RSS

Tag Archives: Antioch

ST JEROME, CONFESSOR AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH

ST JEROME, CONFESSOR AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH

ST JEROME, CONFESSOR AND DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH – MEMORIAL: SEPTEMBER 30

Jerome was born in Strido in Dalmatia. As a youth, he was baptised at Rome and was educated in the liberal arts by Donatus and other very learned men. From a religious motive he travelled through all of Palestine. Then he retired into the vast desert of Syria. There he spent four years reading the divinely inspired books and meditating upon the blessedness of heavenly things.

HE MEDITATED UPON THE BLESSEDNESS OF HEAVENLY THINGS

After being ordained a priest by Paulinus, Bishop of Antioch, he returned to Palestine, to Bethlehem, to be close by the Crib of Christ the Lord. Here he drew up for himself a holy rule and overcame the snares of the devil by pious works and constant reading and writing. From all over the world he was called upon as an inspired authority to settle questions about the interpretation of Sacred Scripture.

AN EXPERT IN THE INTERPRETATION OF SACRED SCRIPTURE 

Pope Damasus and St Augustine consulted him often about very difficult passages of Scripture because of his singular knowledge and understanding not only of the Latin and Greek languages, but also of Hebrew and Chaldaic. He translated the Old Testament from the Hebrew. At the command of Pope Damasus, he made a faithful translation of the New Testament from the Greek and also wrote commentaries on many parts of Scripture. In his extremely old age, he passed [A. D. 420]. He was buried in Bethlehem, and was later transferred to Rome and entombed in the basilica of St Mary Major.

PRAYER:

O God, who graciously gave your Church blessed Jerome, your Confessor and peerless teacher, to explain the Holy Scriptures, grant, we beseech you, that, with the help of his merits and by your assistance, we may be able to put into practice what he has taught us by his life and works. Through our Lord.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964 [bold headings added]

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“I AM THE WHEAT OF CHRIST”- ST IGNATIUS

St Ignatius, Bishop and Martyr

Ignatius was the third Bishop of Antioch, the second successor of Peter in that see. In the time of Trajan, he was accused of being a Christian and condemned to be thrown to the beasts at Rome.

When he was being deported there in chains from Syria, he instructed all the cities of Asia at which he stopped with exhortations from the Gospel, even teaching the remote cities by his epistles.

In one of these cities, Smyrna, while being entertained at the home of St Polycarp, he wrote to the Romans, and among other things said this:

O beasts prepared to bring me salvation! When will they come? When will they be set loose? When will they enjoy my flesh? I hope they are ferocious, so that they have no fear of touching my body, as they sometimes have. Now I begin to be Christ’s disciple. Let fire, the cross, wild beasts, ripping apart of the limbs, pains of the entire body, and every torture of the devil’s refined art fall together upon me, so long as I merit gaining Jesus Christ.

Therefore, when taken to Rome, hearing the roaring lions, he burned with the desire for martyrdom and pronounced these words:

“I am the wheat of Christ: may I be ground by the teeth of beasts that I may become pure bread.” He suffered in the eleventh year of Trajan’s reign.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns and Oates, London, 1964

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

TODAY’S BIBLE READING (ACTS 18:23-28)

APOLLOS DEMONSTRATED FROM THE SCRIPTURES THAT JESUS WAS THE CHRIST.

Paul came down to Antioch where he spent a short time before continuing his journey through the Galatian country and then through Phrygia, encouraging all the followers.

An Alexandrian Jew named Apollos now arrived in Ephesus. He was an eloquent man, with a sound knowledge of the scriptures, and yet, though he had been given instructions in the Way of the Lord and preached with great spiritual earnestness and was accurate in all the details he taught about Jesus, he had only experienced the baptism of John. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him speak boldly in the synagogue, they took an interest in him and gave him further instructions about the Way.

When Apollos thought of crossing over to Achaia, the brothers encouraged him. When he arrived there he was able by God’s grace to help the believers considerably by the energetic way he refuted the Jews in public and demonstrated from the scriptures that Jesus was the Christ.

V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

TODAY’S BIBLE READING (ACTS 14:19-28)

THEY GAVE AN ACCOUNT TO THE CHURCH OF ALL THAT GOD HAD DONE WITH THEM.

Some Jews arrived from Antioch and Iconium, and turned the people against the apostles. They stoned Paul and dragged him outside the town, thinking he was dead. The disciples came crowding round him but, as they did so, he stood up and went back to the town. The next day he and Barnabas went off to Derbe.

Having preached the Good News in that town and made a considerable number of disciples, they went back through Lystra and Iconium to Antioch. They put fresh heart into the disciples, encouraging them to persevere in the faith. “We all have to experience many hardships,” they said “before we enter the kingdom of God.” In each of these churches they appointed elders, and with prayer and fasting they commended them to the Lord in whom they had come to believe.

They passed through Pisidia and reached Pamphylia. Then after proclaiming the word at Perga they went down to Attalia and from there sailed for Antioch, where they had originally been commended to the grace of God for the work they had now completed.

On their arrival they assembled the church and gave an account of all that God had done with them, and how he had opened the door of faith to the pagans. They stayed there with the disciples for some time.

V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.

 

Tags: , , , , ,

THE RADICAL ENTHUSIASM FOR SHARING THE FAITH WHICH PAUL RADIATED IS AT THE HEART OF THIS YEAR OF FAITH

HAVING THEMSELVES EXPERIENCED THE OVERWHELMING LOVE OF CHRIST, THEY BURNED TO SHARE IT WITH OTHERS.

Those two great missionaries, Paul and Barnabas, travelled widely, ceaselessly preaching the news of the Kingdom despite undergoing beatings, imprisonment and rejection. St Luke tells the story of their awesome undertakings, of how they cooperated with the Spirit to tell of Jesus Christ to the various communities. On fire with the love of Jesus, they overcame every obstacle, preaching ‘in season, out of season’. We get a marvellous glimpse of this in Chapter 14 of the Acts of the Apostles when, at the end of their first missionary journey after many difficulties, they arrive in Antioch. Bursting to tell the news, “they gathered the Church together and declared all that God had done with them, and how he had opened a door of faith to the Gentiles” (Acts 14:27).

Having themselves experienced the overwhelming love of Christ, they burned to share it with others. “They put fresh heart into the disciples encouraging them to persevere in the faith” (Acts 14:22). The radical enthusiasm for sharing the faith which Paul radiated is at the heart of this Year of Faith. “Faith grows when it is lived as an experience of love received and when it is communicated as an experience of grace and joy.” In his letter ‘Porta Fidei’ (The Door of Faith), Pope Benedict goes on to quote the words of St Augustine, “Believers strengthen themselves by believing.”

We must not let the gift of faith given to us lie wrapped up like a precious jewel hidden in a safe. “Fan into a flame the gift God gave you” (2Tim 1:6), Paul writes to Timothy, advice to encourage us also. True faith is not adhering to a bulk of doctrine, but an encounter with a living Person, Jesus. Now is the time to respond with all our hearts, with all our energies, to his welcome, “Come and see” (Jn 1:39) and allow ourselves to be transformed by his grace. Getting to know and love the Lord, listening and responding to his word, is the first step on this lifelong journey. As our love for him overflows, others are drawn to share this faith.

This Year of Faith, the Pope writes, is a summons to an authentic and renewed conversion to the Lord. We are to radiate the Word of truth in our lives. We are invited to look at and be inspired and nourished by the great riches in the treasury of our faith. “The love of Christ urges us” (2Cor 5:17) to go through that open door and bring others with us. Let us not sit idly by but, as Paul, having reached the end of his life urged his faithful disciple Timothy, “let us stand by the truths we have learned” (2Tim 3:14).
– Published in “Far East”, Magazine of the Columban Missionaries, issue January/February 2013. Find out more about the Columban Missionaries at http://www.columbans.co.uk and http://www.columbansisters.org (external links).

 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,