callinicus, martyr, who was scourged with iron rods, and given over to other torments. Being finally cast into a furnace, he gave up his soul to God.

In Norway, St. Olaf, king and martyr.

At Troyes, in France, St. Lupus, bishop and confessor, who went with blessed Germanus to England to combat the Pelagian heresy, and by assiduous prayer defended the city of Troyes from the furor of Attila, who was devastating all France. At length, having religiously discharged the functions of the priesthood for fifty-two years, he rested in peace.

At St. Brieuc, St. William, bishop and confessor.

Also, the demise of blessed Prosper, bishop of Orleans.

At Todi, St. Faustinus, confessor.

At Mumia, St. Seraphina.

Again at Rome, St. Serapia, virgin. Under Emperor Hadrian, she was delivered to two lustful young men, and as she could not be corrupted, nor afterwards burned with lighted torches, she was beaten with rods, and finally beheaded by order of the judge Derillus. She was buried by blessed Sabina in her own tomb, near the field of Vindician. But the commemoration of her martyrdom is celebrated more solemnly on the 3rd of September, when their common tomb was finished and adorned, and dedicated as a place of prayer

And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.


Omnes sancti Mártyres, oráte pro nobis. ("All ye Holy Martyrs, pray for us", from the Litaniae Sanctorum, the Litany of the Saints)

Response: Thanks be to God.

 


Roman Martyrology by Month

 

Why the Martyrs Matter


Each day
we bring you a calendar, a list really, of the holy Martyrs who had suffered and died for Christ, for His Bride the Church, and for our holy Catholic Faith; men and women for whom — and well they knew — their Profession of Faith would cost them their lives.

They could have repudiated all three (Christ, Church, and Catholic Faith) and kept their lives for a short time longer (even the lapsi only postponed their death — and at so great a cost!).1

What would motivate men, women, even children and entire families to willingly undergo the most evil and painfully devised tortures; to suffer death rather than denial?

Why did they not renounce their Catholic Faith when the first flame licked at their feet, after the first eye was plucked out, or after they were “baptized” in mockery by boiling water or molten lead poured over their heads? Why did they not flee to offer incense to the pagan gods since such a ritual concession would be merely perfunctory, having been done, after all, under duress, exacted by the compulsion of the state? What is a little burned incense and a few words uttered without conviction, compared to your own life and the lives of those you love? Surely God knows that you are merely placating the state with empty gestures …

Did they love their wives, husbands, children — their mothers, fathers and friends less than we do? Did they value their own lives less? Were they less sensitive to pain than we are? In a word, what did they possess that we do not?

Nothing. They possessed what we ourselves are given in the Sacrament of Confirmation — but cleaved to it in far greater measure than we do: Faith and faithfulness; fortitude and valor, uncompromising belief in the invincible reality of God, of life eternal in Him for the faithful, of damnation everlasting apart from Him for the unfaithful; of the ephemerality of this passing world and all within it, and lives lived in total accord with that adamant belief.

We are the Martyrs to come. What made them so will make us so. What they suffered we will suffer. What they died for, we will die for. If only we will! For most us, life will be a bloodless martyrdom, a suffering for Christ, for the sake of Christ, for the sake of the Church in a thousand ways outside the arena. The road to Heaven is lined on both sides with Crosses, and upon the Crosses people, people who suffered unknown to the world, but known to God. Loveless marriages. Injustices on all sides. Poverty. Illness. Old age. Dependency. They are the cruciform! Those whose lives became Crosses because they would not flee God, the Church, the call to, the demand for, holiness in the most ordinary things of life made extraordinary through the grace of God. The Martyrology we celebrate each day is just a vignette, a small, immeasurably small sampling of the martyrdom that has been the lives of countless men and women whom Christ and the Angels know, but whom the world does not know.

“Exemplum enim dedi vobis”, Christ said to His Apostles 2. “I have given you an example.” And His Martyrs give one to us — and that is why the Martyrs matter.


Joseph Mary del Campos
Editor, Boston Catholic Journal


Note: We suggest that you explore our newly edited and revised "De SS. Martyrum Cruciatibus — The Torments and Tortures of the Christian Martyrs" for an in-depth historical account of the sufferings of the Martyrs.


 


INTRODUCTION TO THE ROMAN MARTYROLOGY

by J. Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop of Baltimore


THE ROMAN MARTYROLOGY is an official and accredited record, on the pages of which are set forth in simple and brief, but impressive words, the glorious deeds of the Soldiers of Christ in all ages of the Church; of the illustrious Heroes and Heroines of the Cross, whom her solemn verdict has beatified or canonized. In making up this long roll of honor, the Church has been actuated by that instinctive wisdom with which the Spirit of God, who abides in her and teaches her all truth, has endowed her, and which permeates through and guides all her actions. She is the Spouse of Christ, without spot or wrinkle or blemish, wholly glorious and undefiled, whom He loved, for whom He died, and to whom He promised the Spirit of Truth, to comfort her in her dreary pilgrimage through this valley of tears, and to abide with her forever. She is one with Him in Spirit and in love, she is subject to Him in all things; she loves what He loves, she teaches and practices what He commands.

If the world has its "Legions of Honor," why should not also the Church of the Living God, the pillar and the ground of the truth? If men who have been stained with blood, and women who have been tainted with vice, have had their memory consecrated in prose and in verse, and monuments erected to their memory, because they exhibited extraordinary talents, achieved great success, or were, to a greater or less extent, benefactors of their race in the temporal order, which passeth away, why should not the true Heroes and Heroines of Jesus, who, imitating His example, have overcome themselves, risen superior to and trampled upon the world, have aspired, in all their thoughts, words, and actions, to a heavenly crown, and have moreover labored with disinterested zeal and self-forgetting love for the good of their fellow-men, have their memories likewise consecrated and embalmed in the minds and hearts of the people of God? If time have its heroes, why should not eternity; if man, why should not God? "Thy friends, O Lord, are exceedingly honored; their principality is exceedingly exalted." Whom His Father so dearly loved, the world crucified; whom the world neglects, despises, and crucifies, God, through His Church, exceedingly honors and exalts. Their praises are sung forth, with jubilation of heart, in the Church of God for ages on ages.

The wisdom of the Church of God in honoring her Saints is equaled only by the great utility of the practice thus consecrated. The Saints are not merely heroes; they are models. Christ lived in them, and Christ yet speaks through them. They were the living temples of the Holy Ghost, in whose mortal bodies dwelt all the riches of His wisdom and grace. They were in life consecrated human exemplars of divine excellence and perfection. Their example still appeals to our minds and to our hearts, more eloquently even than did their words to the men of their own generation, while they were in the tabernacle of the flesh. Though dead, they still speak. Their relics are instinct with sanctity, and through them they continue to breathe forth the sweet odor of Christ. The immortality into which they have entered still lingers in their bones, and seems to breathe in their mortal remains. As many an ardent, spirit has been induced to rush to the cannon's mouth by reading the exploits of earthly heroes, so many a generous Christian soul has been fired with heavenly ardor, and been impelled to rush to the crown of martyrdom, by reading the lives and heroic achievements of the Saints and Martyrs of Christ. Example, in its silent appeal, is more potent in its influence on the human heart and conduct than are words in their most eloquent utterances.

The Church knows and feels all this, in the Spirit of God with whom she is replenished ; and hence she sets forth, with holy joy and exultant hope, her bright and ever-increasing Calendar of Sanctity of just men and women made perfect and rendered glorious, under her unearthly and sublime teachings. In reading this roll of consecrated holiness, our instinctive conclusion is, precisely that which the great soul of St. Augustine reached at the very crisis of his life, the moment of his conversion "If other men like me have attained to such sanctity, why not I? Shall the poor, the afflicted, the despised of the World, bear away the palm of victory, the crown of immortality, while I lie buried in my sloth and dead in my sins, and thus lose the brilliant and glorious mansion already prepared for me in heaven? Shall all the gifts, which God has lavished upon me, be ingloriously spent and foolishly wasted, in the petty contest for this world's evanescent honors and riches, while the poor and contemned lay up treasures in heaven, and secure the prize of immortal glory? Shall others be the friends of God, whom He delights to honor, while I alone remain His enemy, and an alien from His blessed Kingdom?"

It is a consoling evidence of progress in the spiritual life in this country to find the Martyrology here published, for the first time, in English, and thereby made accessible, in its rich treasures of Sanctity, to all classes of our population. It will prove highly edifying and useful, not only to the members of our numerous religious Communities of both sexes, but also to the laity generally. Every day has here its record of Sanctity; and there is scarcely a Christian, no matter how lowly or how much occupied, who may not be able to daily peruse, with faith and with great profit, the brief page of each day's models of Holiness. These belong to all classes and callings of life; from the throne to the hovel, from the Pontiff to the lowest cleric, from the philosopher to the peasant, from the busy walks of life to the dreary wastes of the desert.

Let all, then, procure and read daily the appropriate portions of this Martyrology. Its daily and pious perusal will console us in affliction, will animate us in despondency, will make our souls glow with the love of God in coldness, and will lift up our minds and hearts from this dull and ever-changing earth to the bright and everlasting mansions prepared for us in Heaven!

Imprimatur,  J. Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop Baltimore, Maryland 1916

  Printable PDF Version

______________________________

1   The Lapsi were early Catholics who renounced the Faith and either sacrificed to the Roman gods by edict from the emperor, or offered incense to them to escape Imperial persecution and death, and who later returned to the Faith when persecution subsided. However, Christ warns us, “Every one therefore that shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before my Father who is in heaven. But he that shall deny me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven.” (St. Matthew 10.3-33)

2 St. John 13.15

 

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 "Scio opera tua ... quia modicum habes virtutem, et servasti verbum Meum, nec non negasti Nomen Meum"  
"I know your works ... that you have but little power, and yet you have kept My word, and have not denied My Name."
(Apocalypse 3.8)
 

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